The Importance of a Healthy and Balanced Diet for Senior Strength
Be it a child, young adult or an elder adult, observing a healthy and balanced diet is important. Nourishing one’s body becomes even more important as one reaches middle age and beyond. As one gets older, eating a healthy diet can improve mental sharpness, boost energy levels, and increase the body’s resistance to sickness. More than helping the body to stay in top shape, keeping a proper diet is also key to a positive outlook and staying emotionally well.
Elder adults are extremely susceptible to malnutrition and this happens due to the following scientific reasons:
- Metabolism and appetite slows down with age
- Less caloric intake means less opportunity to absorb nutrients
- The body’s natural ability to absorb nutrients, especially specific important nutrients, decreases with age
Healthy eating for seniors is thus exponentially important for several reasons. And the good news is that it’s never too late to start building good eating habits whatever your age. Today is the best time to change one’s eating lifestyle.
Improving your diet now can help you:
- Prolong life and live it to the fullest.
Proper nutrition is reflected in studies to boost immunity, fight illness-causing toxins, maintaining a healthy weight, and reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, bone loss, and cancer. Partnered with regular exercise and physical activities, a good and nutritious diet can contribute to keeping your strength and independence as you age.
- Improve mental acuteness
Adding fruits, leafy vegetables, and fish and nuts packed with omega-3 fatty acids helps one improve focus and decrease their risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Green tea, rich in antioxidants, also enhances memory and mental sharpness as one ages.
- Improves overall wellness
Proper diet gives one more energy and therefore helps one look better, resulting in a boost in mood and self-esteem. It’s all connected—when your body feels good, you feel happier inside and out.
To start eating a healthy and balanced diet, here are a few practices to observe:
- Aim for 2 to 3 servings of fruits a day. When it comes to veggies, choose antioxidant-rich dark, leafy greens, such spinach and broccol. Make vegetables more appetizing by drizzling them with olive oil or frying with them with garlic or chili flakes. Aim eating 2 to 3 cups every day.
- Eat more fiber because it lowers your risk for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. It also helps nourish your skin and help you lose weight. As one ages, digestion becomes less efficient, so it’s important to include enough fiber in your diet.
- Keep your protein sources varied. Eating high-quality protein improves one’s mood and boosts resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression. It can even help one think more clearly. Eating too much protein from processed meat products such as hot dogs, bacon, and salami may increase your risk of heart disease, cancer, and other health problems. Instead of just eating red meat include more fish, beans, peas, eggs, nuts, and seeds in your diet.
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