Comfort food for seniors
Did you love macaroni & cheese when you were a child? What about Sunday’s pot roast with mashed potatoes? It turns out that the foods that we enjoyed most when we were children, tend to be the same foods we love as we grow into adulthood and older age.
As creatures of habit, we seek comfort from familiar flavours, textures, sights and scents of food. Nutrition behaviours that are formed in childhood become ingrained, and once a particular behaviour or preference is implemented, it’s very hard to change it as we age.
When serving older adults in hospital, retirement or long-term care settings, it’s important to keep in mind that each individual has their own ingrained food preferences. Older adults have already undergone a long period implementing nutrition behaviours during their whole life course. It’s your job to meet them where they are, and try to provide foods that evoke familiar feelings of childhood and the comforts of home.