Healthy Eating Week offers us the chance to highlight the importance of diet, year round.

Our ongoing research shows that concerns over the dietary health of loved ones, is a major instigator in families seeking our support.

Over the past five years, our ongoing research has shown that concerns over the dietary health of loved ones, is a major instigator in families seeking support.

In fact, this reason is stated by almost 25% of applicants. Healthy Eating Week offers us a chance to highlight this.

Malnutrition is both a cause and consequence of ill health, and weight is really no indication of nutrient health, as you can be any weight and yet still undernourished. One in ten over 65’s in the UK is malnourished and this figure rises to one in three being at risk when over 85. The cost to the NHS is enormous and yet, malnourishment is often completely avoidable, if information and education is available… hence our free Community Talk workshops.

Over the years at Home Instead, we have clearly seen the signs and ill effects of an individual that may be struggling with their diet. Social isolation plays a key role, as does reduced mobility, financial restrictions, stress, or bereavement and of course, side effects from medication can also influence appetite. Diseases such as Diabetes and Alzheimer’s pose real challenges, that are also faced by the growing number of older members of our communities that live with Dementia.

The good news is that despite these difficulties, help is available.

In providing client focussed and tailor-made care, our trained Care Professionals are able to discreetly monitor the general health and food habits of our clients, whilst gently encouraging and enabling them to create healthy food plans.

We can all appreciate that it is hard to find the will to create a ‘meal’ solely for one. Often, the literal act of a Care Professional sitting with a client, as they enjoy a lunchtime snack or evening meal, can trigger what could be long lost memories of ‘family’ mealtimes, and by default, new positive food habits are formed.

Very often, all that is needed to instigate dietary changes, is time, and the hour-long visits that we provide enable Care Professionals to talk to clients about their wants and needs, providing an opportunity to make plans that will make mealtimes easy to organise. This also includes making sure that there are no practical obstacles in the way to enable a client to be independent with regards to meal prep. Care Professionals will regularly check that their Client can reach food items, that appropriate crockery and drink vessels are at hand (especially in the case of those living with Dementia, for example) and that options such as caffeine free alternatives are suggested, which in turn could lessen the need to toilet overnight – reducing the risk of trips and falls.

In all cases, our Care Professionals are trained to be observant and if ever there is a concern, it is raised. This proactive approach can make the world of difference when it comes to outcomes, and this is our goal: to improve the circumstances and health of our client. We can be the eyes and ears of the family, allowing them the peace of mind in knowing that their loved one is being cared for, wholeheartedly.

The CQC (Care Quality Commission) acknowledged our ability at Home Instead Exeter & East Devon to actually improve outcomes for our clients, in many cases resulting in a decrease in the need for care, rather than an increase in dependency. This is an achievement which we are hugely proud of.

Awareness is key, and our Community Workshops aim to raise awareness for those within the care profession, and throughout the wider community. If you would like to arrange a free workshop for your organisation or group, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Workshops can be tailored with regard to subject matter and duration. We are here to help, so please do get in touch. Call us on 01395 200600.

If you would like further information regarding our officially ‘Outstanding in all areas’ home care (including Live-In care options), please don’t hesitate. We are here to help. Call us on 01395 200600, take a look around our website, or find us on Facebook and discover why we are different.

Looking for a new opportunity and the chance to make a difference in your community?
Our award-winning team is growing, and we would welcome enquiries from experienced Care Professionals and those new to the sector, as all new team members benefit from our award-winning and fully funded training. You can check out our Current Vacancies via our website or call our Recruitment team on 01395 200600.