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  • Writer's pictureThe Ideal Team

Weight Loss & Seniors

As we age, it is natural to have weight fluctuations. However, when older adults lose weight quickly and without trying, it may be cause for concern. If this is the case, speak with your doctor.


Reasons For Weightloss

Some possible reasons for weight loss may be due to certain medications introduced into their daily regimen, undiagnosed or poorly managed health concerns such as cancer and diabetes. Other reasons may be:


Social Isolation or Depression - As seniors become less mobile, they tend to spend more time alone at home or within their care facility. Their social circle may also become smaller as their peers pass away or family members move away. This increase in isolation can contribute to feelings of depression. Depression can often lead to an overall lack of energy, loss of appetite, sadness or anxious mood, restlessness and trouble making decisions.


Functional Difficulties - Weight loss may occur as a result of their inability to feed themselves. Perhaps they lack the stamina or interest in cooking for themselves or may not feel safe in using kitchen equipment, such as the oven or stove. This inability to feed oneself may be a sign that they are ready for assisted living or the assistance of an in-home caregiver. (*For assistance with meals, feeding, or companionship contact us today to see how we can help.)


Tips to Help Stop Unwanted Weight Loss

The Dieticians of Canada have recommendations to help stop unwanted weight loss in older adults:

  • Eat smaller amounts of foods more often. Try eating every 2-3 hours.

  • Eat more food when your appetite is best.

  • Have a snack before bed at night. Try cheese and crackers or yogurt.

  • Eat your favourite healthy food any time of the day.

  • Use milkshakes, smoothies or meal replacements (Ensure®, Boost®, Resource 2.0®) as snacks.

  • Make every bite count! Fil up on high-calorie healthy choices.

  • Avoid smoking. It lowers appetite and limits taste.


Add these foods -->

To these Foods

3.25% milk or skim milk powder

Cream soups, hot/cold cereal, milkshakes, pudding, scrambled eggs, pancakes

Cream

Pudding, custard

Yogurt, kefir

Fruit, milkshakes, cake

Soft margarine, vegetable oils like olive oil or canola

Scrambled eggs, sandwiches, mashed vegetables (squash, potatoes, yams) rice, barley, stews or soups.

Hard cheese or cheese sauce

Scrambled eggs, sandwiches, potatoes, vegetables

Nuts (cashews, walnuts, pecans, peanuts), sunflower seeds, peanut butter or dried fruit

Hot/cold cereal, yogurt, ice cream, toast, pancakes, salad, or as a snack

Jam, sugar, syrup, honey

Bread, crackers, cereal

Tuna, salmon

Salads, scrambled eggs, crackers or toast


 

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