Physically our abilities change, energy levels change, hair, nails, skin and our eyesight changes as we get older, but have you considered how your nutrition needs change over 50 ?
There is no denying that we will change with age, and although some changes are out of our control, our diet isn’t one of them. You start noticing changes in your 40’s as simple physical tasks get harder, the grey hair, the wrinkles and ‘smile lines’ appear, the number on the scale creeps up easier and you wonder what is going on. Many changes happen slowly in our muscles, bones, digestion, and eating habits when we age. In order to age healthy, slow age-related muscle loss and stay stronger longer we need to understand how our nutrition needs change over 50.
Nutrition Needs Change Over 50
Remember when you were kid and could eat a hamburger, fries, milkshake and still feel up to running around at the park? The advantage of youth…
As we age, our bodies require different nutrients. What you needed to grow the body, brain and organs of a child, to make excellent neural connections and strong muscles and bones, is different from what you need as an adult. Once we are over 50, we have greater nutritional needs to maintain muscle, increase energy, ward off disease, and maintain balance, brain & eye health and agility.
The most common issue as you age is experiencing nutritional deficiencies. Your body doesn’t absorb certain nutrients in quite the same way as it did in your twenties and you need even more of certain nutrients as you age in order to keep muscles strong and energy up. Stay stronger longer by understanding how your nutrition needs change over 50.
More Protein to Slow Age -Related Muscle loss
Sarcopenia, or age-related muscle loss, begins slowly in your 40’s and accelerates as you get older. It affects over 200 million people worldwide, to a point that it can impact their quality of life. With muscle loss comes an increased chance of mobility issues, falls, broken bones as well as diseases like type 2 diabetes.
You can prevent sarcopenia by ensuring that you have sufficient amounts of protein in your diet. In particular, protein from animal sources such as meat, fish, poultry, dairy, and eggs contain all of the essential amino acids for muscle protein synthesis. Milk proteins contain casein, whey protein as well as the muscle building amino acid leucine, which are not only beneficial in preventing muscle loss but can help you re-build muscle as well. High quality plant based protein is also effective in slowing age-related muscle loss if the source contains all essential amino acids.
Adding a scoop of Boomer Nutrition ENERGY Protein Powder or Organic Vegan Protein Powder with leucine to one of these popular smoothie recipes is a great way to slow muscle loss. Add staying active every single day to that and you have a recipe for healthy aging.
More B12 as Absorption Declines as We Age
Many discover as they get over 50 that they have a vitamin B 12 deficiency but don’t always understand why. Fewer stomach acids, a normal effect of ageing, means you might not be able to absorb some of the nutrients efficiently. Vitamin B12 is key in the production of healthy red blood cells and in neurological functioning so getting enough over 50 is important. Consuming lean meats, eggs, fish and Boomer Nutrition Protein Powder with added B vitamins can help but do get your B 12 levels checked over age 50 to be sure you are getting enough in your diet alone.
Drink More, Eat More Frequent Smaller Meals
Receptors throughout your body signal to your brain that you are dehydrated and need water, however, as we age, those receptors become less and less efficient. The effects of dehydration, particularly in older adults, can cause fatigue, slower cell regeneration and a decrease in your ability to absorb necessary medications.
Not detecting hunger, or feeling less hunger because of changes to taste, smell and a normal decrease in the hormones that trigger hunger, is also dangerous as it will ultimately lead to your not receiving adequate amounts of the nutrients your body needs, like iron, magnesium, protein, calcium, vitamins D and B12.
Eat Nutrient Dense Foods if Eating Less
Many older adults tend towards a more sedentary lifestyle and as a result, don’t need as many calories relative to their activity level and pre-existing muscle mass. This is fine as long as they are still getting the nutrients they need. As we age, we need even more protein to slow muscle loss, more calcium and Vit D for strong bones and B12 to maintain overall body health. Many older adults eventually lose some of their appetite, as a consequence of ageing, illness, treatments or medications, so meals that focus on nutrient dense whole foods is key to ensure they are still getting necessary nutrients.
A healthy protein smoothie made with greens, fruit, healthy fats such as flax & hemp seeds and high quality protein powder will go a long way to maintaining these nutritional requirements as they include many of the whole foods that you need. Include key supplements in your diet as you age if you find that you aren’t up to several big meals a day and change your routine to include several smaller meals and snacks. Eat healthy. Age Healthy. Stay Stronger Longer.
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