How In-Home Cooking Care Supports Elderly Nutritional Needs

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How In-Home Cooking Care Supports Elderly Nutritional Needs

Aging-in-place improves aging adults’ quality of life, but only if the right support services are put in place. Meal planning and cooking services are two of the most important, and enlisting the help of an in-home care provider is a considerable benefit for loved ones who’ve chosen to spend their golden years in the comfort of their own homes.

Malnutrition is a risk when it comes to aging adults, as are other conditions related to a poor or inadequate diet. This is why in-home cooking care is important for adults who live alone. 

Keep reading to learn more about how regular access to fresh, healthy, and delicious meals and snacks – centered around the client’s dietary recommendations – can make a significant difference in the lives of seniors living at home.

Support Elderly Nutritional Needs With In-Home Meal Support

There is scientific evidence why adults 65+ have different nutritional needs than their younger adult counterparts. These reasons include:

  • Slower metabolisms and reduced activity levels require fewer calories.
  • Aging bodies have a more challenging time absorbing nutrients, so even though caloric requirements are lower, nutritional requirements are higher.
  • Medications may interfere with nutrient absorption and assimilation.
  • Chronic health conditions, including dementia, are managed with specialized dietary recommendations and restrictions for optimal wellbeing.
  • Age-related declines in mobility, energy levels, memory loss, or medication side effects can pose more challenges when it comes to aging adults procuring, preparing, and cooking their meals.
  • Other barriers to eating well include difficulties swallowing, struggles to open jars or packaging, inability to read the fine print on ingredient lists or expiration dates, and a decline in oral health.

Best Nutritional Plans for Adults 65+

Meeting elderly nutrition needs requires a personalized approach, taking the client’s medical history, current health, dietary recommendations/restrictions, and taste preferences into account. There are no one-size-fits-all plans, so in-home meal support becomes critical. 

When our caregivers enter the scene, we get to know our clients and their needs and plan meals and snacks accordingly. We are well-versed in a range of diet plans that cater to elderly health and wellbeing.

Anti-Inflammatory Diets

Almost every senior-centered diet plan honors the tenets of an anti-inflammatory diet. Anti-inflammatory diets reduce inflammation throughout the body by eliminating foods that cause inflammation and focusing on colorful, flavorful, fresh whole foods. This diet has impressive results in improving adults’ physical and emotional wellbeing.

DASH Diet

The DASH Diet stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. It is a healthy-eating plan designed to help treat or prevent high blood pressure (hypertension). It focuses on foods rich in heart-healthy nutrients like potassium, magnesium, and calcium while reducing or eliminating high-saturated fats, sodium, bad cholesterol, sugar, and processed foods.

Diabetes Diet

Most diabetes diets operate along the same lines as a Mediterranean or Adkins diet (higher in protein and lower in carbs) with anti-inflammatory diet properties thrown in there. When done right and by adding lots of fresh herbs, low-sodium salt, and other spices to the mix, clients with diabetes are shocked at how delicious diabetes-friendly foods can be.

MIND Diet

The MIND Diet stands for Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. As the full name implies, it combines the DASH diet for heart health and the Mediterranean Diet principles to promote a diet that enhances neurological function and slows down the decline of progressive memory loss. 

Homecare Services Ensure Clients Eat Healthy Meals & Snacks

Now that you are familiar with a few examples of the center points our caregivers use when creating personalized meal plans for our clients, learn about the ways we work to ensure our clients eat healthy meals and snacks.

Grocery Shopping 

All of the research-driven diet recommendations for heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and Alzheimer’s/dementia have one thing in common: ample access to fresh fruits and vegetables. This is only possible when clients can regularly get to the grocery store, which becomes a challenge, especially if they no longer drive.

The combination of our transportation and grocery shopping/errand running services means your loved one is assisted along their grocery and errand routes, or that we can arrive with fresh groceries in tow each week.

Meal Preparation

As the above points indicated, the struggle to eat well is often anchored in the decline in physical strength and stamina as clients age. The removal of meal planning and prep burden is a game-changer for the majority of our clients. We create weekly meal plans and prepare healthy meals and snacks.

Full-time and live-in caregivers prepare meals in real-time and then keep our clients company, enjoying the meals and snacks together. If your loved one needs part-time or overnight support, that’s fine too. In that case, we can prepare multiple meals at one time, clearly labeled with easy heat-and-eat instructions.

Companionship

In addition to changing elderly nutritional needs, there’s also the reality that meals are best enjoyed in company. Many recent studies find seniors who eat alone are at far higher risk of malnutrition and increased health issues than those who eat in with others.

As one international study points out, “…eating, beyond its biological necessity, is a central part of social life,” concluding that eating alone is one of several risk factors for malnutrition and that eating meals with others should be a goal of senior long-term care plans.

Let Affordable Senior Home Care Lend a Cooking Hand to Help With Elderly Nutritional Needs

Affordable Senior Home Care keeps meal planning, preparation, and shared meals a central component of our in-home care services. Learn more about the benefits of in-home care and how home cooking services improve the quality of aging loved ones’ lives.

But our services don’t stop there! Learn more about the many benefits of in-home care with Affordable Senior Home Care.

7 BENEFITS OF IN-HOME CARE

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Testimonials

“I heard about Affordable Senior Home Care through a friend and called them immediately for my parents. Their pricing is fair and service is impeccable. I would recommend this company and have to any and all of my friends. Thanks again.”

Matt M.

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Erin S.

“I would like to thank you for providing my Aunt, Margaret W., with such amazing care and attention. Now that my Aunt is home, Colleen has set her up with wonderful in-home care, not just through your facility but also with MD’s and other healthcare professionals who come to the house. She has assured that the home is safe and comfortable for my Aunt and her caregivers. I really just can’t list everything she has done for my Aunt. This is way too much and I just don’t know where to start. I am so happy to have Affordable Senior Home Care!”

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