I have a friend who’s a vegetarian, but I don’t think you’ve never met herbivore (haha!). Last week, we talked about 4 important nutrients: folate, potassium, magnesium, and B12. This week, we’re jumping into four more: calcium, vitamin d, Omega-3, and the last one is… water. That’s right.
- Calcium plays many roles in the body. It
- Maintains strong bones
- Can be consumed in animal products such as dairy, plant- based foods such as kale and broccoli, and certain processed foods that are fortified with the mineral.
Very often, sources of calcium also provide the body with protein, both of which are needed for bone health. It is best to consume food, rather than supplements, but this can be done if necessary.
- Vitamin D, calcium’s best friend
- Crucial for calcium absorption, maintain bone density, and prevent osteoporosis
- Can protect against chronic diseases, including cancer, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and autoimmune diseases
- Deficiency can be linked to increased risk of falling
Very few foods naturally contain vitamin D, but many are fortified. Supplements of this vitamin are very common. Your body produces the vitamin when exposed to sunlight, but this process becomes less efficient over time.
- Omega- 3’s are a type of fatty acid.
- Can be found in soybeans, walnuts and flaxseeds, as well as in fish.
- Can reduce symptoms in rheumatoid arthritis and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration.
- may also reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease
Fats in general are very important for body function and energy levels and when part of a balanced diet can help maintain optimal health.
- Water may seem like an obvious “nutrient” for healthy living, but its importance cannot be emphasized enough.
- The elderly very often forget to drink water, and over time their sense of thirst may even decline.
- Once you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated
- Some people may need to have their amount of fluids restricted due to medical reasons such as kidney or liver disease.
We previously learned that folate and fiber are incredibly important as you age. However, fiber absorbs water, which makes you should be sure to keep your water consumption high!
Being healthy means eating a balanced diet. You can take vitamin supplements to help ensure that you are getting everything you need, (especially if you aren’t always in control of your food choices). Whether in Barrington, Lake Barrington, North Barrington, Lake Zurich, Deer Park, Inverness, Bull Valley, Crystal Lake, Schaumberg, and Hoffman Estates, nutrition should be a top priority while you age!