Palatable, nutritious and digestible foods for prevention of undernutrition in active aging
Undernutrition among older adults is a multifaceted challenge where the palatability, availability and cost of food intersect with metabolic effects and health outcomes. The research partners representing six different countries in EAT4AGE focus on some of the most important age-related changes that should be overcome to prevent undernutrition and avoid impaired muscle function; i.e. decline in digestive functions, oral processing, sensory perception and appetite. EAT4AGE investigates how food reformulation can be used to combat undernutrition and improve the health of older people. Selected food prototypes are being developed in the project and will be tested for anabolic response in skeletal muscle among older adults. This will provide further knowledge on how the different protein sources in the selected food prototypes are processed in older adults. EAT4AGE investigates how food reformulation can be used to combat undernutrition and improve the health of older people.
The project has addressed the choice of protein source and type of processing for development of innovative nutrient-dense foods with improved acceptability, as protein source may affect digestibility in older adults as well as appetite and satiety. The initial in-vivoscreening (sensory characterisitcs) resulted in the formulation of four culturally relevant, innovative, energy- and nutrient-dense food prototypes based on cereals, dairy and meat. In-vitro testing of selected prototypes for textural properties have been performed to develop a textural ingredient toolbox for developing innovative food products for older adults. Ongoing work is testing the nutritionally enhanced innovative products with older adults in all countries for palatability, acceptance, and satiety. The digestive processes change with increased age, thus, food prototypes are being tested using a semi- dynamic in vitro digestion model. This will provide new knowledge for older adults, that will be disseminated with the INFOGEST network as discussion partner and dissemination platform. A first workshop with INFOGEST was held together with EAT4AGE consortium meeting 2022. Selected prototypes will also be tested for anabolic response in skeletal muscle among older adults in 2023. This will provide further knowledge on how the different protein sources in the selected food prototypes are processed in older adults.
- Design and choice of food ingredients and prototypes with improved nutritional composition to prevent undernutrition in vulnerable older adults.
- Development of a toolbox to provide a unique systematic approach to develop texture-based recommendations for prototype development in WP1.
- Optimising nutritionally enhanced food prototypes for textural acceptability, oral comfort and liking among older adults.
- Develop a new international consensus on a semi-dynamic in vitro digestion model for older adults.
- Disseminate findings through the international network INFOGEST.
|University of Leeds
|Teagasc Food Research Centre
|International Beer Breweries LTD (IBBL) GAT operation
- Four protein-rich, culturally relevant and palatable food prototypes, innovative and nutrient-dense, have been manufactured at pilot scale: soft cheese, protein-enriched dessert, cereal pillows and tenderised meat. Prototypes were screened and characterised via in vitro methods (textural properties, digestibility) and in vivo (sensory properties).
- EAT4AGE has generated knowledge for better understanding lubrication performance of food ingredients to design food for elderly population with just-right textural properties. This new knowledge has led to the development of a textural toolbox of ingredients, tailored made for older consumers.
- The project has worked towards the development of an international consensus in vitro digestion model of the elderly, together with INFOGEST network.
- The developed foods will be tested by oder consumers in four european countries in the second part of the project to check their acceptability and oral confort, as well as tested in clinical trials.