Malnutrition is a serious condition that develops due to a deficient intake of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. It can be caused by not consuming enough food or eating foods that do not provide adequate nutrition. Malnutrition contributes to a progressive decline in health, increased mortality, and reduced cognitive and physical functional status. According to Statistics Canada, over one-third of seniors living at home are at risk of malnutrition.
Symptoms of malnutrition include bruising easily, changes in skin pigmentation, achy joints, and increased sensitivity to glare and light.
One of the biggest reasons for malnutrition in seniors is the difficulty in getting or preparing healthy food options. You can help your loved one by preparing meals ahead of time, picking up groceries for him/her, ordering him/her a meal delivery program, and/or ensuring they have healthy snacks to eat between meals.
Another reason many seniors are malnourished is due to having difficulty eating. Exercising can lead to improved appetite while adding flavour to meals can encourage eating. If you or your loved one is having difficulty swallowing, try having soups, yogurt, and smoothies.
If you have any concerns regarding changes in weight or appetite or further concerns about your nutrition, talk to your health care provider. He/she can help you monitor your weight to screen for malnutrition, assess medical conditions that may cause or increase the risk of malnutrition, and recommend vitamin and mineral supplements if necessary.
Using the Boom Health app, you can receive fresh and healthy meals made from quality ingredients. Our service includes a wide range of options including vegetarian and gluten-free. The app can be found on the App Store and Google Play Store.
Reference: Statistics Canada
This article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.