Vitality

Best Foods To Eat For People Over 50 Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Although older adults aged 65 and above are at higher risk of getting infected with COVID-19, as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the pandemic that has slowed the world down and forced millions at the confines of their homes since December 2019 has also struck those below that age range, and not even younger ones are spared.

With this in mind, it is good to know that when you get old (especially at ages 50 and above), changes begin to manifest not only in skin health and physical movements, but also in how your body responds to nutritional needs. Therefore, as you age, your body needs more food rich in nutrients as well as vitamins for optimal health. 

Dr. Pamela Peeke, nutrition and fitness expert and author of the New York Times bestseller "The Hunger Fix," said in a HuffPost article back in 2015 that in youth, "it is all about growth and maintaining a body that can procreate. After the age of 50, the goal is to prevent disease by maintaining an optimally healthy and active mind and body."

What Dr. Peeke said back then still applies now. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, here are the best foods to eat if you are 50 and above:

Food Rich In Fiber 

Since your gastrointestinal system automatically slows down after 50 years old, it is essential to eat enough fiber to keep it up and running smoothly beyond that age.

"Fiber not only helps your gastrointestinal function run smoothly, but it also decreases gastrointestinal inflammation and cholesterol, while providing a slow release of energy-rich carbohydrates into the bloodstream," Dr. Peeke said.

Raspberries, lentils, carrots, broccoli and other fruits and vegetables are examples of fiber-rich food that are needed by your body.

Food Rich In Vitamin B12 

Dr. Peeke said that as your body ages, your stomach's acidity decreases, making it much harder to get enough vitamin B12 in your diet. Stomach acidity helps release B12 from food, and the vitamin itself is important for maintaining a healthy nervous system and key metabolic processes.

So if you are aged 50 and above, you should include vitamin B12-rich food such as meat, eggs, seafood and dairy products along with B12-fortified food such as whole-grain cereals to your diet.

Turmeric And Cinnamon 

Taste changes as we get older. "Aging produces a decrease in saliva production and ability to perceive taste," Dr. Peeke said, which means you might want to experiment with different spices, including turmeric and cinnamon.

Known mainly for being staples of Indian cuisine, turmeric and cinnamon are useful spices that your body need. Like most spices, both possess anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, making them vital to your immune system. Even a few beverages made with these spices are great for immunity.

Safe, Potable Water 

Along with taste, thirst changes too, which means dehydration becomes more common as we age.

To keep yourself hydrated from 50 years old onward, drink lots of water. Your body uses water in all its organs, cells and tissues to help regulate and maintain bodily functions, which include metabolic function. "Women need nine cups of water, while men should drink 13 cups daily," Dr. Peeke said. "If you’re more physically active and also live in a hotter climate, you’ll need more (water)."

Cinnamon tea Drinking cinnamon tea lowers blood sugar levels. Imo Flow/Pixabay

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