Ashley on Living Healthy Chicago: How Your Diet Changes with Age

What are some of the things we have to alter as far as our diet as we age? Our bodies progressively change as we age, most notable being that our digestion becomes weaker, our metabolisms slow, our risk for dehydration increases, + we do not readily absorb some of the vitamins + minerals that we need.  There are some things we can do to counteract these changes via both diet + supplementation.

HYDRATE:

  • Water is important for keeping your body running efficiently + effectively, but as we age, we tend to take more and more medications that can dehydrate us. Be sure to be taking in clean, filtered water throughout the day…
  • Your water source matters! I recommend Kona Deep to my clients because it is directly sourced off the coast of Hawaii from a deep ocean current 3,000 feet below the surface. It’s unique because it has naturally occurring electrolytes; more so than regular spring water, that is a faster + better source for hydration. A published study from the University of Arizona found that Kona Deep rehydrates twice as fast as a spring water and carbohydrate-based sports drink (Gatorade!). Easily found at the following retailers: Mariano's, Fresh Thyme, Woodman's Markets, Sunset Foods, Standard Market and select Freshii locations
  • Ideally, you will drink ½ of your body weight in fluid ounces daily, however, this may need to be increased if you are on medications that deplete water sources within your body, so monitor yourself + look for signs of dehydration:

 

o   Dark urine

o   Literally being thirsty

o   Dryness- mouth, skin, lips, brittle hair…

o   Headaches

o   Et al.

DIGESTION/ABSORPTION:

  • Take a probiotic in the morning and/or add fermented foods into your diet for gut health
    • Kimchi - a Korean fermented "coleslaw" that can improve gut flora with 1/2-cup servings per day added to meals
    • Lifeway Kefir – 99% lactose-free, high in protein, 12 active probiotic cultures, no added sugar, gluten-free, full of vitamins + minerals…it’s amazing as a smoothie base or sipped straight from the bottle! It's the Champagne of Dairy!
  • Utilize digestive enzymes 20-30 minutes before meals to ensure proper absorption of vitamins/minerals
  • Decrease the tough-to-digest foods without decreasing nutrients. This can be done by lowering animal-based proteins + incorporating more cooked vs raw vegetables into your diet.
  • Retaining the Vitamin D + calcium we need for strong bones as we suffer bone less is key to living healthy as we age. The sun is not providing Vitamin D as readily as it used to when we get older, so taking a high-quality supplement is ideal for maintaining bone health. Incorporating foods with calcium + vitamin K is also hugely beneficial.

ENERGY NEEDS:

  • Adjust your caloric intake throughout your aging in order to meet with your slowing metabolism.
  • B12 is not easily absorbed due to loss of stomach acid as we age + this lends to our depletion of energy overall, so making sure you have foods with B12 in your diet, but also supplement is key to sustaining energy.
Ashley Pettit