Obesity is a risk factor for most senior health conditions, so it’s essential for caregivers to help their aging loved ones regulate their weight. Many seniors turn to overeating. They may eat massive meals or snack at odd times, resulting in uncontrollable weight gain. Managing overeating can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. Here are a few strategies to reduce your loved one’s overeating habits.
Discuss the Dangers of Overeating
Many seniors overeat because they think there’s no harm in it. Since they’re not focused on having perfect bodies, they decide to eat whatever they want. It’s important to remind your loved one that weight isn’t just an aesthetic issue. Explain that you’re concerned about the way obesity can worsen arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, and other common health issues. You may want to bring up this discussion with a doctor, who can advise your loved one on a healthy weight for his or her height and age.
Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Castle Rock, CO, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.
Reduce the Availability of Processed Snack Foods
A lot of processed foods are carefully designed to encourage overeating. They contain precisely calculated blends of fat, sugar, and sodium that keep people eating handful after handful. Getting rid of processed junk foods is one of the most effective ways to reduce overeating. Instead, fill up the refrigerator and pantry with whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, and lean meats and only offer your loved one food at mealtimes. Many caregivers feel guilty about doing this because they hate the idea of depriving their loved ones of favorite snack foods. Try to reassure yourself by remembering your loved one is getting enough nutrition during meals and doesn’t need to snack.
Cook Foods with a Strong Effect on Satiety
Satiety is the sensation of being full. It’s carefully regulated by a variety of hormones and other bodily functions, but in the senior years, satiety may be more difficult for the body to gauge. Many seniors overeat because they constantly feel hungry. To help your loved one feel full, serve foods that take longer to digest. Foods that have a high satiety index tend to be those with a lot of fiber and protein, including eggs, oatmeal, fish, yogurt, and vegetables.
In Castle Rock, in-home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.
Provide High-Volume and Low-Calorie Foods
Some seniors don’t respond well to caregivers switching their diets to nothing but three healthy meals a day. In situations where your loved one won’t be satisfied without snacking on something until his or her stomach is stuffed, offer foods that are high in volume while being low in calories. Though this is technically overeating, it ensures your loved one isn’t consuming an unhealthy number of calories each day. Some good options include unbuttered popcorn, berries, citrus fruits, and vegetable sticks.
Professional caregivers with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement for seniors who need help eating less. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care services. Castle Rock families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Call us today at 720-287-1685 to discuss how we can give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing your loved one is being cared for with professionalism and compassion.