Did you know there are many factors that cause people to lose their appetite as they age?
As a Family Caregiver, you strive to protect your senior loved one and provide them with the support and healthcare they need. If you have noticed that your loved one has had a decreased appetite, there are ways to ensure they are getting the nutrition they need to stay healthy and fight off illness.
Potential Reasons For Your Loved One’s Decreased Appetite:
- Reduction of smell and taste - if your senior loved one is not able to smell or taste their food, they will be less enthusiastic about eating. You can experiment with using new and varying spices to entice your loved one to try new food. This may interest them enough to focus on eating again.
- Medication - Many medications can affect a person’s appetite. If you notice a significant change in your loved one’s desire to eat regular meals, have a conversation with their doctor about alternative medications.
- Problems with chewing - If your loved one has trouble chewing, it will decrease their desire to eat. Problems chewing could be caused by dental problems or ill-fitting dentures, so they may need to see a dentist. You may also consider serving your loved one smoothies, which can be made so they are rich in nutrients, fruits and vegetables.
- Constipation - This condition can cause your loved one discomfort and the feeling that their stomach has no more room for food, even when they haven’t eaten very much. You may want to consider talking with their doctor about medications that cause constipation and they could prescribe an alternative. Also, add food to your loved one’s diet that will help their body’s digestive system.
If your senior loved one has experienced some of those symptoms, healthcare professionals report there are things you can incorporate into their diet in order to lessen these symptoms and increase nutritional intake:
- Add nutrient rich foods to your loved one’s grocery list that are high in Omegas and Fatty Acids.
- Ensure your loved one is getting enough calcium and Vitamin D.
- Decrease the amount of sodium in their diet.
- Help your loved one drink enough water.
Your senior loved one’s nutritional needs are just one of the many things you know are important. It’s also one of those things that is more difficult to stay on top of when things get busy. As a Family Caregiver, you wear many hats and the professionals at Freudenthal Home Health can assist you in providing the utmost care. Contact us today to learn about our staff of healthcare professionals and assistants ready to be your partner in home health care.