2020 was a year of changes, self-realization, and transformations. As a family, we always focus on the right diet but visible gaps existed. We started to work on the daily intake of Vitamin C and re-worked on the requirement of micronutrients like Zinc, Selenium. The whole focus seems to have shifted towards nutrition, along with regular indoor workouts and relieving stress, for better strength and immunity. Moreover, being in the mid-’30s with the mindset of “aging healthily”, boosting the body’s natural defenses became a priority. With a whole lot of changes in the lifestyle, we decided to read more on maintaining strength and immunity through nutrition.
Well, as we age, we are more likely to contract infections due to the decreased production of our body’s T-cells – the fighter cells. While the connection between nutrition and immunity is still being researched, our family doctor shared that micronutrient malnutrition becomes prominent while aging. Upon further query, we got to know that the intake of some essential vitamins and trace minerals often gets reduced with lower and less variety in diets as we age. Every calorie consumed must be packed with the right nutrition for better immunity. Often the gradual loss of bone tissues goes unnoticed, which leads to bone fragility and increased risk of fractures.
How to maintain strength and immunity?
As we age, there are certain nutrients that play a very important role in the proper functioning of our body’s cells and organs. Hence the question of how to maintain strength and immunity through nutrition in India is very common.
Researches have shown that deficiency of Vitamins A, B, C, D, E, Zinc, Iron, Copper, Folic acid, Omega 3, and Selenium can alter our body’s immune response. These vitamins and minerals are essential for boosting immunity.
Here are some nutritious foods that must be a part of our diet, as we age:
1. Whole Plant Foods:
Vitamin C-rich fruits, whole grains, leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds are rich in antioxidants and various essential minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and vitamins. Enhancing the consumption of these can help us keep our immune system strong.
2. Milk products / Foods rich in Vitamin B12:
Vitamin B12 absorption decreases as we age. Thus, including milk, milk products (cheese, yogurt), soybean-based fermented foods, along with B12 fortified breakfast cereals is of utmost importance.
3. Breakfast cereals / fortified breakfast cereals:
Folates are essential as we age, and if the consumption of fruits and vegetables is limited then our body might have a deficiency of this essential Vitamin B (Folic acid). Thus, folate fortified breakfast cereals are a great choice. We have also included “Ensure” in our daily diet, which contains 32 vital nutrients which improve and support bone and muscle strength, as we age. Including Ensurein our diet is a perfect choice for strength, immunity, and energy.
4. Calcium-rich foods and Vitamin D:
Being calcium deficient, more so as we age and after menopause in women, enhances the brittleness of bones and the probability of fractures. Thus, intake of milk-based products and calcium-rich foods like broccoli, and kale are imperative. Vitamin D improves the absorption of calcium and thus helps in maintaining bone density.
Along with these essentials, staying hydrated and engaging in moderate exercise are equally important. Right from jogging to moderate weight-bearing exercises are good for holistic well-being.
Well, that’s what we focus on when it comes to nutrition, as we age, to get the #StrengthToLiveNonStop. How about you?