Food and Nutrition

Food and Nutrition

Eating Advice Adults and People over the Age of 50

The Adult Years

  • Eating well is important as we grow older. Maintaining a healthy weight, especially in the adult years greatly reduces the risk for many cancers, diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Carrying too much body fat around the waist is a cause for concern.

Healthy eating tips include:

  • Eat the recommended amounts and types of food from Canada’s Food Guide.  
  • Watching portion sizes and eating more fruits and vegetables.  A good strategy is to fill half of your plate with vegetables.
  • Eat more traditional foods:  meats, fish and birds, berries and plants from the north and from local gardens. 
  • Eat more whole grains and use whole grain flours when making bannock or other breads and desserts.
  • Choose to drink water instead of sugary beverages, especially when thirsty.  Six  to eight cups of fluids each day helps keep people from becoming dehydrated.
  • Limit  fat, sugar, salt and extra calories (when possible, avoid cake, pastries, chocolate,  candies, cookies,  granola bars, ice cream, French fries, potato chips, salty snacks, alcohol, fruit flavoured, sports and energy drinks, soft drinks, and sweetened hot or cold drinks.
  • Eat high fibre foods such as beans, legumes, corn, berries and whole grain breads.
  • Cook meals at home. Some store-bought and restaurant foods are usually high in fat, sugar, and salt.

Special Nutrient needs for those over 50:

  • In addition to following the food guides, men and women over the age of 50 need a daily Vitamin D supplement of 400 international units (IU).
  • Vitamin B12 also may not be well absorbed by people over the age of 50. Vitamin B12 is necessary for making red blood cells and promoting normal nerve functioning.

Recommended Number of Food Guide Servings per Day


Age in Years
19-50 years 51 + years
Females Males Females Males
Vegetables and Fruits 
7-8 8-10 7 7
Grain Products 
6-7 8 6 7
Milk and Alternatives 
2 2 3 3
Meat and Alternatives
2 3 2 3

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