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Nutrition for the Older Adult By: Julie Thurnau, RD, CNSC Harrisonburg Dietitians, LLC May 7, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Nutrition for the Older Adult By: Julie Thurnau, RD, CNSC Harrisonburg Dietitians, LLC May 7, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Nutrition for the Older Adult By: Julie Thurnau, RD, CNSC Harrisonburg Dietitians, LLC May 7, 2009

2 Weight Management To maintain weight or prevent unwanted weight gain you must balance you food intake with what your body needs. How? Intervention: Small Frequent Meals, Balance Food Groups, Decrease Fat and Simple Sugars, Increase Exercise and/or Natural Activity.

3 Diseases That Have Diet Related Interventions Alzheimers Disease Foods that may help prevent or decrease symptoms of Alzheimer s disease include: Vitamin E Fortified cereals (check the label), Nuts such as almonds and hazelnuts, Peanut Butter, Seeds, Sweet potato, Vegetable oils (use sparingly), Whole grains, Wheat germ Omega-3 fatty acids Fatty Fish, olive/canola oils Diet low in Trans Fats (Read Labels) Source: Diet and Alzheimers: What the Research Shows.

4 Cognition and Vitamin B12 Up to 30 percent of adults aged 50 years and older may have atrophic gastritis, an increased growth of intestinal bacteria, and be unable to normally absorb vitamin B 12 in food. They are, however, able to absorb the synthetic vitamin B 12 added to fortified foods Researchers found that a daily supplement providing 2 mg folic acid and 1 mg vitamin B 12, taken for 12 weeks, lowered homocysteine levels by 30%. They also demonstrated that cognitive impairment was significantly associated with elevated plasma total homocysteine. However, the decrease in homocysteine levels seen with the use of vitamin supplements did not improve cognition (Prevention is Key)

5 Food sources of vitamin B 12 Mollusks, Clams, Liver, Beef, Fortified Breakfast Cereals, Rainbow Trout, Salmon, Beef, Yogurt, Haddock, Tuna, Milk, Ham, Eggs, American Cheese, Chicken

6 The main antioxidants found in foods are vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene and selenium. Foods to add to your daily diet that contain these include: Foods Rich in Vitamin C Asparagus, Bell peppers, Broccoli, Brussel sprouts, Cantaloupe Sweet potato, Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruit (watch with certain medications), Kiwi, Potatoes with skin, Strawberries, Tomatoes Foods Rich in Vitamin E (already reviewed) What foods have antioxidants?

7 Foods Rich in Beta-carotene (a form of vitamin A) Cantaloupe, Carrots, Collard greens, Kale, Pumpkin, Mango, Mustard greens, Spinach, Sweet potato Foods Rich in Selenium Beef, Brazil Nuts, Brown Rice, Eggs, Fish and Shellfish, Fortified Cereals (check the label), Ham, Poultry, Whole Grains

8 Vitamin D Requirements & Sources Males years- 10 mcg. > 70 years- 15 mcg. Females years- 10 mcg. > 70 years- 15 mcg. Food Sources of Vitamin D mcg. Cod liver oil, 1 Tbsp Pacific oysters, 3.5 oz -6.0 Most fish, 3.5 oz -8.0 Vitamin D fortified milk-2.45 Egg, cooked Beef, 3.5 oz Yogurt, 1 cup-0.10 Cheddar cheese, 1 oz-0.09

9 Diseases That Have Diet Related Interventions Hypertension or High Blood Pressure Repeated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg (140/90) Chronic hypertension can cause blood vessel changes in the back of the eye (retina), abnormal thickening of the heart muscle, kidney failure, and brain damage. Treated with: regular aerobic exercise, weight reduction (if overweight), salt restriction, and medications.

10 Sodium and Potassium Consume < 2,300 mg (~1 tsp. salt) of sodium per day. Choose and prepare foods with little salt. Avoid processed/canned foods Consume potassium-rich foods, (thought to relax blood vessels and prevent hypertension) such as fruits, vegetables, nuts seeds, legumes

11 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (2005) A Healthy Diet Should: Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat- free or low-fat milk and milk products AND Includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts AND Is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars. Source:

12 Food Guide Pyramid

13 Physical Activity Older adults should participate in regular physical activity to reduce functional declines associated with aging – Engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity most days of the week – More exercise is recommended for weight loss – Before starting a new exercise plan ALWAYS get your physicians approval

14 Nutrition for Aging Follow the Food Guide Pyramid focusing on increasing fruits, vegetables and whole grains Eat a colorful diet If approved, exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week Control your weight

15 Harrisonburg Dietitians, LLC Teaching you how to make your cake & eat it too! Call to make an appointment or visit our website at for more nutrition information / online class offeringswww.harrisonburgdietitians.com


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