4

votes

Help for an underweight, malnourished 61 year old

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 24, 2011 at 8:54 PM

My 61 year old father just informed me he's been in the hospital for 9 days because his doc overdosed him on pain meds for a double hip replacement he had 1.5 years ago. He's 5'4" and under 100 lbs at this point. He has a history of alcoholism (been sober for 3 years) and just in terrible shape. But he's asked for my help in getting back into good health.

Here's my question: How should he begin paleo so he doesn't shock his body yet gain weight and strength back? I think a Whole 30 approach is too much for him. His nutritionist told him to buy up Carnation Instant Breakfast (WTF?). I told him he needs good fats, meat, eggs, and veggies but I'm not sure about the particular amounts he should eat. I'm also wondering if he should have more fruit since he suffers from low blood sugar.

Any help, articles, advice is appreciated!

26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

(7967)

on July 07, 2011
at 12:28 AM

I am very sorry to hear that. What a sad situation, and his doctors are largely to blame.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on July 06, 2011
at 11:26 PM

Great answer! Thank you kindly. Unfortunately my dad decided to give up and we are just waiting for the call. In a way its for the best but hopefully this thread will live on and help someone who has fight left. I'm hypoglycemic too. Totally cured with paleo. Don't You love it :)

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on June 28, 2011
at 08:11 PM

Thanks, and congrats on making progress, and good luck. Love your screen name BTW :-).

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 28, 2011
at 04:47 PM

Picked your answer ULH! The shakes are working and paying attention to the nutrients of each food is the way we're going. Though he is back in the hospital being treated for major depression. He was terribly addicted. I'm still pissed the doc just blindly wrote scrips all this time without ever seeing my dad.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 28, 2011
at 04:44 PM

Someone recommended that stuff! I will give that to him.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 25, 2011
at 06:11 PM

Yes, hypoglycemia. I'm putting him on a staged approach. Right now he's in the hospital being pumped full of potassium. Luckily he's willing to give up gluten.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on June 25, 2011
at 02:16 PM

It sounds like he has an addiction. That is a whole separate kettle of fish besides diet. Good luck!

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on June 25, 2011
at 03:33 AM

oh man, getting off those pills is going to be no easy trick. :( good luck, BB.

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on June 25, 2011
at 01:30 AM

He drinks one coconut / whey drink in the morning. And puts whey in his coffee??? a couple of times a day... I gave him the idea of the whey but I am not sure how it got in his cofee... Whey is easily digestable. He takes small anounts of cocunut oil as he is worried about his health ( He is not Paleo )..

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 25, 2011
at 12:04 AM

Butter and milk. Check!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 25, 2011
at 12:04 AM

Aww Meredith

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 24, 2011
at 10:26 PM

Mem, good idea. Though he doesn't mind cooking and gets into it. He did all the cooking when I was a kid. He lives alone and three hours from me so a shake may be enough to get his energy up to be able to cook. I should have him throw in a steak for good measure.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 24, 2011
at 10:24 PM

I'm seeing more people on here looking to heal so I think paleo may have the capacity to help my father gain good weight and facilitate muscle strenghth. He lost the weight because his doc gave him high doses of pain meds over the past year and they interrupted his appetite. By last month he was taking 315 pills of this stuff. He looks like walking death.

0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on June 24, 2011
at 09:53 PM

You're a good daughter! Your Dad's in good hands :)

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on June 24, 2011
at 09:49 PM

Does your Dad have any strong food preferences and the opposite - things he will NOT eat? Does he live with someone who might assist him? Does he cook and if so, to what extent, if he lives alone? Many recovering alocholics have a strong sweet preference, and not alot of patience with processes like food prep. Might consider high protein/high cal smoothies with high quality protein mix+bananas+other fruits he likes to start off. He could also have 1 of these/d in addition to meal foods.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 24, 2011
at 09:23 PM

Can you tell me the amounts your friend is consuming? My dad is severely malnourished and I don't want him to get sicker.

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7 Answers

2
1fc9c11cf23b2f62ac78979de933ad83

(2435)

on June 24, 2011
at 09:14 PM

Whole milk helped me put weight on my daughter. I also slather everything I can in butter. Low blood sugar will be fine so long as he eats enough protein at meals. I would also try to get him to eat lots of coconut. Good luck!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 25, 2011
at 12:04 AM

Butter and milk. Check!

0
26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

on July 06, 2011
at 10:39 PM

  1. Go grain free, especially gluten-free

  2. For goodness sake don't suggest LC! The man needs plenty of sugars!

  3. If shakes are the best bet right now I would suggest one comprised of: ice cream, a scoop of whey protein, a shot of heavy cream (not too much as he's probably not up to digesting excessive fat in his condition), bananas, and berries. Delicious, nutritious, easily digestible, and very caloric of course.

  4. Have him eat as much as he can of green veg, white potatoes, sweet potatoes, white rice, high-fat dairy products (cheese, greek yogurt), beef, lamb, pork, all sorts of seafood, nuts, fruits (specially berries), coconut meat, coconut water, and cook/drizzle everything in butter, cream, coconut oil, leaf lard, beef fat, and EVOO.

