Improving our eating habits is essential today, as the cause of deteriorating health is due to unhealthy eating habits that exist today. And one of the most unhealthy eating habits we have is timelessly munching on snacks.
This majorly affects elderly people. So it is important to figure out some healthy snacks for elderly people. Elderly people especially should pay attention to what they are eating as an unhealthy diet could harm them in many ways.
This article will guide you through the best 7 healthy snacks for elderly people!
1. Why Is a Healthy Diet Important For the Elderly?
As you age, you need to take up a healthy and well-balanced diet. This is simply because it helps you stay energized and it lowers the risk of developing certain health conditions such as heart disease, blood sugar, and others. Therefore developing healthy eating habits becomes essential to meet the nutritional needs of older adults.
However, for some adults, it gets difficult to change their eating habits. In such cases, you may benefit from finding out some healthy snack ideas because snacks make a huge difference in your overall health.
2. 7 Best Healthy Snacks For Elderly People
2.1. Celery with Nut Butter
For many, celery may seem to be just a boring vegetable. However, it has a long list of health benefits. It is a great source of many important antioxidants.
Celery alone is a low-calorie snack that contains flavonoids and is rich in Vitamins such as Vitamin C and Vitamin K. And pairing up Celery with natural peanut butter or almond butter makes it an interesting, tasty yet healthy recipe.
Nut butter is a healthy fat (unsaturated) that makes celery a better-balanced snack. This snack has the right amount of crunch and creaminess, fits most diet plans, and most importantly, pleases adults well.
Pairing celery with a few tablespoons of peanut butter will prepare a snack with minimum calories, sufficient protein, and vitamins.
2.1.1. Benefits of Celery With or Without Nut Butter
- It reduces inflammation
- It has an alkalizing effect
- It supports digestion
- Lowers risk of heart diseases
- It helps improve cholesterol levels
2.2. Hard-Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs as a snack are easy to make, healthy, and tasty. Eggs are one of the most healthy food choices for older adults, as it is an excellent source of protein.
Besides being a high protein source, eggs are also rich in vitamins A, D, and B6. Also, a high-protein snack keeps the stomach full for a longer period of time. So it is one of the best choices for snacks.
And to make the snack more delicious, you can always season your hard-boiled eggs.
2.2.2. Few Recipes to Make Your Eggs Interesting
- Eggs with curried yoghurt dip: If you are looking for something spicy, this dip will do the work. You can prepare the dip with Greek yoghurt, a few tablespoons of lemon juice, salt, fresh mint, and curry powder.
- Eggs with soy sauce, seaweed & sesame seeds: Soy sauce paired with eggs is a classic duo. And to take it a level up, you can season it with some sesame seeds and seaweed toppings. This is a sushi-inspired toppings recipe.
2.3. Fresh Berries
Having fruits for snacking is a healthy habit. Among fresh fruits, the most preferred choice is berries.
You can pair your berries with yoghurt to make it a full-fledged tasty snack. Yoghurt and berries together are a nutritious snack for seniors, as they provide a higher nutrition content than berries or other fruits alone.
You can even prepare a fresh fruit salad by adding a few apple slices & nuts to the yoghurt-berries pairing and making even more healthy snacks for elderly people.
2.3.1. Benefits of Eating Berries
- Good source of fibre
- Helps fight inflammation
- Rich in antioxidants
- It may help improve blood sugar levels
- Helps lowering cholesterol
2.4. Protein Smoothie
The next item on the list is protein smoothies. Having a glass of smoothie is a delicious way to devour a lot of nutrients.
Smoothies contain many essential vitamins and antioxidants, making them one of the most consumed healthy snacks for elderly people.
However, to make it more nutritious for older adults, it is important to add some protein powder because otherwise, smoothies alone are majorly carbohydrates.
You can choose the protein powder as per your taste and dietary requirements. Various protein powders are readily available in the markets, such as those containing cow’s milk or those that are non-dairy.
2.4.1. Here Are Two Tasty Smoothy Recipes:
- Cranberry Yogurt Smoothie: Cranberries are a common home remedy for Urinary Tract Diseases (UTIs), a common condition susceptible to seniors.
- Green Smoothie: Green smoothies are very fresh & nutritious. It is a good source of vitamins, mostly vitamin C. You might use all sorts of green leafy vegetables to make a green smoothie. Add a teaspoon of honey if you like.
