Aging is a bitter truth of life that every human being has to go through irrespective of their willingness. With every passing year, the ability of the human body reduces with regarding the productions and usability of vital nutrients from the regular meals needed for healthy function and survival of an older age person. However, the good news is that this deficiency of necessary nutrients can be easily fulfilled with the intake of some important supplements for seniors.
The major changes in hormones in your older age increases your risk of many aging-related health problems like arthritis, osteoporosis, dementia, etc. In the adolescent or youth stage of life, the human body’s nutrients absorption capability remains quite high. However, this nutrients absorption capability starts to deplete drastically by the age of 40 and when a person enters into the 50s they almost develop all aging-related health troubles in the lack of nutrients portion in their body.
Fresh fruits, vegetables, and unprocessed whole foods are the ideal sources of vital nutrients such as vitamins, fiber, minerals, etc. However, due to the effect of aging these ideal nutrient sources don’t work the way it used to be in the youthful stage of life. So here comes the role of dietary supplements sources which can easily fulfill the scarcity of all essential nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, minerals, omega 3 fatty acids, enzymes, etc. These supplements come in the form of pills, capsules, powder, liquids and gel tabs. You can easily avail these dietary supplements in any drug store without showing any prescription.
However, which particular nutrient your body is actually lacking with and troubling your health this can only a health practitioner can determine and accordingly prescribe you the required supplement for your health improvement. In general, at the 50s, 60s, and 70s onwards your body requires the below mentioned nutrients supplements for your overall organ nourishment and fitness.
Nutrients Supplements Requirement During the 50s
During the 50s year of age, people require some vitamins and minerals more than their youthful age. The necessity of these essential nutrients can be fulfilled either with some changes in diet routine or through the supplements of these vital minerals and vitamins.
- Calcium- Once you enter into your 50s your bone strength and density depletion rate get rapid leading to chances of fragile bone or bone loss. This risk factor is for both men and women however post-menopausal women are the greater victim of bone loss or bone fracture issue because of the reduction in estrogen hormone in the body.
In order to improve the bone mass density calcium is the most vital nutrient which works great when combined with Vitamin D. Some good dietary sources of calcium include Milk (fat-free or low fat is ideal), cheese, yogurt, dark green leafy vegetables, figs, calcium, and fortified breakfast cereals.
- Vitamin D- Sunlight is the most ideal source of Vitamin D needed for maintaining bone mass or density. In the youthful age, your body can easily produce this vitamin if you sit at least for 15 to 30 minutes time under the sun, minimum two times a week through the synthesis process.
However, during the older age like after the 50s, this ability of body deteriorates hence one cannot get this vitamin D this way. So to fulfill the necessity of this vitamin for your bone health you can include its food sources such as vitamin D fortified milk, cheese, egg yolks, beef liver, tuna, mackerel, vitamin D-fortified cereals, and Vitamin D supplements.
- Vitamin B6- The count of red blood cells may reduce with aging that leads to many health issues in your 50s. So to maintain the balance of red blood cells Vitamin B6 is important that helps in the formation of red blood cells. Some common dietary sources rich in Vitamin B6 include chicken breasts, bananas, potatoes, and fortified cereals. Its supplements can also be consumed after the consultation with a doctor.
- Vitamin B12- Vitamin B12 helps in keeping your red blood cells and nerves in a healthy position. Though even older adults need this particular vitamin in the same amount as any other age adult person but due to the aging effect, many of them face difficulty in absorbing this vitamin from its food sources.
Especially in your 50s, you may find difficulty in absorbing this vitamin from its natural food sources. In that case, you can consult with your doctors as they can prescribe you to take Vitamin B12 supplements and can suggest eating foods such as fortified cereals to grab this vital vitamin for your stable health.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids- Omega-3 is another essential nutrient that your body cannot produce itself. The consumption of omega-3 rich foods or supplement help in your 50s to prevent many aging-related health issues like Alzheimer’s disease, irregular heartbeat, high blood sugar, cancer, reduces inflammation and plaque buildup in arteries.
Some good dietary sources of omega-3s fatty acids include edamame, salmon, walnuts, flaxseed oil and its supplements that may come in pills or capsules form.
- Probiotics- In your 50s your body is more susceptible to unhealthy bacteria growth in your gut and the count of healthy bacteria such as probiotics diminishes. Hence your gut health gets badly affected and this impacts its nutrient absorption ability.
So to ensure that the nutrient that you are taking in food or supplement form absorbed by your body easily you should include probiotics in your diet routine. Some food sources of probiotics include kimchi, kefir, yogurt, and dark chocolate.
Nutrients Supplements Requirement During the 60s
As you get older your dietary requirements change over time. Though usually health experts and nutritionists recommend natural foods to get essential nutrients for your body but as with age the gut gets less efficient in absorbing those nutrients and your body remains nutrient-deprived so many health problems develop. So to get the sufficient nutrients in your 60s supplementing your diet with below-mentioned nutrient are become your necessity and it must not be overlooked.
- Vitamin D- In past decades Vitamin D was only known for enhancing your body’s absorption capacity of calcium from foods which is important for the maintenance and improvement of your bone health. However, this is not true as Vitamin D does much more for the betterment of your health especially in your older age when your body’s absorption capacity deprives.
