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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Boston, Massachusetts » Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #348918

Research Project: Cardiovascular Nutrition and Health

Location: Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging

Title: Dietary considerations for reducing cardiometabolic risk in older adults

item Lichtenstein, Alice - Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging At Tufts University

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/22/2017
Publication Date: 8/23/2017
Citation: Lichtenstein, A.H. 2017. Dietary considerations for reducing cardiometabolic risk in older adults. IN: Watson, R.R., Zibadi, S., editors. Handbook of Nutrition in Heart Health. Wageningen, The Netherlands: Wageninin Academic Publishers. p. 285-301.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The aim of dietary guidance specifically targeted for older adults to minimize the risk of developing cardiometabolic disorders is, for the most part, consistent with that associated with optimal health outcomes throughout adulthood. Evidence suggests that there is a direct link between healthy dietary patterns, cardiometabolic disorders and total mortality. Due to diminished levels of physical activity, decreased metabolic rates, and increased proportions of fat to lean muscle mass, energy requirements decline with advancing years whereas nutrient requirements remain either unchanged or increase. To accommodate these changes there need to be increased efforts to educate 'younger' older adults to these changing and how to gradually accommodate them, such as paying increased attention to choosing nutrient dense foods within and among food categories. The use of nutrient supplements by older adults should be monitored to minimize the risk of overconsumption. This is particularly important because older adults who report using nutrient supplements tend to be those who have dietary and lifestyle patterns that are most closely associated with lower rather than higher risk for cardiometablic disorders and nutrient insufficiency. With advancing age it may be necessary to adapt living environments to promote the ability to acquire and prepare familiar foods. This is particularly important during times of change such as living environment or composition of the household. The data suggestion at any age individuals can benefit from improvements in dietary and physical activity patterns. The period of time older adults can expect to remain active, productive and independent continues to expand. Hence, no one is too old to benefit from improvements in lifestyle behaviors.