Food for Life: Healthy Meals Elders Can Live With
Allison C. Morrill, JD, PhD, Principal Investigator
Funded by National Institute on Aging (AG18201)
This research evaluated the effectiveness of a 2-hour video-based educational workshop in improving the diets of 164 older adults who live in elder housing and prepare some of their own meals.
This video explains how our food needs change as we age, and portrays the experience of several older adults who have modified their diets to maintain health.
Distributed by New England Research Institutes, 1.800.775.6374.
In addition, a booklet contains information about healthy eating, including recipes by the video subjects
Paired housing sites were randomized; half received the intervention and half served as controls (and received the intervention afterwards). Interviews collected data on diet, intentions, physical activity, and knowledge of nutrition at baseline, and at follow-up six weeks after the intervention.
Comparing the groups, intervention participants increased consumption of fruits and vegetables while controls did not; neither group reduced saturated fat or sodium. Intervention effects were not mediated by any advancement in knowledge or stage of dietary change. Having diabetes seems to promote healthier diets. Gender differences raised interesting questions.