Avoiding weight gain in old age

Published:May 10th, 2012


It is a fact that as a person grows older, many physiologic alterations occur in his/her body. Some of these alterations are negative ones including health-related illnesses and deviations. As we age, many changes happen in our body, one of the significant ones being a reduction in the basal metabolic rate which is often a cause of weight gain and obesity in the elderly.

To evade such things to arise, one of the preventive measures that a person can take is to modify his/her dietary regimen to not only gain weight but also to reduce the excess weight. Hence, it is important to identify the food groups that are required by old individuals and the ones that should be avoided.

Eat low calorie foods that are rich in nutrients

Caloric requirement somehow decreases as the person gets older. This is because apart from the reduced BMR, the physical activities are also limited in the elderly unlike in younger individuals. Despite of this fact, the need for protein and other essential minerals and vitamins are still the same. But, you should remember that you still need to be conscious in choosing the foods to eat. Make sure that you eat foods rich in nutrients but with less amount of calories. This is not only recommended because of the age factor, but this is also applicable in older individuals who are clinically diagnosed as obese.

Increase the intake of fiber in diet

Aside from health-related illnesses, other alterations in the body are also experienced by an adult. One of these is constipation that occurs as a result of decreased motility due to physical inactivity. To prevent this to arise, a high-fiber diet is very important to be included in older person’s everyday diet lists. These include cereals, fruits and vegetables that are fiber rich. On the other hand, you also need to support these by increasing your oral fluid intake daily. It is necessary to drink at least 2-3 liters of water every day. It is also acceptable to include other types of fluids such as fruit juices, milk and other healthy drinks.

Reduce intake of fatty food and sugar

Because of an increased incidence of heredofamilial diseases in old age such as hypertension and hypercholesterolemia, it is important to decrease intake of fatty foods, most especially foods that are rich in saturated fats. Aside from the abovementioned illnesses, diabetes is also one common diseases affecting adults. So, it is essential to decrease intake of too much sugar. Aside from triggering health-related problems, it can also be a source of calories that may predispose to gaining of more weight. To do this, avoid too much intake of foods such as candies, cakes and other sweets.

Nutrient rich foods should be increased

Intake of foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals are also important. Vitamins are essential for boosting the immune function of the body against infections and diseases. Calcium is important in maintaining bone density while zinc also aids in maintaining normal functioning of the immune system. Another important nutrient is iron that is responsible for preventing anemia in older adults.

Include physical activities in your daily routine

Above all, proper dieting is useless without performing other healthy lifestyle activity. Simple walking, gardening and other chores are uncomplicated activities that are very useful in maintaining the strength and energy of the body. Being old is not a hindrance to maintain wellness and healthy self. Being healthy is not limited to younger age, but can be achieved in all walks of life. Remember the saying that “life begins at sixty”. So, do not limit yourself to be healthy in all aspects. Live healthy and worry-free.




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