ADDRESSING CHANGES IN EATING HABITS

ADDRESSING CHANGES IN EATING HABITS

Author: Raylene Peine of Lila Bruk & Associates [https://nodietdietician.com/]

As we age, our bodies change, and we find ourselves struggling with issues we didn’t even think about 10 years before.  Part of this change includes the transformation of our lifestyles, including our social lives, eating habits, and exercise routines.  The difference in eating behaviours can be a result of many things, such as; an increased/ decreased appetite, a new living space or a decrease/ loss of taste.

 

Assessing Your Appetite:

When trying to assess your appetite, it is best to look back at how your eating has changed over the last few years.  Think back to two years ago – what, and how much did you eat?  Are you eating the same kinds of food, and are you eating the same volume of food?  If not – why not?

Make a list of what differences there are in your life – did you move, or lose a loved one? Did you used to cook, and now have meals delivered?

Take a look at this list and analyse what you see.  Do you think you eat better now than you did two years ago?  If so – well done.  If not – what are the reasons?

If it’s because you have moved, or lost a loved one, have you spoken to someone (be it a psychologist, counsellor, religious leader) about your feelings?  Emotional strain is often reflected in our eating behaviours, as when we are hurting, we often tend to adjust our eating, without realising it.  We feel nauseous, have stomach cramps, lose our appetite, or even overeat, all as a way of trying to hide our emotions.  This uncontrolled eating behaviour can be detrimental to our health – Overeating may result in gaining weight, which could result in an increased risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease. While under-eating can cause someone to lose weight, become frail, which could result in a falling and serious injury.

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Are you at risk of falling?

Are you at risk of falling?

Improved health care has lead to an unprecedented growth in the older population and soon there will be more adults over 65 than children under 5 years of age. However, the incidence of falls is also increasing and fall injuries are now among the 20 most expensive medical conditions.

As seen in the image above, 1 in 3 individuals over the age of 65 falls once a year, and of those who fall, half will fall recurrently. By the age of 80 the proportion of older adults who fall annually increases to 50%. Falls lead to morbidity and mortality and can have serious implications on the individual as well as on the global population.

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