Fabulous Fall Foods
As the leaves change and temperatures turn cooler, our seasonal food cravings tend to follow suit. The variety of fruits and vegetables that have their peak season in autumn combines with the desire for warm, hearty comfort food, resulting in wonderful, healthy options to add to our menu options.
For seniors, the foods of fall can be a rich source of nutrients and new options to try—all the better to expand and enhance your dietary choices!
Try some of these options to increase the likelihood of getting the necessary amounts of a variety of micronutrients for optimal health, regardless of your age!
Kale, spinach, and other dark green, leafy vegetables are packed with nutrients that are especially helpful to older adults. These contain folate, Vitamin K, and riboflavin, which help prevent cardiovascular disease, can improve bone health, and help guard against eye problems such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
Pumpkin is a great source of Vitamins A and C. Apples provide fiber (eat the skin!) and a variety of nutrients that are important for senior health. Vitamin A is great for eye health, while Vitamin C may help prevent diseases caused by oxidative damage such as cancer.
Cranberries aren't just for Thanksgiving dinner! They can add flavor to many dishes and offer a variety of important micronutrients. Try them dried in a salad or add cranberry juice to your breakfast routine.
Parsnips (part of the carrot family) and sweet potatoes both add fiber and Vitamin C. Parsnips are a good source of iron and calcium, good for energy levels and bone health. Sprinkle a baked sweet potato with cinnamon for even more health benefits!
Fall foods have multiple health benefits—many are thought to improved cognitive health and may help prevent Alzheimer's disease. Even coffee and chocolate can be added to the list, as they seem to have some benefits in warding off age-related memory impairment.
What about other comfort foods? When fall rolls around, the cooler weather begs for warm protein dishes such as stews, chili, and soup. Packed with lots of vegetables, beans, and lean meats, these and other dishes can easily be added to the "fall favorites" list.
Adding in these great seasonal options can go a long way in helping seniors maintain a healthy lifestyle because they increase variety in their diet. Trying something new, or making the most of a seasonal favorite, increases the likelihood of making good food choices.
That's something we all need! Learn more about the dietary and nutrition plans available at The Villas Senior Care Community by visiting our website.