If the seniors in your life are more likely to indulge in the numerous junk and fast food choices that are so readily available, they’re in excellent company. Even though these sorts of foods are convenient, they are frequently high in calories, fat and cholesterol and lack fiber as well as other key nutrients that are essential to nourish aging bodies. As a matter of fact, as few as 5% of us are getting enough daily fiber – something very important for seniors.
Why Is Fiber Important?
Fiber’s health benefits include:
- Weight management: Lower in calories and slower to digest, foods that are typically rich in fiber help people to feel fuller longer.
- Reduced cholesterol: With fiber in the digestive tract, the human body absorbs lower levels of cholesterol.
- Blood sugar regularity: Because high-fiber foods take longer to break down, steady blood glucose levels are sustained.
- Enhanced digestive tract functioning: Fiber in the digestive tract stimulates the intestines, reducing problems from constipation.
- Reduced cancer risk: Sufficient quantities of fiber in the diet help defend against certain types of cancer, such as colon cancer.
Simple Tips to Increase Daily Fiber Intake
If a senior’s diet is deficient in sufficient quantities of fiber, it is necessary to add more fiber gradually. Adding a lot of fiber all at once might cause bloating, gas, and other adverse effects. Encourage seniors to build up daily fiber intake over several days, while making certain to drink lots of water as well, which will help reduce unwanted symptoms.
The following foods with a high fiber content are an excellent place to begin. Bear in mind that ideally, it is recommended that adults should be consuming 14 grams of fiber for every 1,000 calories consumed every day, which translates to about 24 grams for women and 38 grams for men.
- Apples (4.4 grams in one single raw, average-sized apple)
- Raspberries (6.5 grams per cup)
- Pears (5.5 grams in one single raw, medium-sized pear)
- Strawberries (3 grams per cup)
- Avocado (10 grams per cup)
- Bananas (3.1 grams in one average-sized banana)
- Carrots (3.6 grams per cup)
- Broccoli (2.4 grams per cup)
- Beets (3.8 grams per cup)
- Brussels sprouts (3.3 grams per cup)
- Artichoke (6.9 grams in one raw globe)
- Kidney beans (12.2 grams per cup, cooked)
- Lentils (13.1 grams per cup, cooked)
- Chickpeas (12.5 grams per cup, cooked)
- Split peas (16.3 grams per cup, cooked)
- Oats (16.5 grams per cup, raw)
- Popcorn (1.15 grams per cup, popped)
- Quinoa (5.2 grams per cup, cooked)
- Almonds (4 grams per 3 tablespoons)
- Sweet potatoes (3.8 grams per medium-sized boiled potato without skin)
- Dark chocolate (3.1 grams per 1-ounce piece)
With a variety of options to satisfy each senior’s individual taste, it’s very easy to incorporate more fiber into the diet and enhance older adults’ health.
At At-Home Care Company, the compassionate senior helpers Des Moines families need, we know how a well-balanced diet for older adults helps maintain general health and wellness so that seniors can continue to live active and engaged lives. Our knowledgeable care team is here to help promote healthy snacking and eating habits for seniors and provide important companionship during meals, and any other time, day or night.
To learn information about the numerous ways At-Home Care Company’s senior helpers in Des Moines and nearby areas are available to help a senior you love maintain nutritious eating habits and much more, contact us at 515-292-2650 for more information and to schedule a no cost in-home consultation today. For a full list of the towns and communities we serve, please visit our Service Area page.