Getting more fruits and vegetables, and therefore more nutrients, into your senior's diet is probably a big concern for you as her caregiver. It's even more difficult if your elderly family member doesn't enjoy eating fruits and vegetables all that much. You might have to get creative.
Double up on Fruits and Vegetables in Recipes
In recipes that call for fruits and vegetables, you can add more than called for in the original recipe. You might even want to go so far as to double up. With vegetables that cook down and shrink, your senior might not even notice that there are that many more vegetables or fruit in the finished dish. Another option is to choose vegetable-based options whenever possible, such as spinach pasta. It adds interest and another serving of vegetables.
Make Sure Fruit and Veggies Are Included in Every Snack, Too
Lots of times, snacks don't necessarily consist of all the healthiest choices. Pair a little bit of chocolate with fruit. Or use carrots and celery for dip rather than crackers. Bonus points if your senior enjoys dips such as hummus, which are vegetable-based. With a little bit of creativity, snacks can dramatically increase your senior's intake of fruits and vegetables.
Slip Fruits and Vegetables into Smoothies, Sandwiches, and Soups
Soups, sandwiches, and smoothies are really easy dishes to slip more fruits and vegetables into. Choosing baby spinach to add a bit of crunch to a sandwich makes it that much more nutritionally-dense. Look for creative ways to help your elderly family member to get a variety of fruits and vegetables. For instance, if your senior doesn't like carrots, include them in a mixed berry smoothie to hide the taste.
Stock up on Frozen and Canned Options
You can reduce a lot of prep time with fruits and vegetables by choosing frozen and canned versions. You do need to be careful when you go this route, however. Make sure that you read the ingredient labels for the different vegetables and fruits. You want to avoid anything that has a lot of added salt, sugar, or other ingredients.
You might also want to make the tasks of cooking and meal preparation as easy as possible for your senior by hiring elder care providers who can handle all the hard work for her. They can help with everything from grocery shopping to helping your elderly family member clean up after eating.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED-ONE ARE CONSIDERING IN-HOME SENIOR CARE IN RIVERSIDE, IL, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT BRIGHTSTAR CARE OF LA GRANGE. CALL TODAY 708-551-2500.