It is necessary for people to step up their nutrient game in their advancing years in order to counter the effects of ageing. It is necessary to avoid empty calories and substitute it instead with extra, protein, calcium and other vitamins and minerals. Rohit Shelatkar, fitness & nutrition expert, Vitabiotics Ltd, talks about some of the foods that must be included in the diet plan:
Yoghurt: As one advances in age, their bones become weaker. In order to oppose some of these effects, it is highly crucial to have a daily intake of calcium. Yoghurt is one of the best sources of calcium and must be included in the diet. This superfood is also rich in zinc, vitamin B, probiotics and vitamin D, which is highly crucial for a healthy life. Additionally, keeping the weak digestive system of elderly people in mind, simple foods like yoghurt that do not need to be broken down or those that can be broken down easily are suitable for them.
Eggs: The protein requirements of humans increase with age and eggs are the easiest and most effective source for the same. They have a multitude of benefits as they contain 13 essential vitamins and nutrients including Vitamin D as well as Choline – a macronutrient that helps in liver function, normal brain development, nerve function, muscle movement, maintaining a healthy metabolism and maintaining muscle mass.
Fish: A complete package of proteins and poly saturated fatty acids such as Omega 3, make fish a very beneficial ingredient in the plate of an elderly person. The healthy fat present in the fish lowers the risk of heart disease and maintain heart health.
Fibre: Due to a weak gut, the elderly tend to have a small amount of intestinal bacteria or microflora. The inclusion of fibre in the diet will provide elderly people with the right amount of prebiotics and keep the intestines and digestive system in a good, working order, prompting elimination of toxins from the body. Also, the inclusion of fibre promotes a feeling of fullness, so overeating can be avoided. Foods like garlic, beans, green leafy vegetables and fruits are great sources of fibre.
However, even the most balanced diet may lack the right amount of micronutrients for elderly people to lead a healthier life. A multivitamin or a vitamin supplement must also be included as this will provide ageing people with the daily requirements of essentials micronutrients such as B vitamins, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Magnesium, Iron, Zinc and Selenium.