Healthy Eating and Fitness Tips for Seniors that Shouldn’t Be Ignored

Getting healthier is an attainable goal at any age, and it can be crucial as you age. If you are thinking about improving your quality of… Trista - June 14, 2021

Getting healthier is an attainable goal at any age, and it can be crucial as you age. If you are thinking about improving your quality of life and committing to a healthier lifestyle, you should know that age is nothing but a number. The time is always right to put your health first. Experts suggest that senior citizens should have an optimal body mass index number between 23 and 23.9. Changes in body chemistry and metabolism causes unique challenges for elderly adults to stay fit. However, there are still simple ways to keep healthy and active in your golden years.

There is no time like the present to take a step in improving your health. At any age, what you eat and how active has a significant impact on how you feel. Adjusting to a regime is something that can be adopted with a few changes in routine. Nutrition experts have recommended that seniors pay particular attention to specific proper dietary intake and staying active for at least two and a half hours of moderate aerobic exercise per week. Before beginning a routine, you should consult with your primary care physician for advice. Keep reading to find out other ways for seniors to get active and healthy.


20. Figure out individual nutritional deficiencies for a healthy future.

What is on your dinner plate can go a long way in helping you feel better. It makes sense that once people age, their ability to absorb certain nutrients is not as strong as it used to be. This compromised ability could mean that your body may have trouble taking in calcium, vitamin B12, and vitamin D, among others. Because elderly adults tend to eat less, they are at risk of not getting the proper nutrition they need. Dietary deficiencies have also been linked to several chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, and osteoporosis, among others.

Because proper nutrition is essential, seniors should make sure they get the appropriate amounts of certain nutrients. Calcium is vital for bone density and strength, and vitamin D works with calcium to promote strong bones. Magnesium regulates glucose and blood pressure. Seniors can make sure that they are getting these important nutrients by taking supplements and eating fortified foods like cereals, bread, and milk to keep their vitals working correctly. Talk with your doctor to find out what you are lacking and what foods you may want to incorporate into your diet to ensure you are getting the nutrients you need.


19. Fill your plate with the right proportions.

The USDA recently announced a different visual aid when it comes to healthy eating. My Plate for Older Adults was put together to encourage elderly adults to incorporate better dietary options in their meal planning. Rather than follow directions from the food pyramid, you would use this simple graphic to select foods with the recommended equivalents. For example, the USDA is now suggesting putting more whole fruits and vegetables on the plate to cover at least half of it.

Portion control is crucial for older adults who are wanting to commit to a healthier lifestyle. It is also vital for those who are wanting to lose weight. Proper portions recommended by the USDA can help those who want to lose weight but still allow them to enjoy the foods they want to consume. If you can train your eye to follow these food guidelines when you are filling your plate, you select different kinds of foods that promote healthy nutrition.


18. Lower intake of saturated fats for a healthy diet.

Have you ever heard of saturated fats? They are a big no-no if you want to maintain a healthy diet. Saturated fats can harm a person’s health, and elderly adults should be particularly wary of having too much fried food in their diets. Bodies need certain fats for energy and other functions, but too much saturated fat causes cholesterol to build up in arteries and blood vessels. That is because saturated fats raise bad cholesterol, which increases your chance of heart disease and stroke.

Healthy fats like avocados have greater health benefits. They might reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and lowering inflammation. These healthy fats also build cell membranes. Some research has also suggested that omega-three fats that are found in fish oil could help in the prevention of dementia. There are loads of health benefits from this kind of fat. Please keep reading to find out more ways senior citizens could incorporate in their new healthy lifestyles.


17. Pile on the protein at this age.

Proteins are essential for healthy eating, at any age. However, when it comes to aging and eating protein, seniors may want to pay particular attention to the critical nutrient. It is vital for muscle strength and balance, and it is recommended that there is a protein source present at every meal. These sources could include eggs, egg whites, turkey, chicken, fish, and other cuts of lean meats. Leaner proteins like white meats will have less saturated fats, which can help promote better heart health.

However, how much should you eat? Many dieticians suggest a dietary allowance for elderly adults is 1.2 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram body weight. That is more intake than younger individuals. The reason for more is because since senior citizens are more susceptible to falls and muscle breakdown, the added protein could help keep them strong. Experts suggest about 35 grams of protein at each meal, which means the size of a fist.


