Old people should take in various diet with rich and complete nutrients to strengthen essence and qi and delay ageing. They should supplement the deficient nutrients of the organism appropriately. For instance, old people are subject to calciprivia. Accordingly, they should select the diet with rich calcium. Milk and dairy products, soybean and bean products are the ideal sources of calcium in diet. Also, celery, hawthorn fruit, coriander, etc. contain a large proportion of calcium. Besides, old people may regularly eat the foods strengthening the spleen and kidney, benefiting health and prolonging life such as lotus seed, Chinese yam, lotus root starch, water chestnut, walnut and black soyabean.
The old people's diet should be rich in protein, vitamin and fibrin but scanty in sugar, fat and salt. This is the quintessence of the so-called "bland diet". The spleen and stomach in old people are asthenic and declining, and weak in transportation and transformation. Consequently, old people should eat more fish, lean meat, bean products, fresh vegetables and fruits. But they should limit animal fat while vegetable oil is advisable such as sesame oil and maize oil.
Warm, well-cooked and soft diet
It is suitable for old people to eat warm diet, not uncooked and cold one in case the spleen and stomach should be impaired. However, it is not advisable to eat the very hot diet, either. The diet should be "warm but without scalding the lips, cold but without shaking the teeth." Old people with odontoseisis and odontoptosis have dysmasesia. Thus, it is suitable for them to eat the soft diet but abstain from sticky, hard and heavy foods. Gruel is the most suitable food for old people. It is not only light, but also strengthens the lung and promotes the production of body fluids. It is particularly suitable for old people's viscera.
Scanty food intake and slow feeding
The aged should not eat too much, but eat for more times, a small amount at each time. The feeding should not be too hurried and fast while careful mastication and slow swallowing are advisable. This can not only help digestion and absorption, but also prevent "gulping, choking, dysphagia and cough".