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Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

Nutrition and Healthy Aging

2.0 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the nutrient needs specific to the older adult, common age-related changes that impact nutritional status, nutrition-related diseases common in older adults, the impact of food-borne illnesses on the health of aging adults, the United States’ governmental MyPlate food guidelines, and the purpose of the Older Americans Nutrition Program (OANP).
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Increasing scientific, clinical, and social interest helps us understand the relationship between nutrition and aging. Eating well is essential in all stages of life but is especially important for maintaining good health and slowing the aging process in older adults. Nutrition influences the risk of contracting acute and chronic diseases and affects the physiological and biological processes of aging. Making healthy food choices also has social impacts, since healthy adults are more productive members of society and utilize fewer resources on multiple levels than unhealthy adults.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Identify nutrient needs specific for healthy aging.
  • Describe how age-related physiological and psychological changes impact nutritional status.
  • Describe the need for fiber in the diet of older adults.
  • Discuss the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Identify the benefits of probiotics.
  • Describe how age-related social and economic changes impact nutritional status.
  • Describe how food-borne illnesses affect older adults.
  • Discuss the United States' governmental MyPlate food guidelines.
  • Explain the purpose of the Older Americans Nutrition Program (OANP).

When agriculture was developed more than 10,000 years ago, seasonal crops became available and predictable, and human diets became relatively stabilized for the first time. While hunting and gathering was still important, people no longer had to worry about the large swings in the availability of food supplies. During the next several thousand years, the quality of food did not change much, and the human diet consisted of natural foods (Micozzi, 2006). This remained true until modern times.

Today, the typical American diet increasingly consists of more processed and contaminated foods than ever before in human history. The use of pesticides, the prevalence of industrial farming of both crops and livestock, the incorporation of genetically modified foods into mainstream foods, the availability of fast foods and super-sized food portions of nutrient-poor foods, as well as the overuse of antibiotics and hormones in meat, dairy, and poultry products have changed the landscape of food in much of the modern world. At the same time, Americans suffer from more degenerative lifestyle-related ailments (such as heart disease, some forms of cancer, diabetes, and stroke) than ever before. Obesity is at epidemic proportions for all age levels, including older adults. Many health-care providers are seeing what researchers have been saying for decades—how people eat and what they eat is strongly linked to how people feel and the diseases with which they struggle (Luck, 2005).

While healthy eating is essential in all stages of life, eating well is especially important in older adulthood. Recent studies have shown that one out of four older Americans suffer from poor nutrition (National Resource Center on Nutrition, Physical Activity & Aging, 2012). Advancements in medical research and technology and a growing awareness of the importance of healthy lifestyles have led to longer life expectancies than ever before in human history. Nutrition plays a vital role in enhancing the functional quality and well-being of older adults. Nutrition that is not only adequate but supports the healthy function of the major body systems is fundamental to health on all levels.

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • NCBTMB -National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork
  • Florida Board of Massage Therapists


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

May 30, 2019

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.