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Older people need to eat more protein-rich foods when they try to lose weight by dealing with chronic food or acute illness or hospitalization, according to the growing consensus among scholars. During these stressful periods, aging organs process proteins less efficiently and need more of it to maintain muscle mass and strength, bones and other essential physiological functions Even healthy elderly people need more protein, than when they were younger to help preserve muscle mass, experts suggest. However, one third of the elderly do not eat enough because of decreased appetite, dental problems, poor taste, swallowing problems, and limited financial resources. Combined with a tendency to become more sedentary, it puts them at risk of worsening muscles, compromising mobility, slower recovery from disease seizures and loss of independence.
Impact on functioning. Recent studies have shown that older people who consume more protein are less likely to lose their functionality: the ability to dress, get up from the bed, climb the stairs, and more. In a 208 study that followed more than 2,900 adults over 23 years, the researchers found that those who eat the most protein are 30% less likely to become functionally impaired than those who eat the least amount
. to eat more protein may be healthier), "our work suggests that older people who consume more protein have better results," says Paul Jacques, co-author of the study and director of the Food Epidemiology Program at Jean Maier University USDA. Research center for nutrition in aging nutrition.
In another study published in 201
"While you consume enough protein, you will not prevent age. the total loss of muscle by not eating enough protein can be an aggravating factor that makes older people lose their muscles faster, "said Wayne Campbell, Professor of Nutrition Science at Purdue University
Recommended intake. So how much protein should elderly people eat? The most commonly cited standard is the Recommended Dietary Supplement (RDA): 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
For a 150-pound woman who consumes 55 grams of protein per day; for a man of 180 pounds, he requires a meal of 65 grams.
To put this in perspective, the portion of 6 ounces of Greek yogurt has 18 grams; half a cup of curd, 14 grams; 3-ounce chicken without skin, 28 grams; half a glass of lentils, 9 grams; and a glass of milk, 8 grams. (To check the content of proteins in other common foods, click here.)
Older adults were rarely included in the studies used to establish ARP, and experts warn that this standard may not adequately meet the health needs of the older population. After reviewing additional evidence, an international group of physicians and nutritionists in 2013 recommended healthy adult adults to consume 1 to 1.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day – a 25 to 50 percent increase over the RDA. (This is 69 to 81 grams for a woman weighing 150 pounds and 81 to 98 grams for a 180 pound person). His recommendations were subsequently adopted by the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism.
When the disease is a problem. For adults with acute or chronic illnesses, the group has suggested a protein intake of 1.2 to 1.5 grams per kilogram of body weight, while noting that the exact amount of "disease-dependent, severity" and other factors . (At a level of 1.5 grams per kilogram of a woman, a 150-pound woman will have to eat 102 grams of protein per day, and a person with 180 pounds will have to eat 123 grams.) Even higher levels, up to 2 grams per kilogram For older people who are severely ill or malnourished, bodyweight may be required [Theseguidelinesdonotapplytoadultswithkidneydiseasewhoshouldnotincreaseproteinintakeunlesstheyareondialysis"Proteinbecomesmuchmoreimportantduringtheadultlifeeventsthatforcethemto"Forexampletoreplacethethighortheknee"saysStuartPhillipsdirectorofMcMaster'sUniversityCenterforNutritionExerciseandHealthinCanada
"Higher amounts of protein have value when something in the body of an elderly adult is changing, "Campbell agrees, a co-author of a new study in JAMA Internal Medicine that does not benefit from increasing protein intake for older men. This may be due to the fact that the intervention period, six months, was not long enough. Or it could happen because study participants have adapted to their diet and have not been exposed to additional stress from illness, exercise or weight loss, said Campbell
Another recommendation calls on older people to allocate consumption of proteins evenly throughout the day. This stems from studies that show that elderly people are less effective in protein processing in their diet and may need a larger meal.
"The total dose you eat may not be as important as the dose you eat. "explains Dr. Elena Volpi, professor of geriatrics and cell biology at the University of Texas Medical School in Galveston, Texas. "If I eat too little protein during meals, I may not adequately stimulate the intake of amino acids in the skeletal muscles. If I eat too much, say a big T-bone steak, I will not be able to store it. "
Based on her studies, Volpi suggests that elderly people eat 25 to 30 grams of protein to eat. In practice, this means rethinking what people eat at breakfast when protein intake is the lowest. "Oatmeal or cereal with milk is not enough; people should think of adding Greek yogurt, egg or turkey sausage, "said Volpi.
Protein in all forms is good. Animal protein contains all the nine essential amino acids our bodies need; plant proteins. If you're a vegetarian, "it takes more work to balance all the amino acids in your diet," eating a variety of foods, says Dennis Houston, an associate professor of gerontology and geriatric medicine at the Wake Forest Medical School in North Carolina. "Otherwise," I would normally recommend having animal protein in my diet. "While red meat is lean and you do not eat it too often," that's good, "Houston says.
Add-ons. How about powdered or liquid protein supplements? "There is no need for supplements, unless someone is malnourished, ill or hospitalized," said Volpi.
per month. Preliminary data, which are still to be confirmed in a larger clinical trial, indicate that "this may improve recovery after hospitalization," Volpi said. "The first line of protection should always be real food," said Samantha Gallo, assistant director of clinical nutrition at the Sinai Mountain Hospital in New York. "But if someone is not able to consume a turkey sandwich and will rather drink a protein shake during the day, we will try this."
However, older people should not drink protein shakes instead of food, warns Gallo, adding: "This is a bad idea that can actually lead to a reduction in protein intake and calories in the long run."
KHN's discovery of these topics is backed by the John A. Hartford Foundation and the Silver Century Foundation