Textured Food Innovations
Serving Long Island - Nassau & Suffolk Counties, New York City & The Boroughs
Dysphagia diets are critically important for individuals who may be experiencing a variety of swallowing disorders for many different reasons. Some causes for dysphagia may include, but may not be limited to: cerebral vascular Accident (Stroke), head and neck cancer with a history of surgical intervention and radiation therapy, neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Myasthenia Gravis, Multiple Sclerosis, and Dementia, as well as those individuals who may be adults with a history of developmental disorders.
As a result, all dysphagia diets need to be tailored to the specific needs of the individual affected, while at the same time ensuring that each diet meets the nutritional needs of the individual. However, while a diet may be considered as “safe” in that it is designed to reduce the risk of aspiration or may be easy to be consumed (swallowed), many pureed diets are unappealing in appearance and taste.
Consequently, while the diet may be deemed to be “safe,” some individuals may continue to experience insufficient caloric/nutritional intake because the food that is provided is often not very appetizing. Beyond the routine aspects of good medical care, food may or may not have a positive impact on the individual's rehabilitation program and overall well-being.
The psychological influence of familiar and pleasant tasting foods will often make a positive difference in the individual's desire to consume the food being presented or not!
The questions provided below are designed to provide some ideas as to how your facility’s dysphagia diets may or may not be contributing to the successful nutritional aspect of a person’s rehabilitation/ treatment program, when required to consume a pureed diet consistent with their diagnosis of dysphagia.
Nutritional Requirements And The Individual’s Interest In Their Food
- Are the puree diets each person receives consistently meeting the nutritional requirements of each patient?
- Do all patients consume sufficient quantity of their food tray consistent with their nutritional requirements?
- Though the food being presented is modified, does the patient exhibit any degree of pleasure in the appearance of the food?
- Does the patient’s family seem pleased regarding the visual appearance and especially their loved one’s interest in eating?
- While a person’s diet is modified, does the individual demonstrate positive interest in their food?
QUALITY OF LIFE
- Do you feel that your facility’s pureed diets are prepared in such a way as to ensure a person’s optimum quality of life (positive mealtime experience)?
- Do the patients who recognize and understand why they need to be on a pureed diet feel that their quality of life (positive meal time experience) is being considered when their food is being prepared, or do they feel that food was put into a blender and scooped on to their tray, with no consideration to how the individual may or may not ENJOY it?
- Do a significant percentage of patients on pureed diets in your facility refuse to consume their lunch or dinner, or a good portion of same because they say the food doesn’t taste good?
- Do the families of patients who are on pureed diets express their pleasure and appreciation regarding their loved one’s pureed meals, because each presentation demonstrates the facility’s desire to maintain optimum quality of life (positive meal time experience) when preparing food, to ensure adequate and nutritionally appropriate consumption?
- Do the families of patients who are on pureed diets compliment your dietary staff, nurses, and/or facility administrator regarding how pleased their loved one is about their meals, even though they are pureed?
- Do the families of patients who are on pureed diets indicate or state that they would recommend other families to your facility because so much care goes into the preparation of pureed foods?
- Do a significant number of patients in your facility who must be on pureed food, fail to meet their nutritional requirements on a daily basis?
- Of those patients who are on pureed diets, who have documented insufficient calorie counts say that they don’t eat very much because their food doesn’t look or taste good?
- Do patients in your facility who are on pureed diets often experience persistent lethargy, poor skin integrity, constipation, due to insufficient nutrition often require hospital admission because of altered mental status and UTI, often associated with malnutrition and dehydration?
- Do patients in your facility who are on pureed diets fail to experience diet upgrades to more challenging food textures due to chronic lethargy, malaise, muscle weakness, etc, due to insufficient nutrition?
If, any of these questions and/or issues has relevance to at least one person in your facility, then you and your dietary staff need to re-evaluate the nutritional benefit of each person’s pureed diet and its impact on one’s quality of life. We at Textured Food Innovations are committed to the health, safety, and well-being of every person who requires a pureed diet, by ensuring that all of our meals are visually appealing and excellent in taste in order to help each patient with dysphagia experience optimum nutrition and an improved quality of life.
For More Information Or To Speak To One Of Our Speech Pathologists Contact Us At:
(844) TEX - FOOD
Email Us At: TEXTUREDFOOD@AOL.COM
Is Your Facility Meeting The Pureed Diet Challenge?
Textured Food Innovations will help your facility meet the pureed diet challenge by providing modified textures which are visually appealing and delicious too. Individuals who require a pureed diet will enjoy eating once again. Watch for those smiles and you'll know you met the challenge!