Encouraging the Elderly to Maintain a Healthy Weight

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Ways to Help Seniors to Maintain a Healthy Weight

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Weight management may become a serious concern for some seniors receiving Scottsdale elderly care, as certain health conditions and medications can make it difficult to stay within a healthy range. Whether your elderly loved one’s goal is to gain or lose a few pounds, these strategies can help address many of the common factors that affect weight during the senior years.

Season Food with Herbs and Spices

A decreasing sense of taste is a normal part of the aging process, and certain conditions such as dry mouth can exacerbate the problem. Many seniors turn to salt and sugar, which can contribute to weight gain and other health issues. Instead, herbs and spices offer a healthier alternative that can help keep the weight off. If your loved one needs to gain weight, enhancing the taste of meals can also encourage better and more frequent eating.

Focus on Strengthening Exercises

Many seniors instantly think of going on a walk as the best way to maintain their weight, yet building muscle can help burn calories throughout their daily routine. Seniors who are underweight can also benefit from toning exercises that burn less fat during a workout. It is important to note, however, that lifting heavy weights is not necessary to see results. Low weight-bearing exercises such as yoga and water aerobics can provide similar results with less risk for injuries.

Provide the Right Drinks

Weight maintenance is not just about the food your loved one eats. It is also important to understand how beverages can affect his or her overall weight. Water has zero calories and can be made more palatable for seniors who need to lose weight by adding small amounts of fruit juice. If your loved one needs to gain weight, then high-calorie drinks such as low-fat milk and fruit smoothies can help without adding extra fat to his or her diet.

Make Meals Social

Companionship plays an important role in senior weight management. For instance, if your loved one might otherwise skip meals, a part-time caregiver in Scottsdale can help prepare meals and encourage him or her to eat. A caregiver can also help prevent your loved one from overeating. Your loved one should also plan meals with friends and family members and attend senior social events where healthy eating opportunities are encouraged.

Having someone around to encourage your loved one to maintain healthy habits can make all the difference. Consider a professional caregiver from Home Care Assistance. If your senior needs assistance with regular exercise or preparing healthy meals, or just needs a companion to offer support when needed, our experienced caregivers can help meet his or her individual needs. For seniors who require more comprehensive care, we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, stroke, and Parkinson’s care Scottsdale families trust. For more information, call one of our knowledgeable Care Managers at 480.448.6215 to schedule a free in-home consultation.