How Aging Can Affect Your Appetite (And How To Combat It)

By Alexa Sooter | 3 March 2020 1604 views
maintain a healthy appetite

How To Maintain A Healthy Appetite As You Age

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Your relationship with food has probably changed several times throughout your life. And you will find that, as you get older, it will only continue to change.

You might be surprised at the way in which it changes, however. 

Although it is not talked about very often, a loss of appetite is a common side effect of getting older. It doesn’t usually become noticeable until you’re in your late sixties or so.

But if you have a chronic illness or have struggled with food in the past… you may notice changes starting as early as your fifties.

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Some of these changes include feeling fuller for longer or noticing that things don’t taste the same. While these aren’t massive changes, their impacts can be far reaching.

Luckily, there are easy ways to work around the changes and ensure you keep a healthy appetite… and, more importantly, a healthy body.

Be Prepared For: Feeling Fuller

As you get older, your body gets worse at processing the food you eat. This is due, in large part, to a reduction in saliva and stomach acid production.

Both of these fluids are used to break down the food you eat. When there is less fluid, food takes longer to break down.

In the short term, this means you will feel fuller for longer. If you noticed older relatives eating less than younger adults when you were growing up, now you know why

But consequences become more dire the longer this goes on. When your body doesn’t break down food properly, you don’t get the nutrients you need.

It’s an important factor to consider when you approach changes to your appetite. So important, in fact, that I wanted to mention it here though it has its own section further in the article.

Missing nutrients isn’t just frustrating. It can be dangerous.

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Before you worry about possibly being low on nutrients, you need to deal with the food you’re not digesting. Your first line of defense is going to be a high-fiber diet. Fiber helps your body move food through your digestive system… which means your meals won’t make you uncomfortable any more. 

You will also want to increase your water intake. Water is vital for digestion. Since your body isn’t producing as much fluid as it once did, you’ll need to help it out.

You might have been able to get away with chronic dehydration when you were younger… but it’s just not worth it as you age.

Combined, these steps should help you process your food a little more efficiently. Fiber supplements like Metamucil are easily sourced from most grocery stores.

With today’s focus on “fit living,” most stores also carry water bottles already marked with units of measure. Just find one you like and drink up!

Be Prepared For: Missing Out on Nutrients

Getting enough nutrients becomes more and more important as you age. That is part of what makes changes in your appetite potentially dangerous

Whether you don’t crave food the way you used to… or your body isn’t processing your food well enough… underperforming appetites mean you aren’t meeting your nutritional needs. This becomes an even bigger problem if you have other chronic health conditions

If you think you might be low on vital nutrients, you need to go see your doctor. Most people hate getting their blood drawn, but it will be necessary to find out what you’re low on and by how much.

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Once the blood test is done, your doctor can help you choose supplements and make changes to your diet so that you can fix the problem. Severe cases might require regular doctor’s visits so that you can receive your nutrients through concentrated doses.

Fortunately, these situations are very uncommon. You will likely just be sent back home with a grocery list of high-nutrient foods and supplements.

Be Prepared For: Changing Tastes

Another change you will likely see as you age is that your senses of taste and smell become less sensitive. These changes happen gradually, but you will probably end up with a much less “refined” palate than you currently have.

Your sense of taste changes because your overall number of taste buds decrease as you age. Scientists are still trying to find out exactly what reduces your sense of smell. 

But as helpful as it is to know the reason for this decline, this information does little to prepare you for the effects of the change. You may find that you can no longer taste certain flavors… or that certain flavor combinations no longer appeal to you since you can’t taste with the range you once did.

And, in certain cases, you will find yourself cutting out certain foods or food groups entirely because you simply don’t crave them. 

At the moment, there is no way to reverse these changes. There are ways, however, to work around them.

One of the best ways to maintain a healthy approach to your food is to try new recipes and keep your menu changed-up from one week to the next. This will ensure you’re exposing yourself to a range of foods and nutrients you might otherwise be missing out on.

You should also try to eat with friends or family. Isolation is a very real danger for many older people.

Finding some way to bring community into your mealtimes gives you another way to enjoy the food you eat. It might not be all about the flavor anymore… but that doesn’t mean that meals aren’t important!

The Takeaway

Your appetite is going to change as you age. You probably aren’t going to be thrilled with the changes… but they do not signal the end of your positive relationship to food. And they certainly don’t have to impact your health.

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As with your health in all things, pay attention to the signals your body is giving you. Keep a food log, if necessary, so that you know what you’re eating and when you’re eating it.

If a startling pattern emerges, talk to your doctor and make a plan to address the issues.

Aging is not easy, and for many, it’s not fun. But it is part of life, and it is one that you can handle with confidence, so long as you listen to your body.

How To Boost Your Digestion & Metabolism As You Age (So You Can Stay Healthy & Fit)

I know I don’t have to tell you this… but digestion as you get older changes a lot.

That’s for a lot of reasons:

  • You have less acidic stomach acid as you age…
  • Your metabolism naturally slows down, which makes you less hungry… and:
  • Your gut bacteria (which actually “processes” the food you eat) changes.

Now there’s not too much you can do about your stomach acid…

But your metabolism and gut bacteria? You can actually do quite a lot to help those out.

That’s because some of the best doctors in the world are just finally starting to understand how your metabolism and gut bacteria really work to break down food into energy.

So if you find that you don’t have the appetite that you used to… or your energy feels a bit sluggish… this is perfect for you.

One of the leading advocates for better gut health is Dr. Steven Masley, MD.

And he’s isolated 4 types of “good” gut bacteria in particular that can boost your digestion and metabolism quite a lot.

These are 4 types of “good” gut bacteria that are scientifically proven to help improve your digestion and energy levels…

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To see a new documentary where Dr. Masley is interviewed about this startling discovery… click the link below:

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P.S. – Yeah, this is a whole documentary released online, completely free to you. And Dr. Masley is great at breaking things down into plain English and giving you your exact next steps. Click here now to watch the full streaming documentary now…