An article published in the International Journal of Diabetes Mellitus stated that by the year 2025, two-thirds of the people with diabetes will be 60 years old and above.
In general, the elderly who are diabetic are more prone to complications such as hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases. Furthermore, low appetite, limited physical activities and other factors can impact the nutrition intake of elderly with diabetes. Keeping in mind each person’s nutritional requirements are different, the older group of diabetics are advised to consult dieticians/nutritionists to determine ideal eating plans. Besides, there are some overall rules on meals for the elderly with diabetes.
- Maintain carbohydrate intake
Carbohydrates are your bodies’ main fuel. You must, however, be cautious to consume the right type and the right amount. The recommended sources of carbohydrates for people with diabetes are oatmeal, red rice, quinoa, or wheat/multigrain/kurakkan bread.
- Favour foods high in protein
To compensate for the reduction in the intake of carbohydrates, more protein should be added to the meals. Based on research, the elderly with diabetes will experience weight loss if they don’t replenish their diet accordingly. Some food options for such protein are fish, skinless chicken, low fat dairy products, soya and peas.
But in the case of people with kidney diseases, the protein intake should be limited (as advised by your doctor or dietitian).
- Follow food restrictions
An older diabetic is more likely to suffer from other diseases such as constipation, dementia, heart diseases, or lack of appetite. Therefore, having a list of foods to avoid is clever. As mentioned before, the rules for calorie intake differs from person to person. Therefore, consult your dietician/nutritionist and doctor for the best way to maintain your blood sugar level. If you struggle due to appetite loss, you can try to split your meals and eat more times a day in smaller quantities.