Proper nutrition is so important for our senior family members for maintaining their health, and enabling their medications to work effectively. But sometimes our elders don’t eat nutritious food or eat enough food to support good health. According to the National Institute on Aging, there are some ¬†reasons why they don’t eat properly. One of the most common reasons for a lessening of appetite is that as we age our senses of smell and taste are often reduced. This affects the experience of eating by making food smell and taste less appealing. Similarly, a reduction in vision can also affect the appetite, because much of food’s appeal is in its appearance.
Some medications have side effects that can cause a loss of appetite, cause food to taste bad or to have no flavor. If this is the case, talk to your doctor about possibly substituting a different medication or prescribing another medication to counteract the side effects. Some older people have problems with chewing. They may have teeth or gum problems or a problem with their dentures. This may be remedied by a visit to the dentist.
It may also help to alter the diet to include softer foods. Sometimes the problem can be that meals are eaten alone. Meals that are shared with other people are much more interesting and even appetizing. This is one of the great benefits of elder care facilities Vancouver,¬†WA, where meals can be an engaging social event. Dining with friends can encourage healthy eating. One more common reason seniors may not eat well is that they dislike cooking in general or cooking for one person. This is another advantage of living in an elder care facility, where the meals are prepared for seniors with a focus on nutrition, appearance and balance.
Just knowing that there are steps you can take to ensure that your loved one is getting the nutrition that is so vital to their health, can help you relax and get him or her on a healthful and tasty diet.