March is National Nutrition Month: Every day is a good day to eat right

March is National Nutrition Month: Every day is a good day to eat right

It’s not always easy to eat right at any age. Seniors may have a few extra hurdles to jump. Food choices may be limited due to illness, chewing problems, lack of appetite or inability to shop or prepare food. Talk to your doctor about nutritional supplements if any of these situations apply to you.

According to TUFTS food pyramid for older adults, a person may need less food to maintain one’s weight; however, one’s need for vitamins and minerals may stay the same or even increase. That’s why it is important to choose a variety of nutrient-rich foods every day.

TUFT University recommends:

  • 3 or more servings of low- or nonfat dairy products daily (e.g. 1 cup milk or yogurt, 1 ½ oz. low fat cheese).
  • 2 or more servings of protein-rich foods daily (e.g. beans, fish, skinless poultry, lean meat or eggs).
  • 3 or more servings of bright-colored fresh, frozen or canned vegetables. Look for dark green, red, orange and/or yellow vegetables (e.g. romaine lettuce, winter squash, sweet potato, ¾ cup vegetable juice, ½ cup carrots, ½ cup cooked spinach).
  • 2 or more servings of fresh frozen, dried or canned fruit packed in juice. Those with deep colors typically have more nutrients. Choose 100% fruit juice. Juices fortified with calcium provide a non-dairy calcium source (e.g. medium size peach or banana, ½ cup berries or sliced melon, ¼ cup dried apricots or raisins, ¾ cup 100% orange juice.
  • 6 or more servings of high-fiber, fortified, or whole grains such as brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, and bran cereal (e.g. 1 slice whole-wheat bread, ½ cup raisin bran or oatmeal, ½ cup cooked enriched pasta or rice).
  • 8 8-oz glasses of water or beverages such as fruit or vegetable juice, milk, reduced sodium soup, tea or coffee.

Whether caring for oneself or someone else, every day is a good day to eat right.

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