Thus, the hypothesis was that social and economic factors—such as low educational level, living alone, being single, widowed, or divorced, low income level, low previous (before 60 years old) or current occupational level, feeling of loneliness, living in rural areas, and low food expenditure—are related to
Factors contributing to malnutrition
Older adults are predisposed to nutrient deficiency due to a decline in total and resting energy requirements (physical inactivity, loss of lean muscle mass and increased adiposity) that gradually reduces food intake while vitamin and mineral needs remain unchanged or increased .
What Are the Factors Affecting Nutrition in the Elderly
The good news is that many of the factors that affect an older person’s nutrition don’t have to impact health and longevity.
The older population is the single largest demographic group at disproportionate risk of inadequate diet and malnutrition.
Mild vitamin deficiencies are very common among seniors, and particularly so among the frail and institutionalized elderly. Anemia, cognitive impairment, an increased propensity for developing infections, and poor wound healing are among the associated manifestations of mild vitamin deficiencies in the elderly.
Older adults (aged ≥65 y) tend to be more prone to nutritional deficiencies (1), because aging may come with an accumulation of diseases and impairments. These include cognitive and physical decline, depressive symptoms, emotional variations (2), and poor oral health (3), along with socioeconomic changes (1).
How Does Poor Nutrition Affect Us?
The Factors That Influence Our Food Choices
Biological factors include age, gender, growth, disease states, and genetic makeup. Among the nonbiological factors, socio-economic status is the most important. Poverty is one of the major socio-economic causes of variation in nutrient intake, and it also impacts nutrient requirements.
What are the major risk factors for malnutrition in older adults? Poor physical or mental health, social isolation, alcoholism, dentures, limited functional ability, poverty, and polypharmacy.
Some health conditions that can lead to malnutrition include: long-term conditions that cause loss of appetite, feeling sick, vomiting and/or changes in bowel habit (such as diarrhoea) – these include cancer, liver disease and some lung conditions (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)