The MyPlate for Older Adults model emphasizes the latest senior nutrition guidelines for optimal overall health.
It’s certainly no secret that a nutritious diet is crucial for a healthy body. What many people don’t understand, however, is that dietary needs for adults change as we age. Nutritional experts at Tufts University have introduced the MyPlate system, which is a more advanced version of the previous food pyramid, supplying up-to-date senior nutrition guidelines.
The MyPlate for Older Adults model contains details on foods that are high in vitamins and minerals and low in salt, sugar, and fat; however, it also provides direction on topics like recommended physical activities and fluid consumption, issues that are of specific concern for older individuals.
What Are the MyPlate for Older Adults Nutritional Guidelines?
Given that activity levels are often diminished, older individuals tend to require fewer calories as they grow older, but they also still need the same or higher levels of nutrients and regular activity for optimal health. MyPlate for Older Adults suggests:
- Brightly-colored vegetables, such as carrots and peppers.
- Deeply-colored fruits, like melons and berries.
- Whole, fortified, enriched grains and cereals, like brown rice.
- Low- and non-fat dairy products, including yogurt and low lactose milk.
- Liquid vegetable oils and soft spreads, which are lower in saturated and trans fats.
- Spices as a substitute to salt.
- Liquids such as water and fat-free milk.
- Physical activity, including walking, resistance training, and light housekeeping.
Additionally, further guidelines include taking advantage of options that are easier to prepare and decrease waste, like bags of frozen pre-cut vegetables and single-portion cups of fruit.
How Can Home Care Help?
At Home Matters Caregiving, we realize it can be a challenge to help aging loved ones follow a healthy diet. Our trained and experienced caregivers can:
- Help plan and prepare wholesome, appetizing meals based on your loved one’s specific nutritional needs.
- Provide transportation and accompaniment to exercise classes, or provide the motivation and encouragement to stay physically active in other ways, such as taking walks together or participating in recorded exercise programs.
- Take care of grocery shopping and other errands.
- Ensure the senior stays hydrated.
- Offer friendly companionship every step of the way.
- And more!