| To futher complement the Eden Alternative philosophy, Hillcrest Manor will be transitioning from the standard 3 meal pattern to the "Everyday is a Holiday" concept. This will result in five meals being offered throughout the day, rather than three meals typical in long-term care facilities. In addition, diets will be liberalized with minimal restriction, rather than the strict therapeutic diets often used now.
As a Registered Dietitian, I fully support these changes occurring at Hillcrest Manor. The appetite of an elderly resident is often diminished, and three large meals per day can be overwhelming. Frequent meals are better suited to maximize caloric intake. A Continental Breakfast will be offered everyone. Brunch will be available at 9:30 a.m. and dinner will be served at 4:00 pm and all elders will be taken to their respective dining areas to enjoy these two main meals. Snacks will be offered at 1:00 pm and at 7:30 pm, and will consist of high calorie/protein options from which to choose. Note that this meal pattern is especially appropriate for the diabetic resident, allowing for carbohydrate intake to be dispersed throughout the day, aiding in blood glucose normalization.
In regards to liberalization of therapeutic diets this concept is fully supported by the American Dietetic Association for the following reason:
- Improved dietary compliance
- Enhanced calorie and nutrient intake
- Improved psychosocial status of residents
- Improved appearance and flavor of food
- Increased accuracy and efficiency of tray line
- Improved or maintained fasting blood glucose levels
- Improvement in ability to maintain acceptable weight
- Improved surveys due to reduced chance of error
- And most importantly......
- Improved quality of life for elders
- Happy, healthy and satisfied elders