16. Consume plenty of water to stay healthy.

Sure, this one might seem like a no-brainer, but how much water do you drink daily? Drinking water is one of the most fundamental ways to stay healthy. Because people are mostly made out of the water, it is imperative to replenish and stay hydrated. Proper water levels help you maintain energy and feel good throughout the day. The recommended amount of water for older adults is at least 1.7 liters, or 57.5 fluid ounces, every day. Dehydration can be common in elderly adults, especially during the hotter summer months.

There are several ways to ensure that you or the older adult you care for is drinking enough water. You could keep a journal that documents how much and at what time the individual is consuming. Offer smaller but more frequent amounts throughout the day. If you are a caregiver, address any issues that may come up with consistency and discuss the right amount of water consumption.


15. Fiber provides good digestion.

Fiber is one of those essential components in nutrition, and seniors should take particular care to ensure that they are getting enough in their diets. Often elderly adults may have trouble staying regular. Fiber helps regulate proper digestion and can prevent constipation. It has also been shown that fiber can decrease appetite, so for those wanting to lose weight, the right amount can assist you in reaching your ideal weight. Several foods are high in fiber such as oatmeal and bananas.

A diet that is high in antioxidants and rich in fiber can include a variety of different foods. Raw fruits and vegetables are healthy sources that have loads of fiber. You can also find fiber in beans, popcorn, baked potatoes with the skin, and various nuts. The possibilities of including fiber on your plate are colorful and plentiful, and your gut health will thank you for having fiber in your meal prep. Want to know more ways to stay healthy as you age? Read on to discover healthy eating tips for seniors.


14. Skip the diet trends.

If you are looking to reduce your weight, it can be tempting to jump on the weight-loss bandwagon and try a fad or crash diet to get the results you are looking for. The problem with popular diet trends is that they may not encourage the correct amount of nutrients that older adults need to stay healthy. Some even require to eliminate entire food groups. Low-fat diets cut out healthy fats as well as saturated fats. Meal plans that cut out carbohydrates limit foods meant to give and sustain energy throughout the day.

Losing weight is more effective if it is done the right way. If you want to adopt a healthy diet plan that helps you lose weight in your golden years, talk with your doctor and see what would work best for you. Diets like the Mediterranean diet promote taking in good fats and proteins that are important in building muscle and helping you recover quickly from physical fitness. It is all about finding what works for you, matching the caloric intake with your activity, and keeping you healthy in the long run.


13. Eat more frequent meals.

As people age, one of the most noticeable changes is the slowing of metabolism. The rate at which food is broken down can start to change after people turn 20 years old. Metabolism is responsible for the amount of energy or calories the body uses to keep itself maintained and operating. Slower metabolism and a less active lifestyle can also contribute to feeling more melancholy and not like yourself. A sedentary lifestyle could also lead to more health problems, like heart disease.

There are several ways to combat this problem, and experts suggest eating smaller and more frequent meals to optimize your metabolism. To ensure a more efficient metabolism, you would need to consume carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Instead of three good-sized meals throughout the day, break up your routine and feel more energetic with healthy snacks and smaller portioned meals that provide the recommended nutrients needed to fuel your body properly. Find more ways to adopt a healthy and active lifestyle by reading the other recommendations on this list.


12. Avoid processed foods to maintain a healthy diet.

This helpful eating habits and fitness tip for seniors is easier said than done. Many convenient foods at the time can take a toll on your health if you consume too much. Seniors can be particularly susceptible to meals like frozen dinners, snack packs, and lunch meats because they are easily prepared. Basically you should try to avoid anything that comes in a box or bag. These foods contain higher levels of fat, sodium, preservatives, and sugars that may complicate chronic health problems, like high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

Other processed meats like salami, chorizo, pepperoni, and Parma ham are often cured and fermented. This non-precooked method could lead to the risk of developing a parasitic disease like toxoplasmosis. It has been linked to Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disorders. To avoid these health problems, experts advise seniors to cook cold meats thoroughly before eating and only purchase items that say they are ready to eat. You could also freeze them four days before planning to consume them.


