Designing meals for elderly with eating difficulties: a cooperative approach

Viktoria Olsson, Maria Nyberg, Zada Pajalic, Gerd Örtman, Albert Westergren, Anna Blücher, Håkan Andersson, Karin Wendin

Forskningsoutput: KonferensbidragPoster

5 Nedladdningar (Pure)


Approximately 15 % of the Scandinavian population aged 60 and above suffer from eating difficulties with malnutrition as a risk factor. In an effort to improve their possibilities of a healthy and independent living, we have chosen the strategy to develop nutritious and tasty food in combination with functional eating aids to be integrated in the everyday lives of elderly.

This new, multi-disciplinary project concerns the design of meals for those who experience difficulties in transporting food from the plate to the mouth. The present paper, as part of the project, aims at presenting today’s knowledge of what home-living Scandinavian elderly with pre-oral eating difficulties experience as important factors concerning the meal. The review of peer-reviewed research publications will be complemented with in-depth interviews, surveys and observation studies. Data will be used in a co-designing process, where elderly are involved in developing meals and eating aids that support independence and integrity.

For elderly in general it is well known that food and drink preferences are affected by past experiences. However, impaired appetite, taste and smell as well as eating difficulties require special adaptations of food and beverages. Serving popular dishes and using distinct flavours and presentations improves meal satisfaction. Elderly suffering from e.g. hand tremor or difficulties in gripping often develop strategies to remain independent, of which one may be to omit meal constituents affecting the sensory and nutritional quality of the meal. Furthermore, the eating situation among people with eating difficulties is often associated with guilt and shame, and social withdrawal is therefore a common scenario.

Remaining independent in respect to eating is highly valued among elderly. By integrating various dimensions of the meal, including nutritional and sensory aspects, in the development of functional eating aids, the possibility of a healthy and independent living among elderly increases.

StatusPublicerad - 2014
EvenemangEurosense 2014 -
Varaktighet: 2014-sep.-072014-sep.-10


KonferensEurosense 2014

Nationell ämneskategori

  • Livsmedelsvetenskap (40103)


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