To lead a brain-healthy life you need to look after your brain, your body and your heart – there is no better time to start than now. Every day is another chance to get stronger, to eat better, to live healthier and to be the best version of you!
In order to look and feel your best, your body needs a complex blend of nutrients, whatever your age. Not only do you need the right proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals — you need adequate fluids to stay hydrated and a good dose of fibre, too. That’s a tall order — and even the most careful eater can be hard-pressed to meet each nutrient target every day.
Getting this balance right is even harder as we age, appetites diminish and particularly after the loss of a life partner, there is often reluctance to bother with continuing to cook for one.
A Healthy Nutrition Philosophy is based on balanced nutrition — a combination of healthy foods and supplements that help you meet your daily needs, coupled with the right calorie balance to help you lose, gain or maintain your body weight.
Protein is vital to virtually every cell in the body. Your body uses protein to manufacture important molecules in the body, like hormones and enzymes, and to build and maintain muscle tissue. Protein is also great at satisfying hunger. Your body is constantly assembling, breaking down and using protein, so it’s important to include enough protein in the diet every day to replace what is being used. It is suggested that up to 30% of your daily calorie intake comes from protein, which can include protein sourced from plants, such as soybeans, and animals, like poultry, fish and eggs.
Your body’s preferred source of fuel is carbohydrates — not fat or protein — so it’s important to include an adequate number of carbohydrates every day for daily activities. It is recommended that you get about 40% of your calories in the form of healthy carbohydrates — whole grains, beans, vegetables and fruits.
Your body requires small amounts of beneficial fats — and the right balance of fats — in order to function properly. The average diet supplies more total fat and saturated fat than we need, and not enough of beneficial fats, such as fats from fish, nuts, olive oil and avocados. Fats are a very concentrated source of calories, which is why it is recommended that you limit your fat intake to not more than 30% of your daily calorie intake.
Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are involved in many of the chemical reactions your body performs every day, and many minerals – like calcium and magnesium for instance – have structural roles in the body. A well- balanced diet helps to supply the vitamins and minerals you need, and taking a daily multiple vitamin and mineral supplement helps you get the proper amounts.
Plant foods produce a wide range of natural compounds, called phytonutrients (“phyto” means “plant”) that are known to have a number of benefits. Many of these phytonutrients are pigments that give fruits and vegetables their beautiful colours, which is why it is recommended to eat “colourful” meals that include plenty of vegetables and fruits.
Fibre supports the digestive process, helps to fill you up, and promotes the growth of friendly bacteria in the digestive tract. Whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans are the best sources of dietary fibre. The majority of people, particularly among the senior population do not get enough fibre in their diets, so supplements can be incorporated into your diet to assist you in reaching your daily target of 25 grams.
The human body is 70% water, so it’s no surprise that we need to stay hydrated in order to remain healthy. Your body needs water to transport nutrients to cells and to get rid of waste products. Water also helps control body temperature and lubricate joints, organs and tissues. Most of the chemical reactions in the body take place in water, too. The general recommendation for fluids is about eight (240 ml) glasses a day. Water should be the first choice, but plain tea or coffee can also count toward meeting your daily fluid needs. This is also an area where the senior population struggle to drink enough water
The best way to find out how balanced your own nutrition plan is, is to complete the Health Assessment then we can show you how the right combination of Nutrition and exercise for longevity and a Healthy Active lifestyle.