There’s no denying that giving your body the right nutrients and maintaining a healthy weight can help you stay active and independent long after retirement. You’ll also spend less time and money at on health care expenses and greatly improve the quality of your life whether you’re a retired senior citizen or an active adult engaged in the workforce. Here are 3 helpful healthy aging tips for Healthy Aging Month to help you enjoy more out of aging gracefully.
1.) Add Fewer Calories: Older adults need fewer calories than they did in their younger years. Seniors move around less, have less muscle, and their metabolic rate goes down. The number of calories needed each day depends on age, gender and activity level. Women aged 51 and older have a recommended calorie intake of 1,600 to 2,200 depending on how active they are whereas men aged 51 and older have a recommended calorie intake of 2,000 to 2,800 according to choosemyplate.gov.
2.) Add More Essential Nutrients: Aging skin is less able to naturally convert sunlight to Vitamin D which in turn affects the body’s ability to absorb calcium. Older adults need both vitamin D and calcium to prevent bone loss. It’s best to ask your doctor if you are getting enough of those must-have nutrients as you age and if you aren’t, what foods you should eat and whether you need a supplement. If your doctor isn’t sure, ask for a referral to a registered dietitian and nutritionist.
3.) Reduce Empty Calorie Foods: The American Heart Association recommends a healthy dietary pattern that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, legumes, fish, skinless poultry, nuts, and fat-free/low-fat dairy products, and limits sodium, saturated fat, red meat, and added sugars. It’s also important to limit “empty calories” — foods and drinks that are high in calories but low in nutrients such as processed foods, sugary foods, or foods. Eating too many foods with empty calories leaves less room for eating nutrient-dense snacks and sugary beverages. Overeating high-calorie foods that lack the proper nutrients for healthy aging reduces the overall nutritional value of your diet, can lead to weight gain, and contribute to chronic diseases that limit your quality of life as you age.
If you’d like to learn more about healthy aging nutrition or need help planning healthy meals to fit your retirement lifestyle, please contact Prajakta Apte, RDN of Right Nutrition Works today! It’s never too late to start taking control of your nutrition to better the quality of your life.
Prajakta Apte, RDN is a Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist in Surprise, Arizona who works with individuals who want to be more conscious about their health but who may struggle with knowing what’s accurate and want to have a complete makeover by learning how to transform their understanding of nutrition and health. By doing so, they can be more confident about their nutritional health and be known as experts in health and nutrition among their tribe.
Prajakta Apte, RDN
Right Nutrition Works
18789 N Reems Rd, Suite 260-I
Surprise AZ 85374
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