There seem to be a variety of reasons why your parents or grandparents may seek excessive sweets or salty foods. Sweet and salty seasonings are much simpler to taste for many elderly with a decreased sensory palette than blander items. That is why you may notice that they are drawn to such foods that their taste receptors are used to. However, these cravings are also a symptom of poor nutrition in some circumstances. Many individuals lose roughly two-thirds of their average sense of taste by 70 years old, affecting their responsiveness to sweet and salty flavors. If you want to help your loved one handle sweet and salty food addiction, keep reading.
Experiment with New Recipes
Maintaining appropriate sugar and salt amounts in your family member’s diet doesn’t mean they can’t eat tasty, savory meals. Simply add a dash of originality to the recipe! Sugar can be reduced in many dishes without impacting flavor, for instance, by using spices like vanilla and cinnamon or swapping to naturally sweet options like honey and fresh fruits. Using herbs and spices rather than excess salt as an alternative can also be a wise choice.
Load Up on Sufficient Water Daily
As sodium is a natural electrolyte that controls and regulates the fluid levels in our cells, a persistent desire for salt may indicate that your loved one is dehydrated.
When the body’s fluid levels are reduced below average, one may begin to crave salt; this is the body’s means of motivating one to drink plenty of water. According to some studies, misunderstanding dehydration for hunger might lead to salt cravings because thirst makes you think you need to snack when what you really need is to load up on water.
Seek Your Doctor’s Opinion and Watch the Numbers
Being unsure of the daily recommended intake of salt and sugar can lead to wrong food choices. As per reliable sources, people should consume no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day and less than 10% of their calories from refined sugar.
Even so, your parents’ salt and sugar consumption should be tailored to their specific medical needs as determined by the family physician. Check with the doctor to see how much salt and sugar are allowed in your loved one’s diet, and reassess these numbers frequently.
Examine the Food Labels of Packaged Foods When Grocery Shopping
Do you know that processed and commercially cooked foods contain about 80% of the sugar and salt we consume? Even commonly used condiments like ketchup, mustard, and soy sauce, as well as spreads like marmalade and preserves, can have high salt and sugar levels.
It’s good to practice reading the labels on any packaged foods you’re thinking about buying for your family member. Check for high sodium levels and additional sweeteners and avoid such products as they only harm your parents’ health. If feasible, try substituting natural foods for packaged items.
High sugar and salt intake can worsen current health issues if they are not addressed. Follow our tips mentioned above to handle your loved one’s sweet and salty cravings. It will take some getting used to as you switch up their usual diet but stick to the plan if you want to reap the benefits.