alexa Energy requirements in frail elderly people: a review of the literature.


Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research

Author(s): Gaillard C, Alix E, Sall A, Berrut G, Ritz P

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Abstract This review collates studies of healthy, sick, underweight (BMI < or = 21 kg/m2) and very elderly people (> or = 90 yr), in whom resting energy expenditure (REE) was measured using indirect calorimetry. We have observed the following: (1) REE, when adjusted for differences in both body weight and fat-free mass (FFM), is similar in healthy and in sick elderly people being 20 and 28 kcal/kg of FFM per day, respectively, (2) their nutritional status influences their energy requirements given that weight-adjusted REE increases in line with a decrease in BMI, (3) total energy expenditure is lower in sick elderly people given that their physical activity level, i.e. the ratio of total energy expenditure to REE, is reduced during disease averaging at 1.36, (4) energy intake (EI) being only 1.23 x REE is insufficient to cover energy requirements in sick elderly patients, whereas the EI of healthy elderly people appears sufficient to cover requirements, and finally, (5) gender ceases to be a determinant of REE in people aged 60 yr or over, with the Harris & Benedict equation capable of accurately predicting mean REE in this population, whether healthy or sick. This article was published in Clin Nutr and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research

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