11. Figure out a healthy, ideal weight.

Don’t ever let that number on the scale get you down. However, you should focus on a healthy weight. What you should weigh depends on a variety of factors. A man who is over 60 and has diabetes may have a lower weight than his peers, or a woman over 50 who has not gone through menopause may differ from women older than 60 years old because of the hormonal shifts triggered during the change. Bodies are also different, and what has worked for one person does not necessarily mean it will work for another.

Rather than fixating on a certain number, you may want to focus on body composition or muscle-to-fat ratio and see where your fat is stored on your body. Most people generally store fat above or below the hips. Fat in the hips presents a greater risk for more severe health problems like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Talking with a dietician can help you find more individual ways to zone in on your specific needs.


10. Adopt a more active lifestyle.

Sure, you don’t have the energy you used to when you were a kid – or even a young adult. Nevertheless, don’t let that stop you from enjoying an active lifestyle. There are several benefits for getting out and getting active, especially for senior citizens. A daily movement schedule is linked to improved cognitive function and better motor skills. Exercise is also helpful in lowering the risk of vascular dementia. Other studies have shown that maintaining a routine can help older people stay focused on the task at hand and allow them to have a more high-quality life. Energy levels are improved because you feel better.

Consistent physical activity is vital in preventing many common diseases in senior citizens, such as heart disease and diabetes. Exercise improves immune function, which is critical because immune systems can often be compromised as people age. The health benefits of committing to an exercise routine are something that can have long-term benefits. Find more ways to stay healthy as you age by reading the rest of the ideas on this list.


9. Consistency in exercise is key.

Just with any hobby, spending time doing it is essential. It doesn’t matter what workout you do. It’s more important that you consistently stick to the routine you choose. It has been a well established fact that regular exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight, increase energy levels, and boost your overall health. It also helps improve strength and flexibility, and thus reducing the risk of falls. You have a better mood because you feel better about yourself. The way to benefit from these advantages is to keep to a routine, something that people at any age may find difficult to accomplish.

Working out and eating healthy is ideal at every stage of your life. However, as people age, it becomes even more vital. Even if you work out only a little bit, and enjoy veggies once in awhile, it is better than nothing. However, try to make a consistent workout so you can stay healthy for the long haul! Keep reading for more tips about how you can stay healthy as an older adult. You are about to learn the best and most simple workout for someone your age.


8. Figure out the benefits of a walking routine.

Walking can be a fantastic, low-stress way to include more physical activity in your life. Experts say walking for 30 minutes per day can reduce the risk of hip fractures because regular walking can prevent the loss of bone mass. It can also reduce pain, an essential benefit for those seniors who have arthritis and osteoporosis. Moving can make you feel better and better cope with the health conditions you may be inflicted with. Don’t feel bad if you don’t have a walking partner; maybe you have a four-legged friend who would love the great outdoors, too.

The other great thing about walking is that it can be broken up depending on your comfort level. If a 30-minute walk is too challenging a feat, you could break it down into three separate 10-minute walks throughout the day. You could also incorporate longer walking trips to the grocery store or opt for the stairs instead of taking the elevator. After about two weeks, you will be able to feel the health benefits of your new walking lifestyle. Keep reading for more fitness tips for seniors.


7. Find a workout buddy can help you stay healthy.

Executing an exercise routine can have many health benefits, and it also presents an opportunity to socialize with other people. Being social is important for seniors to stay fit emotionally and mentally as well as physically. That interaction with others reduces any potential for social isolation that the elderly may be feeling. Spending too much time alone can result in symptoms of depression, cognitive decline, and other diseases. It is vital for seniors to feel connected to those they care about.

If you like a sense of community during your exercise, consider taking a class for senior citizens in your area. There may be several great opportunities that allow you to meet people and socialize while you all commit to bettering your health. You could also invite a friend or family member to attend the class or go for daily walks to keep you motivated to your new lifestyle. Understand that your workout buddy does not have to be the same person every time, nor do they have to be your age. Want more ideas? Keep reading for more suggestions to stay healthy as you age.


6. Make sure you are getting enough sleep.

We hope these tips help you stay healthy as you age! Besides, working out, let’s talk about getting some rest. Getting active and eating healthy is just part of the puzzle to living a better quality of life. What you do during the day is essential, but so is what you do at night. A good night’s sleep reduces stress levels. Rest is how the body repairs itself from the wear and tear of every day. Getting the right amount of sleep builds a stronger immune system, making it easier to fight off viruses.

