Tips for Helping a Resistant Senior Change their Diet

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Overcoming Senior Resistance to Diet Changes

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After hearing what your parent’s doctor had to say in his or her most recent appointment, you know the time has come for mom or dad to start eating better foods. Unfortunately, they are not as concerned as you are, and you need some help getting them on the right track. As a leading provider of at-home care in Sonoma County, we understand that there may be some resistance when asking an aging loved one to change his or her diet, and present a few simple ways that can make the process easier.

  • Allow for Moderation – In many cases, doctors say that certain foods have to be significantly reduced. This is not the same as banning them entirely. For example, your parents might need to start eating lean meats for most of their dinners, but they can enjoy burgers and hot dogs at the annual Fourth of July picnic. Education can also be very powerful, so you may want to teach your parents about moderation by chatting with their doctors.
  • Make Cooking Fun – As your parents prepare meals with new healthier ingredients, they might start to forget about how much joy cooking used to give them. Bring the grandchildren over one day to cook with your parents, or spend an afternoon researching new recipes online together. By distracting them from the fact that they are using ingredients they’ve never tried before, you are allowing them to focus on spending time with the little ones or envisioning their culinary masterpiece.
  • Cook for Them – While you may need to hire help for some of the days, you can cook for your aging parent or loved one when time allows. Invite them over for dinner, or bring the family over to prepare a meal. If the food is prepared and ready for them, they may be more likely to eat it than if they had to prepare it for themselves. Click here for more information about professional caregivers in Sonoma County who can assist with daily activities including meal preparation, light housekeeping, transportation and more.

Don’t force too many changes onto your parents at once. Instead, speak with the doctor about how imminent the need for a new diet is, and slowly work to incorporate plenty of healthy foods until eating them has become a routine.

For more information about senior nutrition, contact Home Care Assistance Sonoma County today. While we specialize in live-in home care, we also provide hourly care and specialized stroke, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and dementia care in Sonoma County. Call 707-843-4368 and speak with a Care Manager to schedule a free, in-home consultation to see how our home care services are helping change the way the world ages.