Can meal services for seniors keep seniors independent?
Few would be surprised to know more seniors are choosing to stay at home instead of dealing with the stress of moving to a long-term care facility. Recent reports have stated that over 75% of seniors want to stay in their homes for as long as they possibly can. However, as a person gets older, a different set of challenges begin to appear as seniors try to take care of themselves. One of these challenges may be eating properly. Fortunately, meal services for seniors can keep the elderly healthy and independent.
A 2012 report from Brown University suggested that in-home meal services may prevent seniors who need minimal care from moving into a nursing care facility. But, it is important that families and other caregivers also consider other needs the senior may have.
Many other variables can have an effect on a senior’s ability and desire to eat healthy food. These variables include:
- Limited income
- A decrease in appetite
- Changes in the digestive system
Although planning healthy meals can be challenging for seniors and their family members, meal services for seniors will ensure that seniors eat balanced, well portioned, and healthy meals.
THE IMPORTANCE OF MEAL SERVICES
As previously discussed, meal services geared towards seniors will reduce the risk of the development of certain age-related health conditions including osteoporosis, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Good nutrition will also decrease the risk of many types of cancers also.
Good meal service will work with seniors and their caregivers to ensure that meals that are delivered to the senior will be in compliance with any dietary restrictions and nutritional orders prescribed by the senior’s physician.
FACTORS THAT DETERMINE APPETITE
There are also several factors that determine a senior’s appetite and other eating habits. Some of these factors are:
- Not wanting to eat alone
- Difficulty cooking for only one person
- Difficulties with chewing
- Changes in the ability to taste food
- Limited mobility
- Limited transportation
It is important that caregivers and family members do not overlook any factors when meal plans are being prepared. For example, do not choose a meal plan that requires a lot of cooking. Many seniors have difficulty standing for long periods of time.
Meal services for seniors allow seniors to maintain flexible schedules and stay independent while remaining at home. Caregivers can plan and prepare healthy meals that will allow seniors to stay active.
Do you or someone you love need help preparing meals in your home? Contact Prosper Home Care and find out how the agency’s caring professionals can help plan personalized meal service options for you or your loved one