The elderly population has an increased risk of chronic conditions. Higher consumption of fruits and vegetables has been shown to decrease the risk of heart disease and stroke, cancer, lower blood pressure and have a positive effect on blood sugar.  Eating a variety of different fruits and vegetable, of various colors, will provide your body the mix of nutrients. There are simplified ideas to help one incorporate fruits and vegetables into their diet.

Snacking smart – keep fresh fruits and vegetables cut up and in the refrigerator so that they are easily accessible for a quick snack.  Experiment with new combinations – this can help prevent one’s diet from becoming bland and boring, and helps one to intake a variety of nutrients.

Start your day with a fruit or vegetable – This helps one to start thinking about how to incorporate these foods from the beginning of the day, such as adding berries to oatmeal.

It can be challenging for the elderly, and general population, to think about how to make lifestyle changes to increase fruits and vegetables in their diets. Studies have shown that an education-based theory and health education models have a greater impact on the consumption of fruit and vegetables in the elderlies. A Registered Dietitian can be a valuable resource to help one become educated on the benefits of varies fruits and vegetables, develop personalized obtainable goals and work with the elderly to strategize ways to incorporate them into their diet. Contact a Registered Dietitian today to get started eating healthier, increasing fruits and vegetables, understanding healthy foods and decrease the risk of chronic conditions.

 

Resources

“Vegetables and Fruits.” The Nutrition Source, Harvard T.H. Chan, 26 Feb. 2018, www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-and-fruits/.

Mohammad Mehdi Hazavehei, Seyed, and Maryam Afshari. “The Role of Nutritional Interventions in Increasing Fruit and Vegetable Intake in the Elderlies: A Systematic Review.” Aging Clinical and Experimental Research, vol. 28, no. 4, 2016, p. 583.

“5 Easy Ways to Eat More Fruits and Veggies.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, diet.mayoclinic.org/diet/eat/easy-ways-to-eat-more-fruits-and-veggies?xid=nl_MayoClinicDiet_20180206.