If you would like to have more delicious recipes for smoothies, check this article on “19 best meal replacement smoothies”.
2.5. Vegetables with Hummus
Vegetables are always a top choice of go-to healthy snacks for elderly people because of their abundance of health benefits. And pairing it with a rich protein source like hummus makes it a preferred diet for the elderly.
Hummus is a famous Middle-Eastern dip well paired with raw or grilled vegetable sticks. A variety of vegetables can be eaten raw, which are both healthy and crispy such as carrots, celery, sweet peppers, cucumber, and broccoli.
Hummus is best paired with bell pepper strips or carrot sticks. Consuming hummus with vegetables keeps a low-calorie diet and works for a healthy and strong metabolism.
2.6. Home-made Granola Bars
Home-made granola bars with natural, wholesome ingredients definitely fall under healthy snacks for elderly people as they feed adults with the required nutrients.
Home-made granola bars have a varied flavour and versatility and are a good source of protein & fibre. Homemade bars are much preferred over ready-made ones because most ready-made bars may be loaded with extra calories and sugar.
With homemade bars, you can add more flavours and cut down on the added calories and sugar. A variety of wholesome ingredients can be added to homemade bars, such as rice cereal, nuts, whole grains, and seeds.
To make a fully healthy granola bar combine the following ingredients:
- 300 grams of oats
- 200 grams of nuts ( almonds, walnuts, peanuts, any nuts)
- 60-120 grams of nut butter
- 50-60 ml honey or syrup (optional, add as per taste)
- 200 grams of dates
- Mix-ins: raisins, chocolate chips, dried fruits, coconut flakes
Granola bars help reduce cholesterol levels and blood sugar. It also improves your gut health. So, these bars are equally nutritious and delicious.
Whichever yoghurt it is, greek, plain, or low-fat, yoghurt will always be one of the most healthy snacks for elderly people. Among all dairy products, snacking on yoghurt is the most suggested by health experts.
Yoghurt is a good source of protein and contains probiotics. And probiotics are something which is very much in need not just for the elderly people but everyone because probiotics enhance digestion.
As with age, the ability to digest food becomes less, so consuming probiotics is very beneficial. To get the most from yoghurt, elders should be provided with plain or Greek yoghurt.
To make it more delicious, yoghurt can be paired with fresh fruits. The flavour of yoghurt is very flexible to mix it up with anything. Or in case a little bit of honey can be added too, to sweeten it.
2.7.1. Yoghurt Has the Following Health Benefits
- It keeps your heart healthy
- It is good for bone health
3. Final Thoughts
As we age, our immunity goes down, and we become more susceptible to various health issues such as diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, and so on.
This is why elderly people must eat food that provides them with the right amount of nutrients to maintain their optimal health. It can get difficult for seniors to take care of their own diet due to ageing, so home care facilities are much needed.
Family caregivers can even be hired to plan a proper diet for the elders at home. Caregivers are well-trained, so they are best at what they do. However, if you want to do it yourself, you can too.
As this article mentions a few healthy snacks for elderly people, you may take reference from here. Planning a proper diet for our older loved ones is very important because the food we give them should also make them feel comfortable while eating.
It is important to know what you need to add to the diet plans. So, to know more about a healthy diet, you may check this article, and click here.
Do let us know your views on these 7 healthy snacks for elderly people that we have listed. You can share your feedback with us via the comment box below.
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4. Frequently Asked Questions
4.1. What is healthy food for elderly parents?
Some areas to focus on might be protein and whole grains. High-protein foods can help build lean muscle and prevent your seniors from getting tired and can be found in nuts, Greek yoghurt, mashed avocado, eggs, tuna, or protein powder added to smoothies or juices.
4.2. Why are snacks important for the elderly?
In many cases, healthy snacking can be quite beneficial for seniors. By consuming smart, healthy snacks between meals, you or the senior in your life can maintain proper caloric intake and sustain greater energy throughout the day.
4.3. What is a protein breakfast for seniors?
Eggs, yoghurt, and nuts or seeds are the best sources of protein. add vegetables. Vegetables may not be your breakfast choice, but there are many ways to incorporate them into a meal. Try the spinach and mushroom omelette or the bell pepper and onion omelette.
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