Our last blog post explained common issues that stand in the way of older adults maintaining healthy nutritional habits. There’s another consideration that makes good nutrition crucial: the link between nutrition and cognitive decline in older adults.
Lack of nutrition in older individuals is far more common than you might realize. The National Resource on Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Aging notes that 35% – 50% of the seniors residing in long-term care facilities are experiencing malnutrition, and as many as 65% of hospitalized older adults may be malnourished also.
A poor diet makes older adults twice as likely to need to visit their doctors and three times as likely to need hospitalization. Malnourished seniors will also face the challenge of reduced muscle mass and increased challenges recovering than those with better eating habits. Along with that, new research highlights the role that healthy and balanced eating plays in shielding against cognitive difficulty. Healthy Aging and Longevity research shows an unexpected link between eating habits exercised throughout their adult years and age-related cognitive decline risk.
To limit the danger of cognitive decline, older adults can follow a diet that is rich in fish, cereals, veggies, and fruits, while low in hydrogenated fats.
What Are the Additional Concerns for Someone With Diabetes?
Older adults with diabetes need to be especially careful with the food choices they make. In particular, an older individual with diabetes might experience a decrease in memory after a meal, especially if that dish consists of carbohydrate-rich foods, sugary soda, and so on. While the specific causes behind these issues are unclear, the spike of insulin in the brain is a likely factor.
Making healthy diet choices today can help older adults minimize the risk of cognitive decline later on. Take these proactive steps to enhance the nourishment of a senior loved one:
- Keep blood pressure as well as cholesterol levels regulated.
- Implement a workout routine.
- Maintain a healthy weight and BMI.
- Supply healthy food choices for every meal. For instance, replace basic carbohydrates with complex ones like beans, whole grains, and fresh veggies.
- Request assistance from a dietitian or a home care specialist like Dakota Home Care.
For older adults, a quick snack is usually easier to prepare than a full meal. The home care professionals at Dakota Home Care can help in a variety of ways, by preparing nutritious meals, picking up groceries, providing transportation to the grocery store, and more.
Connect with us online or at (877) 691-0015 to find out more about how we can help somebody you love with customized in-home care services in Bismark, Fargo, Lincoln, Mandan, and the surrounding locations.