Live in or hourly home care can help your loved one to live a safer, more independent life in the comfort of their own home, giving them the opportunity to stay in control and age with dignity. At HomeTouch, our aim is to empower your loved one to maximise the potential of their twilight years,and we know that a healthy diet can go a long way towards this.
As we age, it becomes increasingly difficult to prepare balanced, healthy meals. As motor-function and spatial perception decreases, causing shaky hands and clumsiness, the very process of cooking can get to be too much. Add to this the planning and physical energy that goes into shopping for a week of meals, and you might be able to see how challenging it can be for an elderly person to reap the benefits of a healthy diet.
The World Health Organisation has stated that many of the diseases suffered by older people are the result of dietary factors, compounded by changes that naturally occur with the ageing process.
Nutrient deficiencies, caused by reduced appetite and lack of variety in foods, are common in older people, and diet affects a number of diseases that are common in old age. Diseases including and not limited to cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and cancer.
A carer may also not prioritise their own diet as they should, leaving them open to illness and fatigue, which can lead to gaps in care.
The tendency to eat microwavable meals that require little planning and preparation, is high. It’s fine to eat a microwave meal every once in a while, but eating them regularly can have a significant impact on health. They tend to be high in sugar, salt, calories and saturated fats, and are known for cutting corners by substituting healthy ingredients for cheaper alternatives.
The importance of a balanced diet cannot be overstated. It’s estimated that eating just one or two extra servings of fruit and vegetables every day, can cut cardiovascular risk by 30%. But managing the logistics of improving the diet of a loved one can be a practical nightmare.
Motivation plays a big part in eating healthy meals. Eating is traditionally a communal experience, so if your loved one is on their own it might be that they just don’t see the point in making an effort. They might lack confidence in the kitchen, and be underwhelmed by the meals they feel they can produce. Carers might also find it difficult to summon-up the energy required to cook when they’ve spent all day seeing to the practical needs of another.
This is where services like Mindful Chef can really help. Mindful Chef prepare food boxes that can be delivered every week. It’s very simple, you or your loved one can select the meals they want for the week, and those exact ingredients are delivered.
Grocery shopping being the most ideal solution, remains an effort, therefore online orders delivered to your door is the most reliable and convenient way, also maximising time spent in the carer’s company. Catering for one or two people can be a challenge, this is where Mindful Chef becomes the obvious choice.
The benefits include:
● Avoiding a fridge full of leftover ingredients that will ‘go off’ over time
● A varied and interesting diet, helping your loved one to rediscover food
● Meal boxes for one or more people, so if your loved one is on their own there’s a box for them, and if they would like to eat alongside their carer, there’s a box for that as well
● Healthy recipes, designed for balanced meals that maximise nutritional benefit
● Simple instructions that will guide your loved one, and/or their carer, through the cooking process one step at a time
● Pre-measured ingredients so there’s no confusion over quantities
● Availability of vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options
We know that ageing can make simple tasks, like cooking, a struggle, and we also know that good food fuels a longer life.