Sleep is crucial as you age because it can assist in memory and concentration. It is recommended that senior citizens get at least seven and a half to nine hours of sleep each night. If you are having trouble getting some Z’s, talk to the doctor to find out if there are any underlying causes. Insomnia may come from inactivity during your day or consuming too much caffeine. It could also be a sign of sleep apnea or restless leg syndrome. Keep reading for more ways to stay healthy as you grow older.


5. Plan annual and regular doctor visits.

Going to the doctor isn’t always fun; it’s not like the old days where you get to miss school, enjoy McDonald’s, or even a lollipop. However, it is essential to monitor your health regularly. A yearly checkup with your primary care physician is a step in allowing your doctor to diagnose any problems at an early stage and prevent long-term complications. Conditions like diabetes and high pressure can worsen if they go undetected. You will also have the opportunity to talk to your doctor about any concerns you may have about getting older.

Senior citizens should also talk to their doctors as soon as possible if they experience any cold or flu symptoms. The flu virus can result in serious complications in adults over the age of 65. Because the immune system weakens as you age, the sickness can hit differently. Seeing a doctor within the first two days of symptoms can help you get a vital antiviral to reduce how severe they are and how long they will last.


4. Utilize an aerobic exercise routine.

Have you ever heard of an aerobic exercise routine before? It is time to learn more about this healthy way to stay fit for seniors. There are several benefits seniors can receive from aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise provides an opportunity for older adults to burn calories, lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol levels, keep your joint movement and improve heart health. The great thing about aerobics is that it builds endurance depending on overall health and activity health. The exercises can also help lower the risk for osteoporosis.

To get started, exercise with five-minute cardio sessions a few days a week to raise your heart rate. You can then work gradually to increase to completing 30 minutes of aerobic activity most days. Aerobic exercises include walking briskly, tennis, swimming, hiking and running. Another excellent option for seniors would be a water aerobics class that provides an even lower impact on your joints. Keep reading for a few final ways to stay healthy and fit in your senior years.


3. Exercise improves mental moods.

Working out can be a miracle drug for many people, including you! That really goes for people of all ages, too. Exercise is not only a huge stress reliever; it can boost your mood and improve your overall mental health. It also helps reduce feelings of sadness and depression. The natural mood booster can continue as long as you keep consistent. Getting active has also been shown to slow the progression of certain brain disorders.

There are other ways to improve brain function. An activity like different puzzles or Sudoku keeps the brain active, and they can be accomplished in the comforts of your own home. Multitasking and creativity prevent memory loss, dementia, and other signs of cognitive decline. Although exercising is important at all ages to improve mental moods, it is especially important for seniors. For more ideas about living healthier as you age, read the rest of the list.


2. Doing small workouts can help you overcome obstacles as you age.

Getting older presents particular challenges, and a regular fitness routine can be the first step in making it easier. If you feel discouraged by some of your health problems or pain, you may be at a loss at what to do. You may be worried about falling or that you will never reach your goal. Everyone has to start somewhere. You may not be sure where to begin, but the important thing is to begin. Don’t be discouraged that you can’t do the same things you could when you where in your 20s, 40s, or any other age – it’s okay!

Aging may seem like the right time to slow down, but it is the perfect time to be more active. Once you overcome the first obstacles, you will be able to see some of the benefits. You add these advantages once you add movement to your life. Remember that slow and steady wins the race, and the pace you can is the pace you should. It’s never too late to get moving. Keep reading to learn why exercise at every age is so important.


1. Exercise improves balance and flexibility, especially as you age.

What are some important things you should focus on as you workout in your later years of life? Maybe muscle mass isn’t the number one goal for seniors. Remember, different types of physical activity have additional benefits, including balance. Balance exercises help seniors maintain standing and stability. That is true whether you are sitting still or moving around. Yoga and posture exercises can help you gain confidence as you improve your balance. Improved balance reduces the risk of falling or fear of falling. Lower body strength training also helps you with your balance.

Flexibility is essential when you age because it helps the body’s joints to move more freely with its full range of motion. You can improve your flexibility through stationary stretches and yoga and then build over time. Seniors who stay limber can increase their physical activities and help them become more independent. Are you searching for more ways to stay healthy in your older life? Read these secrets about how you can live a healthy and happy life past 80!