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Nutrition For Seniors

Learning about adequate nutrition for seniors might feel like a daunting task – but we’re here to help!

By reading our simple nutritional tips and dietary guidelines, you’ll find that maintaining your health can be easy and the effects could be life changing.

The following information will help you to select nutritious foods for a senior lifestyle while planning nutritious meals.

Pantry Staples Include:

  • Cans of baked beans, kidney beans and spaghetti for quick meals
  • Canned fish such as tuna, salmon, sardines to provide protein and fish oils
  • Canned vegetables such as peas, corn, beetroot, asparagus, carrots
  • Whole wheat biscuits and crackers
  • Dried fruits and nuts such as prunes, sultanas, dried apricots, unsalted cashews and peanuts
  • High fibre cereals such as bran flakes, rolled oats, whole wheat cereal biscuits, raw muesli
  • Canned fruit such as pineapple rings, pears, peaches
  • Canned vegetable soup like pumpkin, tomato, pea and ham
  • Skim milk powder for adding extra protein to milk drinks and soups
  • Rice, pasta, 2 minute noodles, potatoes, bread, fruit bread for energy giving carbohydrates
  • Herbs, spices and stir fry or pasta sauces to enhance the flavour of your meals

Fridge Staples Include:

  • Reduced fat dairy products to provide calcium and protein such as milk, yoghurt, cheese, custard, ice cream
  • Fresh vegetables such as tomatoes, avocado, cauliflower, broccoli, pumpkin, snow peas and fresh fruit.

Sample Meal Plan


  • Bowl of porridge made with 1/2 cup of reduced fat milk topped with 1/2 cup of fresh strawberries
  • Small glass of fruit juice
  • Piece of wholemeal toast with margarine and jam

Provides: 1 1/2 serves of breads/cereals, 1 1/2 serves of fruit, 1/2 serve of dairy, 1/2 serve of extra food.

Morning Snack

  • Glass of reduced fat milk
  • Medium apple muffin

Provides: 1 serve of breads/cereals, 1 serve of dairy.


  • 1/2 cup of baked beans
  • 2 slices of wholemeal toast with a scrape of margarine
  • Side salad (lettuce, tomato, cucumber, celery, capsicum) with low fat dressing

Provides: 1 serve of breads/cereals, 2 serves of vegetables, 1 serve of meat, 1 serve extra food. 

Afternoon Snack

  • 1/2 cup of fresh fruit salad with 1/2 tub of natural vanilla yoghurt

Provides: 1 serve of dairy, 1/2 serve of fruit.


  • 2 small lean grilled lamb chops (sprinkled with fresh rosemary)
  • 1 1/2 cups of vegetables (corn kernels, pumpkin, peas)
  • 1 medium potato
  • 1 small dinner roll with margarine

Provides: 1 serve of breads/cereals, 4 serves of vegetables, 1 serve of meat, 1/2 serve of extra food.

Evening Snack

  • Mug of hot MILO with reduced fat milk
  • Handful of mixed dried fruit and nuts

Provides: 1 serve of dairy, 1 serve of fruit, 1/2 serve of meat.

Remember, your fluid intake is just as important as the food you eat! Try to drink at least 2 litres of fluid every day.

For more information, see the MoH Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People

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