Regular meals, snacks and drinks help form a structure to the day, provide opportunities to interact with other people and deliver essential nutrition for residents in care. Approximately a third of residents are at risk of malnutrition which is linked to weight loss, nutritional deficiencies, delayed wound healing and an increased risk of infection.
Snacks play a really important role by significantly increasing daily energy for those with, or at risk of, malnutrition. Many older adults have smaller appetites, so regular snacks throughout the day can help top up food intake meaning people aren’t overwhelmed with large quantities of food at main mealtimes.
Offer your residents snacks during the night (if people are awake), before breakfast (if they wake early), mid-morning, mid-afternoon and early evening.
TOP SNACKING TIPS & RECIPES:
- Offer a variety of savoury and sweet snacks across the day. These Mango Chicken Tartlets tick both boxes and are packed with flavour; or try these Smoked Haddock Balls, layered with smokiness and spice.
- Include fruits and vegetables as snacks to help your residents reach their 5-a-day.
- Try to change the snack choices each day so they don’t become too repetitive.
- Use full fat dairy products such as whole milk and yogurts in snacks like these classic Tandoori Chicken Bites.
- Fortify snacks if needed for example add butter and cheese to a digestive biscuit.
- Use snacks in social activities such as ‘decorate a cupcake’ or ‘make your own’ smoothie.