A healthy lifestyle as you age can help you look and feel your best. Try making eating an enjoyable part of your life by:
Asking a friend to lunch and trying a new dish
Baking cookies with your grandchildren
Helping with special meals for celebrations
Trying a new recipe
Healthy eating can promote independence in later years by helping protect you from certain illnesses:
- Emphasize whole grains such as bran and whole grain and/or enriched cereals. Have 5-12 servings of grain products a day.
- Include colorful fruits and vegetables, such as squash, broccoli and oranges - bright orange and dark green may offer you more protective nutrients. Have 5-10 servings of vegetables and fruit a day.
- Help strengthen your bones and possibly prevent osteoporosis by improving your intake of calcium and vitamin D. Choices include: milk, yogurt, and cheese. Have 2-4 servings of milk products a day.
- For high quality protein, include foods such as beef, poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, and legumes. Have 2-3 servings of meat and alternatives a day.
- Choose lower fat foods more often; choose leaner meats, poultry, and fish, lower fat milk products more often.
- Use small amounts of added fat in cooking and at the table.
When making food choices:
- Be realistic: If you want to improve your food choices, make small changes one step at a time; there is a better chance that the change will last.
- Be adventurous: Expand your tastes to enjoy a variety of foods. Try a theme dinner with your friends featuring foods from other countries.
- Be flexible: Eat regularly, choose wisely, and include some physical activity in your day.
- Be sensible: Enjoy all foods. If you’re craving chocolate cake, have a piece and enjoy it. Just don’t overdo it. Remember all foods can fit!
Healthy eating and regular physical activity give you energy to get going and keep going.
- Eat and drink enough to maintain a healthy weight by following Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Eating.
- Choose healthy snacks to boost your energy level - try fruit or fruit juices, yogurt, cheese, a hard-cooked egg or a bowl of cereal for a quick "pick me up!"
- Plan nature walks at parks with a friend or group.
- Join a "mall walkers" group.
- Plant a garden.
You owe it to yourself to receive the best possible advice on healthy eating. Get the facts from a source you can trust…ask a Registered Dietitian. Contact HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 to speak to a dietitian or check out our Northern Health Nutrition website!