Many seniors lose their appetite as they get older, and this unwillingness to eat can be caused by health conditions, medications, and the physical changes that come with aging. If you’re a caregiver, finding foods that stimulate your senior loved one’s appetite should be your top priority. Here are eight foods for older adults who don’t want to eat.
For some seniors, the process of chewing and swallowing is difficult or unpleasant. Make eating easier by whipping up tasty smoothies loaded with healthy nutrients. Use full-fat and calcium-rich yogurt as a base, and combine it with vitamin-dense fruits and vegetables. Add protein powder if your loved one’s protein intake is too low.
Switching to nutritious foods is not the only way older adults can boost their health. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional home care. Tucson, AZ, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.
Like smoothies, soups are easy to eat and can be packed with a lot of nutrients. If your parent has difficulty chewing, try adding pureed chicken and vegetables to the soup. A cream-based broth increases the calorie count and adds some much-needed calcium to the diet.
3. A Glass of Wine
Many people experience an increase in their appetite by consuming a glass of wine before dinner. Red wine has additional antioxidant benefits.
4. Ice Cream
Ice cream is not the healthiest food around, but it’s calorie-dense and rich in calcium. When seniors refuse all other options, ice cream is often an effective last resort.
5. Finger Foods
For seniors with manual dexterity issues, using utensils can make mealtime unpleasant. However, switching to finger foods is a good idea. Make calorie-dense snacks your loved one can eat with his or her fingers. Try peanut butter and crackers, freshly cut vegetables, and cheese sticks.
If your aging loved one needs occasional help with bathing, grooming, cooking, or other basic household tasks, or if you need time to attend to important personal matters, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of live-in and respite care. Tucson seniors can maintain their independence while living at home with the help of our reliable respite caregivers.
6. Nutrient-Dense Foods
In the event your loved one has a low appetite, make sure he or she has easy access to food at all times. Even if your parent isn’t hungry, he or she might munch on snacks if there’s a plate full of them nearby. Make sure your loved one’s snacks are nutrient-dense. Good options include hard-boiled eggs, slices of avocado, blueberries, and sunflower seeds.
From pinto beans to kidney beans, legumes are an excellent option for seniors who don’t want to eat. Beans are soft and easy to eat. Some seniors avoid eating because of digestive disorders. Because beans are packed with fiber, they can relieve common digestion issues. Fiber isn’t the only senior-friendly nutrient found in beans. These legumes are also great sources of low-fat protein, folate, iron, and magnesium.
8. Sweet Potatoes
Cooked sweet potatoes have a soft, pliant texture that makes them easy to eat. They’re also filled with nutrients ranging from vitamin A to potassium. If your loved one prefers finger foods to eating with forks, try cooking sweet potatoes cubed.
While some seniors require help with meal prep, others may simply need a little motivation to eat healthy foods. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care. Tucson Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. To create a comprehensive in-home care plan for your aging parent, give us a call at (520) 214-5440 today.