What Happens When Seniors Stop Caring about Cooking

Jun 15, 2020 04:40 PM EDT | By Staff Reporter

What Happens When Seniors Stop Caring about Cooking

(Photo : What Happens When Seniors Stop Caring about Cooking)

You've noticed that your parent doesn't cook for themselves anymore. At the most, they boil themselves an egg or fry up bacon. Otherwise, their meals seem to consist of buttered toast, bowls of cereal, and premade desserts. Read ahead to find out why this is happening, and why a luxury senior living facility could be your best solution. 

Tea & Toast Syndrome  

Your parent may be dealing with something called tea and toast syndrome - this is a phenomenon where seniors whittle down their diets to simple comfort foods like cups of tea and toast. They don't cook or order wholesome meals for themselves anymore, choosing to stick to those few favourites. 

Eating these items day in and day out is concerning because they have little nutritional value. Eventually, the diet will affect your parent's physical health. They will need to have more complex meals packed with essential vitamins and minerals.

Why Is This Happening? 

There are several theories. It could be that recipe planning, grocery shopping, cooking, and cleaning could be too much for them to manage. They're turning to meals that take minimal effort to put together. 

It could be a medical condition. Certain illnesses and medications suppress appetite and cause dietary issues. Your parent should go to a doctor to see if there's an underlying condition that's pushing them toward tea and toast syndrome. If there are no results, then it could be that isolation and loneliness have affected their food cravings. 

What Can You Do?

One of the simplest solutions for this is to suggest that your parent move into a senior home with daily dining services. An elderly care home like All Seniors Care has excellent dining services prepared by an in-house Executive Chef and culinary team. Every meal is expertly prepared and dietician approved. This will resolve several problems for your parent:

- They won't have to worry about shopping, cooking, or cleaning dishes
- They can have a wholesome, nutritious diet
- They can find options that accommodate their dietary restrictions
- They can try different cuisines on a regular basis

Another reason why your parent would appreciate these dining services is that it's a community gathering. They can eat in a large indoor dining room or on an outdoor patio when the weather is warm. When you come to visit, they can sit in a private family dining room. Dinner will no longer feel isolating. It's a social occasion. 

If you're worried that your parent is bored or lonely, this could be the ultimate benefit. A study by the University of Oxford found that social eating can make people happier and more satisfied. Sharing three meals a day with other residents will probably have a profound effect on your parent's mood. They could become a completely different person after moving into this new home. 

If your parent loved to cook and slowly stopped, you need to step in. It may not seem like much, but those meals of tea and toast are cries for help. With the help of a nursing home, you can make sure that they feel cared for and that their meals get a lot better.

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