Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

The reason for this books review is to research this issue of nourishment of older people, and discuss my findings. I am researching this subject matter using tools such as athens, and using websites such as google scholar, ovid and internurse. I’ve chosen to use articles and reviews from days gone by ten years as I feel they’ll bring the most current nursing treatment techniques and the most dependable research into the subject.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Nutrition of the elderly is an important area of nursing care and should not be studied lightly. It’s important in nursing health care to determine patients nutrition, as if looked after it can optimize the overall well being of the patient. Malnutrition is the key worry when concentrating on elderly patients diet, as 40 to 60% of elderly people who are hospitalized are malnourished or vulnerable to malnutrition. This statistic is quite high, meaning that the correct medical practise is not always used. Within this review I will be looking to find the reason why behind this and how the care of these patients can be risen to its full potential.

When we look at diet we have to consider why it is the fact that elderly patients are so different compared to everyone else. Many questions occur when we understand this for example do they have different eating habits, is there a physiological problem or even will there be a internal problem. The answers to these questions can always be yes in relation to the elderly and we must look further than these basic questions, and review the books of the topic to fully become aware of the correct nursing care to effectively assess and treat this problem.


A review by Finch et la (1998) implies that a a lot of the elderly people, not necessitating hospitalization, are well nourished and also have a good absorption of all correct vitamins, vitamins and energy. However what’s of more importance in this review is older people patients who fall without this category including patients whose diet does have an impact on their health insurance and have physical and or mental problems which lower their dietary intake.

A record by COMA (DH, 1999) explained that diet zero older people, most seen in calcium mineral levels and suggested that current practice of fortifying flour with calcium should continue the same. That same survey also highlighted the reduced levels of Vitamin supplements D in the elderly which, together with the low degrees of calcium gave matter for the increased incidence of osteoporosis within the elderly human population.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Another review highlighting deficiency in different areas for the elderly. (Steele et al. , 1998) point us to the fact that many older patients don’t have a good dentition. This naturally can have a massive impact on their nutritional consumption and in their choice of food and simplicity or difficulty of consuming it. They also found that those of older people who had their own dentition does have a measurable better nutritional and mineral consumption than those who didn’t. People that have poor tooth tended to eat significantly less super fruit, nut products and food generally that was hard to chew, meaning they missed out on vital natural minerals and vitamins.

All of the facts drawn from books show us that the diet of older people can be an important and special group. I am going to now consider further literature showing these specific groupings in older people population which lack of proper nutrition make a difference.

Malnutrition is a primary concern in medical practise with seniors patients, so when looking at it we should be fully alert to what the word means. An assessment by DiMaria-Ghalil (2005) shows this is of malnutrition. Any disorder of nutritional position, including disorders resulting from a scarcity of nutrient absorption, impaired nutrient metabolism, or over-nutrition.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Reuben (2005) shows us that malnutrition can be due to many things in older people inhabitants such as dietary intake, isolation, persistent health problems, and physiological changes.

The schedule for the correct nursing care and attention with older patients is essential and must be used for every patient so that no patient is misdiagnosed. Through the routine nursing assessment, any and all alterations in the overall assessment areas that could affect the patients factors of absorption, absorption, or digestion of nutrients should always be further evaluated to make sure if an older patient is at a healthy risk. These areas are the following.

As explained by an assessment done by the University or college of Texas, Institution of Nursing (2006) a typical assessment should be achieved including their present record, past and medical history, and an examination of their current symptoms.

A note with their social record should be studied into account.

Any drugs the individual may be taking which can socialize or affect the patients nutrient intake and absorption. Boullata, J (2004) explained that drugs make a difference and enhance the nutrient needs for the metabolism of the elderly. It also explained that factors such as restrictive diets, changes in diet plan and diet, alcoholism and persistent disease with long term drug treatments can all impact the nutrient consumption and reactions within an seniors patient. The fourth area that should be considered is the patients’ practical restrictions. Boullata, J (2004) demonstrated that patients with useful constraints can be at risk of malnutrition for many reasons, whether it be a disability restricting their motion, and even a internal problem such as dementia which can restrict the patients’ capability to eat in several forms.

Next that’ll be inspected on the nursing assessment will be the objective examination. This will include a physical study of the individual with emphasis on things such as an oral exam, lack of surplus fat, dysphagia, bmi and muscle spending. Also DiMaria-Ghalili (2005) confirmed that for a more in depth notion of the patients eating consumption can be gathered by a recorded three day calorie matter using a food chart for the patient. This can help gain even more information for the patients’ diet.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Also one of the primary things used for every patient in clinic which is malnourished or at concern with malnutrition is the nutrition risk assessment tool. Both DiMaria-Ghalili (2005) and Salva, A (2004) go on to state how this tool is vital and incredibly useful at examining as it establishes the chance by looking at the patients bmi, record of weight loss, subconscious stress, or severe disease and dementia or any other conditions that could affect their eating intake. Through the use of all these it can help think of a individual report for the patient, and with this rating we can evaluate if the individual is malnourished, and what further action can be studied to benefit the individual. This includes things such as referring the patient to the dietician, and or the talk and language therapist.

