70 and Beyond: What You Need to Eat

by Jean Baker, MS, RD

Concerned about the unique dietary needs of seniors, researchers at Tufts University have compiled a special Food Guide Pyramid for people over age 70.


Even the most healthful diet can’t guarantee long life, but active and healthy seniors can increase their odds of staying that way by being aware of how aging changes their nutrient needs.

Fork in the hand of the devil

The 70+ Pyramid

Most people eat fewer calories as they get older. With a typical energy (calorie) intake of 1200 to 1600 calories per day, elderly consumers have to make every calorie count in order to get enough of the essential nutrients. The 70+ pyramid, therefore, outlines the “nutrient dense” choices in each food category, emphasizing whole grain or enriched breads and cereals; a variety of different colored fruits and vegetables; low-fat dairy foods; and lean meats, fish, poultry, and legumes.


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