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My mother is losing weight. She claims she is eating and even puts on a show to make me think she is but the scales tell a different story. She is starting to look frail. She is still fairly independent but am not with her 24/7 to watch.

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I know this is frustrating. My mom is 85 lbs, frail, and has Alzheimers. She thinks she is on a diet and only eats low cal. I bring her all her favorite foods and she just picks. Unless sis and I take her to a fancy restaurant, she won't eat much.
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I appreciate your response. Her doctors don't seem to be concerned about her eating habits. I mention them frequently but they say, "Your mom is a healthy weight for her age. Older people don't eat much." Unfortunately, if you research the ADHD you will find one of the characteristics of it is that the person lies for no reason (pathological lying). For example, several times I made her a home made pot pie, and delivered it all cooked and ready to eat at 5PM, for her and my dad to eat. He is 85. She calls me up, "We ate every bit of it. It was delicious." I go over there to check on something and there it is in the refrigerator with a tiny little scoop (and I do mean tiny) taken out of the side of it. Last night she wanted tacos. I made some, took them over and when we talked on the phone, same thing. "We ate it all." Well, she ate a few bites of the filling, that was it. It is very frustrating. I told my husband that she'll end up dying of malnutrition. I get both of them Boost to drink, but I can't force them to do anything. My dad has poor eating habits, too, but my mom's are the worst.
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Gemgarden, I suppose true anorexia can strike at any age, and if someone has suffered with it before just getting old is not a cure. I doubt she thinks not eating is a funny game, although she may thing it is funny to "fool" you into thinking she has eaten. Does her doctor know about this? Is she seeing a psychiatrist? Unhealthy relationships with food such as anorexia can be incredibly hard to overcome, even younger people without cognitive decline are out there starving themselves to death.
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No, no dementia yet. My mom has ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) which she has had all her life. Try reasoning with a person that has these two dysfunctions...you can't.
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There's certainly no reasoning with a person with dementia? Has your mom been assessed for that?

What seems reasonable and obvious to us is not obvious any longer to a person with no ability to solve problems. Talk to her doctor.
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My mom is 81 and eats the smallest amounts of food you can imagine. She plays with her food on her plate, moving it all around, pretending like she is eating. She thinks it is funny, a game to her. My grandmother was anorexic at 85 years old and is gone now. I really feel my mom wants the title as "the oldest anorexic on file". My mom lives on pills, honestly, she takes so many supplements and pills it is unreal. She feels these supplements are better than food--there is no reasoning with her. She takes about 30 pills in the morning and 30 at night. No wonder she is not hungry. Plus she is on pain meds for her spine and the Tramadol kills her appetite. She constantly complains her legs are so weak that they won't hold her up--well, is it any wonder? I keep telling her she needs fuel to make her body work--she just ignores this advice and every time she gets thinner she just has her clothing taken in for her smaller size. She enjoys being thin, I think, because in her 50's she was about 200 pounds, which she hated. There is no reasoning with an elderly person, I have found out. They do what they want.
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Ooops, there I go posting to someone who is not there in2013! Fooled again.

