How can I ensure my elderly parents have a nutritious diet?

If you are caring for someone elderly or wanting to look after your health, read more…

Having a nutritious diet is something that not only helps heal your gut health, but it shows on the outside, for example, healthy skin, hair, and nails. If you are eating nutrition dense foods, such as protein (chicken, beef, turkey), fruit and vegetables and even fats (yes, fat can be good for you, but read more to see why).

If you are caring for someone elderly or wanting to look after your health, read more…


Does what you eat affect you in your later years?

The answer is yes, what we put into out body, may not show at the time, but in later years can seriously affect you, if not eating correctly, It can affect the way we move, how much sleep we get and our breathing.

A healthy diet can help older adults:
  • maintain their independence
  • reduce their risk of chronic diseases
  • improve their mental health

For example, if you spend your life eating unprocessed, natural foods, you will overall feel and appear healthier. If you are spending most your life eating processed foods like pizzas, burgers and high sugar foods, there is a chance your health is not going to be in a good state, and you will feel more tired and run down.

By all means, having processed foods every now and then is acceptable, you cannot completely cut it out, however, it is all about moderation. Having a cheat meal is something that will reduce cravings that little bit if you are improving your health…

“Eat something that will make you feel good hours after eating, not something that will make you feel good for 15 minutes whilst eating it”



What nutrients should I recommend to my elderly parents?

The main nutrients your body needs when you are getting older is Vitamin D for bone health and B12 to support nerve functions.

Foods that include Vitamin D:
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Pork chops
  • Mushrooms
  • Fortified foods such as: tofu, yoghurt, orange juice and milk

If you are vegetarian/vegan you can get in your vitamin D by taking supplements, in tablet form or gummy form. These can be bought in your local supermarket.

Foods that include B12
  • Meat
  • Fish
  • Cheese
  • Milk
  • Greek Yoghurt
  • Eggs

If you are vegetarian/vegan, you can get In your B12 by taking supplements. These can be bought in your local supermarket.


How can I start to prioritise nutrition now, in preparation for when I am older?

If you are looking at the ingredients of something you are eating and you can see ingredients that are too long to even pronounce and you do not recognise, then it not going to be good for you.

Ultra-processed foods are something that provide a small amount of pleasure and have ridiculous amounts of calories, which can contribute to all your daily intake.

A normal human should intake around two thousand calories a day, some ultra-processed foods like a domino’s pizza can come to almost that full intake.

You may say, well I can just eat that pizza only today then, and that is my daily calories?

Yes, true, but what nutritional value has a dominoes pizza got instead of having three nutritious meals packed with benefits. Plus, you are eventually going to get hungry again throughout the day and I bet you will not feel energised after, you will probably feel full up and tired.

So, in conclusion, try to limit the amount of ultra-processed foods you eat!



I have cravings and I do not know how to control them.

You are always going to have cravings, but there is a small hack to this…

When you are feeling low, grumpy, and lethargic, you crave chocolate and want to reach for a Cadburys chocolate bar. Well, your body is not actually craving chocolate, it craves magnesium, so instead you can have:

  • Leafy green vegetables (spinach, kale) if you are wanting a proper snack, buy some kale crisps.
  • Beans – particularly chickpeas, if you roast these and add spices, they are like crisps.
  • Whole grains – brown rice, quinoa, oats – have a big bowl of porridge and add a little chocolate to really get rid of that craving.
  • Fish - Salmon and tuna
  • Dark chocolate
  • Yoghurt
  • Avocados
  • Bananas

If you are ever craving a certain food, google a healthy alternative, your body is not craving that certain food, its craving a certain nutrient.



Are my elderly parents hydrated enough?

Dehydration can lead to a range of health problems, including constipation, urinary tract infections, and confusion. Our bodies crave hydration, but drinking loads and loads of water is not only a big task, but for elderly adults is not durable. If their mobility is not great, constantly getting up and down for the toilet is not going to make them very happy.


If you struggle to drink three litres of water a day, try this:
  • Cucumber - high water content – dip in hummus for extra protein.
  • Melon – a good, sweet treat to reduce craving
  • Blueberry’s – good anti-inflammatory properties
  • Tea – to get in your water drink some tea, try getting decaffeinated teabags so you are not overdoing the caffeine.
  • Diluted juice – although it says no added sugar, there is originally sugar in diluted juice, but in moderation, a few glasses a day can help bring up your water intake.



How could I make my elderly parents diet more convenient for them?

Convenience is key when eating nutritiously packed foods, as some say, its sometimes easier to just stick some processed foods in the oven rather than cooking a healthy meal, and that is the struggle most have, younger and older. You can solve this by doing:

  • Meal prep - this can be sourced from a nearby meal prep service or can be done by a loved one. A family member could meal prep food for the week for you, to reduce the unhealthy eating habits and is more convenient. This ensures your family know what you are eating is good.
  • Meal subscription boxes- websites like HelloFresh provide meals to your day, all ingredients, and instructions to help you cook a nutrition dense meal. Not only does this ensure you are eating healthy and fresh foods, but it promotes independence. This may get your loved ones cooking in the kitchen again.
  • Order food from restaurant’s that offer healthy options, some restaurants/meal prep services allow food to be delivered to your door every day.
Remember – keeping healthy and your nutrition is your highest property for you and your elderly parents, some services may be higher in price, but putting away a small amount of money to guarantee your loved ones are getting the correct nutrients, is something to consider.


Surround yourself with people who are promoting a healthy lifestyle

Its very easy to be tempted into eating/drinking something that is unhealthy by people around you, avoiding these interactions. When you are surrounded by people encouraging healthy behaviour its more motivating to eat healthy.

Family members, friends and your carers will motivate you to eat better, you never know, your healthy habits could inspire others to act the same.

When working amongst group situations, its easier to fall into traps of eating poorly, for example, if a coworker brings in sweet treats and offers you one, you are probably going to take it because everyone else has.

Reminder: whether it is homemade or not, you can say no when people offer you food, it is okay.


Will my parents’ carers provide help with nutrition and hydration?

When our carers visit your loved ones, they will make you anything depending on call time, whether it is a small sandwich for a dinner call or a nice meal on an evening call, our carers will do anything depending on your needs.

For example, if family has prepared meals or prepared ingredients for a meal, our carers will prepare that for a customer. Depending on the length of call, our carers could prepare a fresh, nutrient packed meal for your loved ones.

During our carers time spent with your loved ones, they are motivating to help hydrate. Whether this is providing fresh water, ensuring they are drinking it, or providing an alternative.

At Bluebird Care, the wellbeing of our customers is the heart of the care provided. We listen to your needs, and we form a plan which aligns with you!

If you would like to contact us to discuss your needs, click here.

How to find the right care for you or your relative

1. Find your local office

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2. Get in touch with us

Fill in our call back form or give us a call to find out how we can help you.

3. Assessment

We’ll come out to you to find out what you or your loved one needs to help stay independent at home.

4. Care team chosen & care starts

You'll be cared for by our specially trained team to support you to remain at home for as long as possible.

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