TUFTS UNIVERSITY: #MYPLATE FOR OLDER ADULTS

from Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter, January, 2012

Following the federal government’s replacing the food pyramid with MyPlate, Tufts University’s Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging unveils MyPlate for Older Adults.  It’s the third such resource created by Alice H Lichtenstein, DSc, and Helen Rasmussen, PhD, RD.

“Although calorie needs decline with age due to a slowdown in metabolism and physical activity, nutritional requirements remain the same or in some cases increase,” Lichtenstein said.

The new model for nutrition contains suggestions for foods that have a high density of nutrients.  Unique to this version of MyPlate are icons for regular physical exercise and adequate hydration, both of particular concern for older adults.

In addition to recommendations for fresh fruits and vegetables, icons include examples of frozen, pre-peeled fresh, dried and certain low-sodium, low-sugar canned forms that are equally nutritious while being less fuss to prepare, less expensive and less perishable than fresh foods.

Because older Americans need to keep an eye on their blood pressure, MyPlate icons suggest low-sodium spices as options to table salt.

For more information about MyPlate for Older Adults and to download it, visit http://now.tufts.edu/articles/eat-well-age-well

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