• Hospital Food

    Hospital Food

    Hospital food has long been a tough issue for administrators to deal with. The problem lies in several areas- the quality of food prepared, the number of patients served and the delivery of the food. Many hospitals serve foods that are the equivalent of institutional faculties, in other words not very appetizing. At least not as appetizing as the menu describes it. So the hospitals need to change the way the menu reads or change the food that is served.

    Either you or people you know have experienced the worst hospitals have to offer with the wrong tray of food or your tray missing pieces of your meal. Not to mention the meal is not tasting that good. Sadly, though ordering your meals gives you something to occupy your time. Something for you to look forward too, yet you were happy when you actually got what you ordered. Hence the problem with food that hardly edible is that the patient may not get enough nutrients to help them get back on a healthy track.

    Fortunately, most hospitals are taking steps to improve the choices offered to patients, visitors and staff. You will see more fresh vegetables and whole grains in the meals. Many are constantly assessing any feedback from patients on the meals and always trying to improve them.

    How Does My Doctor Order My Meals?

    Every patient in every hospital has an approved diet the doctor places him or her on during a visit. Sometimes patients can be placed on an NPO diet, which means nothing by mouth. So you get an intravenous diet or IV. Each diet will vary by the condition, treatment and procedure the patient has during a stay.

    A typical IV bag: The average IV bag is made from sugar and water. It is the simple sugar dextrose, which the body can break down easily to provide you with energy. However to much of anything is never good for so the staff needs to make sure you don’t take in too much dextrose over a 24-hour period. It can cause problems like vein irritation. IV solutions can contain a variety of vitamins or minerals that doctor prescribe for you. Each day you are in the hospital the staff will review your IV intake and assess if is an appropriate volume.

    High calories for postsurgical healing: Many people will find themselves in catabolic state after a surgery. This occurs when the body is lacking nourishment and has been put through a surgery. Surgery requires that you not eat anything after midnight the day before. When you finally get admitted and have your surgery you may have gone nearly gone a full day without food or water. Your doctor will normally provide you with a high caloric diet for the next few days. After surgery you may be able to or want to eat any food or drink. The high calorie IV takes all of that responsibility off you until you are ready.

    Correcting nutritional deficits: Some people come into the hospital undernourished either by choice or from abuse. To treat this issue a special IV catheter is placed in a large vein to give the body high fat and caloric liquids. This solution is not clear like a regular IV and has a milk-like appearance to it from the high fat content. This is called a hyperalimentation diet and the IV is called a central line. Doctors may consult a surgeon for the diet components and the proper placement of the line. These lines can be prone to collecting germs because of the IV content so they are monitored much more closely than a regular IV.

    Liquids diets by mouth: Many times before and after a bowel or abdominal surgery is performed a doctor will order a clear liquid diet by mouth. Clear liquids are liquid you can see through like a broth or gelatin. These will help to clear the bowels and don’t make the bodywork so hard. A full liquid diet will consist of soups, ice cream and custards. Once the body can handle the liquid diet, the doctor may progress the patient up to more solid food.

    Hospital food alternatives:

    If your doctor tells you that there are no diet restrictions you can order what you want from the daily menu. You may even have food from the outside if allowed by the hospital. Today most hospitals offer kosher, vegetarian and meals for people with allergies. When you arrive at the hospital a menu should come with your first meal. The menu will be for the next days meals-breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you have choice between hospitals to have a procedure you should not let the food be a determining factor in where to go.

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