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how to start eating again

michdjp's picture
michdjp
Posts: 191
Joined: Sep 2011

hello to everyone

On 10-24 my dad finished chemo and radiation treatment (33). He had the feeding tube put in on 9-28- and that has been his only source of nutrition throughout his treatments. Now that he is done and trying to swallow he wants to start drinking and eating. I do not know where to start. What are the best drinks to try? what are the best foods to try? Seems like such an easy question but soooo hard (i'm afraid to offer him something he will choke on or get sick with).

Thanks for your help on this
hope everyone is well

Michelle

ratface's picture
ratface
Posts: 1232
Joined: Aug 2009

is how I started. Mine tasted like chalk from what could tell at the time. Why don't you check out the superthread.

Hondo's picture
Hondo
Posts: 5655
Joined: Apr 2009

There is a post here call Superthread By Sweetblood, it is full of information that will give you all kinds of help.

Just click on this link Superthred

Wishing you and your Dad well
Hondo

sweetblood22's picture
sweetblood22
Posts: 3230
Joined: Jan 2010

This is a question we get a lot, one of the most asked, so I have been working on a bigger post for it on the superthread. I will just copy and paste what I am working on below in a second. I had forgotten I was working on it, so thanks for the kick in the arse to get it started again. I've been way more than unmotivated lately, to say the very least. Before I paste, a few thoughts...

It's going to depend on where you dad is at. So I will go really basic, from step one and work up. I suggest a good blender/emulsifier and a mini chopper (unless you got mad knife skills. I do, but I'm lazy and the chopper was $9) if he has trouble chewing, swallowing and or moving his tongue around and or lack of saliva. I had all of the above. It's much easier to mince all the veg before cooking with the mini chopper instead of trying to make a sore mouth do all the extra work. The emulsifier makes awesome smoothies and purées soups to a velvety creamy consistency easily. I would avoid salt and any acidic foods. I would start with liquids, good broths and smoothies. Then if that goes well, pudding or mush type things and puréed soups. Then move to soft cooked veg, rice, pasta and poached eggs. Etc. Depending on where he is at, this can be a progression just over a week or two, or, it took a year for me to work into 'normal' foods once I started eating again. Any questions, feel free to ask me. Here are my notes and what I'm working on so far. Recipes are included on some of the suggestions. Good luck.

My notes so far:

One of the questions we always seem to get is for soft,  bland foods, that are easy to swallow.  I thought I would expand on this, and then link it to the superthread for when we get asked this question again.  I also have linked some of the items with a corresponding recipe if the person would like to make the dish at home.   

It may be a good idea to leave out any salt and pepper, or things like Ginger, tomatoes or wine, or other things that burn.   I also prefer homemade stock, but will use no or low salt canned in a pinch.   

Also chopping up an mincing food before cooking it, or puréeing soups before eating, makes it much easier to eat on a sore mouth or when you are having trouble swallowing.   

here's another thread for some food ideas:

SOFT BLAND FOOD IDEAS

Broth and Soups or things made with broth:
 
BONE BROTH FOR HEALTH BUILDING. Collagen is essential for- Soft tissue and wound healing.  Formation and repair of cartilage and bone. 
Healing and coating the mucus membranes of the gastrointestinal tract. Aids in cases of weight loss from cancer.
 

BENEFITS OF BONE BROTH  

REBECCA KATZ MAGIC MINERAL BROTH

CHICKEN STOCK RECIPE

BEEF STOCK

VEGETABLE STOCK

You can certainly add things to the broth above.   I use my crock pot to make all kinds of stock, and it's quite easy to do. I keep it frozen in containers.   Make gnocchi, or ravioli nudé, pastina, congee, oatmeal, or pureed vegetable and bean soups with the stock.   I find store bought to be too salty and lacking in vitamins.  

BASIC CONGEE

EGG DROP SOUP

WANTON SOUP  

VEGETARIAN SPLIT PEA SOUP  

RICE PUDDING

CRUSTLESS QUICHE

Soft cooked vegetables of all kinds

MASHED CAULIFLOWER

MASHED SWEET POTATOES

CREAMED SPINACH  

STEAMED ZUCCHINI  

WINTER SQUASH AND POTATO GRATIN

Poached eggs

Grits

Cream of wheat

OATMEAL IDEAS

DelMonte peaches
Avocado
Bananas

Smoothies:

Here is a good all around smoothie meal.  I did the nutritional analysis for you.  The first number is the amount in the smoothie, the second number, in the parentheses is what you would need for a 1600 calories per day.  I use a HealthMaster.   That or a vitamix is best.   I often have this for breakfast.   Especially good when you are on the go.  

