Nutrition and Hydration Week

Nutrition and Hydration Week runs from 14-20 March and aims to bring people together to highlight and educate the value of food and drink in maintaining health and wellbeing in the health and social care sector.

Good nutrition and hydration is taken very seriously at the Chiswick. As we get older, our appetites diminish so great care is taken to provide balanced and tempting meals to nourish and sustain. Menus are carefully planned and balanced to be visually appealing as well as tasty, and there is always a choice of dishes to meet dietary or cultural needs and preferences. 

Fluids are just as important. In later years, our bodies retain less water and the signs of dehydration are more difficult to spot or sense. As a result, we may not feel thirsty until hydration levels have dropped significantly. 

Those with dementia need extra special care or prompting to ensure they consume sufficient amounts of food and drink.

This guidance is also useful for those who may be looking after an elderly relative at home. Eating and drinking well helps our cognitive ability, endurance levels, mood levels and all-round health, so a balanced diet is important for us all, not just those of senior years.

Nutrition and Hydration Week will be showcasing and sharing tips so that we can all improve our eating habits. 

We all know of a fussy child who refuses to eat anything remotely like a vegetable. Canny Mums can ‘hide’ some grated carrot or courgette in a pasta sauce or casserole. Fruit can be used to make smoothies, ice lollies or even ice cream if you go easy on the sugar.

Why not get the children involved in cooking from scratch? They are more likely to try something they have made themselves. Or why not have a contest to try a new, healthy, ingredient in a meal with a reward for the person who has tried the most new foods by the end of the week?

Try replacing less healthy foods with more wholesome options: bulgur wheat instead of white rice, sweet potato in place of ordinary potato, prawns or seafood in pasta sauce instead of meat or home-made oven chips to replace the fried variety?

Make mealtimes special. A family meal seated at a nicely laid table can work wonders. Eat slowly and ensure no distractions, such as mobile phones, books or laptops at the table. Just a few, small changes can make a big difference.

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