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One Third Of Canadian Seniors Aren’t Getting Enough Healthy Food, According To Report
March 21, 2013
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If you're an elderly person, or if you have elderly people in your life, here's something to think about and maybe even check out.

About a third of seniors in this country might not be getting proper nutrition or enough healthy food, according to Statistics Canada.

The results suggest 34 per cent of Canadians 65 years of age or older were at "nutritional risk," StatsCan said.

And that's a big deal.

"Nutrition is a building block for optimal health," said report author Pamela Ramage-Morin. "We know that undernourishment can lead to falls, it can lead to hospitalization."

The report says a number of factors can affect the quality of food seniors eat.

- How often they can get to a grocery store
- How hard it is for them to cook
- Living alone
- Having a disability or trouble swallowing
- How much money they have

Depression and loneliness can be factors as well, especially for women over the age of 75. And seniors who are depressed are twice as likely to be eating poorly... or not at all.

Women are more likely than men to be at nutritional risk: 38 per cent for women vs. 29 per cent for men.

In the study, gaining or losing more than 10 pounds (4.5 kg) in the past six months and skipping meals almost every day were the main drivers of nutritional risk.

In fact, 15 per cent of those surveyed admitted to skipping at least one meal almost every day.

The goal says Ramage-Morin is to identify seniors who are at risk before they reach the stage of not getting enough healthy food.

The report is based on data collected between 2008 and 2009.

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