Adopting a lifestyle that emphasizes the importance of healthy eating is one that has numerous benefits. It can help you feel energized, maintain a healthy weight and control disease. It’s part of the Active Living lifestyle, which means it’s accessible to everyone. You’ll be happy to know that nutritious food is easily attainable and there are plenty of resources online to help educate you on the subject. This blog post is a good place to start!
Did you know that it’s possible to control or prevent some of the diseases that creep up on us in old age with healthy eating and regular physical activity? It’s true. And there’s even more good news – you can start doing both at any age!
You’re probably accustomed to seeing, and tuning out, the ads, commercials, magazine articles, etc., exclaiming the benefits of a new so-called superfood. In reality a healthy diet goes beyond the latest health craze or diet, it’s about moderation and nutritional needs, two facets that we’ll cover.
Nutrition and diet are another aspect of Active Living, a concept we introduced in our last blog post, which also includes sleep and physical activity. There are some great resources online if you need help getting started. Using a search engine to comb for keywords and phrases, like ‘Healthy Eating for Seniors,’ or ‘Nutrition for the Elderly,’ should pull up plenty of reliable results.
“Fact: Most senior women do not eat enough vegetables and fruit, grains, milk and milk products, meat and meat alternatives. Most senior men do not eat enough vegetables and fruit or milk and milk products.” – The British Columbia Ministry of Health Services
To avoid becoming part of this statistic, utilize food and nutrition guides like those provided by the Government of Canada. Their guides can help you figure out serving sizes, as well as the number of recommended daily servings for each food group. For those who aren’t dieticians (that’s a lot of us!) there is even a brief description of how to read food nutrition labels. Understanding the amount of each macronutrient, vitamin and/or mineral that is in the food we eat is a step in the right, healthy direction when it comes to improving diet. Combine that with your new knowledge of recommended servings and sizes and you’re on the path to improvement!
Great, you know what to eat! Now let’s get you some groceries to stock the fridge and pantry. One great option that gets you healthy, cost-effective food and supports your area’s local business is the farmer’s market. At a farmer’s market you can talk to the grower to learn more about how foods are grown and harvested, plus they often have the tastiest recipes to share using their products! The foods they carry are usually ‘in-season,’ which simply means that they were farmed during their optimal growing season.
If you are homebound or would find it easier to have the groceries brought to you, have no fear! There are some great businesses that offer delivery services, like some national grocery chains. Their websites make it easy to select what you want and how much, as well as how and when you want the food dropped off. Getting the delivery is like opening a giant present!
Other ways to get groceries:
- Call a friend or family member for a ride
- Some local community groups have volunteer drivers or shopping services, check their website or call the information line
- Taxis are often easily available, some stores have phones with a direct line to a local service and most drivers will help you load the car
- A personal shopper
As with any other time of one’s life nutrition is essential, but it’s also important to understand what you’re eating, how much, and how it will affect your body. Since an older individual’s lifestyle is different than that of a young child, teenager or middle aged adult it only makes sense that their nutritional needs would be different, as well. Hopefully this blog post gave you a place to start if you are new to the Active Living lifestyle. With that we ask, what are you eating?
At Keeping Connected we love to talk about your health and fitness goals, share delicious healthy recipes, or help you set up transportation to the grocery store. Call us now and find out more about how you can benefit from Keeping Connected.