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Look after your health this Nutrition & Hydration Week!

This Nutrition and Hydration week, 13 - 19 March, we are raising awareness with our top tips on how to improve your nutrition and how to stay hydrated!

With 3 million people at risk of malnutrition in the UK, there has never been a more important time to raise awareness of the importance of eating and drinking well.

Preventing malnutrition and dehydration improves health and well-being and helps to reduce the burden on the Health and Social Care services.

As you get older, eating well can help improve your mental sharpness, boost your energy levels, and increase your resistance to illness. You can improve your nutrition by:

  • Avoiding empty calories - these are foods with lots of calories but few nutrients, such as crisps, sweets, baked goods and alcohol. Instead, opt for whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds
  • Pick foods that are low in cholesterol and fat - you especially want to try to avoid saturated and trans fats
  • Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables - break the apple and banana rut and go for colour-rich foods like berries or melons. Aim for 2-3 servings a day
  • Choose calcium for bone health - good sources include milk, yogurt, cheese or non-dairy sources such as tofu, broccoli, almonds, and kale
  • Vary your sources of protein - eating enough high-quality protein can improve your mood, boost your resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression, and even help you think more clearly
  • Eat more fibre - dietary fibre can do so much more than keep you regular. It can lower your risk of developing heart disease, a stroke, and diabetes, improves the health of your skin, and helps you to lose weight.

Water helps you digest your food, absorb nutrients, and get rid of waste. You can improve your hydration by:

  • Sipping on drinks throughout the day - get a reusable water bottle with a straw and fill it with plain water. Take it with you wherever you go and sip it throughout the day
  • Freshening up your water - sometimes adding a few slices of lemon or orange or some ice cubes can give water a fresh taste
  • Eating soft, wet foods that have high water content - these can be foods like yogurt, pureed fruit, and custard
  • Having a cup of a healthy soup as an afternoon snack - broths and soups count as fluid intake toward your daily goal
  • Setting a daily tea appointment with a friend - taking a break for a healthy drink with a friend can be an easy and enjoyable way to get more fluids.

For more information, please visit www.nutritionandhydrationweek.co.uk