Nutrition for Older Adults
Nutrition plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of good health. According to the World Health Organization, “Nutrition is the intake of food, considered in relation to the body’s needs.” Food is, thus, the source of nutrients. There are six important classes of nutrients: carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, water, vitamins, and minerals. All nutrients are essential and should be worked into the diet to constitute what is called a balanced diet.
Getting adequate nutrition, however, is a challenge for older adults because the body id less efficient at absorbing key nutrients. Thus, older adults are at a greater risk of malnourishment. Older adults are faced with “physiological changes, the presence of disease, and economic, social, and psychological circumstances. These factors can increase the risk of malnutrition by altering nutrient needs and decreasing the motivation to eat and the ability to acquire and enjoy food” (p.612). It is, therefore, of utmost importance that special attention be given to the nutritional needs of older adults to ensure that the human body is strong and capable of preventing diseases which are caused by certain dietary factors.
DOROTHEA’S DIET ASSESSMENT
1. Recommendations to improve Dorothea’s diet.
Dorothea’s current diet regime lacks essential nutrients such as vitamins and minerals. In addition, there is not sufficient water intake. Dorothea’s diet lacks variety of food and the nutritional value of her current eating regime is extremely poor. As a result Dorothea is underweight and undernourished.
Recommended Dietary Changes:
1,5 cups of fruits-half a cup of bananas, half a cup of sectioned orange,1 cup of 100% fruit juice
2 cups of vegetables- 1 cup of cooked spinach, 6 raw baby carrots,1 cup of raw lettuce
5 ounces of Grains- Cooked Oatmeal(half a cup),Whole grain bread (2 slices) ,brown rice(1 cup cooked)
5 ounces of protein- 1 ounce cooked fish, 2 eggs, 1 ounce cooked skinless chicken, half an ounce of nuts(12 almonds) , half an ounce of pumpkin seeds
3 cups of Dairy products- 2 cups of vitamin D-fortified low-fat milk, one cup of fat-free yoghurt
5 tsp of Oil- Trans-fat free Margarine (2 tsp),avocado( half med),Peanut butter( 2 T)
5 cups of water
2. Due to Dorothea’s inactivity I recommend that Dorothea engage in low intensity exercise. A daily ten to twenty minute walk around the block is a great aerobic exercise. Moreover, I suggest that Dorothea walk in straight lines in a heel to toe fashion in the course of her daily walk, this will increase her balance. In addition, to increase endurance Dorothea should stretch an elastic band at least twice a week. Furthermore, Dorothea will benefit from performing daily static stretches to enhance her flexibility.
3. Dorothea is currently at risk of developing Heart diseases due to the lack of lack of fruits and vegetables that are essential in controlling blood pressure and lowering blood cholesterol. Moreover, Dorothea is at risk of developing certain cancers. Dorothea’s age and the lack of potassium and vitamin D in her diet also put her risk of developing osteoporosis.
In addition, the lack of essential minerals such as …