Why it’s Important to Keep Eating Well as You Age
Healthy eating is important at any age, but as you get older, it becomes an absolutely essential part of your life. Not only does it keep your body healthy, allowing you to be more active, but there are mental health benefits, too, giving you a more positive outlook on life and ensuring that you are emotionally stable.
Although you might think eating healthily will be about sacrificing those foods you love and eating food you don’t enjoy, but you know it is good for you, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way. In fact, eating healthily can be just as enjoyable as eating unhealthy food once you get started. Read on to find out just why it’s so vital to keep eating well as you get older, and the reasons might just be the impetus you need to do what you know you should do.
Perhaps the biggest reason of all to eat well as you get older is that it can prolong your life, enabling you to live not only longer but more healthily at the same time. You will be able to enjoy that extra life as you will be active throughout. This is because a good diet will include all the nutrients you need to boost your immunity (making it less likely you’ll get sick), remove toxins from your body, keep your weight at a healthy level, and reduce the risk of various conditions including:
- Type II diabetes
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
Plus, being in good physical health will help you to stay more independent as you age, doing what you want to do and not having to rely on anyone else.
Sharpen Your Mind
Those who eat healthy, well-balanced diets that contain nuts, fish (particularly oily fish since this contains omega-3 fatty acids), fruit, and vegetables (especially leafy green ones) will often have better cognitive function than those who eat lots of processed food and sugar, for example. A good diet means you are more able to focus, and studies have shown there might even be a decreased risk of developing conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
You can enhance your diet with antioxidants to really boost your immune system and flush out the toxins within, enabling you to be healthier all round. Green tea is an excellent source of antioxidants, and this can improve memory as a bonus.
There is something to be said for simply feeling good, no matter what age you are. A healthy diet will give you this ‘feel-good’ feeling and even provide you with more energy. This, combined with a positive outlook, means you will try more new things, take on challenges, and not just stop enjoying yourself just because you are advancing in years.
Eating more healthily is a great habit to get into at any age, but even if you haven’t eaten so well in the past, that’s no reason not to do so now – it’s never too late to get healthy and change your diet. Even if you have medical issues such as dysphagia that mean swallowing is hard, you can still eat healthily and enjoy your meals; adding SimplyThick to your liquid diet will give it a thicker consistency and you’ll feel healthier because of it, ready to go out and enjoy your life.
When you think of eating healthily, you’ll immediately think of the food you’re eating and whether or not it’s good for you. However, healthy eating is – despite what you and everyone else might think – about more than this. It’s also about how enjoyable eating is. The pleasure of eating is just as much a part of eating well as what you are eating is. This is why something like the thickening agent mentioned above is so crucial; it allows anyone to enjoy food, even if they would usually be unable to.
Something else that makes food more enjoyable is eating in a social setting. Whether you go to family or friends’ homes for a meal or barbecue once in a while, you organize your own get-togethers with neighbors, or you go to a club or class where everyone has lunch together on a regular basis, these meals are fun and something to look forward to, and they can be healthy even if the food itself is not. You could even invite someone to your home and cook together. It really doesn’t matter so much what you do, what you eat (to some extent). Being around other people is good for you, and socializing as you get older is something you should definitely keep doing, especially if there is food involved.
The Best Foods to Include in Your Diet
Although it’s fine to have some fun from time to time and enjoy a takeout or some sweet treats, you should make most of your dishes healthy, or at least include some healthy elements. Some of the best things to include in your food at any age, and certainly as you get older, are:
- Fruit and vegetables
- Foods containing calcium such as milk, cheese, eggs, or non-dairy alternatives such as almonds and kale
- Protein – although this should be varied so that you don’t have too much processed meat