Healthy Eating by Shelby Shelby
Hydration Is Important As We Age
Did you know that September is Healthy Aging Month? As we age, nutrition becomes even more important. Providing your body with the nutrition it needs can help you prevent illness and maintain a better quality of life. One vitally important nutrient to older adults is water.
As we age, we often experience less thirst. This loss of thirst can lead older adults to experience dehydration. The dietary guidelines recommend 2.7 liters of fluids per day for adult women and 3.7 liters of fluids per day for adult men, unless otherwise recommended by your physician. If those numbers overwhelm you, remember that fluids can come in the form of drinks or even foods that are liquid at room temperature, like soups or yogurts. If you aren’t having enough fluids in your day, start by taking small steps to reach your fluid goal.
Here are some tips to help you get enough fluids to stay hydrated!
Add flavor to your water. Try adding fruits, like lemon, and even vegetables, like cucumber, to make your water tasty and fun to drink.
Track your liquids. Tape a paper to your refrigerator and tally up your liquids for the day. Start by determining how many cups you are drinking now then challenge yourself to add 1 more every few days until you meet your goal! Remember ALL liquids and foods that are liquid at room temperature count toward your daily total.
Have three glasses of skim or 1% milk each day. This helps you get in some fluids to stay hydrated and helps you consume plenty of calcium and vitamin D, two more nutrients that are important for older adults.
Eat foods that are high in water. Great options include soups, yogurt, Jell-o, and fruits and vegetables, like watermelon and celery.
Shelby Shelby, RDN, LD registered dietitian living in Morgantown, KY. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Dietetics from the University of Kentucky and completed her dietetic internship through the Coordinated Program in Dietetics at the University of Kentucky. She is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Human Nutrition from the University of Alabama. Shelby is a certified LIFESTEPS® instructor, Diabetes Prevention Program instructor, and holds a Certificate of Training in Food Allergies. She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and is on the Social Media and Website Committee of the Kentucky Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Shelby is passionate about individual and community health and works hard to assist her clients make healthful lifestyle changes.