There are numerous nursing strategies we may use to be sure that any patient that is malnourished can be assessed and supervised to assist in improving their health insurance and general health. As I previously noted by Salva, A (2004) discussing the dietician if the patient reaches risk for or has under-nutrition. Another useful collaboration for nursing care and attention is to check with the patients’ medication and review it for possible drugs that make a difference the nutrient connections. Also consulting with a multidisciplinary team focusing on nutrition may benefit the patients all over treatment as it is more specific to their needs.


There are also methods that the nurse may use in the patients’ day to day routine to help the patients attempts in becoming nourished. By alleviating a dry out mouth area the nurse can help the patient become more happy, and wanting, to use diet and liquids. This can be done by staying away from any foods or drink which can further result in a dry mouth, such as, tobacco, dried up and cumbersome foods, and highly acidic foods. Also to encourage consistent sips of water and keeping lip area moist will help the patient to become more hydrated and convenient, which, will make them more happy to eat and drink.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Margetts, B (2003) also states how important it is to keep up an appropriate dietary consumption for an seniors patient. It goes on to explain the way the daily requirements of old people includes thirty kcal per kg of bodyweight and 1g of proteins per day, with this only 30% of calories from fat. It also goes on to clarify all requirements will vary with regards to the degree of malnutrition and physiological stress the patient is. A nurse can take this into consideration when treating a patient in their daily routine by increasing the patients’ oral intake, of which there are numerous ways of obtaining. Souter, S (2003) demonstrates a patients meal times are important as it will regulate how much food the individual has consumed and whether or not they will need assistance with eating from a member of staff. A nurse can go beyond this by requesting the patients family to visit during mealtimes so that it is a more slow paced life for the individual, meaning they’ll feel more laid back and willing to consume, and for many who need help eating, their members of the family can assist them which may be more comfortable for the coffee lover. A nurse can also ask the family members to generate favorite foods of the patients from your home to help in the intake of the individual. With foods that they regularly eat and revel in, the patient will be more likely to partake in meal times and even snacking between dishes, increasing their absorption overall. If this is done for a patient the nurse should be aware of the foods the patient enjoys, and or are designed for in order to provide you with the patient using what the necessity and want because of their duration in clinic. The nurse can also look at the nutrients that the patient needs, therefore can suggest small and consistent meals that have these to help regain and maintain weight. The nurse can also help a patient with their mouth area health care such as helping patients with the dentures before food is offered so they are prepared to eat when it occurs.

Souter, S (2003) proved that other ways to improve meals times is to create a good environment for the patient. By detatching things such as bedpans, urinals, and unwell bowls can help to create a positive and clean place for the patient to eat, so there is nothing putting them off or distracting them of their food. Also Souter, S mentioned that any patients who tend to feel unwell during food times can be administered antiemitics over a schedule that will help to lower and diminish the probability of them being nauseated during their meal.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample

Shahar, D (2001) also shows that with certain patients who are mobile enough to sit down in a chair somewhat than their bed should be put in such as it is more comfortable to allow them to eat their dishes. The nurse can also create a soothing atmosphere for patients who needs assistance in eating their food by seated at the patients eyeball level and making attention contact during in order that they feel they aren’t just a task for the nurse. Additionally it is important for nursing staff not to interrupt patients during meals for medication rounds and procedures as it might distract the individual from their food and even make sure they are feel, depending on medication, tired or nauseated that may stop them from eating a sufficient amount for themselves. Nursing personnel can also provide specialised healthy support for several patients depending on the requirements. The Diet Screening Initiative (2002) states that a patient should be began on nutritional support when they can not or won’t eat an adequate amount to profit themselves. The patient must be assessed regarding if they already use unnatural diet and hydration. This can be done by providing oral supplements to the individual. These supplements aren’t to replace meals, but to be given during the day between meals as shown by Wilson, M (2002).

Also it is stated by American Society of Anaesthesiologists that by inserting elderly patients as earlier in the day as easy for testing or procedures it will decrease the amount of time that the individual is nil orally and not permitted to drink or eat. Meaning less time is wasted where in fact the patient could have been receiving a nutritional diet and essential fluids.Nutrition of the Elderly Sample