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Weeroona Aged Care Plus Centre (NSW)

Chalmers Street Redfern NSW

Food Glorious Food 

Residential - Metropolitan - 80 beds/Consumers or more

Award descriptors

  • Clinical care/medication management
  • Health and wellbeing

Project to re-design resident meals to reduce the use of pre-packaged oral nutrition supplements and increase nutritional intake through the consumption of ‘real food’.

About this program

Food glorious food
Eat right through the menu
just loosen your belt
two inches and then you-
work up a new appetite
in this interlude
then food once again
food fabulous food
glorious food

(Words and Music written by Lionel Bart: 1960 – from the musical “Oliver”)

George Bernard Shaw said “there is no sincerer love than the love of food”.  Empirically, one of the most topical areas of conversation within any residential aged care environment amongst the people who live there is food.  All too often, we hear residents within an aged care environment express general dissatisfaction around food services and the quality of food which is provided in these living environments . So why is food so important? It’s not just about nutrition, it’s about memory and the relationship which every resident has with their food intake as they were growing up and the exposure to different types of foods.

Optimal nutrition for older persons in our care is vital to ensuring functional activities associated with daily living is achieved maintained and optimised. Food and fluid intake, if managed well, can contribute significantly to improved quality of life and the reduction of adverse clinical outcomes for the individual, specifically in relation to bowel management, skin integrity, falls management and wound management .

This submission aims to outline a project that was piloted with the goal of re-designing resident meals through the substitution of ingredients for alternatives which achieved increased caloric intake, high protein and high energy without impacting on taste.  The project aim of this menu and recipe re-design was to reduce the use of pre-packaged oral nutrition supplements and increase nutritional intake through the consumption of ‘real food’. Historically, the home had been reliant on supplements to address poor oral intake and malnutrition, a process known to be costly and impact on residents’ quality of life due to poor palatability, taste fatigue and limited choice .

While evidence shows the elderly population requires increased nutrition to prevent muscle loss and decline , it was recognised that food choice was integral to our residents’ satisfaction. Through the use of specially formulated fortified recipes that not only provide adequate nutrition, but are wholesome, fun and full of flavour, we have enhanced our residents’ quality of life, and given them choice and autonomy over their nutritional care needs. The aim of this project was to involve our residents and representatives to design a menu based upon residents’ likes and preference.  The key to this projects success was to ensure the end product offered a similar taste, smell and food experience of the original product.  This project was successful through the extensive collaboration from nutrition and dietetics experts as well as experienced chefs within the aged care industry to deliver a product which residents wanted to eat, and in fact, wanted more of.

More information about this program

Ms Sharon Callister at sharon.callister@aue.salvationarmy.org or call 02 9779 9411

Changed
Friday, 21 December 2018 - 6:06am