When you get older, you realize you can’t eat the same things you used to eat. Your tastebuds have changed, and most importantly, what your body needs has changed.

That’s why it is important to know what is needed for a well-balanced diet and what your body needs in order to stay healthy. Don’t be fooled by the “sugar-free” statements on food products. They’re usually high in sugar and sometimes those aren’t good sugars. Reading the label is important and knowing what you are putting in your body can determine how you feel during the day and even weekly! Check out what is important and what isn’t.

1. Eat Your Vitamins

Vitamins will start working quicker in your body if you eat them directly from the source. So go ahead and eat those fruits and vegetables. If you have a hard time eating some of them, blend them up into a smoothie or process them into a yummy soup! There are different ways to making sure you’re getting enough folic acid without eating a bag of spinach. Taking multivitamins can cause you to exceed the number of vitamins you need- so it is important to consult your doctor before taking them!

2. Just Because It’s Called Fruit Juice Doesn’t Mean It’s Good For You

Fruit juices have almost or the same amount of sugar as soda! AHHHH! That’s no good. The human body isn’t meant to process such high levels of sugar. Michael Goran, the director of the Childhood Obesity Research Center at the University of Southern California stated, “Unlike glucose, which serves as fuel for the body, fructose is processed almost entirely in the liver where it is converted to fat, which increases the risk for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and liver disease.” These are all diseases that can be controlled or even prevented by our diets. If you are just craving some fruit juice, look at the label and go for a lower sugar and carb content!

3. Don’t Cut Out Fats

There are some healthy fats! I’m not saying go out there and eat a big plate of nachos and you’ll be fine. You need to watch your fat intake- but not be scared of them. Trans and saturated fat intake should be limited, as these fats can raise cholesterol levels. Unsaturated fats do the opposite. They can lower bad cholesterol levels and offer many heart health benefits. The perfect foods for this are avocados, fish, flaxseed, olive oil, seeds, and soybeans. 

4. Drink Lots of Water

Water is a huge part of our bodies. Water helps keep your body temperature normal, protects your spinal cord, and lubricates your joints! Not drinking enough water will make you and your body dehydrated. Water helps flush all the toxins out of your organs as well. 

 5. It’s All About Portion Control and Moderation

No matter how tempting it is to eat chocolate cake every day or a large pizza all to yourself, it isn’t ideal or good for you. The good news is you can treat yourself with it every now and then and in smaller portions. It’s easy for your eyes to be bigger than your stomach and you want to try to eat everything on your plate, but it isn’t good for you. You can feel bloated and drowsy throughout the day. If you do get too much, don’t be afraid to get it to go and eat it for dinner or lunch the next day! When it comes to those sweet treats you love so dearly, don’t do it often. Make it something you look forward to and make it worth it!

6. Fiber Reduces Bad Cholesterol

Try eating foods with fiber to help lower your cholesterol. A good source of fiber is a bowl of oatmeal mixed with fruit. It is a good way to start your day and keep you full for a while. It will keep you from overeating the rest of the day. Oatmeal, apples, and beans are good for reducing bad cholesterol in the bloodstream allowing your blood to flow easily.

7. Eat Real Food

Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will keep you healthy. This keeps you from eating over-processed foods that are packed with sodium, carbohydrates, fats, and sugar. These foods also keep you fuller for a longer period of time. No one likes being hungry all the time. 

Sometimes we’re lead to believe less is more when it comes to what we put in our mouth. When in reality- we can eat more of the good and real stuff as long as it is what our bodies need. If you decide to change your diet drastically, it is harder to stick with. Slowly incorporate all of these above and you’ll be having a well-balanced diet in no time!

Williams Loving Care can help. About one-quarter of Americans over age 65 need help with everyday activities such as well balanced diets, cooking, and getting in and out of bed or a chair & living a HIGH QUALITY LIFE. We are an independently owned, faith-based company. Our educated caregivers can help with these and other tasks while engaging clients in activities that improve their quality of life. Our caregivers can also provide support for physician-approved diet, exercise plans, transportation, and can assess a home for safety issues and reducing fall hazards. 

For more information on how we can help, contact us today at 334-549-4009.

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REFERENCES:

https://www.unitypoint.org/livewell/article.aspx?id=060291df-8d2b-40ca-81f2-261b7168ce77