Our dietary habits and nutritional needs gradually change as our bodies mature. A toddler doesn’t eat the same food as an adult. Similarly, a young adult has more caloric requirements as compared to an older person. Whether you’re a grown-up in your prime or a senior citizen, the most important factor to ensure good health is a well-balanced diet. We will discuss eating for your age.
Following a planned diet with all the required nutrients goes a long way in maintaining a healthy life.
There are multiple diets out there and what you choose depends on your particular diet goals. However, you don’t need a fancy diet to be healthy; adding nutritious foods to your meals helps too.
Our guide will come in handy in telling you what your body needs, depending on your age group.
The human body and nutrition
The human body requires food for nourishment and proper working of all bodily functions. Its nutritional needs include several elements divided into two main subcategories- macronutrients and micronutrients.
The human body is entirely dependent on the nutrition it gains from food and needs it for physical growth and development.
- Macronutrients: Includes carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. Required in larger quantities and provide energy and building material to the body.
- Micronutrients: Includes vitamins and minerals. Needed in smaller portions but are still as important as macronutrients because they promote biochemical functions.
The relation between age and changing nutritional needs
All bodies require quality nutrition, regardless of their age. However, this doesn’t mean that all age groups can function perfectly on the same ratio of nutrients.
The body of a 20-year-old young adult is vastly different from a person well in their 60s. Understandably, their dietary needs vary too.
To put it simply, at different stages of life, certain nutrients are required in more quantity than the others.
An infant needs a mix of all nutrients, and this need is met by breast milk. With toddlerhood, the caloric requirement increases, which extends into a few decades of adulthood.
As the body begins to grow old, the need for high-calorie diets decreases, and the need for foods with high nutritional value increases.
Feeling exhausted? One nutrient that helps tackle fatigue is iron.
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Nutritional needs for different age groups
As bodies develop, so does the level of nourishment required by various elements. This means that during the different decades of your life, you will have to focus on adding various foods to your diet.
Here’s what you should be eating in your various life stages.
Eating in your 20s:
The 20s is a fast time. Life is busy and there’s barely any time to focus on what you’re satisfying your appetite with. This is also the time when young adults are most prone to depending on fast food for their meals.
In addition to keeping all nutrients in balance, an important element to add to your diet is ample protein.
It makes the body stronger, but it also helps keep you full. So there will be no untimely fast food cravings, and your energy needs will also be met.
Dietary focus: Protein
Eating in your 30s:
Much of the excitement from your 20s is carried forward into the 30s. The only difference is that now you’re swamped with additional responsibilities like managing a household and possibly kids.
It’s common to feel exhausted during this time, and one nutrient that helps tackle this fatigue is iron. In your 30s, you should be mindful of adding superfoods like olive oil and flax seeds to your diet.
Dietary focus: Iron
Eating in your 40s:
This is the age when people start to slow down and settle into their daily routines. It’s also the crucial time between your younger years and the onset of old age.
The nutrition during this time should be focused on bolstering your bones and strengthening your body.
Calcium is one of the most important elements that help people in their 40s increase their bone strength and slow down the aging process.
The body also needs abundance of magnesium and vitamins for the proper absorption of calcium. Additionally, antioxidant-rich foods like dark chocolate and berries should be your best friends.
Dietary focus: Calcium
Eating in your 50s:
With the onset of the 50s, the body starts to slow down due to decreasing metabolism. This is also the age where signs of aging become visible.
Our body is in the early stages of senior life, and the caloric intake requirement also decreases.
The food you eat at this time should be high in nutritional value with enough micronutrients. Vitamins and calcium play an especially important role during this time.
High fiber veggies and Brazil nuts act as hormone stabilizers and fulfill the micronutrient requirement.
Dietary focus: High fiber veggies
Eating in your 60s and onward:
It’s in your 60s when the body begins to notice the real effects of aging. With slower processes, the body begins to become weaker.
It’s extremely important to cut down on foods rich in calories and increase the intake of foods that offer the required nutrients.
It’s also at this stage in life that nutritional supplements help in making up for the lack of any particular nutrient. Both plant and animal-based lean proteins will effectively keep the muscles strong.
Nuts, whole foods, and legumes should be given priority over energy-dense foods.
Dietary focus: Nuts, whole foods, and legumes
Food for thought
Starting with simple changes to your diet can be the perfect way to kick off a much healthier lifestyle—for you and your family.
Eating the right foods at the right time and making it a habit will improve your life in more ways than one. Plus, your health is directly related to your life insurance rates. The healthier you are, the lower your premiums.
At Quotacy, we understand the importance of your life and what it means for your family. This is why life insurance is so essential. Securing their future with a term policy allows you to provide for them if the unexpected were to happen.
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About the writer
Director of Creative Strategy
Greg is Quotacy’s Director of Creative Strategy. He has an eclectic past from working on movie scripts to creating ad campaigns for major brands. His love of creative solutions drove him to strategy, and he now uses his powers to help families protect their loved ones. Outside of work, Greg spends his time off the grid hunting, fishing, camping, biking, hiking, and walking his dogs.