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Nova Scotia Seniors: March is Nutrition Month

Posted Mar 01, 2016

Nutrition MonthIt’s the “N” word! Most of us hate it because it usually means eating the bark off a fir tree or running to the store for the latest “super food” for dietary health – something brand new like Eye of Newt… wait… that’s not new…

Actually, the best changes to make are small ones, ones that we and our seniors can live with and not all at the same time. Also, never cut out their favourite foods – just interchange them with healthier choices. This helps our seniors (and us too) to stick with it. Gradually, the diet becomes healthier at every step and we, including our Nova Scotia Seniors, actually get used to the alterations and would not even want to go back to old habits. We can re-program our cravings over to healthier choices.

Cravings for specific foods are not hereditary. We are not born with cravings for pizza and hot dogs. It is conditioning that happens through the years. Learning to eat healthily in small steps keeps us on track

Think of it as an adventure: Eating nutritional meals does not mean ugh! I started with stripping the chicken – a BIG step for most. However, after watching my father go through a quintuple bypass 35 years ago, I knew my genes needed support and so started my alterations right on the spot. I learned to cook with skinless chicken and prepare delicious meals. I can make “ oven fried” chicken that you would not be able to differentiate from deep fried chicken. I could no sooner go back to old habits than I could nibble on a stick of butter.

I gradually honed my diet, over a slow period, to include the healthy oils, the whole grain carbs and a wider variety of fruits and vegetables. Plus, I controlled portion size – Instead of waddling away from the table, feeling like a stuffed goose, I walked away comfortable and satisfied.

Start by including a fruit or veggie at every meal. You don’t have to change everything all at once. Add a salad or, instead of regular fries, try lightly coating the potatoes in a mix of olive oil, garlic paste and oregano – bake them at 400º for about 20 minutes (even better than the original). Cut back on the size of your dessert and add melon or fruit slices on the side. Still satisfied – still had dessert… yum!!

Do a check up after each meal. Check on how you feel. You will notice that you feel better and this will help generate new habits. You will find that you do not want to go back to the way you felt and BIG BONUS: You WILL actually become healthier bit by bit.

Always Home Homecare wants to get this information out to you. We have seen, all too often, our Halifax Seniors, some neglected and some just not knowledgeable about nutrition, worsening their existing conditions through poor dietary habits.

Keep your health, gain your health, eat your way to health. Break out the recipe book and take a chance – it’ll be fun!