Going to the grocery store and picking out food for your loved one can be daunting, especially if you’re unsure what’s healthy for them. Aging family members need to maintain their health in their golden years, but with all of the conflicting information about senior diet and nutrition, it can be hard to know what’s good for them—and what isn’t. Here are common food seniors should avoid:
Low-Fat Peanut Butter
It’s no secret that peanut butter is delicious. But if you’ve got family members in their golden years with you, it is time to consider whether or not low-fat peanut butter is worth the hassle.
The main issue with low-fat peanut butter is that it contains more sugar than regular brands-and while that may sound like a good thing at first glance, it means your loved one will have an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular disease (and possibly even Alzheimer’s).
Granola bars are a great snack to have on hand, but they’re not always the healthiest option. Many granola bars contain large amounts of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup. These ingredients can cause your blood sugar levels to spike, leading to increased hunger later in the day or even an energy crash.
In addition, many brands add unhealthy fats like hydrogenated oils and trans fats (which may increase your risk for heart disease) into their products to make them taste better and last longer on supermarkets’ shelves.
Fruit juice is a popular choice for family members in their golden years. It’s easy to drink and contains vitamins but has a lot of sugar. Fruit juices have more calories than soft drinks, so you could gain weight fast if you drink them on top of your regular food intake. If you’re going to drink fruit juice anyway, dilute it with water or add ice cubes to make it less sugary.
If you’re a fan of turkey burgers, consider reconsidering. According to a study by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, eating them more than three times per week can increase your risk of developing colon cancer by 26%.
The reason for this association is unclear; however, it could be because turkey contains toxic chemicals called phthalates, known carcinogens (cancer-causing substances). In addition to colon cancer risk factors like age and family history, consuming too many processed meats has been linked with an increased risk as well-so while turkey burgers might seem healthy on paper, they could put your health at risk!
If you are old, you might think that canned soup is an easy and healthy way to get your daily dose of vegetables. After all, it’s vegetables in liquid form- right?
Well, this isn’t exactly true. Canned soups often contain high amounts of sodium and other additives that can do more harm than good for your health. And if you’re not careful about what kind of canned soup you buy, there’s also a chance that some cans could be contaminated with lead or BPA (a chemical used in plastic).
Diet soda is a common favorite among aging adults in retirement communities, but it should be avoided. Aspartame, the artificial sweetener in diet soda, can cause many health problems, including headaches and dizziness. It also increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 85 percent!
We hope you’ve learned a few things from this list and can avoid some common mistakes people make when trying to eat healthy. Remember: if something seems too good to be true, it probably is! We all want better health for our loved ones, so take these tips with a grain of salt and research before making big changes in their diets.