As part of our ‘Stay Nourished’ Campaign, we are delighted to share this lovely story from one of our CAREGivers, Nathalie Graham. Nathalie really went above and beyond for one of our clients to change her diet and the results were lifechanging. A big thank you to Nathalie and the rest of the team that visit this client for their hard work. This story really does demonstrate what effect good nutrition can have.
Here is Nathalie, telling the story in her own words:
"Mrs B is 95 years old and leads a mostly sedentary life due to poor mobility. Mrs B has type 2 diabetes and suffers with constipation. Mrs B lives at home alone and manages her day to day life with the help of daily visits from CAREGivers and her family.
When I first met Mrs B, she was in poor health with a blood sugar level of over 110 mg/dl and rising. She spent a short spell in a care home and unfortunately lost her appetite completely and was finding it hard to enjoy her meals. Mrs B’s blood sugar levels spiked to such a dangerous level that she came very close to being hospitalised for stabilisation.
Mrs B’s usual diet at this time was largely based around ready meals and sandwiches, with the exception of breakfast that was a generic brand of cereal (high in sugars), with added fruit and a banana. Her cupboards were full of lovely items, unfortunately, all high in carbs and sugar.
Having always had a huge interest in food preparation and nutrition and currently undertaking multiple nutrition courses online, I felt confident that I could help Mrs B. I consulted Mrs B herself, her family and my supervisors at work about trying a new diet to help her regain her appetite, have regular bowel movements and lower her blood sugar levels. With everyone in agreement that this would be the best way forward, we embarked on our new regime.
I firstly, with the permission of Mrs B, looked through her food cupboards to get a better understanding of the types of foods and flavours she likes. Mrs B had an eclectic spice and herb cupboard and a very sweet tooth. Good news; I understood that Mrs B liked flavoursome and colourful foods and was not averse to trying new things to win back her appetite.
Gleaning from some experience and lots of research with the very helpful Diabetes UK organisation I put together a dietary plan that would be rich in fibre, proteins and complex carbs with some good fats. I cut out the simple carbs and refined sugars. This included the following:
Plenty of fresh fruits
Some dried fruits
Lots of vegetables
Beans and lentils
Plenty of fresh and dried herbs along with what I call Super Spices - cinnamon and turmeric along with white balsamic vinegar.
Mrs B has been on her new plan for just 2 months now eating 3 fresh meals daily with plenty of fruits just after her meals; good snacks and hydration throughout the day. With all her CAREGivers on board and cooking nutritious healthy meals, Mrs B’s appetite has blossomed and she now looks forward to her lovely meals and even trying new foods.
Recently Mrs B had a routine visit from the diabetic nurse to check her blood sugar level. Mrs B is now at a healthy blood sugar level the diabetic nurse was very pleased with this outcome and approves of her diet.
Mrs B no longer requires any laxatives and has regular daily bowel movements. Her cognitive abilities have also dramatically improved.
In her own words she now feels like she could go on forever like this”.
We'd like to say a MASSIVE thank you to Nathalie for really going the extra mile for our client and for all her enthusiasm and hard work.