Jan 24 2014
Malnutrition is more common with the elderly than those of any other age group. This is often due to alterations in body composition, the ability to access and eat certain foods and adequate energy intake.
Depression can also play a role in malnutrition amongst elderly individuals and will cause changes in the likes of energy levels, weight, appetite, well-being and digestion.
Staying in top condition
Both ill-fitting dentures and poor dental health can instigate malnutrition issues with the elderly as such ailments can create problems when it comes to chewing and swallowing food. Staying in top condition is therefore imperative and the easiest way to do this is to attend regular health checkups for both general health and dental hygiene.
Create a meal plan
Talking to a nutritionist is a great option for the elderly and can help them to form a healthy eating plan that is suited to their exact needs. Certain people may find that they need more iron or calcium in their diet as they age and a diet plan can set out ways for you to obtain these vital nutrients.
Others may discover that they eating the wrong foods entirely. The right types of food will provide all the vitamins and nutrients required to function healthily; certain foods will even promote higher energy levels, a happier mind-set and more drive.
Help is at hand
Sometimes malnutrition is quite simply caused by mobility issues. If an elderly individual has trouble getting around, he or she may find it difficult to access certain areas of the household.
A simple solution would be to install a stairlift. From curved stairlifts to narrow styles, there are a number of lift variants available. Installing such a device is easy and once in place should allow the elderly individual to freely move around their home as and when they please – thus allowing them to stay independent and active.
The elderly may wish to employ an individual to come to their home on a weekly basis in order to prepare meals and acquire a shopping list to deal with. Quite simply, having a few meals ready in the fridge or freezer is a great way to deter issues such as malnutrition and ensure elderly individual get all the sustenance they need.
Shopping online is also another great way to ensure plenty of food is in the home at all times and such a task can even be completed from the comfort of the individual’s own home.
Due to more and more of the elderly appearing undernourished, a project to raise awareness of malnutrition amongst the elderly has been launched. Raising awareness will provide those who need help with a number of handy sources.
This project was put in place after almost one million people aged over 65 years in the UK were said to suffer from this particular ailment. The aim is to raise awareness amongst professionals, including doctors, care homes, hospitals and surgeries so that problems are not allowed to escalate.