You can’t always be there. But we can.
Are your aging parents not eating as much as they should? Have they been missing meals or not eating as much for a meal as they used to? This could negatively impact their health, both physically and mentally. The good news is that you can help your aging parents to regain their appetite. It may take some time, but there are some tips that will help you to do this. When it comes to taking care of your senior’s health, it is one of the most important things that can be done.
Increasing Nutrients, Not Portion Sizes
If you are a family caregiver and your aging parents aren’t eating enough, you may want to start making them bigger meals. You might suggest they eat an entire plate full of food. However, that may not happen and it isn’t the way to get their appetite back either. One of the best things you can do is to help them increase the nutrients they are taking in and not necessarily increase their portion sizes.
Regular Meal Schedule
If your aging parents have lost their appetite, this could be because they are missing meals or forgetting when to eat a certain meal. One of the best things you can do if this is the case is to help them set up a regular meal schedule. Bodies, especially when aging, need regularity. This goes the same for hunger. If your aging parents aren’t eating on a regular meal schedule, their body may not be convinced it is truly hungry. It may be helpful to get your parents a timer for mealtimes.
Social Meals Might Be a Great Idea
Your parents may not have an appetite because they are feeling lonely. This may be especially the case if one of your parents has passed away. It might be beneficial for getting your parent’s appetite back on track to encourage them to eat with others. You may want to invite them over to your house for a meal or two. You may want to bring in home care services to help with their meals. Home care service providers can plan, shop and prepare these meals as well as keeping them company when the are eating.
Side Effects from Medications
What medications are your parents on? There may be some medications that are causing the lack of appetite. Some medications will make your parent have a metallic taste in their mouth. This can make them feel sick when eating. If nothing seems to help, they can always talk to their doctor about possible medication changes. When dealing with a senior, medications are important, but so is nutrition. There must be a balance between the two.
If your parent has lost their appetite and they aren’t eating enough, it might also be best to talk to their doctor about them taking an appetite stimulant. This shouldn’t be done without the approval of a doctor, however. It could impact other medications they are taking.
Is your parent not eating enough? Have they lost their appetite? Hopefully, these tips will help them regain their appetite.