Intake of healthy nutrition is basically needed by everyone. However, elderly people may need to pay more attention to elderly meal plan samples. This is because the elderly are a group that is quite susceptible to decreased appetite so that it can have an impact on nutritional deficiencies. If that’s the case, the health condition of the elderly can also be disrupted.
There are many factors that can cause the elderly to experience a decrease in appetite. This can be caused by a decrease in the sense of smell and taste, no longer being able to chew food, digestive problems. Also, a mouth condition that may be bitter due to taking drugs. In fact, healthy nutrition is needed to maintain a healthy body.
Organize the elderly food menu and portions
It is important that you regulate the portion of the elderly you eat to meet the nutritional needs of the elderly and support their body health. The reason is, many elderly people have high blood pressure or hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes. Besides being able to suppress disease symptoms, elderly meal plan samples can also slow down the development of degenerative diseases, so that the elderly remain healthy.
According to the National Institute on Aging, generally healthy elderly or people over 50 years old are required to complete the following nutrients in their diet every day.
- Fruits and vegetables
Five servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Or, it can be divided into 150-250 grams of fruit per day and 200-350 grams of vegetables per day. Usually, the choice of fruit for the elderly is soft in texture and does not taste sour, for example, papaya, banana, dragon fruit, or avocado. While vegetable choices for the elderly include pumpkin, spinach, kale, cucumber, carrots, broccoli, lettuce, and other green vegetables.
- Oil, sugar, and salt
Use 5 teaspoons of oil. Limit the use of sugar to only 4 tablespoons and salt to only 1 teaspoon. For the use of sugar and salt, you need further consultation with a doctor, especially if the elderly have hypertension or diabetes.
The nutritional needs above may vary for each elderly, especially those who have certain health problems. But in essence, fill your plate with foods rich in carbohydrates, plant and animal protein, vegetables, and fruits.
All of these elements must be available every time the elderly eat. Do not forget to set meal times, at least three main meals, and two interludes between main meals. Apply the principle of eating small portions but often.
- Staple food
Staple foods that are a source of carbohydrates can help the elderly to be active. For example, staple foods can be rice, wheat, corn, cassava, sago, potatoes, taro, breadfruit, vermicelli, and noodles. The portion is 150-300 grams per day. This amount can be divided into three, so for example, if you eat breakfast, you only need to take 100 grams of rice or one scoop of rice.
- Source of protein and minerals
Food sources of protein in the elderly diet, including chicken, fish, meat, beef liver, chicken liver, eggs, tofu, and tempeh, amount to 150-200 grams per day. You can add milk or dairy products, such as cheese and yogurt, as much as 3 cups per day. Choose fat-free or low-fat milk and dairy products.
Nutrient Intake That Must Also Be Considered
As people age, a person’s nutritional needs will also change. In the elderly meal plan samples, there are several types of nutrition that should be met.
- Vitamin B12
Intake of foods containing vitamin B12 is needed to encourage the formation of red blood cells and DNA. To meet these nutritional needs, try eating foods rich in vitamin B12, such as fish, eggs, and milk and dairy products.
The intake of this one nutrient has an important role in the body. One of the most important benefits of calcium is to build and maintain a healthy body, so the risk of bone disorders in the elderly can be avoided.
- Vitamin D
Intake of vitamin D can help increase the effectiveness of calcium in maintaining bone health and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. In addition, vitamin D intake can also help protect the body from the risk of various diseases, such as cancer, type 1 diabetes, and autoimmune diseases.
Magnesium plays an important role in maintaining a healthy body. Intake of these nutrients can help maintain immunity, heart health, and bone strength.
Eating foods rich in fiber can help maintain a healthy digestive system. There are several examples of foods that are rich in fiber content, including fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
- Omega-3 Fats
The elderly are advised to eat foods rich in omega-3 fats. There are many benefits that can be obtained from the intake of this nutrient, including lowering the risk of rheumatoid arthritis and slowing the aging process, and decreased ability to see in the elderly. In fact, the intake of healthy fats is also said to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and maintain brain performance.
- Mineral water
It is no longer a secret that the human body is mostly made up of water. Therefore, the consumption of water is needed and must be met, especially in the elderly. The bad news, people who are elderly may experience a decrease in the ability to feel thirsty.
This can increase the risk of dehydration. In fact, the elderly body still needs a lot of water intake so that the performance of the organs is always maintained. To avoid the risk of disease, try to always consume 8 glasses of water or the equivalent of 2 liters of water every day.
If needed, the elderly can also get nutritional intake other than food. In this case, the elderly can take special supplements or multivitamins.
Daily food menu for healthy elderly
- Breakfast with one hard-boiled egg, 1 medium tomato mashed, and 1 medium-sized papaya slice.
- Provide 1 banana for a morning snack.
- For lunch, prepare 1 cup of rice (150 grams), 1 piece of fried tempeh, a small bowl of spinach, and 1 medium-sized fish (milkfish, tuna, or mackerel).
- Choose medium-sized corn, cassava, or sweet potato for an afternoon snack.
- For dinner, provide white rice or brown rice the size of 3/4 cup or the equivalent of 100 grams. Then, complete with 1 piece of tofu, 1 small bowl of vegetable tamarind, 1 piece of grilled chicken, and one sweet orange.
- Prepare 1 glass of low-fat milk size 150-200 ml for an evening snack.
Elderly meal plan samples a day for the elderly with certain conditions
For the elderly with certain health conditions, you can prepare special food menus.
Elderly without teeth
- You can serve breakfast in the form of a bowl of chicken team rice, boiled fried eggs, and tomato juice.
- Provide a bowl of green bean porridge whose skin is peeled for a morning snack.
- For lunch, prepare rice, vegetables, and vermicelli, then stew chicken liver and tofu peppers.
- Afternoon snack, give the elderly a banana or papaya. You can also replace it with a small bowl of yogurt.
Read also: Breakfast For Gastritis Patients
Elderly with constipation (constipation)
- For breakfast, you can serve a bowl of chicken porridge with pieces of hard-boiled egg, and carrot juice.
- Give 1 piece of ripe papaya for a morning snack.
- You can serve rice with milkfish paste, vegetable and clear corn, and a glass of mango juice.
- In the afternoon, you can give a snack in the form of wheat biscuits or avocado juice.
- When you’re making a meal plan for the elderly, make sure to change your fruit, vegetable, and side dishes each day. The goal is that they don’t get bored and it’s easier for you to persuade elderly people who have difficulty eating.