Senior Calorie Needs

Everyone knows that eating a balanced diet is important for maintaining health at any age, but it’s especially important for older adults. Getting the right amount of nutrients and energy, and avoiding what you don’t need, isn’t always easy. Caloric needs change as you grow older or your activity level changes. Understanding your caloric intake needs can help you live a healthier life and get the nutrients you need.

What are Calories?

Calories are the units that measure the amount of energy in food. Since all functions in the body require energy, getting enough calories is important. Often, however, people are at risk of consuming too many calories and not enough of the nutrients that encourage healthy body functions. A balanced diet should consist of foods that contain the right amount of both calories and the nutrients you need to stay healthy.

How Much Do I Need?

Every person’s metabolism, activity level, hormones, and health history combine to create unique calorie needs, and these needs will change as you age. For adults and seniors, the recommended caloric intake ranges from 1,600 to 2,200 calories per day for women and 2,000 to 2,600 calories per day for men. The more physically active you are, the higher your caloric intake should be; if you are less active, your body won’t need as many calories.

How Can I Get the Right Amount?

You can measure the amount of calories you’re eating by looking at food labels and seeing how many calories are in each serving. Serving sizes are often a standard amount that’s easy to measure, such as an ounce, but are not necessarily the amount you would actually eat.

Ensuring that you eat both enough calories and enough nutrients can be as easy as swapping some foods or ingredients that are high in calories but low in nutrients for ones that are high in nutrients. Whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and minimally processed foods can be as satisfying for your palate and your stomach as ultra-processed foods, plus they provide you with more nutrients without the additives that can increase calories without much benefit.

It’s important to remember that a healthy diet is part of a practice or pattern of a healthy lifestyle, not a quick fix. Eating well your entire life, in combination with regular physical activity, will promote good health in the long term; there isn’t one superfood that will instantly solve any health problems. It may take some time to see results from any changes you make, and those results may not be obvious from the outside. Paying attention to what you eat should help you be aware of what nutrients you are getting or lacking and improve your overall health, not just with weight loss in mind.

Kingsway's Cuisine

The first priority of Kingsway’s dining staff is to craft delicious meals, of course, but they work hand-in-hand with our registered dietician to ensure our meals are nutritious, too. Our nine dining locations offer a range of options, from a light and quick breakfast to a gourmet dinner with your family. Whatever your dietary needs or preferences, we have the right meals for your health and your palate.

Senior Health & Wellbeing