Senior stage of life comes with a variety of new rules when it comes to health and health care. However, the transition doesn’t need to be hard or complicated. It’s much easier to make healthy diet choices when you know which plan to follow, so here are a few things to keep in mind during your next supermarket visit which will ensure you age gracefully.
Create a weekly meal plan
The easiest way to stay on track when it comes to your diet during the week is to create a weekly meal plant. This will help you make healthier choices when it comes to food and allow you to create good eating habits. And you don’t even have to start with three fully-prepped meals a day. Start by planning and prepping a week’s worth of dinners and keep them in your freezer until it’s time to eat. As you get better at meal planning and prepping, you can introduce lunch and even breakfast.
Don’t run from fats
Even though weight gain is a serious problem for seniors and you must keep your fat intake within healthy limits, you shouldn’t avoid all fats. For instance, saturated and trans fats can go, but good monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats need to find their place on your plate. These healthy fats protect your body from disease and maintain a good mood. Think olive oil, avocado, fatty fish and nuts.
Go for fibers
Type 2 diabetes is quite a common disease in people over 50. One way to stay away from this disease is to eat plenty of fibers which slow down the release of sugar and stabilize blood glucose levels. Dietary fiber also helps in digestion, lowers cholesterol levels and helps with weight maintenance. In general, experts recommend that men over 50 consume 28 grams of fiber per day, while women need a little less, around 23 grams. Best sources of fiber are plant foods like veggies, fruits, beans, nuts and whole grains, and they all are quite dense in nutrients, which is another plus.
While you can get all the necessary nutrients from your diet, this is not always possible or enough. Consult with your doctor and see which supplements you can introduce to your daily diet. Women in menopause can also seek help from supplementation. Quality menopause diet supplements can help with hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mood swings, sleeping issues and other symptoms. You can even find natural menopause supplements if you want to avoid anything synthetic.
Work on your skin health
People usually think they can’t do anything about their skin later in life because losing skin integrity is just a “sign of aging”. However, you can be proactive and introduce plenty of vitamin E and C. There are various nutrition choices you can make to better your skin like eating some sunflower seeds, almond, spinach, bell pepper, broccoli, kale and berries—all excellent sources of vitamin E and C. Eating smart to support your skin will have aesthetic benefits and it will help your injures heal faster and make your skin more resilient.
Reduce salt, increase spices
With age, taste buds lose sensitivity, so people tend to overdo it with salt to boost flavors. However, according to experts, too much salt can lead to blood pressure complications which can, in turn, cause heart issues, stroke and kidney disease. 2,300 milligrams of sodium should be your daily limit. If you need more flavor, experiment with spices and herbs. Basil, sage, turmeric, cayenne pepper are all packed with flavor and even have some added health benefits.
Hydrate whenever you can
Many seniors report lowered feelings of thirst which can lead to dehydration. In order to stay healthy and strong, don’t miss a chance to hydrate throughout the day, even if you don’t exactly feel thirst. If you’re not a fan of plain water, go for fat-free milk or 100% fruit juice. While every body works differently, these tips above will help everyone and they are 100% universal. So no matter if you’re nearing your senior years or if you’re already there, make sure to include these healthy choices into your diet and you’ll feel like you’re in your prime!