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Strategies for Helping a Senior Parent Stop Overeating

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Seniors need to curtail their eating habits if they’re trying to manage their weight or an obesity-related health condition. However, you may find it difficult to get your aging parent to eat healthy if he or she has always been an overeater. These tips are all easy to implement so you can prevent your loved one from eating too much.

Talk About Appropriate Portions

Your loved one may not even be aware that he or she is overeating. Talk to your loved one about how metabolism slows down with age. You can also demonstrate what appropriate portions of certain types of food look like. For instance, your loved one’s meat or protein portion of a meal should be no larger than a deck of cards. It’s also not necessary to fill up a plate or bowl. Small portions are a way for seniors to enjoy a few special treats without overdoing it.

Am in-home caregiver can be a fantastic source of information about nutrition for your loved one. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Kingwood, TX, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.

Encourage Healthy Snacking

Seniors who eat smaller meals may feel hungrier between each one. Snacks can satisfy your loved one’s hunger before it gets so strong that it leads to binge eating. However, you should encourage your loved one to treat snacks like meals. Snacks should be small and made up of healthy foods. For instance, a small handful of nuts or a few veggie sticks can stave off hunger until the next meal while adding a nutritional boost to the day.

Suggest Waiting Before Getting Seconds

For the average person, it takes about 20 minutes or more to feel full. Seniors who eat their food too quickly may not feel full even though they’ve eaten enough to meet their daily calorie needs. Keep containers of food off the table as you eat so your loved one will be less tempted to reach for the serving spoon. Encourage lingering during meals. Sharing a conversation while eating is a great way to slow down long enough for the body to send signals that it’s full.

In Kingwood, in-home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.

Choose Satisfying Foods

Foods that break down slowly can also help seniors avoid feeling the urge to eat more throughout the day. Try starting your loved one off with a breakfast that contains complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, that give an initial sense of fullness that lasts. Just make sure to keep dinners light so your loved one doesn’t experience indigestion that keeps him or her up at night.

Minimize Mindless Eating

Boredom contributes to overeating. Make sure your parent has plenty to do during the day so he or she doesn’t have time to snack while sitting in front of the television. Ideally, your loved one should keep busy doing things such as gardening or crafting. Going on outings with a caregiver is another way to keep your loved one away from the refrigerator so he or she starts to eat less.

Professional caregivers with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement for seniors who need help eating less. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care services. Kingwood families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner when your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging. Call us today at 832-412-1345 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.