The consistent loss of appetite, especially in senior citizens, is a grave health risk. When your loved ones consume less food, their body suffers from a deficiency of already-scarce nutrients. Taking this into consideration, it is essential to treat the loss of appetite, as soon as possible.
What are the reasons behind the loss of appetite?
There are numerous causes that result in the loss of appetite in the elderly. The following three reasons are the most prominent causes of a poor appetite.
Side effects of medications: Senior citizens are prescribed a number of medications that improve cognitive and physical functioning. However, while these medicines help with one area, they come with a number of adverse side effects. If the loss of appetite is a side effect of the prescription, communicate with the doctor, and request a change of medication.
Depression: Experiencing depression and depressive symptoms is extremely common in old age. When your loved ones start losing control of their physical bodies, feelings of inadequacy rise up and hurt self-esteem. Consequently, shattered self-esteem leads to depression. With that said, inappetence is also a symptom of depression. In this case, you can talk to the doctor, or encourage your loved one to talk with a mental health professional.
Feelings of inadequacy: As stated earlier, feelings of adequacy are common in old age. When your loved ones are unable to prepare their own meal, they naturally feel a drop in their appetite. In this situation, you can increase their appetite by encouraging them to participate in the meal preparation (only if it is safe for them).
Method One: Increasing Physical Activity
An active lifestyle fosters an increase in appetite. Senior citizens are often urged to avoid participating in physical activity, as it can affect their motor functions. On the contrary, it is crucial for your loved ones to exercise and maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle. You can search for senior workout plans, or hire a professional nurse from Arlington home care services, to help your loved ones work on their physical well-being.
Once the seniors are engaged in a physical fitness routine, their appetite can naturally increase. Additionally, if your loved ones maintain a consistent food and exercise routine, their body can become accustomed to the schedule. Therefore, they would experience hunger at a routine time.
Method Two: Make Mealtimes Enjoyable
You can also work on your loved one’s appetite by improving their eating experience. For instance, you can put on their favorite movie, play tasteful music, or just converse with them while they eat. According to research, talking while eating increases the amount of food that a person consumes. Therefore, if you are caring for your loved ones, or if you hire a nurse from a Dallas home care company, make sure to keep them engaged in conversation as they eat.
Method Three: Increase Nutrient Density
If your loved ones experience a lack of appetite, it is more convenient to increase their calorie intake and keep the portion size small. You can search for healthy meal plans that are specifically engineered for seniors. This way, they can benefit from consuming all the required nutrients, without being forced into eating.
Moreover, serving nutrients in liquid forms can also be beneficial for your loved ones. Instead of making solid and heavy meals, you can serve delicious smoothies to certify the required intake of the necessary nutrients. This way, your loved ones can stay hydrated and healthy.
The loss of appetite in the elderly is extremely common. However, the appetite can be easily improved by increasing physical activity, conversing during meals, and increasing the nutrient density of the food being served.