Check out this article in the Australian Prescriber:
The rates of malnutrition in older people living at home are estimated to be as high as 30 per cent, and in aged-care facilities can be as high as 70 per cent. Studies have shown that malnutrition in the elderly can result in significant illness, hospitalisation, the development of pressure ulcers, infection, an increase in falls and fractures, and even death. Unintentional weight loss can also result in a reduction in the ability to care for oneself, loss of mobility and independence, and a poorer quality of life.
Ms Schneyder said that for people at risk of malnutrition, using real foods was the first step to improving nutrition.
"Eating small frequent meals and snacks between meals, increasing the nutrient density of meals by adding milk powder, grated cheese, margarine and cream, and having nourishing fluids like milk drinks, smoothies and juice are the main ways to boost protein, energy and nutrients," she said.
Ms Schneyder said that using nutritional supplements could be a valuable addition to the diet for an older person who was malnourished or at risk, but warned supplements should not be used on their own without a comprehensive assessment from a dietitian.
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