As almost 75% of adults experience difficulty digesting lactose, many seniors find it challenging to eat enough calcium. If your elderly loved one is lactose intolerant, a lack of dairy in his or her diet may mean he or she has, or will develop, a calcium deficiency. To help ensure that your senior loved one gets enough calcium everyday, the senior care experts at Home Care Assistance in Naples suggest incorporating the following foods into his or her diet.
1. Collard Greens
One cup of collard greens has 350 milligrams of bone-strengthening calcium per serving. Collard greens can be a little difficult to eat raw and are best served cooked or lightly steamed. To make a simple side dish, stir washed and dried collard greens in olive oil over medium-high heat with chopped garlic for three to four minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. For a boost of protein and a more filling dish, add cooked and shredded ham at the end.
2. Canned Sardines and Salmon
Eating calcium-rich foods have been shown to help prevent osteoporosis in seniors. Canned fish with bones, such as sardines and salmon, can provide up to 350 milligrams of calcium per serving. As they are also full of Omega-3 fatty acids, serving sardines or lox on crackers or bagels is a fast way to incorporate essential nutrients in an easy snack.
3. White Beans
Besides bone health, calcium is responsible for the normal clotting of the blood and nerve pulse conduction. Most beans have some amount of calcium, but white beans have the most at 240 milligrams per cup. For a tasty way to incorporate white beans into your loved one’s meal plan, have an hourly or 24-hour caregiver in Naples make a simple soup by cooking the beans, veggies, olive oil, and chicken broth over medium-high heat until ingredients are soft.
4. Soymilk and Almond Milk
Non-dairy milks are full of calcium and vitamin B12, helping elderly bodies regulate hormones and enzyme production. As one cup of soymilk or almond milk provides 200 milligrams of the daily-recommended 1200 milligrams of calcium for seniors, a bowl of cereal or a simple smoothie can be a healthy choice. For a midafternoon snack, blend one-half cup of soymilk, frozen banana, frozen strawberries, vanilla, and honey in the blender and serve immediately.
If you’re looking for ways to help promote a healthy senior diet, turn to Home Care Assistance. Our professional caregivers are expertly trained to help promote healthy senior habits by assisting with grocery shopping, meal preparation, and safely executing exercise routines. In addition, we also offer a variety of in-home care services, including dementia, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s care in Naples, for seniors with chronic physical and cognitive conditions. To learn more about how our care services may benefit your elderly loved one, give a Care Manager a call at (239) 449-4701 and schedule a free in-home consultation.