Nutrition Strategies for Active Seniors
I often speak about nutrition for sport and fueling your body for exercise, but what about for those who are just living active lifestyles? Playing golf, walking the dog, gardening or helping your kids with home renovations all require a steady supply of energy. Whether you have a busy social schedule or you do a lot of travel, thinking ahead about meal and snack planning can be difficult. In fact, a recent survey found that although boomers strive to eat a healthy diet they are only doing so about half the time.
Here are a few strategies to ensure active seniors get the energy they need and eat well consistently, not just when they think about it.
- Food is your fuel and you need a regular source. Try not to go more than 4 hours without eating. Think about your day before you leave the house a decide what you should bring if you will be out over a meal or snack time. Often just packing a peanut butter and jam sandwich or an apple and a yogurt can tide you over until you get home.
- Start with a balanced breakfast and include a good source of protein. Protein will act like an anchor for your energy and make it last longer. Don’t just have toast and juice, add an egg or 1 tablespoon of peanut butter.
- If you golf, be sure to toss a few energy bars into your golf bag. Try ElevateMe, Kind, Vega One or Lara bars. If you are golfing over the lunch hour, pack a turkey sandwich or a salmon wrap.
- Keep emergency snacks in the car and take them on the plane with you. Portion-controlled snacks like Boost 100kcal provides a great source of protein and energy in a portable, on the go container. It’s also particularly good for diabetics, being low in sugar and high in fibre and protein. Keeping a big back of trail mix might not be ideal when watching your waistline. Research shows that eating pre-portioned, calorie set snacks can help people control their calorie intake better.
- Focus on fruits and vegetables. When in doubt, pack a fruit!
Healthy Snack Ideas:
- Mashed black beans with lime, cumin and cilantro spread on whole grain crackers
- Wasa crispbread with chopped tomato and green onion sprinkled with grated parmesean
- Cottage cheese and canned fruit
- Dry cereal and milk to go
- Overripe banana, skim milk and cinnamon shake
- Cucumbers and carrots with hummus dip
- Apple slices with almond butter
- Peanut butter banana roll-up
- Shrimp, Greek yogurt and dill on cucumber rounds