Many things influence our health, from our genes to the environment, and nutrition is an integral lifestyle factor that impacts how our bodies develop. Unfortunately, older adults are prone to vitamin deficiencies, as natural age-related changes can affect how the body absorbs these nutrients; for example, vitamin B12.
Aside from deterring sicknesses, each vitamin has different jobs to help keep the body functioning, and “it is usually better to get the nutrients you need from food, rather than a pill. That’s because nutrient-dense foods contain other things that are good for you, like fiber (National Institute on Aging).”
The Woodlands at Canterfield promotes healthy aging in all that we do. Our luxury senior living community in West Dundee, Illinois, provides residents with the support, services and resources to live safe, active and healthy lives – including a nutrient-dense diet.
Below, our team is sharing some of the best vitamins for seniors and tips on how to naturally implement them into your diet.
1. Vitamin B12
There are many different types of vitamin B, each one has a unique function, but all of them generally help the body produce new cells. Vitamin B12 is not just one of the best vitamins for seniors, but an essential one, as older adults are more likely to have deficiencies due to stomach acid quickly absorbing the vitamin from foods.
Animal meats are an excellent source of vitamin B12, and beef is packed with this important vitamin. Just one grilled steak is full of about 467% of the daily recommended intake! Milk and dairy products are also excellent sources of B12, with one cup of whole milk supplying about 46% of the daily recommended intake.
2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Cardiovascular disease becomes more common with age and includes health conditions such as hypertension and arrhythmia. Omega-3 has been shown to boost heart health and even prevent cognitive decline and can be found in many different types of fish.
Salmon, for instance, is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, containing 2,150 mg of omega-3 in just 3.5 ounces. Other fish, like mackerel and sardines, are also rich in these healthy fats. Or consider adding oysters and caviar for an elegant addition to your diet!
Magnesium helps regulate blood pressure, keeps your bones strong, and assists your heart in maintaining a strong beat. Unfortunately, many magnesium-rich foods, like nuts and seeds, are difficult to digest, and some older adults tend to steer clear for that reason alone. However, it’s important to understand that when the body lacks enough magnesium, it can affect memory, mood, muscles and many other bodily functions, making it another one of the best vitamins for seniors.
Thankfully, plenty of magnesium-rich foods are delicious and easy to include in your favorite recipes. For example, about two cups of spinach can get you to your recommended daily intake of magnesium, and bananas have about 8% of your daily intake. For a magnesium-packed treat, dark chocolate is packed with magnesium, thanks to the high levels found in cacao powder.
Potassium deficiencies can lead to fatigue, bone fragility and high blood pressure. Not only does potassium help bone density and cell function, but it can prevent the development of kidney stones and mental health concerns like depression and anxiety.
Fruits and vegetables, like bananas, potatoes, plums, avocados and broccoli, are packed with potassium and can be enjoyed on their own as a healthy snack or added to a myriad of dishes!
With any health condition, or if you simply want to focus on a specific aspect of your health, vitamins can give your body an extra boost to help you reach your wellness goals. However, please note it is recommended that you speak with your doctor before changing or increasing your vitamin intake.
Beyond exceptional care, The Woodlands at Canterfield strives to provide resources for older adults and families that provide education on healthy aging. We invite you to download our free shopping list tool to help you fuel your body with the right nutrients on your next trip to the grocery store!
For more information about The Woodlands at Canterfield, please visit www.WoodlandsAtCanterfield.com.