We all know that nutrition is important – eating the right things, in the right amounts, at the right times. But we don’t always do what’s good for us. That’s just life, and human nature. But as we age, the need for (and health benefits of) a good diet outweighs our reliance on good old tea and biscuits!
Why we need a good diet
Life expectancy has doubled in the UK over the past 200 years, but the extra decades on our lifespan aren’t necessarily healthy ones.
You might not need as many calories as you age (unless you’re still as active as ever), but the calories you are getting should be the good stuff, topped up with treats – rather than the other way around. As well as plenty of fruit and veg, eating oily fish (and taking an Omega-3 supplement) can have a very positive impact on health in later life. They can even help to prevent strokes, dementia, Parkinson’s disease and depression; while an excess of salt, fatty foods and alcohol can increase risk.
Calcium and Vitamin D are just as important, as these help to keep your bones healthy; in fact low levels of Vitamin D can lead to more falls as you age. Being active can also help to guard against osteoporosis, but if you’re not eating right, finding the energy to get out and about can be difficult.
Improving your diet, taking part in exercise (the more social the better), drinking sensibly and staying away from the cigarettes can seriously improve your quality of life.
And while you don’t always feel like food shopping (let alone cooking), and the thought of getting your body moving is a little daunting if you haven’t exercised for years, sometimes all you need is the right encouragement, a safe environment, and likeminded people to share in the adventure.
Eating socially; enjoying food
You can’t beat a home-cooked meal. It’s tastier, healthier, and packed with far more vitamins and minerals than processed foods – plus, it’ll do your heart and brain the world of good. But as you age, cooking might not be as enjoyable.
It can be a struggle to keep a good diet. But our mission is all about making life a little easier for our residents. A love of food should never be forgotten, which is why we place a big focus on nutritious, home-cooked meals. The decision to come and live as part of a community should be jam-packed with benefits, and one of the biggest benefits at Abbeyfield South Downs is our fantastic food.
All of our meals are cooked onsite, with regularly rotating menus: they’re never bought in or plated elsewhere, because our community deserves better. We encourage people to have their say (a little bit of what you fancy does everyone the world of good!), and we’re proud to know that we’ve made some of our community feel “better than they have done in years” because of our nutritious know-how, and sociable set-up.
Not everyone craves company, so our community have as much freedom and independence as they like. But if they do want to pass a mealtime with great company, the option is always there (and highly encouraged by our caring staff).
We understand that as people age, the thought of leaving their home can feel daunting, unwelcome, and even unnecessary. But independent living in a sociable community can be a positive, fulfilling experience (especially when it comes to help with eating well).
Living well in later life
So, what makes a house a home? We believe it’s living somewhere that enhances your life: a sense of community, companionship, and quality support (as and when it’s needed).
It’s feeling safe and settled with good security, being around people who really care, and being treated to delicious, home-cooked meals each and every day.
It’s enjoying everything that life still has to offer. Get in touch today to find out more about the opportunities at Abbeyfield South Downs.