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January 17, 2019

Recognizing Malnutrition

Recognizing MalnutritionEating a well-balanced, nutritious diet is a challenge that many of us struggle with. However, the health risks associated with malnutrition can be especially concerning for older adults.

Here are some signs to watch for if you’re concerned that someone may be suffering from malnutrition:

  • Weakened immune system
  • Poor wound healing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Weight loss
  • Dental issues

If engaging in good eating habits is a struggle, there are steps anyone can take to ensure that they are getting proper nutrition. In addition to consulting a physician about diet or health concerns they might have, they can also try the following tactics to get back on the right track:

  • Make meals a social occasion– Sharing a meal is one of the most enjoyable ways to ensure that someone is eating well. This can look like making something healthy and delicious for others, or reaching out to people that love to cook healthy food and offering them your company.
  • Make healthy eating fit your budget– Good food doesn’t have to be expensive. A doctor or nutritionist can point patients to budget friendly, nutritious food options. And, maintaining a healthy lifestyle saves money on medical care in the future.
  • Shop for healthy foods– Having a kitchen stocked with healthy snacks and meal options is one of the most important steps to maintaining a balanced diet. 
  • Encourage people to ask for help– If someone you know has concerns about their ability to plan healthy meals, shop for the groceries or if they just aren’t getting the nutrition they need, tell them to ask for help! In-home caregivers, delivery services, family, friends and medical professionals can all help older adults reach their nutrition goals.

If you think someone you know is malnourished, watch for the symptoms listed above and share meals if you can so you can ensure that your loved one is getting proper nutrition. 

Comfort Keepers®Can Help

If someone is struggling to maintain healthy eating habits, consider getting support from the trusted care team at Comfort Keepers®. Our caregivers can help with grocery shopping, meal preparation, and can help support physician-prescribed exercise regimens and diets. Our goal is to see that clients have the means to find the joy and happiness in each day, regardless of age or acuity.

To learn more about our in-home care services, contact your local Comfort Keepers location today.

References
Mayo Clinic. “Senior health: How to prevent and detect malnutrition.” Web. 2017.
Public Health Post. “Malnutrition in Older Adults.” Web. 2017
Feeding America. “Facts about Senior Hunger in America.” Web. 

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