As you go further in the aging process, your body is forced to come to terms with quite a few changes. These changes are most often detrimental to your well-being and disrupt the functionality of various body parts.
Numerous ailments begin to make their presence felt, which is most commonly followed by doctors’ appointments and long medical bills. All of these can take an immense toll on your body, causing it to shrink and be undernourished.
How To Gain Weight In The Elderly?
This lack of nourishment will only lead to further negative consequences, which means that giving your body what it deserves becomes absolutely crucial. Gaining weight, especially in the elderly, as a result, becomes an increasingly daunting task. That being said, there are a few ways in which you can effectively gain weight as an older adult.
- Improve your appetite –
Since the aging process often signals the onset of a variety of disorders, your appetite takes a massive hit. Bodily changes and tons of discomfort suppress your hunger and can often lead to undernourishment, thus hindering your ability to gain weight.
In the case of dementia patients, maintaining your appetite becomes a huge concern because of its ability to inhibit hunger. Moreover, the kind of medication you take also has a massive impact on your appetite.
Therefore, it becomes crucial to identify the cause of your decreased appetite and find ways to correct it. This could include finding natural foods that increase your hunger or cooking meals with ingredients that you really like.
- Switch up portion sizes –
Rather than relying on three whole meals throughout the day, it is suggested that you break these meals down into smaller portions that you can consume during various intervals in between. Ensure that these portions are rich in proteins and healthy fats so as to improve your calorie intake. Supplement these small meals with high-calorie shakes and smoothies so that your body can be hydrated and nourished regularly.
- Have access to nutritious foods –
Quite a lot of senior citizens find it difficult to gain weight because of a lack of access to nutritious and healthy foods. Perhaps you find it difficult to walk to the grocery store and buy some healthy food for yourself.
This becomes a pressing problem among the elderly. In order to avoid this, find yourself a trusted helper or a professional caregiver to purchase nutritious foods for you and prepare healthy meals for you. Ensure that you have access to nourishing food items such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts at all times.
- Eat healthy snacks –
Although snacking on unhealthy foods can be detrimental to your health, you can substitute it with healthy food items in order to gain weight. Keep some dried fruits, kale chips, baby carrots, fruits, et cetera, with you at all times so that you can munch on them as and when you have small pangs of hunger. This will contribute to your intake of calories and therefore help you lose weight.
- Soften/puree meals –
Changes in the body often cause senior citizens to have difficulty eating. Since most dental problems arise during this period, it can lead to an issue when it comes to chewing and swallowing food in a proper manner.
This can cause them to shy away from eating food in general, which in turn contributes to a calorie deficit. In order to prevent this, find someone to puree your meals so that you can consume the food easily. Ensure to add more ingredients in order to make the meal tastier and a lot more festive. It also becomes important to increase the serving size when the meals have been pureed in order to ensure that the food has a more filling effect.
After a certain age, gaining weight takes a lot of prominences, but doing so becomes extremely difficult, especially due to the onset of numerous physical ailments. Consult your doctor before venturing into any weight-gain techniques in order to avoid any detrimental effects on your body. You may even ask your doctor for methods to gain weight and increase your appetite.
The important thing to do is to eat healthily and eat a lot. Try to be mindful of what you consume, and take in food items that you like so as to consume more calories.