Meals Fast Simple Nutritious

Some mature adults say they have no time to cook. They're too busy living life to its fullest. For others, lack of inclination or energy or perhaps less mobility require quick and easy solutions for nutritious eating.

Whatever the reason, try these tasty "meals in minutes" for starters:

  • For a quick breakfast, add milk to instant hot cereal. It's as fast to prepare as ready-to-eat cereals.
  • Keep frozen dinners and entrées (perhaps a low-

If you're a mature adult, use this checklist for insight Read each statement. If a statement applies to you into your nutritional health. If you care for an older or someone you know, circle the number in the "yes"

adult, perhaps a parent, use it to be a better column. Then tally up the nutritional score of "yes"

caregiver. answers.

Yes

I have an illness or a condition that made me change the kind and/or amount of food I eat.

2 points

I eat fewer than two meals per day.

3 points

I eat few fruits or vegetables, or milk products.

2 points

I have three or more drinks of beer, wine, or spirits almost every day.

2 points

I have tooth or mouth problems that make it hard for me to eat.

2 points

I don't always have enough money to buy the food I need.

4 points

I eat alone most of the time.

1 point

I take three or more different prescribed or over-the-counter drugs a day.

1 point

Without wanting to, I have lost or gained 10 pounds in the past six months.

2 points

I am not always physically able to shop, cook, and/or feed myself.

2 points

Total

points

6 or more... You're at high nutritional risk. The next time you see your doctor, registered dietitian, or other qualified health or social service professional, bring this checklist. Talk about any problems, and ask for help to improve your nutritional health. Read on for practical ways to follow their advice. Source: Reprinted with permission by the Nutrition Screening Initiative, a project of the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Dietetic Association, and the National Council on Aging, Inc., and funded in part by a grant from Ross Products Division, Abbott Laboratories Inc. Go to www.aafp.org/nsi.xml for a print or interactive copy of this checklist.

3-5 . . . You're at moderate nutritional risk. Try to make some changes-suggested here—that improve your eating habits and lifestyle. Get advice from a registered dietitian or another qualified nutrition professional . . . or from an office on aging, a senior citizens' center, health department, or senior nutrition program. And check again in three months.

6 or more... You're at high nutritional risk. The next time you see your doctor, registered dietitian, or other qualified health or social service professional, bring this checklist. Talk about any problems, and ask for help to improve your nutritional health. Read on for practical ways to follow their advice. Source: Reprinted with permission by the Nutrition Screening Initiative, a project of the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Dietetic Association, and the National Council on Aging, Inc., and funded in part by a grant from Ross Products Division, Abbott Laboratories Inc. Go to www.aafp.org/nsi.xml for a print or interactive copy of this checklist.

calorie version) on hand for quick cooking and easy cleanup. For the most nutrition, buy frozen meals with meat, poultry, or fish; a starchy food (such as rice, pasta, or potato); and a vegetable. Team them with a salad, a roll, a piece of fruit, and milk for a hearty meal that takes little effort.

  • Watching your salt intake? Check the sodium on frozen meals and canned foods (stews, soups, and chili). Many have more sodium; look for those with less. Use other seasonings instead of salt. Enhance flavor with MSG, with only one third of the sodium that the same amount of salt has. One-half teaspoon is enough for a pound of meat or 2 to 3 cups of cooked vegetables. Before using MSG, know if you or your guests are sensitive to it.
  • Prepare food ahead, or to freeze as leftovers. Perhaps make lower-fat meatballs with lean, ground turkey or beef. Brown, drain any grease, then com-
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