Position of the American Dietetic Association: individualized nutrition approaches for older adults in health care communities

J Am Diet Assoc. 2010 Oct;110(10):1549-53. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2010.08.022.


It is the position of the American Dietetic Association that the quality of life and nutritional status of older adults residing in health care communities can be enhanced by individualization to less-restrictive diets. The American Dietetic Association advocates for registered dietitians to assess and evaluate the need for nutrition interventions tailored to each person's medical condition, needs, desires, and rights. Dietetic technicians, registered, assist registered dietitians in the assessment and implementation of individualized nutrition care. Health care practitioners must assess risks vs benefits of therapeutic diets, especially for older adults. Food is an essential component of quality of life; an unpalatable or unacceptable diet can lead to poor food and fluid intake, resulting in undernutrition and related negative health effects. Including older individuals in decisions about food can increase the desire to eat and improve quality of life. The Practice Paper of the American Dietetic Association: Individualized Nutrition Approaches for Older Adults in Health Care Communities provides guidance to practitioners on implementation of individualized diets and nutrition care.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / physiology
  • Community Health Services / standards*
  • Dietetics / standards*
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Health Services for the Aged / standards*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nutrition Assessment
  • Nutrition Disorders / diet therapy
  • Nutrition Disorders / prevention & control*
  • Nutrition Therapy / standards
  • Nutritional Requirements*
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Quality of Life
  • Societies
  • United States