Contract foodservices providers around the country are becoming more involved in figuring out how those who are elderly with issues such as dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and other conditions can enjoy foods that are nutritious and healthy. Many facilities that cater to the aging (nursing homes, hospitals, assisted living facilities) offer up food that’s not so appealing – and extremely unhealthy, in some cases. Think processed fish sticks, pizza rolls, chicken nuggets, French fries; not the healthiest, and for some seniors difficult to chew or swallow.
Those with dementia no doubt present a challenge when it comes to healthy eating. Many wander around, and find it hard if not impossible to cut foods into bite-size pieces using a fork and knife, quickly becoming frustrated. It’s no wonder many who have cognitive and other issues often lose a substantial amount of weight or lose their appetites altogether. Could healthy cuisine choices such as different types of finger foods be the answer?
Possibly, according to a recent article highlighting the development of healthy finger foods by two Atlanta-based chefs who have been working with chefs at 39 of the Watermark at Logan Square senior communities across 20 states to create healthier, nutritious “finger foods” to make eating easier and more palatable for seniors. So, what are some examples of these healthy cuisine choices those with dementia or other problems may find more appealing? Crepe-wrapped cheesesteak, beef Wellington cupcakes, tilapia wrapped in puff pastry.
According to Watermark’s National Director of Dining Services, Rob Bobbitt, while the main courses at the Philadelphia tasting included mostly meats and cheese, other foods on hand were also finger foods in the form of bite-size vegetables and fruit. A very creative approach to healthier eating options for seniors! For example, Beef Wellington is formed into easy to handle cupcakes and then topped with mashed potatoes and healthy sides such as easy-to-pick-up asparagus spears.
Honestly, who would find chicken nuggets, fish sticks, and pureed foods appetizing time after time? Well-heeled seniors are often accustomed to good food, and cognitive or neuromuscular issues are unfortunately an all-too-common part of life for many seniors. Including nutritious finger foods in dementia dining helps improve seniors’ nutrition, allowing them to preserve their dignity and enjoy at least a bit more independence. Seems fancier fare at facilities who cater to seniors is a growing trend!
Gourmet Services Inc. provides healthy cuisine choices for not only seniors, but the corporate and educational dining environments as well. For every occasion, including catered events or restaurant/concession needs, quality ingredients, unsurpassed service, and fresh healthy menu choices are what we’re all about. When searching for an Atlanta contract foodservices company you can rely on, look no further than Gourmet Services.