Can senior citizens lose weight and then manage to keep it off? Seniors are more susceptible to chronic disease due to their weakened immune systems — and obesity is a high-risk factor for other diseases. To put it plainly, the heavier you are, the sicker you often become.
Indeed, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) obesity in the United States is at epidemic proportions.
Senior Citizens: Can Will Power Lose Your Weight?
In fact, will power, while powerful, just won’t be enough to get your weight down to acceptable levels. Researchers tested this. They found that participants who just practiced willpower exercises for six weeks didn’t improve their self-control issues.
You have to combine that willpower with meal planning. Plan and organize what you’re going to eat — and make sure the food is nutritious, varied and healthy, And, don’t tempt yourself by keeping junk food in the house. Also, eat slowly — savoring each bite of food will help you control binge eating and emotional eating. Binging is a sure fire recipe for packing on unhealthy calories.
Senior Citizens: Go Easy On The Sugar
Manufacturers add sugar to just about every food you eat. Many foods are packed with sugar at amounts way above necessary. Educate yourself by reading the food label at the back of the package. Look for the column that says, “Added Sugars”.
Added sugars show up in pasta sauces, flavored yogurts, breads and even salad dressings. While you’re cutting sugar, try to eat more beans and lentils. Keep in mind that even foods labeled as “low fat”, may still contain excessive amounts of sugar.
Late Night Cravings
Do you get the “cravies” late at night. No surprise, as many people do. But, keep in mind, that might be the worst time to eat as far as your day-night clock is concerned. Your body night cycle isn’t expecting food at that time — consequently your weight gain could be considerable.
But, the good news is, you don’t have to go cold-turkey. Feed your “cravies” some decaf green or black tea. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that umami, can help increase feelings of satiety and decrease food cravings. L-theanine in tea — this is also linked to better sleep, which will keep you out of the kitchen at night — can deliver that umami kick. Umami is a Japenese word that means “savory”.
Indeed, researchers today recommend that older adults eat 25 to 30 grams of protein at every meal — as well as protein-rich snacks. Eat protein especially at breakfast.
You can reach this target number easily — just with a cup of Greek yogurt, one-third cup of mixed nuts and a glass of milk. This adds up to a little more than 35 grams of protein, and makes for a healthy and nutritious breakfast.