Getting older often creates obstacles to eating well at the very time that it’s most important to do so. When older adults don’t eat enough, don’t eat the right foods, or lose the ability to absorb certain nutrients, it can cause physical decline or exacerbate pre-existing conditions. Malnourished seniors may lose weight, get tired or become anemic. They are more likely to have diminished muscle strength—a prime risk factor for falls—and wounds that fail to heal properly.
Maine can help by:
- Making it easier for seniors to use the SNAP benefits that are available to them (currently only an estimated only two in five seniors who are eligible enroll).
- Promoting Nutrition programs like Meals on Wheels, and mandating timely payments to avoid waitlists.
- Advocating for support and passage of LD173, providing $5M for statewide hunger relief.
About 44 million Americans provide 37 billion hours of unpaid, "informal" care each year for adult family members and friends with chronic illnesses or conditions that prevent them from handling daily activities such as bathing, managing medications or preparing meals on their own. family caregivers increasingly provide care for aging parents, siblings, and friends, most of whom have one or more chronic conditions and who wish to remain in their own homes and communities as they age.
- A Maine Caregiving Tax Credit will help relieve the cost burden many caregivers take on to assist their loved ones. Qualified expenses may include out-of-pocket costs for services and supports such as transportation, home modifications, assistive technology, and other necessities.
- Supporting a paid leave proposal including for working caregivers of older adults