As per one study report, the intake of this essential vitamin in older age like in your 60s reduces your risk of heart diseases, some type of cancer and relieves from chronic pain. Though the sun is the most ideal source of this vitamin but due to the reduction of your body’s synthesizing ability of vitamin D from the sunlight you cannot rely on this source.
Some good food sources of Vitamin D include egg yolks, tuna, mackerel, and beef liver. Also, you can take its supplements however, in that case, prefer those supplements which contain Vitamin D3, which is the more active form and much effective than the D2 its counterpart.
- Vitamin B12- This is a very crucial vitamin needed for older adults as even its little deficiency in the body may put them at the risk of Dementia a major mental health disorder in which the affected patient loses his or her ability to remembering things that are vital for survival.
However, as the level of stomach acid necessary for absorbing this vitamin from foods by your body declines with age so you remain deprived of this essential nutrient. So get enough level of this B group of vitamin you can take its supplements about 2.4 micrograms in a day which is your daily recommended limit.
- Omega-3- This is another essential nutrient that has versatile health benefits as it nourishes and benefits every other organ of your body. DHA which is omega-3 fatty acids remains in abundance in your brain’s cell membrane which helps in a good amount of blood supply and in the growth of new brain cells vital for better memory and brain health.
However, with age, your brain’s absorption capacity to this essential omega-3s fatty acids declines leading to memory retention and other brain function get hampered badly. So to avoid these brain health risks and to improve and maintain your memory in your 60s must include its food or supplement sources in your diet.
Some good food sources of omega-3 fatty acids include trout, clams, sirloin, cheeseburger, flaxseed oil, walnuts, salmon, edamame and beef liver.
Nutrients Supplements Requirement During the 70s
During the 70s and thereafter an older adult’s body needs following nutrient supplements for its maintenance and healthy survival.
- Protein- With aging, a substantial amount of reduction in the body’s muscle mass happens. This is because due to aging-effect your body’s ability to build up muscle mass declines hence naturally it gets thinner and loose. The moment you lose approx. 10 percent of your body’s muscle mass then on your immune function doesn’t work the way it should be.
This is the time when your body's necessity for protein increases in spite of a reduction in your hunger level and portion size. So to fulfill the necessity of this essential nutrient during your 70s you must start taking protein supplements in your diet routine. The protein supplements can come in powders or pills form that helps in building and regaining your loosed body mass and muscles.
At this age, the recommended doses of protein are 20 to 30 grams of whey protein mixed in a regular shake. Apart from protein supplements, some food sources of protein include almonds, beans, chicken and beef.
· Vitamin B12- This is the most essential vitamin required for every older adult as discussed above even its mild deficiency in the body increases the risk of dementia in an older adult. However due to the depletion of stomach acid needed for the absorption of vitamin B12 from food sources in old age the body remains this nutrient deprive.
So to ensure your optimal brain functionality the Institute of Medicine recommends to people over 50 to get it through B12 supplements. The daily recommended doses of this vitamin are 2.4 micrograms. Apart from B12 supplements, some common food sources of this vitamin include sirloin, cheeseburger, trout, beef liver, and clams.
- Vitamin D- Vitamin D is very important during the 70s in order to protect your body against common illnesses and infection risks. Though sunlight is the most ideal source of this critical nutrient but with aging your body’s ability to synthesize this vitamin from sunlight declines.
So to get this essential vitamin for your body you should look for its supplements rich in vitamin D3 or cholecalciferol. This is an active form of Vitamin D and effective than the Vitamin D2 its counterpart. Apart from its supplements some good food sources of Vitamin includes egg yolks, tuna, beef liver, mackerel, and cheese.
Vitamins and Minerals Recommended Limit for People Over 50s
The excessive doses of any vitamin and minerals instead of doing good, harms your health by causing some side effects. So to avoid this risk every individual must follow the recommended dietary guidelines. Try to grab most of these nutrients from food sources instead of depending on supplements source. As per the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015 to 2020 the recommended daily vitamins and minerals doses for men and women of different age groups are following-
- Calcium- A substantial reduction in the level of calcium mineral seen in bones after the age of 50 in both men and women that increases their risk of bone damages and arthritis. The recommended doses of calcium for women aging 50 and above is 1200 mg each day. Men aging between 51 to 70 should have 1000 mg each day and after the 70s 1200 mg but it should not be more than 2000 mg in a day.
- Vitamin D- The daily recommended limit of this essential vitamin for people aging between 51 to 70 is 600 International Units (IU), 800 IU each day for people aging above 70 but it should not be more than 4000 IU in a day.
- Vitamin B12- The daily recommended limit of this vitamin is 2.4 mg each day. However, if anyone is on acid reflux medication then, in that case, they may need its different doses which only a healthcare specialist can guide.
- Vitamin B6- The daily recommend doses of Vitamin B6 for women is 1.5 mg and 1.7 mg for men each day.
Whether your body requires any vitamin and minerals supplementation or not, should not be decided on your own. Consult with a dietitian or a doctor to get confirmation whether you need to supplement your diet or not. Depending upon the quantity of these nutrients that you are taking from your foods, drinks and out of any supplement, a healthcare specialist will recommend the necessary supplementation doses and a healthy source for the same.
No doubt, the important supplements for seniors discussed above are truly effective and beneficial for every older adult of age 50 and above but it must be consumed under the supervision of a healthcare specialist in order to gain maximum possible benefits out of it for your health.