Malnutrition in older adults

Link to article at PubMed

Lancet. 2023 Jan 27:S0140-6736(22)02612-5. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(22)02612-5. Online ahead of print.


Malnutrition is a highly prevalent condition in older adults, and poses a substantial burden on health, social, and aged-care systems. Older adults are vulnerable to malnutrition due to age-related physiological decline, reduced access to nutritious food, and comorbidity. Clinical guidelines recommend routine screening for malnutrition in all older adults, together with nutritional assessment and individually tailored nutritional support for older adults with a positive screening test. Nutritional support includes offering individualised nutritional advice and counselling; oral nutritional supplements; fortified foods; and enteral or parenteral nutrition as required. However, in clinical practice, the incorporation of nutritional guidelines is inadequate and low-value care is commonplace. This Review discusses the current evidence on identification and treatment of malnutrition in older adults, identifies gaps between evidence and practice in clinical care, and offers practical strategies to translate evidence-based knowledge into improved nutritional care. We also provide an overview of the prevalence, causes, and risk factors of malnutrition in older adults across health-care settings.

PMID:36716756 | DOI:10.1016/S0140-6736(22)02612-5

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