Moving Forward Together

JFS Blog

Meeting the Complex Health Needs of Aging Adults

Cook, wearing a mask, laying out trays containing food.

The pandemic has taught us many things, including the importance of supporting the dynamic nutritional needs of our community—especially those of isolated older adults—while preserving individual dignity and choice. Keeping these lessons in mind and building upon our long-term commitment to ensuring older adults can age with dignity, Kristine Stensberg, Senior Director of Nutrition and Aging Care Services, is leading the evolution and expansion of JFS’s Nutrition services to focus on higher nutritional standards that sustain and complement the complex health needs of aging adults.

Our first step in expanding nutritional assistance and support was adding a full-time registered dietician, Alana Olson, to our nutrition team to assist with the development of a new line of home-delivered meals that align with DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) and TLC (therapeutic lifestyle changes) nutrition standards. These evidence-based dietary recommendations support heart health and can help manage blood pressure by emphasizing foods that are lower in sodium, saturated fat and cholesterol, and higher in dietary fiber, potassium, and other heart-healthy nutrients. Our new meals are perfect for individuals with heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and anyone looking for healthier options in general. We will also be offering a variety of low-sodium, vegetarian, and gluten-free meals. Our newly enhanced frozen meal labels include easy-to-read nutrition facts and potential food allergies so that our participants can make more informed choices and have a better understanding of what they’re eating. And for our participants who are experiencing chronic illnesses and need a little extra nutritional support, we can now provide customized boxes of frozen meals and groceries that complement their unique needs. We can’t wait to roll-out our new and improved Foodmobile meals later this spring!

Another exciting nutrition advancement is our new online ordering system for the Corner Market (in-person shopping). The Corner Market is a points-based grocery store on JFS’s Joan and Irwin Jacobs Campus, where you can choose items free of charge based on family size and need. The shelves are stocked with plenty of healthy choices, including fresh fruits and vegetables, meats and dairy, baked goods, prepared meals, hygiene, and baby items—even pet food. Prior to the pandemic, participants frequently experienced extended wait times in scheduling their return visit. Increasing the ease of ordering and allowing for greater accessibility are two issues we sought to address with the launch of our Corner Market online ordering system.

Continuing with the dignified approach of the Corner Market, our new online platform will save time, offer reduced waiting times, and provide more individual choice. Pick-up times will be selected in advance and our dedicated team of nutrition volunteers will work behind-the-scenes to package the produce and grocery items selected. We are confident this new approach will enable more people to reach vital services and better serve our community’s time and nutritional needs.

Older adult sitting outside

Also on the horizon, we are looking forward to offering a new paid meal delivery service that includes a wellness visit at the time of delivery later this summer—more details to follow.

Moving Forward Together as we grow, innovate, and meet our community’s most pressing nutritional needs.

If you or someone you know needs nutrition assistance, we can help.
Call JFS Access to learn more: (858) 637-3210

To support JFS’s critical services, such as emergency nutritional support, visit www.jfssd.org/donate


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