1 medium apple
1 medium carrot 
1 banana
3 leaves of romaine 
1 tbs almond butter
1 cup milk
1 tbs flax seed oil
1 tbs protein powder

Total Calories (kcals) 597 -  (1658)
Protein (gm) 17 - (46)
Carbohydrate (gm) 76 - (130)
Total Fiber (gm) 10 - (25)
Total Fat (gm) 29 - (13.3 - 23.2)
Saturated Fat (gm) 5.4 (< 6.6)
Monounsaturated Fat (gm) 10 **
Polyunsaturated Fat (gm) 12 **
Linoleic (omega 6) (gm) 4.1 12
Alpha Linolenic (omega 3) (gm) 7.5 (1.1)
Cholesterol (mg) 19 (< 300)
Vitamin A (mcg RAE) 735 - (700)
Vitamin C (mg) 32.7 - (75)
Vitamin E (mg a-TE) 9.5 - (15)
Thiamin (mg) 0.4 - (1.1)
Riboflavin (mg) 0.8 - (1.1)
Niacin (mg) 4.1 - (14)
Folate (mcg, DFE) 148.4 - (400)
Vitamin B6 (mg) 0.9 - (1.3)
Vitamin B12 (mcg) 1.3 - (2.4)
Calcium (mg) 486.2 - (1000)
Phosphorus (mg) 485 - (700)
Magnesium (mg) 152 - (320)
Iron (mg) 3.2 - (18)
Zinc (mg) 3.1 -  (8)
Selenium (mcg) 11.7 - (55)
Potassium (mg) 1540 - (4700)
Sodium (mg) 288  - ( 1500 - 2300)
** Nutrient has no established recommendation.

Avocados are a great food.  Good fats and good for you:

AVOCADO BANANA BERRY SMOOTHIE

Half a ripe avocado
1 to 1 1/2 frozen bananas
4 to 5 frozen or fresh strawberries
Splash of nut milk
Pinch cardamom
Pinch allspice

PEAR AVOCADO SMOOTHIE

1 large pear, chopped
1/2 cups green grapes
1/4 avocado
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Blend and top with chopped pecans.

GREEN ENVY AVOCADO SMOOTHIE

1 avocado
2 bananas
2 cups orange juice
1 cup of strawberries (preferably fresh, but frozen will do)
1 cup of orange or strawberry sherbet
1 cup ice

GREEN GOBLIN’S POTION

1 medium or large ripe avocado
1 1/2 cup fresh pineapple
1 Tbs honey
1 1/2 cup orange juice
2 tsp lime juice (optional)
1/4 tsp coconut meat
2 ice cubes

APPLE AND AVOCADO SMOOTHIE

1 Granny Smith apple, cored, skin on
1/2 ripe Hass avocado 
1/2 apple juice 
1/2 cup ice 
3 sprigs mint leaves
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice

Combine all ingredients together in a blender like Vitamix or HealthMaster. 

AVOCADO BERRY SMOOTHIE

1 medium avocado, peeled and pitted
1 tablespoon cashews, raw 
 1 tablespoon honey
1 cup water 
1/2 cup blueberries, frozen 
6 ice cubes

Blend the avocado, cashews, honey, water, blueberries, and ice together until smooth. Serves 1-2

GREAT SMOOTHIE RECIPES

All of the following smoothies were processed in an emulsifier.   (like a Vitamix or HealthMaster)

1 orange, peeled
1/4  of a cantaloupe
8 oz of Silk coconut milk

1/4 cantaloupe
1 banana 
1 8oz container of Greek Yogurt
1 tbs of Honey

1 ripe pear
1 banana
4 oz Silk Almond Milk

1 banana
1 small can of prune juice
1 small container of yogurt

1 pear 
1 banana
Chocolate Almond Milk
2 tbs Chocolate Malt Ovaltine

1 apple
1 pear 
6 oz Almond Milk
1 tbs Almond Butter
1 tbs flaxseed oil 

1 orange 
1 banana
1 small container of cherry yogurt

Check the superthread for more ideas, in the healthy eating/liquid nutrition section:

HNC  SUPERTHREAD

michdjp's picture
michdjp
Posts: 191
Joined: Sep 2011

many many thanks
that is a great start i really appreciate it
hope all is well
michelle

sweetblood22's picture
sweetblood22
Posts: 3230
Joined: Jan 2010
vetorama's picture
vetorama
Posts: 16
Joined: Sep 2005

HI, just wondering if:
1 medium apple
1 medium carrot
1 banana
3 leaves of romaine
1 tbs almond butter
1 cup milk
1 tbs flax seed oil
1 tbs protein powder

Does this one smoothie have 1600 calories?
Thanks

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