Home Care in Westfield NJ
Some elderly loved ones don’t seem to want to eat at all and that can be scary. Try some of these suggestions to help convince your loved one to give more food a try.
Offer Plenty of Water
Make sure that your loved one has plenty of water both during meal times and in between. Dehydration can be a serious problem for your elderly loved one and she may not even realize that she’s hungry. Having plenty of water on hand can also make eating easier if your loved one has trouble swallowing.
Serve Smaller Meals
Smaller meals can be a lot less intimidating to someone who doesn’t have much appetite already. Seeing a full plate brimming with food can be absolutely overwhelming. A snack, on the other hand, isn’t as scary.
Serve Calorie-rich, Nutritious Foods
If your loved one is having a really difficult time eating, you may have to get creative with the calories. Try making smoothies with plenty of fruits and vegetables but add some protein powder as well. Ask your loved one’s doctor to recommend combinations that will help your loved one get the nutrition that she needs.
Look at the Food’s Texture
For some elderly loved ones, taste or the amount of food isn’t the issue but the texture is. Talk to your loved one about what isn’t appealing about the food. To her the texture might be too hard, too soft, or have some other problem. Once you know what she doesn’t like about the food, you can find ways to modify it.
Give Your Loved One More Choices
Some loved ones feel that food is something that they can control, even if the rest of their life is out of their hands. If that’s the case for your loved one, try offering her a few more choices. You don’t want to make the process overwhelming, of course, so try offering two options rather than dictating what your loved one will eat. She may find it easier to cooperate when she has a say in what she’s eating.
Keep a Food Diary for Your Loved One
Start taking notes about what your loved one eats, what she doesn’t like, and what she really dislikes. This can help you when you’re meal planning, grocery shopping, and even talking to her doctor. The better your notes, the more they’ll help.
If you’re still having trouble, make sure that you talk with your loved one’s doctor and work with her home care providers to come up with a plan that will work for her.