In your role as a family caregiver, one of the most important things that you will do is make sure that your senior eats the types of foods that will keep their body healthy and strong, and that will help to ward off serious health complications and issues as they age in place. For some seniors, this can be intimidating. Many are accustomed to a specific diet and may be nervous about the major changes that they believe a healthy diet will bring. One of the easiest ways that you can introduce healthier foods to them gradually is to add them in to familiar foods so that your parent can still eat the foods that they are used to while getting more of the nutrients that they need.
June is National Fruit and Veggies Month.
This is the ideal opportunity for you to find creative and effective ways to help your parent eat more of the foods that you know they need while also allowing them to eat many of the foods that they love. One highly effective way of doing that is by bulking up their supper each day with a variety of fruits and vegetables that will add valuable nutrients while trimming down on fat, calories, and cholesterol.
Try some of these ideas to bulk up suppers during National Fruit and Veggies Month and throughout the rest of your caregiver journey:
- Add to pasta sauce. Spaghetti is a simple and delicious family favorite, but it is also great place to add in a lot of vegetables. Try chopping carrots, onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, and zucchini into your sauce for a bolder texture and lightly sweet flavor. If your family prefers smoother sauce, simply cook with the vegetables and then blend until you reach the desired texture
- Add a soup course. Enjoying a bowl of soup before the main mean can help your parent get more vegetables but also fills them up so they can reduce the amount of heavier items they eat during the meal. Create your own fast, simple, and delicious soup by cooking carrots, onions, celery, and garlic in a small amount of olive oil until they are softened. Add in a can each of diced tomatoes, kidney beans, black beans, and green beans and stir. Pour in two quarts vegetable broth and add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and add one cup of small pasta, cover and allow to cook for five minutes. Add in a handful or two of greens such as kale and allow them to wilt down into the soup as the pasta finishes cooking
- Bump up the nutrition in potatoes. Make mashed potatoes a healthier option for your loved one by blending in vegetables. Try roasting turnips and cauliflower with a small amount of olive oil and then blend this until smooth before adding into mashed potatoes for a delectable flavor and strong nutrition.
Starting senior care for your elderly loved one can be one of the best decisions that you can make for them throughout the course of your caregiver journey with them. Having a senior home care services provider in the home with your parent is a fantastic way to help ensure that they are able to achieve and maintain the highest quality of life possible as they age in place. This means not only addressing their individual needs, challenges, and limitations, but also encouraging them to pursue a lifestyle that is as active, engaged, independent, and fulfilling as possible throughout their later years. A senior care provider can accomplish this by designing a highly personalized set of services tailored to your parent’s needs, personality, preferences, and goals so that they are able to stay safe, healthy, comfortable, and happy in this new chapter in their lives. When it comes to helping them maintain their best health through a balanced diet, this care provider can provide safe and reliable transportation to the grocery store to help them stock their kitchen with the right foods, research recipes with them, and even help them to prepare meals and snacks that will work with their personal preferences as well as give them the nutrition that their body needs to thrive.