« Make healthy hydration the new norm »

Chapter 3: Hydration for elderly


In the older person, physical changes can result in a decrease of total body water and kidney function, cognitive impairment, functional inability as well as reduced sense of appetite and thirst. These can lead to dehydration, which has been found to negatively impact the health of elderly (e.g. increasing the risk of falls, difficulties in swallowing). A high number of dietitians are not fully aware of the recommended total water intake of older adults and unique characteristics of this population.

Learning objectives

  • To explain the physical changes occurring in older people that can increase the risk of dehydration.
  • To explain the importance of older people in staying well-hydrated and the importance of being aware of the hydration requirements and characteristics of this population.