Updated Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People were released this week by the Ministry of Health.

The guidelines cover key issues including prevention of chronic disease, guidance on weight management; preventing and delaying frailty; and recommendations for supplemental doses of calcium and vitamin D for at risk older people,” said Dr Janice Wilson, Deputy Director General, Population Health Directorate.

“The updated guidelines contribute to helping older New Zealanders live longer, healthier and more independent lives in the community. The evidence is clear that older people through optimal nutrition and physical activity can reduce their risk of chronic disease and increase their independence,” says Dr Wilson.

The third edition of the Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People: A Background Paper follows extensive public consultation and gives the best possible advice about healthy eating for older New Zealanders. The guidelines are a handbook for health practitioners and care givers, which provide evidence-based policy advice and technical information to support optimal nutrition in older people.

A copy of the Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People: A Background Paper is available on the Ministry of Health website.

Hard copies of the guidelines won`t be available until results of the 2008/09 New Zealand Adult Nutrition Survey (due mid-2011) are incorporated into the web based document.

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