Pureed Food in 2022- It's Not What you Think!
Some medical conditions or surgery can cause a situation that requires food to be pureed prior to intake. Conditions such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may result in difficulty swallowing for those affected by these diseases. Dysphagia, a condition that affects a person’s inability to swallow, affects up 15% of the Unites States population for those over 50 years old. Feeding tubes are not a preferred option for many people and the alternative can provide a tasteful and delightful eating experience when done right.
The alternative I speak of is a pureed diet. This option allows individuals to intake a variety of food and compared to a liquid diet, it can provide more nutrients and fiber allowing people to stay on a pureed diet longer. The goal with a pureed diet is to avoid aspiration (food or liquid entering the lungs) and maintain healthy eating habits at the same time.
The easiest way to accomplish a pureed diet is by acquiring a food processor. Smaller amounts of food can be placed in a blender but a food processor is built to chop and grind the food creating a consistent texture and blend of ingredients. In some circumstances extra water or milk is added depending on the recipe. For example, macaroni and cheese, which is a beloved meal by all can be prepared the same way you normally would. To puree macaroni and cheese add it to your food processor before serving and add ¼ cup a milk for every portion to assist breaking up the pasta. This results in a creamy and delicious option to enjoy.
Even beef stew is a popular choice among seniors struggling with swallowing solid food. Add beef chunks along with your favorite vegetables and cream of mushroom soup to the food processor and voila! Delicious beef stew to warm the heart and soul of any individual.
Pureed food does not have to be bland and boring. There are many recipe guides to help you prepare food to be savored for yourself or a loved one. Many health care providers would be happy to refer Registered Dieticians and Nutritionists to assist.
Do you or a loved one have a dietary need for pureed meals? Our home health aids would be happy to prepare a meal catered to individual needs!
Keep it yummy in 2022!