Home Care Assistance: If your dad struggles with meal preparation, he’s not alone.
One study found that the percent of adult males who cooked their meals ranged from 34.7 percent (no high school) to 51.9 percent (college grads). At least half of all men rely on takeout foods or others cooking for them. Home Care Assistance can help with this.
In addition, older adults often limit their diet due to pain or difficulty with chewing. If your dad wears bridges or full dentures, ill-fitting dental appliances may make it harder for him to eat certain foods. That can lead to malnutrition. What nutrients does your dad lack with his daily meals and snacks?
Calcium and Vitamin D
Calcium and vitamin D play a key role in bone strength. If your dad isn’t eating enough dairy or fruit juices with added calcium, he may end up with thinning bones. His bones will more easily fracture in a fall if they get too brittle.
Cheese, milk, and fortified cereals are good ways to boost his calcium. A daily breakfast of fresh fruit, plain yogurt, and toasted nuts is an excellent way to increase calcium. He could also have sardines spread on toast points for lunch to get a boost of calcium.
Few adults get enough fiber. Not only does fiber help prevent constipation, but studies find it also lowers the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Your dad can increase his fiber intake by having canned beans in some of his weekly meals. Whole grains are also a good source of fiber. If your dad is into a quick smoothie for breakfast, add a handful of old-fashioned oatmeal to the fruit and yogurt before blending it.
Vitamin B12 helps the body create red blood cells. Older adults don’t absorb it as well as they did when they were younger. If your dad isn’t getting enough B12, he may look pale, be fatigued, and feel lightheaded. Joint pain, anemia, memory loss, and incontinence are other signs.
Your dad’s doctor can test his blood to get his B12 levels. If he does have a deficiency, vitamin B12 pills or shots will help boost his levels. He also needs to eat more grains, fortified cereals, and bread to increase his intake of B12.
Home care assistance is one way to ensure your dad eats a balanced diet. Arrange to have caregivers cook meals for him. With someone else cooking meals, he eats well and gets the nutrients he needs. He can also have help with grocery shopping and planning a weekly menu. Call a home care assistance specialist to learn more.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care Assistance in Peoria, AZ, please contact the caring staff at Home Care Resources at (602) 443-4700
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