Food and Nutrition for Older Adults

Benefits and Risks/Harms of Implementation (2012)

Benefits and Risks/Harms of Implementing the Recommendations

  • Safety issues must be reviewed carefully for each individual
  • General benefits and risks associated with implementation of the guideline are addressed for each recommendation (see "Risks/Harms of Implementing the Recommendation" for each recommendation).

Potential Benefits

  • A primary goal of implementing these recommendations includes improving a person's ability to achieve optimal nutrition through healthful food choices and a physically=active lifestyle
  • Although costs of MNT sessions and reimbursement vary, MNT is essential for improved outcomes
  • MNT education can be considered cost-effective when considering the benefits of nutrition interventions on the onset and progression of comorbidities vs. the cost of the intervention.

Risk/Harm Considerations

When using these recommendations, please consider the following general risks and harms:
  • Review the patient’s age, socio-economic status, cultural issues, health history and other health conditions
  • Consider referral to a behavioral specialist if psycho-social issues are a concern
  • Consider a referral to social services to assist patients with financial arrangements if economic issues are a concern
  • Use clinical judgment in applying the guidelines.

In addition to the above, a variety of barriers may hinder the application of these recommendations.