Nutrition of older adults is an area that is underused when seeking to prevent disease and maintain health, but is becoming more important as this population grows. By the year 2030, older adults will account for one in five Americans. It is important to realize that the nutrient needs of older adults differ from younger adults. Practitioners should understand the aging process, look at its effects on nutritional status, and review diseases and conditions associated with aging and the nutritional implications of those diseases. Federally funded nutrition and meal services can help older adults meet their nutritional needs. This knowledge can assist practitioners in providing the best clinical care possible to help older adults maximize their nutrition status and attain the best quality of life possible well into old age.
The goal of this nutrition for the elderly continuing education course is to examine the health and nutritional requirements of older persons, and assess the potential effect of nutritional status on healthcare needs and quality of life to provide information to help clients, family, and friends maintain quality of life well into old age. After studying the information presented here, you will be able to:
- Describe the social, economic, and ethical problems of an aging U.S. population
- Discuss factors that govern biological aging, such as heredity, environment, and chronic disease
- Discuss the effects of aging on major tissues, organs, and systems
- Explain how the physiological changes associated with aging affect the needs for specific nutrients calories, carbohydrates, protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and fluids
- Develop a diet that includes the dietary modifications indicated for those suffering from or at risk for cardiovascular disease and/or hypertension
- Explain why weight loss and sodium limitations are not always appropriate
- Explain the etiology, nutritional ramifications and treatment of: renal disease, osteoporosis, diabetes mellitus, cancer, and COPD
- List social, cultural, and psychological factors affecting dietary practices and nutritional status of the elderly
- Demonstrate how to determine protein-calorie malnutrition in older adults
- Describe the difficulties of, and procedures for, interviewing older persons
- Discuss anthropometric assessment methods, and their pros and cons as applied to older persons
- Explain which biochemical analyses are appropriate for the elderly
- Explain the impact of aging on drug effectiveness
- Discuss federally funded nutrition support services available to older persons and their impact on older persons’ nutritional status
- Identify barriers that restrict older persons’ participation in available nutrition support services
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This course is intended for an interprofessional audience, including dietitians, health educators, and fitness professionals.
Fitness professionals: Take this version of the course to ensure you receive appropriate credit.
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OnCourse Learning is recognized by the American Council on Exercise as a Continuing Education Specialist (provider #250164). This course is approved for 0.8 ACE CEC.
OnCourse Learning is recognized by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) Certification Committee as an approved provider of continuing education (provider #A1074). This course is approved for 0.8 CEU of continuing education for the CSCS & NSCA-CPT.
The American College of Sports Medicine’s Professional Education Committee certifies that Nutrition Dimension meets the criteria for official ACSM Approved Provider status from 2010 to 2013 (provider #681205). ACSM’s Professional Education Committee certifies that OnCourse Learning meets the criteria for official ACSM Approved Provider status from 2013 to December 2016 (provider #730441). This course is approved for 8.0 ACSM CECs. ACSM approved providership of these programs does not imply endorsement of the sponsoring organization’s products/services.
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Unless stated above, the planners and authors of this course have declared no relevant conflicts of interest that relate to this educational activity. OnCourse Learning guarantees this educational activity is free from bias.
Please see CE Course Instructions to learn how to earn CE credit for this module.