Guidelines For Meeting The Nutritional Needs Of People With Huntington's Disease

These guidelines for meeting the nutritional needs of people with Huntington's Disease were first published in the Association's Gateway newsletter Volume 4 No. 5, September/October 2001. They were prepared by Karen Keast, Dietitian, Huntington Disease Service NSW, and include material compiled by the Dietitians Association of Australia NSW Gerontology Special Interest Group. We are grateful to Karen for this material.

The guidelines were reviewed and revised in August 2004.

If you wish to download or print these guidelines they are available as a separate document

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Warning symbolThe food suggestions on these pages are intended for people with Huntington's Disease, who have special nutritional needs. A diet based on these suggestions may be inappropriate for those who do not have these special needs.

10 Steps to Good Nutrition

1. Eat Frequent Meals and Snacks
AS WELL as breakfast, lunch and dinner include morning tea, afternoon tea and supper.
HAVE double serves of meals and desserts.

2. Ensure All Food is Soft and Moist
AVOID foods which are hard and brittle and more difficult to swallow such as chips, corn chips, nuts, hard lollies etc.
ADD extra gravy and sauces to savoury foods and custard and creams to sweet foods.

3. Make Every Mouthful Count
CHOOSE nutritious energy dense food and drinks, eg milk or fruit juice rather than tea, coffee or clear soup, eg cake and cream rather than a plain biscuit.

4. Enrich the Food You Eat
ADD foods rich in protein and energy to those you already eat and drink, eg add cream to fruit and margarine or sour cream to vegetables.

5. Try to Include a Protein Food with Each Meal
SUCH AS meat, chicken, fish, egg, cheese, milk, custard or legumes.

6. Have Ready-to-Eat High Energy Snacks Handy
eg Yoghurts, FrucheTM, cream cake, fruit and custard

7. Supplement Your Diet
USE fortified drinks such as high protein milk or SustagenTM to boost your energy intake.

8. Enjoy Your Meals and Eat a Variety of Foods
VARY your meals so eating does not become a chore.

9. Maintain a Calm and Relaxing Environment For Meals
MINIMISE all distractions, ie turn the TV and radio off.
ALWAYS sit upright for meals and for at least a half-hour after meals.
ALLOW plenty of time for meals.
EAT slowly.
AVOID eating and drinking at the same time.

10. Monitor Your Weight
CONTACT your doctor or dietitian if you are concerned.

For More Advice:

Nutritional Supplements Enriching with Protein and Energy Quick Simple Meal Suggestions
Suggestions for Sandwich Fillings Simple Nourishing Snacks ideas Suggestions for Desserts
Sample High Energy Meal Plan for a Soft Diet Sample High Energy Meal Plan for a Minced Diet Sample High Energy Meal Plan for a Puree Diet


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