Aging Well in the Gorge March 15th 2016

Eating right doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be simple – and tasty, if you use your imagination and think about what goes on your plate. So during the rest of March, National Nutrition Month, try a new recipe or create your own; or change one eating habit. And to help get you thinking, here are a few eating right tips for older adults from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. You may already know many of them, but they are a good reminder.

1st Make half your plate fruits and vegetables, especially dark-green, red and orange vegetables whether they are fresh, frozen or canned. But beware, canned vegetables can be high in sodium so choose “reduced sodium” or “no-salt-added”.

2nd Make at least half your grains whole such as 100% whole-grain breads, cereals, crackers, pasta and brown rice. Also, look for fiber-rich cereals to help you – well, we all know why.

3rd Switch to fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese. As older adults, we need more calcium and vitamin D to help keep our bones healthy, but not the saturated fat. Include three servings of fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt or cheese each day; and a small bowl of ice cream before you go to bed. (Okay, that last one is my idea!)

4th Eat a variety of foods from the protein food group each week, such as seafood, nuts, beans and peas, as well as lean meat, poultry and eggs.

5th Cut back on sodium. Compare sodium in foods and choose those with lower amounts. If you season your food with your favorite spices and herbs, you’ll often find you don’t miss the salt.
6th Switch from solid fats to oils such as olive oil for sautéing or canola oil for baking. Avoid trans-fat and limit saturated fat to less than 10 percent of calories a day.

7th Drink water instead of sugary drinks. I have a phone app to remind me to drink water because I keep forgetting.

8th Cook at home where you are in control of what’s in your food. And to make my meals quick and easy, I often prepare large amounts of rice, cooked vegetables and meat ahead of time. I then just add a serving of each to a bowl, spice it up, stick it in the microwave, and presto, I have a healthy meal.

9th And most importantly, enjoy your food. There are plenty of delicious healthy recipes (Food Hero is a great website.) Or create your own simple, and yet tasty and nutritious meals. But eat less. Most of us older adults need fewer calories.

For more information, visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ website at

There is not a lecture next week, because of the AARP Smart Driver class on Monday (21st) and Tuesday (22nd) from 8:45 – 12:05. Call the Center to register for the class. The cost is $20 or $15 for AARP members.

For the Center’s Tuesday Night Music on March 22nd, Country Road will be performing. Doors open at 6:00, music starts at 7:00. Everyone is welcome and donations are appreciated.

The movie star who was a Marine, enjoyed motorcycle racing, starred in the Blob, and Bullitt, and was considered the “King of Cool” in the 60’s was Steve McQueen (The winner of a quilt raffle ticket is Sandy Haechrel. And Sandy would want me to remind you of the Cascade Singers’ annual St. Patrick’s Day concert at St. Peter’s Landmark starting at 7:00 PM.)

With both Oregon and Oregon State in this year’s NCAA Basketball Tournament, this week’s “Remember When” question has got to be about basketball – with a local twist. In 1939, the first NCAA Basketball National Championship was won by the University of Oregon. On that Ducks basketball team, who was the starting 6-foot-4-inch forward that grew up in The Dalles? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or mail it with a picture of the USS Saratoga Supercarrier.

Well, it’s been another week trying to remember what time it is. And as the Irish blessing goes, “May the road rise up to meet you; may the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face; the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand”.

“Dance as if no one were watching. Sing as if no one were listening. And live every day as if it were your last.” Irish Proverb

Comment your thoughts!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.