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Energize Your Diet as You Age

Can the right foods improve your energy levels every day?

A Veteran making healthy choices as he shopsGetting older may bring some surprising changes. One of those could be that you feel worn down at the end of the day. Fatigue is common among older adults. An unhealthy diet can contribute to low energy.

You might be able to get some energy back with the right foods and tasty recipes.

Get the right nutrients

Variety is the spice of life, and it may be the key to boost your energy. Start by focusing on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and dairy or non-dairy alternatives. These food groups can help build your plate and guarantee you get enough nutrients like potassium, calcium, vitamins D and B12, minerals, and dietary fiber.

Finding a balanced diet

Eating healthy foods can lead to better weight management. But it can be tough to know where to start. The following choices are examples of healthy food options that can give you energy without the extra calories:

  • Fruits and vegetables with bright colors like strawberries or leafy greens

  • Whole grains like oatmeal, whole wheat bread, and brown rice

  • Fat-free or low-fat milk and cheese, or dairy alternatives that have vitamin B12, vitamin D, and calcium

  • Seafood, lean meat, poultry, and eggs

  • Beans, nuts, and seeds

High-energy recipes

Choosing foods to create a balanced diet may sound hard. VA’s Healthy Teaching Kitchen creates recipes to help you get started. Try these four recipes and then add more options each week:

Before you start a new nutrition program, use Secure Messaging to talk with your health care team. They may have suggestions on where you should start. It’ll be helpful if you record daily meals with a food journal and track vitals to see your progress.


Please vote in our unscientific poll. All responses are anonymous.

Do you think your food choices are impacting your energy?