Is Egg Good For You At An Old Age? Food Safety Tips For Seniors (2024)

Nutrition plays a significant role in maintaining the health of older adults. Ensuring adequate dietary intake can help enhance quality of life, reduce chronic diseaseriskand increase longevity.1-3

Older Australians are faced with a range of issues that can affect their food intake, including a reduction in appetite. At the sametimethey are faced with age-related changes in body composition and functioning, for example loss of muscle mass and decreased mineral absorption which in turn may increase their nutrient requirements. In the2017-18NationalHealth Survey4, older Australians generally rated themselves as having poorer health than younger people, withonly 37% ofpersonsaged 75 years and over rating their health as being excellent or very good4.In addition,the leading causes ofdeath in Australians aged 65years and overare due tocardiovascular disease,canceror dementia,alllinked to dietand lifestyle.5

Skip Directly to:

  • Physiological Changes
  • Body Composition Changes and Protein Intake
  • Contribution to RDIs of One Serve of Eggs in Older Australians
  • Health Issues
  • Conclusion
  • Social Media Resources
  • Useful Resources
  • FAQs
  • Video Resources

Food & Nutrition Issues

The2011-2012National Nutrition & Physical Activity Survey (NNPAS)6 provides a snapshot of food and nutrient intakes across Australians of all ages.

Results of the survey, suggest older Australians are:

  • More likely to meet vegetable intake recommendations compared to younger adults (6% vs 3%)
  • More likely to meet fruit intake recommendations compared to younger adults (30% vs 23%)
  • Less likely to meet dairy and alternatives intake recommendations compared to younger adults (3% vs 10%)
  • More likely to meet lean meat and alternatives intake recommendations compared to younger adults (29% vs 11%)

Older males (24%) are less likely and older females (39%) more likely to meet grain intake recommendations compared to younger adults (35% younger males and 8% younger females)These results tend to reflect the changes in food group recommendations for this age group (i.e.increased number of dairy serves and decreased number of lean meat and grain serves are recommended for 51-70 and 71+ age groups) but nevertheless highlight where older Australians need to improve their intakes.In addition, those aged 51-70 years were most likely to report being on a special diet, such as a weight loss diet, low fat, salt or sugar or a high fibre diet.

When it comes to individual nutrients, on averageolder Australiansfail to meetthe estimated average requirement (EAR) for protein,vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium, selenium andzinc.6Other research studies have suggested that older Australians mayalsobe at risk of vitamin D and vitamin B12 deficiencies.7,8,9Recent researchinAustralianolder adultsfoundthat8% ofhospitalisationsfor falls and almost 8 % ofhospitalisationsfor hip fractures were attributable to vitamin D deficiency, showing thepotential consequences of inadequacy.10

In addition, older adults have the highest risk ofanaemiaaccording to the 2011-12 Australian HealthSurvey11, with rates rapidly increasing after the age of 65 years. Given the higher risk of nutritional deficiencies in older adults, consuming nutrient rich foods becomes an even higher priority.

Physiological Changes

Age-related physiological changes such as decreased immune function, increase in oxidative stress, decreased mineral absorption, decreased gastric acid production and other changes in the gastrointestinal tract canincrease the requirements for vitamins B6, B12, E, C, D, folic acid, zinc, calcium, iron andcarotenoids.12,13Reduced salivary flow, difficulty in swallowing, poor dentition and reduced appetite can also impair the nutritional status of older adults due to decreased foodintake.13 For example, anAustralian study found those with lower chewing ability had lower compliance with dietary guidelines in relation tofibre, sugar, fat andsalt.14Given these physiological changes, older adults may require softer textured, high nutrient content foods to enable them to obtain sufficient nutritional value from the foods they are able to eat.

Body Composition Changes and Protein Intake

Body composition also changes with age, with a particularly notable reduction in skeletal muscle mass (sarcopenia) and other body proteins such as organ tissue, blood cells and immune factors.13

Ensuring adequate protein intake is particularly important to address these changes. The current Australian protein RDI for adults aged 70 years and over (81g protein/ day for men and 57g for women)15 is around 25% higher than the protein needs of younger adults due to increased protein requirements with age.Recommendations to slow theage-relatedloss of skeletal muscle mass were released by the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) in2014.16

  • In healthy older adults the diet should provide at least 1.0–1.2 g protein/kg body weight/day

  • In older adults who are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition due to acute or chronic illness, the diet should provide 1.2–1.5 g protein/kg body weight/day

In conjunction with adequate protein intake, daily physicalactivityor exercise (resistance training, aerobic exercise) should be undertaken by all older people, for as long as possible.