Others will recommend any new questions be posted on a new thread, worded for your specific issue. That way, responses will be for you.
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Carolynn, thank you for that diet outline! I agree with everything you said for a good well-rounded diet (to gain/keep weight on). Have tried to follow the no white foods plan. I believe the scientists who have recommended that plan have saved many from diabetes. I forgot the pharmacist's name who recommended it, and do not know who came up with it first. Growing up, my siblings and I had fun rolling up the soft white bread (it was wonderful) and eating it after we played with it. Maybe it is still stuck somewhere inside to this day. Joke, ha ha.
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Gershen, my friends, some of them are in the nursing profession, have been talking about this weight for many years now. They call it "your fighting weight".
If someone gets cancer, they won't be debilitated by excessive weight loss and may have the weight and nutritional strength to fight any disease.
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I am 86 yrs. and easily gain weight, the 10 lbs. per yr. applied to the gain for some 7yrs. (weight was 130-140) now I have to watch fats, sugar,etc. I have kept weight at less than 190 for eight yrs. How much daily protein do I need?
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Gersh, I think they mentioned that on the 60 Minutes segment featuring the UC-Irvine 90+ study. If you haven't seen it it is definitely worth watching on line, very interesting.
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I've heard recently that its better for seniors to not be too slim. What is a healthy weight when you are younger doesn't apply. So being 15 or 20 Ibs. above the norm for your height is probably ideal when you are a senior. Probably so your body has stores to rely on if you were to get sick or what have you.
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There are various calorie calculators on line, in my opinion the more detailed the survey the better the answers. I liked the healthy body calculator at dietitian, but you could try several and decide which makes sense for you.
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jackbird, it all depends on the person's height and bone structure, and if that person is active or not. What would be the best weight for one person might not be the best for another. Let the person's doctor be your best guide.
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what is the best weight for a 95 year old
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GET ANSWERS, in blue, to your right, ask other caregivers your question, then click ASK.
Welcome to this forum. Your posting here on a thread that was begun in 2013 may have delayed the voluntary forum community from answering right away, sorry you felt it was a waste of your time.
Therefore, if reading the answers given to the original poster is not helpful, be sure to re-ask by entering a new question, as described.
Be sure to start with a follow up with your friend's doctor.
So sorry for your loss of your best friend.
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This is a waist of my time ! I didn't even get a response !
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I am helping in the aid of my best friends mother ( My Bestfriend Past away last May ) and she 87 yrs old, she fell back in February 2015 and broke her collar bone, she spent 3 weeks in the hospital, and 2 months in a rehab. In the rehab she went completely down hill. We got her back home, and she no longer can do Anything Herself ! We have to change her diapers, Bath her, Feed Her, Etc.......
She has lost so much weight , my guess she is 85 pound soak and wet.
What Can We Do For Her ? P.s. A very concerned Loved One.
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I am helping in the aid of my best friends mother ( My Bestfriend Past away last May ) and she 87 yrs old, she fell back in February 2015 and broke her collar bone, she spent 3 weeks in the hospital, and 2 months in a rehab. In the rehab she went completely down hill. We got her back home, and she no longer can do Anything Herself ! We have to change her diapers, Bath her, Feed Her, Etc.......
She has lost so much weight , my guess she is 85 pound soak and wet.
What Can We Do For Her ? P.s. A very concerned Loved One.
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pinky , " fortsip and complain " . ill bet you haul it home in the car boot or is it the bonnet ? wth is a mum ? you talk funnily cuz , your killing me over here ..
this is why it takes meds to put me to sleep .
get some aircraft carriers before china lumps your heads with bamboo sticks ..
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My Mom had always weight around 130.... but since she is aging, she's now 96, her weight has been around 95 lbs the past few years.... she and Dad eat small meals and do snack during the day. Dad hasn't put on any weight over the last few years, neither. Both are in good health for their age. They eat light because they nap so much.
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My mum is 79 , she too is losing weight, here in Uk she has been on fortsip and complain which are not making any difference. She now weighs 92 lbs, has diabetics and a bad back so cannot walk for long, now looking very frail, I too am very worried, any feedback appreciated.
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lawson - just following up: I noticed you have neither posted any answers to outstanding queries, nor posted any additional questions. How's it going with your mom; are you managing all right?
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My mom is 81. Over the last year and a half she has lost a lot of weight. She is now only 98lds, down from 135/135. She is only 5'1 now. She has trouble chewing some foods because she has mostly just her front teeth and no dental coverage with her not so wonderful Humana Gold insurance. She nibbles throughout the day, well when she isn't sleeping which is too often. She has no energy and no desire to anything for exercise as her legs tire quickly. All her labs come back ok as well. My sister lives with her and dad as he requires 24/7 care and is wheelchair bound. Sis is a good cook and tries to make then nutritional meals, dad eats fine, mom, not so much. She takes a couple of bites and is full. The doctor said let her eat anything she wants with regards to snacks and desserts. Still she continues to lose weight. Sis does give her and dad both ensure, but mom says nothing tastes good anymore. Is this a sign of the end of days? We are so worried.
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In regard to liquid supplements, I recommend Carnation Instant Breakfast. It's cheaper - although you do have to use milk - and it tastes a lot better than other products.
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Then she is not consuming enough calories. You do not say how much she weighs, but if it is under 125 lbs., then she needs as many calories as she can eat per day. At this age, calories (the non-sugar kind) are very important and if you cannot see her eat, assume she has no appetite to eat and is not. She probably is also dehydrated. Get her some needed help, move in with her, or she will continue to decline. Also have her doctor notified. This is typical of elderly with eating improperly. I'm a nurse, and I have to sometimes force (greatly encourage and eat with him) my 87 yr. old husband to eat and drink water. Keep us posted on what you decide to do.
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Most everyone I've known who's lived to an advanced age became thinner and ate less. Right now, I have two aunts, both in their early 90s, who were always big women (200 lbs+). They both lost a good bit of weight when they were in their 80s. I'd guess they each don't weigh anymore than 150 or so now. I think it's a natural part of aging. They're mentally sharp, pretty spry and healthy for their age, and just not as hungry at mealtimes as they once were. If you think about it, as you slow down, your body is doing less and therefore needs less fuel.
So many aspects of aging are now diagnosed as conditions or diseases (often with expensive and invasive tests). Before you know it, you have a box full of pills to swallow everyday and you're spending 2-3 days a week in a doctor's office.
We have a really twisted attitude towards aging in this country.
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My aunt, 86, is living independently in a senior complex. She has lost a lot of weight in the last year (size 16 to size 4) and is looking frail, too. She prepares her own breakfast and snacks and joins the other residents, in the dining hall, for lunch and dinner. She says that she eats her meals unless the meat is too difficult to chew. When I took her to the doctor to find the reason for the weightloss, she was put through lots of blood work to find almost everything normal. One of the levels was a bit off revealing a beginning breakdown in the body. The doctor wanted to put her through a scanning process with injected dye. Because she is allergic to seafood, it would have been a hospital procedure. The doctor and I decided against it as my aunt is mentally challenged, functioning as an eight year old, and doesn't understand some things. The doc said that because of chewing/swallowing difficulties, (eating less) this situation does happen so she suggested adding a liquid supplement to her diet. She has been enjoying her daily "milkshakes" and bragging about getting extra treats each day. Her newest clothes don't appear to be hanging off of her after the last 3 months so I'm hoping that this has stabilized her. Although frail looking and walking with a cane, she maintains her apartment, attends activities and assists at the nursing home daily which is 2 buildings down the street. And, she's happy. She has a follow up appointment Thursday, so we'll see if the weight has stabilized.
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Your profile says you're taking care of your mom at your home but not what her condition is, so, what medical conditions does she have? Not all diets are appropriate for all patients if she has for example diabetes, heart issues, kidney problems, etc. Depending on her health, recommending a diet may also need approval of her doctor.

