Healthy Winter Foods for Alaskan Seniors
Balancing a healthy nutrition diet as you approach your golden age becomes more challenging, particularly during the tough winter months. Seniors may tend to experience reduced appetites, endure mobility limitations, and have greater difficulty with chewing and swallowing food. Due to these reasons, it may become difficult for most seniors to manage a properly nutritious diet for a healthy lifestyle.
Baxter Senior Living in Anchorage Alaska is a practical solution to this issue as the expert caregivers are fully trained to provide quality health and ensure the safety of your elderly loved ones.
Continue reading to learn more about the important health tips for your seniors’ healthy lifestyle, especially during Alaskan winter months.
The Importance of Healthy Nutrition for Seniors
In the elderly, a change in routine appetite is normal as their metabolism slows due to reduced activities. In this situation, they may require fewer calories to stay healthy and fit. If calorie intake becomes higher than the burning rate, weight gain can occur which can further lead to other ailments.
Similarly, if seniors skip meals or frequently consume un-healthy foods or beverages, their health can suffer. Poor nutrition can cause sudden weight loss and risk a healthy immune system, potentially causing your loved one to become more vulnerable to seasonal infections, such as flu or common cold.
Benefits of Healthy Nutrition for Seniors
The benefits of healthy eating for seniors range from enhanced mental performance to fighting illness and diseases. Your Baxter Senior Living Caregivers strive to provide assisted living in Alaska where our seniors may be encouraged to adopt healthy eating habits. We serve healthy meals throughout the day. We have found that seniors who eat healthier, tend to feel better, live longer, and have improved immunity.
There are various methods to stimulate appetite in the elderly, some of the many benefits and ways to encourage healthy eating for our Alaskan seniors may include:
- Establish routine and regular schedules for eating. When our seniors do not follow food schedules, their appetites can become affected.
- Reduce their portion size and increase the nutrition density. Their health can be negatively affected if they consume a surplus amount of calories all at once. For example, consider using water when preparing hot cereals instead of milk, or use butter for toasts instead of adding peanut butter.
- Encourage shared meals as the habit of healthy eating can be promoted by encouraging social meals. When seniors have to eat alone in their rooms, they tend to eat less or sometimes skip meals. At Baxter Senior Living, seniors are encouraged to enjoy their meals in dining our dining room along with other residents. In this way, they can socialize with their Alaska assisted living community peers and maintain the habit of eating healthy food in a timely manner.
- Ensure an appetizing taste and sweet aroma. Create food that is a pleasure to touch, taste, smell, and to enjoy the sound of the crunch or the sip. Did you know that natural herbs can enhance the tempting smell of food?
Healthy Winter Foods for Seniors
Now that winter is upon us, let’s discuss healthy winter foods for seniors:
Leafy Green Vegetables
Green vegetables are full of healthy nutrition such as fiber, iron, antioxidants, and many others. Broccoli and spinach can provide essential nutrients to fight winter cold in the elderly. Also, try other dark vegetables as they contain natural ingredients to fight various infections and diseases. Here is a list of healthy vegetables essential for Alaskan seniors to consume this winter season:
Whole grains such as brown rice, barley, and oatmeal are healthy and nutrient-rich winter food choices for Alaskan seniors. Additionally, as they can keep you full for longer, they are ideal for seniors who may not have a great appetite, refuse to eat, or experience trouble eating multiple meals throughout the day. To help improve digestion, select the grains that are rich in fiber. One of the common causes of constipation issues is actually due to lack of an inadequate consumption of essential fiber. Here is a list of grains that can be used as healthy winter food for Alaskan seniors to enjoy to ensure great digestion and reduce constipation:
- Brown rice
Increase Vitamin D Intake
As the midnight sun says farewell with summer and as we endure the dark winter days, vitamin D intake becomes even more important. Milk products, Vitamin D fortified milk, fish, eggs, and various grains are excellent ways to add vitamin D rich nutrients in food for seniors. Here is a list of foods rich in Vitamin D to help keeps bones and teeth strong and healthy, and to prevent against cancer:
- Egg yolks
- Canned tuna
Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Omega 3 fatty acids are essential to prevent various health issues, such as heart diseases, diabetes, and inflammation due to arthritis. Adding omega 3 in daily food intake will be very beneficial for seniors who may experience mild cognitive impairment. Research has proven that mental health has improved after the consumption of a regular intake of omega 3 fatty acids. Here is a list of foods which contains a surplus amount of omega 3 to help prevent against inflammation and other health concerns:
- Fish oil
- Flax seeds
- Canola oil
- Chia seeds
Meat and tofu provide protein, minerals, and vitamins that are essential to repair and maintain healthy muscles, skin, cartilage, chemicals, and blood. Here is a list of foods for protein and essential