If your loved one’s age, illness, or disability makes it difficult for him or her to cook, there are a variety of meal services that can help ensure that he or she receives the proper nutrition
Meal times for a care recipient can often be lonely or frustrating times. Helping your loved one find an easy and nutritious way to obtain and eat meals is important in maintaining his or her health. Generally, there are three types of meal options available to care recipients.
Meals-On-Wheels, or similar community-based services, deliver well-balanced, nutritious meals to your loved one’s door. These delivery services offer a relatively inexpensive way for your loved one to avoid the tasks involved in meal preparation. To find out about meal delivery services in your loved one’s community, look in the Yellow Pages under Meals-On-Wheels, or contact the local Area Agency on Aging.
Home Health Agencies often provide meals as one of their in-home services. This can be a wonderful option for individuals with extreme dietary needs, although generally in-home services are more costly than the other types of meal services—usually because meals are provided along with other types of care. These services can best be found by asking local residential facilities, church organizations, or the Area Agency on Aging.
The third type of meal service involves group meals, which are usually offered at a local care facility. Facilities that provide these meal services are usually facilities that provide intermediate amounts of care (e.g., Group Homes or Congregate Care Facilities) or daily care (e.g., Adult Day Care facilities). Usually, arrangements are made to transport your loved one from his or her residence to the facility for meal times. Group meals also provide the added benefit of companionship at mealtimes, which is especially good if your loved one eats the majority of his or her meals alone. To obtain information about these types of meal services, contact the Area Agency on Aging or local residential facilities to see if meal programs are available.
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