Table 1 shows the contribution of one serve* of eggs towards the vitamin and mineral RDIs for older Australians. Egg consumption data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows 17.9% of adults aged 71 years and over consumed eggs and egg dishes on the day prior to theinterview.17 Eggs can play a role in meeting the vitamin and mineral requirements of older adults.

Table 1: Contribution to RDIs of One Serve of Eggs in Older Australians


% RDI 9 for ages 70+



Long-chain Omega-3s

71-127% adequate intake (AI)



Vitamin B12






Vitamin A




Vitamin E


Vitamin D

54% AI



Health Issues

Overweight, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are significant health issues that affect older adults and are risk factors for chronic diseases such as Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Overweight and obesity rates peak in people aged 65-74 years with78% being overweight orobese.4 Type 2 diabetes occurs in 17% of individuals over the age of 75years.18 High blood pressure is also a risk factor for stroke, with 46.2% of those aged 65 years and over diagnosed with high bloodpressure.19 Nearly half of adults aged 55-64 years have high total cholesterollevels.20 To find out more about eggs and cholesterol click here.

Another relevant health issue for older adults is eye health.There is evidence thatgood nutrition includingvitamin A, antioxidants(lutein and zeaxanthin), omega-3 fatsand zincplay a role in maintaining eye health.21-23In particular,mounting21evidenceindicatesa role for omega 3 fatty acids and lutein and zeaxanthin in the prevention of age-related maculardegeneration.24-26Eggs provide bioavailable vitamin A, omega 3 fatty acids, the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthinandselenium. For further details, refer to ENC’s Eggs and Eye Health statement.


Due to the variety of nutrients found in eggs, they are an ideal food to include in the diets of older adults. They are also economical, easilypreparedand soft in texture which makes them appropriate for people of this age group. Eggs are recommended as part of a healthy eating pattern that also includes adequate amounts of wholegrain breads and cereals, fruits, vegetables, dairy foods, lean meat, fish and poultry and unsaturated fats.

This statement is for healthcare professionals only.

*One serve = 2x60g eggs (104g edible portion)

Wondering if eggs are good for you? Without a doubt, there are a number of benefits to eating eggs every day. Learn about the proven health benefits of eating eggs here.

Discover our super easy & deliciousmeal plansdesigned to help you achieve a healthy and balanced diet. Check out ourweight lossorvegetarian meal plantoday!

Is Egg Good For You At An Old Age? Food Safety Tips For Seniors (2024)


Is Egg Good For You At An Old Age? Food Safety Tips For Seniors? ›

Conclusion. Due to the variety of nutrients found in eggs, they are an ideal food to include in the diets of older adults. They are also economical, easily prepared and soft in texture which makes them appropriate for people of this age group.

Are eggs good or bad for seniors? ›

Eggs are an inexpensive, widely available and easily digestible source of high-quality protein and contain a significant proportion of leucine, an amino acid that is important for muscle synthesis, as well as many other nutrients of significance for older people, including vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.

What are 5 foods that seniors should eat? ›

Eat a wide variety of foods from the five food groups : plenty of colourful vegetables, legumes/beans; fruit; grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and high fibre varieties; lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds; milk, yoghurt, cheese or their alternatives, mostly reduced fat.

Which food is not recommended for senior citizens? ›

Raw or unpasteurized foods

Older foodies who enjoy sushi, rare hamburgers, and unpasteurized milk and dairy products should be cautious with their dining choices after age 60.

What are the three most important foods you can eat for healthy aging? ›

Fruits and vegetables (think orange, red, green and purple) Whole grains (brown rice, whole wheat pasta) Low-fat dairy (milk and its alternatives)

How do eggs affect senior brains? ›

They contain protein, healthy fats, and many nutrients like choline and carotenoids which previous studies report are associated with protective effects for cognitive function.