I've always been underweight and 4. is exactly what I eat. I also have hypoglycemia issues so I can't go too hight in carbs, but also feel crappy LC, moderation is key. Up 10 lbs from my old set point and big improvements in general health and strength.

Best wishes to your dad, it is not too late for him to recover his health, and good for you for helping him.

26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

(7967)

on July 07, 2011
at 12:28 AM

I am very sorry to hear that. What a sad situation, and his doctors are largely to blame.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on July 06, 2011
at 11:26 PM

Great answer! Thank you kindly. Unfortunately my dad decided to give up and we are just waiting for the call. In a way its for the best but hopefully this thread will live on and help someone who has fight left. I'm hypoglycemic too. Totally cured with paleo. Don't You love it :)

0
0b8819cb930ff206468cb5376cd5da1c

(-2)

on July 06, 2011
at 12:13 PM

I have a bulging disc at the L5 - S1 area in my lower back which causes considerable pain down the entire sciatic nerve. My father suggested using the Tiger Balm (http://tig​erbalm.50w​ebs.com) pain patches. They give immense relief to even the most intolerable days. I have highly recommended this product to my friends. One added extra is the menthol and camphor helps to relieve my sinus problems at the same time!

0
0b8819cb930ff206468cb5376cd5da1c

(-2)

on June 28, 2011
at 02:41 PM

I have a bulging disc at the L5 - S1 area in my lower back which causes considerable pain down the entire sciatic nerve. My father suggested using the Tiger Balm (http://tig​erbalm.50w​ebs.com) pain patches. They give immense relief to even the most intolerable days. I have highly recommended this product to my friends. One added extra is the menthol and camphor helps to relieve my sinus problems at the same time!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 28, 2011
at 04:44 PM

Someone recommended that stuff! I will give that to him.

0
13c5a9f1678d75b93f269cdcf69f14d5

(2339)

on June 25, 2011
at 02:18 AM

"he suffers from low blood sugar" Do you mean hypoglycemia?

Does he use a glucose meter?
If his blood sugar is swinging low, I don't think fruit will necessarily help. Protein and fat will keep it nice and steady or glucose tabs, which will raise BG a specific amount. But only a meter can tell you for sure; he may have a food intolerance.

In general, try switching to a healthy breakfast first and gradually move over the other meals. There's plenty of set up - clearing the pantry, shopping differently, cooking differently. It will be a big project, but more manageable in stages.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 25, 2011
at 06:11 PM

Yes, hypoglycemia. I'm putting him on a staged approach. Right now he's in the hospital being pumped full of potassium. Luckily he's willing to give up gluten.

0
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on June 24, 2011
at 09:45 PM

When my father was going through intense chemo, the doctors recommended the protein shakes (he liked Scandia Shake). The idea was to just quickly get somewhat nutritious calories into your system. He basically couldn't eat anything else (nausea, etc).

I think this is a desperate way to take in calories and to gain weight, but if you're desperate, it might be a good starting point.

Very few people in the Paleo community are looking to gain significant weight. This diet usually leans people out or helps them lose weight. The aspect of the diet that you can utilize is to maximize the nutritional value of every bite of food.

You didn't mention how he lost weight, if he was ill or just not eating or what. That might help to get better responses.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on June 25, 2011
at 02:16 PM

It sounds like he has an addiction. That is a whole separate kettle of fish besides diet. Good luck!

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on June 25, 2011
at 03:33 AM

oh man, getting off those pills is going to be no easy trick. :( good luck, BB.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 24, 2011
at 10:24 PM

I'm seeing more people on here looking to heal so I think paleo may have the capacity to help my father gain good weight and facilitate muscle strenghth. He lost the weight because his doc gave him high doses of pain meds over the past year and they interrupted his appetite. By last month he was taking 315 pills of this stuff. He looks like walking death.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on June 28, 2011
at 08:11 PM

Thanks, and congrats on making progress, and good luck. Love your screen name BTW :-).

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 28, 2011
at 04:47 PM

Picked your answer ULH! The shakes are working and paying attention to the nutrients of each food is the way we're going. Though he is back in the hospital being treated for major depression. He was terribly addicted. I'm still pissed the doc just blindly wrote scrips all this time without ever seeing my dad.

0
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on June 24, 2011
at 09:20 PM

My friend is in the same situation. Coconut oil has helped. Also coconut milk with whey powder.

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on June 25, 2011
at 01:30 AM

He drinks one coconut / whey drink in the morning. And puts whey in his coffee??? a couple of times a day... I gave him the idea of the whey but I am not sure how it got in his cofee... Whey is easily digestable. He takes small anounts of cocunut oil as he is worried about his health ( He is not Paleo )..

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 24, 2011
at 09:23 PM

Can you tell me the amounts your friend is consuming? My dad is severely malnourished and I don't want him to get sicker.

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