Eating is a huge part of our lives, being able to prepare healthy meals for yourself and loved ones is essential. Unfortunately, not everyone can manage meal prep themselves. Due to immobility or age-related decline meal prep can be a challenge, especially without assistance. Not being able to consistently eat healthy and balanced meals can contribute to health issues or unhealthy eating habits.
How Do I Prep?
Meal prep is quite simple if you give yourself ample time to prepare ahead. Here are some tips to get started:
Plan and Write It Down
When you give yourself time to prepare, it minimizes trips to the grocery store or panicking because you forgot to buy something. On the weekends, sit down and plan what your meals are for the upcoming weeks or months then write it all down. Make sure to double-check the grocery list with your elderly loved one so you’ll know what is and isn’t allowed in their diet.
Prepare The Kitchen
After buying groceries, you’ll need to prepare the kitchen for cooking. Keep in mind that your elderly loved ones might also use this kitchen to prepare food for themselves when you aren’t available. Store your food properly in the correct containers, and prepare the cooking utensils, pots, and pans. This will make it easier for everyone trying to use the kitchen—especially the seniors.
Give the household instructions on where things are so it’s easier for everyone.
What Type of Meals Should You Be Preparing?
As we age, our bodies will need more nutrients from the food that we eat. Our bodies depend on the vitamins and nutrients from our food to keep us as healthy as possible. Having an unhealthy diet can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancers. What should seniors eat to be healthier?
The Five Food Groups
When we were younger, we were taught to eat from the five food groups: fruits, vegetables, grains, protein, and dairy. These types of food will energize our bodies and provide the right nourishment. For breakfast, you can serve whole grain-rich food such as oatmeal, cereals, or simple eggs and toast. Lunch is the perfect time to eat vegetables so feel free to add leafy greens or other colorful vegetables to the meal such as salads, eggs, potatoes, or vegetable stew. For dinner, eating a low-calorie meal such as beans and rice, or shrimp and pasta is a good way to go.
Avoid Foods that Are High In:
A diet that consists of high sugar intake can elevate blood sugar levels especially when the diet is low in fiber. It can also elevate blood pressure. High sugar consumption may also impair glucose tolerance which can put them in a pre-diabetic state.
A high-sodium diet can raise a senior’s blood pressure. It also increases the risk of cognitive heart failure, kidney damage, stroke, and heart disease.
Trans Fat and Saturated Fat
Avoid serving food with trans fats and limit saturated fat consumption by 10%. These types of fat increase the risk of heart disease and offer very limited nutritional benefits. However, there are types of fat that are healthy for the heart such as monounsaturated fats found in oils and fish.
What If I Don’t Have Time for Meal Planning?
Meal Prep isn’t always easy, we’re all busy and get caught up in our own lives. Luckily in-home senior care services are there to assist you and your loved one with meal prepping and more. In-home senior care in Unified Pledge can assist you with taking care of your elderly loved ones and making sure that they receive the best care and service.
How Does In-Home Senior Care Help?
Caregivers can aid seniors in eating healthy and consistent meals, making sure that their clients will follow their dietary restrictions. In-home senior caregivers can prepare meals and assist with mealtime (monitoring their clients and keeping them company while they eat). They can also put away leftovers and do the dishes to minimize the hazards that seniors can encounter in the kitchen such as hot surfaces, hard to reach places, or wet floors.
Do You Need Assistance?
Unified Pledge Home Health provides a FREE consultation. Talk to them about your situation and explore your options.
A reputable home health agency will perform a complementary in-home care assessment done by a registered nurse. In doing so, they can create a personalized health care plan. Additionally, they also provide a high level of service for skilled medical care based on the physician's order.
Hiring professionals from Unified Pledge comes with the following advantages:
Level II FBI background checks of all staff
Driving history checks
Companions, health aides, LPNs are our direct employees and not independent contractors
Constant communication to patients, family, and care team
Registered Nurse supervision is ongoing with every care plan