As we Start the new year, we share a few tips to help single seniors eat well-balanced meals. One struggle older adults face is cooking healthy meals for one person. Many lack the motivation to spend time in the kitchen when they are the only person eating, while others who have given up driving have a hard time going often to the grocery store.
1. Healthy Shortcuts
While precut, packaged lettuce is a timesaver, a single senior might not be able to eat the whole bag before it goes bad. Instead, shop at the store’s salad bar You can purchase as much or as little as you are likely to use that week. Pre cooked, whole chickens are another healthy convenience food. You can use these for entrees, soups, or salads.
2. Storage Ideas
Another challenge single seniors face is storing healthy foods in ways that will stay fresh longer include:
- Freezing: fruits and vegetables can be bought fresh in bigger quantities then split up to freeze.
- Produce storage bags: You can use special reusable bags designed to help your produce last longer. Some will even double the length of time your fruits and vegetables will stay fresh.
- Paper Towels: To increase the life of lettuce, store it in a glass container with a paper towel. Cover it with plastic. The paper towel will absorb the moisture and help keep the lettuce from getting soggy.
- Cool & Dry Storage: Not all fruits and vegetables should be stored in the refrigerator. Keep tomatoes, potatoes, and onions in a dark, dry place instead.
3. Batch Cooking
Pick a few days a month to bake and freeze healthy entrees. Cooking in batches can help you make the most of prep time. Store entrees in glass freezer to oven containers.
4. Menu rotation
Develop four to six weeks of menu plans that you can rotate through. This helps you avoid food waste.
5. Cooking Apps
If you are tech savvy you might find a meal planning apps useful. Apps like Mealime and FoodPlanner do everything from breaking down nutritional information to generating a grocery list.
6. Meal Sharing
Work together with other single friends to share meals. Plan what each person will make ahead of time, and them meet up to swap dishes.
We hope these tips help make eating healthy a little easier!