How much protein do elderly people need per day?

Older adults need to consume at least five ounces of protein a day. However, for some elderly people, protein-rich foods such as meat or poultry may be hard to chew. And for many, meat, poultry and fish can be too expensive.

Here are some ideas to help older adults meet your protein needs:
  • Choose tender cuts of meat; chicken, turkey or ground meat.
  • Especially if chewing is a problem, have your teeth, gums and/or dentures checked regularly.
  • Visit the dairy aisle. Milk, eggs, cheese and yogurt are good sources of protein.
  • So are beans and peanut butter.
  • If money is an issue, stretch meat, poultry and fish in casseroles or eat them in small portions.
The answer for the eldery is the same for all people with a couple of few small exceptions.

First and foremost protein intake should be parallel to the amount that you need.  If you are sedetary you do not need as much as if you are active or doing weight training or things that require greater protein content.

Most elderly people are less active and do not do much exercise or weight training and therefore the amount of protein should vary.  Most research will say around 1g of protein per kg of weight.  Lets say you have an elderly person, if you use that standard (and most elderly people will lose weight) would put them at around 70g per day. 

If someone is elderly and has difficulty chewing food or very inactive then I could see in the range of about .8g per kg, but if they are more active or involved in resistance training (which they should) or more strenous activity then that number could jump to 1.2g per kg.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.