Nutrition for the Older Adult

Current Status
Not Enrolled
Get Started


Over the past 50 years, the understanding of the impact of nutrition on health has become increasingly important, facilitating a growing interest in the relationships between aging and nutrition. Participate in this module to better understand the unique nutritional needs of the older adult and recognize that undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies are common among older adults but are not a normal part of aging. Learn the parameters used to assess for weight loss among older adults, how to assess at-risk patients for poor nutrition and malnutrition and develop strategies to manage nutritional needs of older adults.

Author Information

Joel G. Anderson, PhD, CHTP
Assistant Professor
University of Tennessee

Valerie Gruss PhD, APN, CNP-BC
Associate Professor
College of Nursing
Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Authors’ Bios
Dr. Joel G. Anderson is an Associate Professor at the University of Tennessee College of Nursing. Dr. Anderson’s research interests involve the use of non-pharmacological therapies and interventions to enhance symptom management and caregiver support. He has published over 40 peer-reviewed articles in numerous academic journals, including Research in Gerontological Nursing, the Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Brain Research, the Journal of Holistic Nursing, Holistic Nursing Practice, and the Journal of Family Nursing

Dr. Valerie Gruss is Associate Professor in the UIC College of Nursing. She is a board-certified Nurse Practitioner with a broad range of clinical expertise and research experience working in primary care and with multidisciplinary teams in a variety of settings. Dr. Gruss’ position at UIC blends her roles as researcher, clinician and educator.

In 2015, Dr. Gruss was awarded a $2.5 million three year grant through the HRSA Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), to create an interprofessional education program for improving the care of older adults.  Additionally, $100,000 per year was awarded to Dr. Gruss’ research in Alzheimer’s and associated dementias. She and her team have launched a free mobile app, Dementia Guide Expert for families, available on iOS and Android. In 2016, Dr. Gruss was awarded the GAPNA “Excellence in Research Award”.

Dr. Gruss is clinical consultant/research collaborator on a Federal Demonstration Project for the State of Illinois, “Money Follows the Person”, which transitions eligible seniors out of nursing homes and back to the community. She was awarded the UIC College of Nursing’s ‘2010 Faculty Practice Award’ and was honored with the “Best Care Practices in the Geriatrics Continuum” award by the American Medical Directors Association, 2008.

Dr. Gruss teaches in the UIC College of Nursing graduate nursing program. In pursuit of changing current nursing education to a more interdisciplinary model, she jointly founded the “Collaborative for Excellence in Interprofessional Education”(CEIPE). This group of volunteer faculty represents over 10 disciplines, providing students with interprofessional immersion experiences. Dr. Gruss serves on the UIC Vice Chancellors’ IPE Steering Committee to move the UIC IPE strategic plan forward. In 2016 Dr. Gruss was awarded the UIC “Teaching Recognition Program Award”.

Expert Interviewee
Samuel N. Grief, MD, FCFP, FAAFP
Associate Professor, Clinical Family Medicine
University of Illinois at Chicago
Department of Family Medicine

Expert’s Bio
Dr. Samual Grief is a board-certified family physician for 25 years. A graduate of McGill University in Montreal, Canada, Dr. Grief has worked in private practice, urgent care and academic family medicine. A Diplomate of The American Board of Family Medicine and Fellow of both the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the American Academy of Family Physicians, his current appointment is associate professor of clinical family medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr. Grief was named one of Chicago’s Top Doctors in 2012 by Chicago magazine and in 2013 one of America’s Top Doctors by Castle and Connolly.

Dr. Grief’s sees patients of all ages. His primary interests are in obesity and endocrinology, particularly diabetes management. He is co-author of “The End of Obesity”, a self-help book for patients. His most current interest is lifestyle modification and motivational interviewing, with an emphasis on promoting wellness.

Dr. Grief has authored many articles pertaining to preventive health care. Dr. Grief has lectured for local, regional and national audiences under the auspices of the Illinois Academy of Family Physicians, the American Medical Association, and the Society of Teachers in Family Medicine.

Memoona Hasnain MD, MHPE, PhD
Professor and Associate Department Head, Faculty Development & Research
College of Medicine,
Department of Family Medicine
Co-Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Module Information

Duration: 30 minutes
Format: Video Stream & pdfs
CEU Value: 0.5

Module Guide and Handout
Resources & References
Continuing Education Credit Information

In support of patient care, Rush University Medical Center is accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

Rush University Medical Center designates this live activity for a maximum of (0.50) AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

This activity is being presented without bias and without commercial support.

ANCC Credit Designation – Nurses
The maximum number of hours awarded for this CE activity is 0.50 contact hours.

Rush University is an approved provider for physical therapy (216.000272), occupational therapy, respiratory therapy, social work (159.001203), nutrition, speech-audiology, and psychology by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation. Rush University designates this live activity for (0.50) Continuing Education credit(s).

Rush University Medical Center designates this knowledge based CPE activity for 0.50 contact hours for pharmacists.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this module, learners will be able to:

  1. Identify the unique nutritional needs of the older adult
  2. Discuss weight loss parameters to assess the older adult’s general health
  3. Summarize the process that clinicians can use to assess at-risk patients for poor nutrition and malnutrition
  4. Discuss appropriate strategies to manage the nutritional needs of the older adult
Technical Support / Contact Info

For technical support, please notify

To report a complaint, please contact the ENGAGE-IL Program Help Desk at

This ENGAGE-IL learning activity fully complies with the legal requirements of the ADA and the rules and regulations thereof. Learners with special needs can make requests for accommodation at any time by sending e-mail to

Note: Please do NOT refresh the page after submitting the evaluations. Please wait for a few seconds for the system to register your responses and produce the certificate.