Eating right is one of the most vital steps for healthy aging. Having well-balanced meals can help your loved one get the nutrition they need to stay healthy and enjoy their quality of life for as long as possible. However, as you get older, it can feel exhausting to prepare meals. Your fatigue or laziness may tempt you to ignore the kitchen and order a pizza instead. When this happens days in a row, it can become an issue for your health, especially for aging adults. Eating what you crave can’t hurt you when you learn to balance your meals in and out of the kitchen. If they’re stuck on what they should eat, here are 17 balanced meal ideas for seniors, nutritious meals they can make with ease and convenience!
1. Yogurt parfait: Combining yogurt, fruits, and nuts is a good mixture of Vitamin C, healthy fat, and carbohydrates.
2. Poached egg: Set the egg on whole-wheat toast and steamed asparagus. Set it off with some butter!
3. Warm oatmeal and berries: Put frozen or fresh berries in a crockpot on a low heat setting. Add a pat of butter, one serving of oatmeal, and water. Cover and leave it to cook on low for a few hours or overnight.
4. Whole grain waffles or pancakes: If possible, pick a brand that contains chia seeds as it contains essential fatty acids and proteins. You should also top it off with fresh berries and add walnuts or almonds for protein.
5. Hard-boiled egg: Add a side of fruits and whole-wheat toast!
6. Power toast: Spread peanut butter or almond butter on whole-wheat toast for some protein and healthy fat. You can also pair it with some fresh fruits!
7. Southwest omelet: Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a skillet. Beat two eggs and pour the egg mixture into the pan with pepper jack cheese chunks and natural salsa or chili sauce. Chili and spices can boost weakening taste buds. Once the eggs are firm, fold and pair them with sliced avocado.
8. Eggs and red potatoes: Melt a pat of butter in a skillet. Cut some potatoes and add them to the skillet on medium heat. Cover for two minutes and then mix in scrambled eggs with the potatoes. Add pepper and jolt until eggs are hot. Seasoning with salt can cause water retention and high blood pressure. Instead, use fresh herbs and spices.
9. Cottage fries: Chop parboiled red potatoes and cook them on medium heat with extra virgin olive oil. Add some leftover vegetables and grated sharp cheddar cheese. Cover it and let it steam then serve!
10. Quinoa salad: Saute pre-chopped onions, red pepper, and mushrooms. Make sure to steam or saute vegetables in olive oil instead of boiling because it drains the nutrients. Then, mix it with quinoa and pine nuts or pecan. You can eat it warm or cold but make sure it’s well refrigerated.
11. Salmon wrap: Set canned Alaskan boneless skinless salmon on a whole grain wrap. Combine it with sliced tomatoes, avocado, greens, and plain yogurt. Wrap it all tightly, cut, and serve!
12. Southwest Chicken Salad: Cook skinless, boneless chicken breast in a skillet with extra virgin olive oil on medium heat. Mix in salsa. Shred chicken and refrigerate to use for salad, wraps, or soup.
13. Lamb and Potatoes: Shape ground beef into small meatballs. Rip fresh basil into slivers or use a dash of dried basil. Chop pre-cooked red potatoes into little pieces. Chop a clove of garlic. Add extra virgin olive oil to a skillet then toss garlic and basil for 5 minutes on medium heat. Add lamb to brown then add potatoes. Cover and toss ingredients for 10 minutes and add a pinch of ground pepper. Cook for another five minutes.
14. Shrimp and fresh greens: Toss fresh vegetables in a saucepan with olive oil. For convenience, you can use pre-cut veggies! Add cocktail shrimp which can also be bought cooked, chilled, and peeled. Serve with lime slices and a berry vinaigrette salad dressing.
15. Baked or grilled Alaskan salmon: Add sweet onion, tomatoes, chopped garlic, dried or fresh basil, and a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil on top of each steak. Wrap each piece of fish in aluminum foil tightly and then put it in the oven at 300 degrees. It is ready for serving when the fish is flaky but still moist.
16. Beans and rice: Warm up a can of pinto, white, or black beans. Pair it with brown rice, oats, or barley.
17. Shrimp and pasta: Heat a pat of butter and a tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan. Mix in cut fresh herbs, garlic, and a handful of shrimp. Saute and cook until shrimp is done. Top it on a bed of pasta and chopped tomatoes.
Eating healthy isn’t so bad when you aren’t stuck on what meals to prepare. Ditching the fast food runs and getting the hang of eating balanced, nutritious meals is going to benefit your aging loved one in the long run.
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