Here at Unique Senior Care we are proud to be supporting Nutrition and Hydration Week. Nutrition and Hydration is an essential part of our clients’ health and wellbeing, and with spring fast approaching, it is more important than ever for elderly people to keep hydrated.
What is Nutrition and Hydration Week?
Nutrition and Hydration Week (N&H Week) aims to raise awareness and educate people on the value of food and drink in maintaining health and wellbeing in health and social care. Running every March since 2012, it is an annual campaign of joint action by the Hospital Caterers Association, National Association of Care Catering and NHS England.
With around three million people at risk of malnutrition in the UK, N&H Week focuses on promoting awareness of having good nutrition and hydration as part of a daily diet. Poor practice in nutrition and hydration care can lead to serious and avoidable harm to patients’ health and wellbeing, and can even lead to death.
The significance of N&H Week for elderly care
Older people are especially at risk of becoming dehydrated, which could lead to other health issues. However, good hydration contributes to physical, cognitive and thermoregulation function. It helps the body to fight diseases and absorb nutrients and medication, as well as preventing dehydration.
At Unique Senior Care, nutritious food and fluid intake is a priority for our clients. We are supporting N&H Week to highlight nutrition and hydration as essential elements of elderly care. Therefore, during our care visits this week we will be giving advice to our clients about eating healthily and staying hydrated. This is especially important with spring (and therefore warmer weather) being just around the corner; people aged 65 years and older are at increased risk of heat-related illness, such as dehydration, as the body loses more fluids than normal through sweat.
Top tips for eating and drinking well
If you’re looking to improve your diet to stay healthy and hydrated, these tips could help:
- Drink water regularly throughout the day. Two litres or six to eight glasses a day is recommended by NHS England. Water, lower fat milk and sugar-free drinks all count.
- Food can account for approximately 20 percent of your daily fluid intake, so opt for foods that naturally contain water, such as cucumbers and watermelons.
- Try to eat at least five portions of different types of fruit and vegetable a day.
- Cut down on saturated fat, sugar and salt. Eating too much salt, in particular, can raise blood pressure and lead to heart disease or a stroke.
- And remember – staying active is an important part of maintaining overall good health. Make sure you drink more water as your exercise, especially in warmer weather.
Find out more about Nutrition and Hydration Week here.