The temperatures are getting warmer and it’s important now more than ever to stay hydrated. However, heat can reduce appetite and older adults feel less thirsty than young people. Furthermore, seniors lose more water as their muscle mass and their kidney function decreases. In this post, we will review ways to stay healthy during warmer climates.
Tips for Summer Nutrition
- Hit your local grocery store or farmers’ market to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables. Slice them up and store them in a container for a quick snack, when needed.
- If your loved one prefers dried fruit, pair it with high-fiber cereal and milk.
- Purchase pre-cut cheese or a whole block for an easy, protein-rich snack.
- Make sandwiches on high-fiber bread and cut them into finger foods for added ease.
- Put a pitcher of water in the fridge with slices of lemons or other alternatives for a refreshing alternative to coffee or soda. Seniors over age 65 should drink about nine 8oz glasses per day.
- Crackers, pretzels, and prepackaged nuts are an excellent alternative to potato chips.
- Prep ingredients or full meals for the week to make it easier during the hustle and bustle of day-to-day activities.
- Add spices and sauces to meals for flavorful touches and medicinal benefits. Ingredients such as cinnamon are great for controlling blood sugar and cholesterol while curcumin has been known to fight diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and cancer.
In the next few sections, we will go over a few summer menu ideas for elderly adults. A quick Google search can provide you with recipes and ideas for making the following breakfast, lunch, and dinner options.
- Eggs of any variety can provide an egg-celent source vitamin B2 and protein
- Eating egg whites can provide the same nutritional benefits while eliminating the risk of high cholesterol
- Lowers cholesterol
- Adding fruit can provide sources of vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants
- French toast
- Depending on the bread you use, French toast can be rich in fiber and protein
- Improves digestive system
- A rich source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and cancer-fighting antioxidants
- Reduces body inflammation
- Try experimenting with apples, broccoli, radishes, red cabbage, jicama, and bell peppers
- A salad with tuna, beans, or chopped eggs on top can provide a source of protein
- Leftover vegetables and brown rice combined with cheese and vinaigrette can provide a fast and tasty lunch
- Peanut butter on whole-grain bread offers a rich source of fiber and protein, while the addition of a chopped banana can add extra nutrients
- Make sandwiches with meats and cheeses for protein and calcium
- Pasta salad
- A great source of fruits, vegetables, and grains
- Provides a rich assortment of vitamins and fiber
- Crab cakes
- Low in fat
- Contains chromium, which helps enhance the action of insulin
- Leftovers/pre-cooked dinners
- Pre-cooked dinners or meals that can be reheated can also help your aging loved one, making it so they will not have to cook during hot temperatures
- Your loved one can cook double the amount of food they would eat in one sitting in anticipation of a future meal
- Low in fat
- Filled with lycopene, an antioxidant shown to fight heart disease and certain forms of cancer
- Packed with potassium and vitamins A, C, and B6
- Contains beneficial antioxidants
- Made of whole grain and an excellent source of dietary fiber
- Frozen treats
- Ice cream, when eaten sparingly, can be a great source of calcium
- Frozen fruit pops or bars can also provide the same benefits as fruits eaten on their own