What is the best breakfast for seniors? ›

6 Easy Breakfast Ideas for Seniors
  • Scrambled eggs. We are all about fast and easy breakfast ideas, which is why scrambled eggs are at the top of the list. ...
  • Toast with avocado and lox. ...
  • Morning parfait. ...
  • Breakfast hash. ...
  • Rice cake with almond butter. ...
  • Cinnamon quinoa with blueberries.
Jan 27, 2023

What is the best fruit for seniors to eat? ›

Healthiest Fruits to Add in to a Seniors Diet
  • Guava. Guava has a sweet flavor with a hint of musky, tropical notes. ...
  • Raw Grapefruit. Grapefruit has many health benefits for seniors, including providing a good source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. ...
  • Oranges.

What is the best vegetable for the elderly? ›

For the optimal mix of nutrients, daily servings should come from each of the categories below:
  • Dark green leafy vegetables.
  • Red fruits and vegetables.
  • Yellow or orange fruits and vegetables.
  • Legumes (beans) and peas.
  • Citrus fruits.

What is the safest food option for elderly? ›

Safer food choices for adults over age 65
Poultry and Meat
Riskier ChoiceSafer Choice
Riskier ChoiceSafer Choice
Premade deli salads, such as: Coleslaw Potato salad Tuna salad Chicken salad Egg saladHomemade deli salads
Vegetables and Fruits
22 more rows
May 2, 2024

Is peanut butter good for old age? ›

The Nutritional Value of Peanut Butter

Interestingly, this butter has some amazing nutrients that prevent heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's, and cancer. Scientific research says that peanut butter can help overcome malnutrition. Therefore, peanut butter can be called a power pack of health for elders.

Is cheese bad for seniors? ›

Your Senior Should Avoid Soft Cheese

Although brie and crackers tend to be a favorite snack, it isn't the best for seniors to munch on. Elderly people and other vulnerable people are particularly susceptible to food illness from mold-ripened cheeses such as brie and camembert.

Should seniors eat potatoes? ›

Potatoes contain vitamins and nutrients that seniors need to stay healthy. A single 5.2-ounce potato contains 27 mg of vitamin C and 620 mg of potassium. They also contain magnesium, phosphorous, niacin, and folate. It's important to note that the skin of the potato contains many of the nutrients.

How many eggs a week should a senior eat? ›

How Many Eggs Can Older People Eat? There is no limit to the number of eggs older people can eat, with the exception of those with type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol or any existing heart disease who can enjoy up to 7 eggs a week.

Which nuts are best for the elderly? ›

Yes, they're small, but tree nuts like almonds, walnuts, cashews, pecans, and pistachios have big anti-aging powers. These crunchy snacks contain special nutrients that can help delay or prevent age-related heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, nerve disease, and some types of cancer.

What foods don't age you? ›

Foods to Favor
  • Romaine lettuce. It's high in vitamins A and C, which curb inflammation. ...
  • Tomatoes. They're rich in a nutrient called lycopene. ...
  • Salmon. It's high in omega-3 fats, which fight inflammation. ...
  • Lentils and beans. These are good sources of protein and are loaded with fiber and nutrients. ...
  • Oatmeal.
Sep 22, 2014

How many eggs should a 70 year old eat per week? ›

There is no limit to the number of eggs older people can eat, with the exception of those with type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol or any existing heart disease who can enjoy up to 7 eggs a week.

How many eggs does a 70 year old woman have? ›

Females are born with between one and two million eggs. The number decreases until a person stops ovulating and reaches menopause. At that point, fewer that 1,000 remain.

Is peanut butter good for senior citizens? ›

Plant-based proteins like peanut butter can help seniors maintain muscle mass, but it also provides more benefits. Plant proteins such as those found in peanuts contain more dietary fiber, which helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and can also help to regulate blood sugar levels.

Are bananas good for seniors? ›

Seniors often experience gastrointestinal problems, including constipation and diarrhea. Bananas may be beneficial for both of these issues. For example, bananas are often recommended for people with diarrhea, as they're a component in the BRAT diet, which includes bananas, rice, applesauce, and tea.

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