Unintentional weight loss in seniors can be dangerous when left untreated, and it often results in secondary health issues, such as depression, lethargy, heart palpitations, and nutritional deficiencies. Keeping an older adult at a healthy weight is a difficult task for many caregivers, but there are a few steps you can take to make sure your loved one is consuming enough calories. The following tips can help you address the involuntary weight loss and boost your loved one’s overall health.
Start with Supplements & Shakes
Until you can come up with a long-term solution, you need to make sure your loved one is getting enough vitamins and minerals. A good way to temporarily address unintentional weight loss is to supplement regular meals with a good multivitamin and high-calorie shakes. Most of your loved one’s nutrients should come from the whole foods he or she eats, but these supplemental products can help until you get to the root of the issue.
Change Up Colors & Flavors
If your loved one has been on a strict diet for the last few months, you might want to try out a few new dishes. In addition to experimenting with new flavor profiles, you can also try to change the look of the food. Different mental health disorders can result in picky eating habits, and brightening the dish could pique your loved one’s interest.
Encourage Exercising More Often
Trying to exercise while losing weight is incredibly difficult, but your loved one might not be eating because his or her body isn’t being challenged. Seniors should start off with very moderate activities, such as walking around the house for a few minutes. After a few days, these activities might stimulate your loved one’s metabolism and trigger his or her hunger.
In Chandler, elderly 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.
Stock the Refrigerator with Nutritious Snacks
As people grow older, certain physical limitations can make it difficult to prepare meals and snacks. Depending on your loved one’s personality, he or she might not be eating enough food because he or she is too embarrassed to ask for help. Instead of forcing your loved one to ask for food, try to stock the refrigerator with healthy meals and snacks to see if he or she eventually gains weight. Options such as sliced vegetables and fresh fruit make perfect midday snacks.
Older adults who have difficulty with meal prep are also likely to be underweight. Senior care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Speak with a Doctor
Sudden weight loss is often caused by serious medical issues. Schedule an appointment with a doctor if your loved one continues to lose weight for more than a few weeks in a row. Many medications can also impact a senior’s appetite and ability to eat. During your appointment with the doctor, bring a complete list of all the medications your loved one is taking.
Performing daily tasks while simultaneously managing the symptoms of a serious illness can be challenging for seniors. The Chandler live-in care experts at Home Care Assistance are available 24/7 to make sure your loved one has the care he or she needs to remain safe and comfortable while aging in place. If your loved one needs professional care, Home Care Assistance is here to help. To hire a compassionate, dedicated caregiver, call us at (480) 448-6215 today.