Dysphagia may result from a disease process, surgery, trauma, dental work, or congenital problem affecting any aspect of the swallowing process from the mouth to the esophagus. In this article, we outline recipes and how-to tips to prepare soft, moist foods, so that patients living with dysphagia will once again be able to experience the joy associated with holiday eating.
For a variety of reasons, many patients experience dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, and may therefore require liquids or soft consistency foods to meet their nutrition requirements. Dysphagia may result from a disease process, surgery, trauma, dental work, or congenital problem affecting any aspect of the swallowing process from the mouth to the esophagus. Some of the more common reasons include mechanical issues such as cancers in the mouth or throat and neurological issues caused by stroke, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), or Parkinson?s disease. In addition, patients who have undergone esophageal surgeries and/or stent placements often require a period of altered food consistency. Softer food choices can make manipulating foods in the mouth easier and shorten meal times, while reducing the risk of aspiration.
Numerous specialists are involved in determining the appropriate course of action for patients with dysphagia. Speech-language pathologists often direct oropharyngeal dysphagia recommendations, while gastroenterologists and radiologists usually manage esophageal dysphagia. The Registered Dietitian?s job is to translate these recommendations into actual foods, taking into consideration the nutritional adequacy of a limited consistency diet.
People with dysphagia go through profound adjustments in their lives. The dietary changes that are imposed, in particular, often create a feeling of loss related to the social aspects of eating that are so important in our lives. This can result in a decrease in intake that leads to significant, and sometimes severe, weight loss. Without appropriate intervention, such a cycle will negatively impact quality of life, and health.
Below is a collection of festive holiday recipes and how-to tips to prepare soft, moist foods, so that people living with dysphagia will once again be able to experience the joy associated with holiday eating. We think these recipes are so tasty, they will delight all of those around the holiday table. Bon Appetit!
Sensational Holiday Recipes
The holidays are associated with the savory entrees, side dishes and soups we all know and love. While any favorite meal can be processed to meet swallowing consistency needs, we offer the following recipes that may become some of your new favorites.
The holidays bring opportunities to enjoy a variety of festive dishes. With some planning, those living with dysphagia can continue to enjoy the celebrations (and food!) that so often accompany the holiday season. Hopefully, these recipes will allow your patients to feel more included in their traditional family festive food fares and more fully enjoy their holiday season.
See this article’s PDF for complete recipes for side dishes, entrees, smoothies and shakes, snacks and desserts.