That said, l can give you some general guidelines. No woman should probably eating less than 1200 calories a day, as less than that makes it difficult to get proper nutrition. If your mom is losing weight, WHATEVER she's eating isn't enough. And the type and quality of calories are more important than just the calorie count.

Folks we need to gain weight need to be eating nutrient dense calories. Foods with concentrated nutrition. High in digestible protein such as pea powder and whey, and quality whole grains with a reasonable amount of higher calorie vegetables (winter squashes, olives, root onion, corn, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots) and fruits (bananas, oranges, apples, pears). Dairy and eggs are okay if not allergic. Swear off the whites foods (sugar, flour, rice) and don't overserve low cal veggies (green salad, celery, peppers, mushrooms) and fruits (peaches, nectarines, plums, berries, melon). High good fat diet: olive oil, grapeseed oil, coconut oil and some butter if desired), no hydrogenated or trans fats or diet margarine. This isn't a comprehensive list but I think you can get the idea.

Sometimes appetite is decreased and a vicious circle without enough nutrition. Is she getting a quality multi vitamin mineral? Increased B vitamins will often increase appetite. Not always not without the doctor's approval.

"Frailty" can also be caused by or from a loss of muscle mass that can occur with less activity. Hauling one's body around is a form of weight bearing exercise, which helps create or maintain muscle mass. Less activity leads to decreased muscle mass, which leads to less hunger, less nutrition, more fatigue, more lethargy, wasting muscle mass and frailty. Again with doctors approval, maybe chair yoga or modified lifting of 2 or 3 pound weights.

My mom just passed in January at 94 and a half. She started showing signs of weight loss for last 2 years, complicated by a new onset heart problem. I gave her either Ensure (250 cal) or Ensure Plus (350 cal) always once and sometimes twice a day. In between meals. She enjoyed it and it didn't fill her up to the point where she didn't is your next meal.

This is all conjecture without knowing her medical condition so please respond and more relevant information can be given. I am a nutritionist so please feel free to ask any questions you may have.
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