It is never too late to start


All people need the same basic nutrients to stay alive and healthy, but the amounts of needed nutrients change from one stage of the human life cycle to the next. Besides, energy requirements decrease with advancing age. Thus, for example, children require a higher caloric intake relative to body size to facilitate physical and mental development, and older people need fewer calories than adults of middle age, because lean body mass (non-fatty), and metabolic rate (the amount of energy expended in a give period) decline with age.

There are significant metabolic and biological changes that occur with age, and the process of ageing also affects nutrient needs. These changes must be taken into consideration to maintain a healthy and balanced nutritional intake. For instance, the metabolism of EPA (an omega-3 fatty acid) is different between older and younger men.

It is best to start making healthy choices from youth and maintain them throughout life, because nutritional choices have a great impact on health, with short- and long-term consequences. However, adopting good nutritional habits later stages of life (during the forties, fifties, and even the sixties) may still help to reduce the risk of chronic disease as we grow older.

Nutritional needs change at each stage of life, and it is important to adjust diet and physical activity to meet these changing needs and ensure health and wellness throughout your life. The metabolism of certain nutrients, like EPA, may be altered with progressing age, and this should be considered when establishing dietary habits.


Léveillé P, Chouinard-Watkins R, Windust A, et al. Metabolism of uniformly labeled 13C-eicosapentaenoic acid and 13C-arachidonic acid in young and old men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2017;106(2):467-74.

Rivlin RS. Keeping the Young-Elderly Healthy: Is It Too Late to Improve Our Health through Nutrition? Am J Clin Nutr. 2007;86(5):1572S-6S.

British Nutrition Foundation. Nutrition through life. Disponible en:

World Health Organization. Nutrition for older persons. Nutrition topics. Disponible en: