Nutrition and Older Adults
Social and Emotional Changes and Nutrition
Presented by
Janice Hermann, PhD, RD/LD
OCES Adult and Older Adult Nutrition Specialist
Social Changes and Nutrition
Social Changes and Nutrition
 Loneliness is a problem for many older adults
 Loneliness does not only relate to living alone
Social Changes and Nutrition
 Loneliness can affect food intake
Social Changes and Nutrition
 Loneliness can lead to poor dietary habits
 Eating the same foods.
 Snacking instead of eating meals.
 Eating easily prepared foods.
Emotional Changes and Nutrition
Emotional Changes and Nutrition
 Although not inevitable, depression is a
common problem for many older adults
Emotional Changes and Nutrition
 Depression can affect food intake by causing:
Tips if Social and Emotional Changes
Affect Food Intake
Tips if Social and Emotional Changes
Affect Food Intake
 Have others over to share meals
 Eat out with others
Tips if Social and Emotional Changes
Affect Food Intake
 Senior meal sites provide a social setting to eat
 Some medicines can cause depression, check
with your doctor about the medicines you use.
Tips for Caregivers if Social and
Emotional Changes Affect Food Intake
Tips for Caregivers if Social and
Emotional Changes Affect Food Intake
 Serve food attractively
 Serve foods with a variety of flavors, colors,
temperatures and textures
 Don’t serve the same food day after day
 Make the surroundings pleasant
Tips for Caregivers if Social and
Emotional Changes Affect Food Intake
 Have older adults help plan and prepare meals
 Watch for signs of loneliness and depression
 Help older adults get involved in activities
 Check with doctors about medications
Summary
 Have others over to share meals
 Eat out with others
 Senior meal sites provide a social setting to eat
 Some medicines can cause depression
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Nutrition and Older Adults Social and Emotional Changes and