Senior Care in Palm Beach Gardens FL
When many people think of the role that nutrition and eating play in a senior care journey the first thing that comes to mind is making sure that that elderly adult gets the nutrition that she needs on a daily basis in order to stay strong and healthy, and the struggle that many people have in this area because of the prevalence of convenience, prepackaged, and junk foods in the modern marketplace. Going a little further, you may start thinking about a senior being overweight and needing to help her shed those excess pounds. What most people do not think about when it comes to aging women is the possibility of an eating disorder.
February 21-27 is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. This weeklong observance is dedicated to helping provide reliable and honest education about eating disorders, reduce the stigma and myths associated with these issues, and give hope to those who are suffering as well as those people who love and care for the sufferers.
According to the National Eating Disorders Association, concerns about weight and the possibility of developing eating disorders is much more common among aging adults than most people think. Not recognizing these risks or doing anything to ease them can put your aging mother at serious risk if she is coping with the mental, emotional, and physical issue. Some things that you should know about eating disorders and the elderly include:
- 90 percent of women across all ages express concern about their weight, regardless of their health
- 43 million adult women diet to lose weight during the average year
- Nearly 60 percent of women at midlife express being dissatisfied with their bodies
- 62 percent of women over the age of 65 report wanting to lose weight
- 31 percent of women over the age of 65 actively diet in an effort to lose weight
- More than half of women who diet to lose weight are actually already at a normal body weight
- There are several different eating disorders that impact elderly adults, including bulimia, anorexia, OSFED, and binge eating disorder.
The reality is that many elderly women have been dealing with struggles over their weight since they were young and are merely continuing these issues throughout their later years. This can make it more difficult for you to recognize these potentially dangerous behaviors in your aging mother because you may be accustomed to them. Being able to step back and notice when your mother does not have a healthy relationship with food and eating can help you to modify your senior care efforts for her so that she can maintain a healthier, safer, and more comfortable lifestyle throughout her aging years.
Some symptoms of potential eating disorders that you and your mother’s home care provider should keep your eye out for include:
- Not eating enough even though she already does not weigh enough
Expressing fear or extreme concern over the possibility of gaining weight
- Mentioning weight and the desire to lose weight with obsessive frequency
- Developing her concept of self-esteem seemingly completely based on her weight
- Eating normally but using purging techniques to avoid gaining weight
- Feeling out of control in relation to food and eating
It is important to remember that not all eating disorders involve not eating enough or engaging in behaviors that cause weight loss. Instead, binge eating disorder is the exact opposite. This disorder is characterized by not being able to control yourself while eating and consuming huge amounts of food on a regular basis without any form of purging activity. This can lead to significant weight gain, which is also extremely dangerous to health.
If you notice any of these behaviors and are concerned about your mother’s health, get in touch with her doctor so that you can work together to find balance and help her recover.
If You Or An Aging Loved One Are Considering Hiring Professional In-home Senior Care in Palm Beach Gardens, FL, Please Contact The Caring Staff at Assisting Hands Home Care at 561-829-3080 Today.