We share what is most helpful when it comes to reversing health moving in the wrong direction for people supported. You can also download the below list right here.
The following are based on our experiences facilitating substantial health gains for people supported in waiver, ICF, independent living and home-based settings.
• Weight gain/loss often happens when My25 menus aren’t being followed—this includes staff deciding to not follow the menus and/or extra servings being prepared and consumed at mealtime than what is called for in the menu. We understand the need for flexibility at times, but also want to point out that shortcuts and/or a different set of rules can come at the expense of consumer health. Because My25 menus are all choice-based, all you have to do is let us know about consumers’ food likes/dislikes, so we can keep tailoring the menus to suit individual choices and the routines of the setting.
• Consumers may refuse to eat healthier foods that are on the My25 menus (even though menus and recipes are choice-based and created by My25’s chef—a graduate of one of the top culinary schools in the country). We understand how to reverse such reluctance. Please download our quick-read overview:
Tips For When Consumers Refuse to Eat My25 and/or Eat Better In General. And keep letting us know about consumer choices, so menus can continually be tailored to suit their likes/dislikes and dietary needs.
• The My25 Therapeutic Report is sometimes not followed closely by staff. The Therapeutic Report indicates, as an example, when lower calorie amounts/serving sizes should be followed for specific individuals—often for those who need to lose weight. We’re happy to re-train staff on how to use the Therapeutic Report, and we can also provide a simple one-page outline of how to use this Report.
• Leftovers are a leading cause behind weight gain. This happens for a few reasons, but two that we have seen as the key culprits: 1. Leftovers are being eaten as a snack. and/or 2. When leftovers are eaten for lunch the next day, a dinner size portion of the leftover is served instead of a lunch size portion of the leftover. We suggest cutting back on the number of days you have for leftovers.
• We will adjust menus to help get a consumer moving in the right, healthy direction. We will often facilitate weight loss by reducing calories. We understand that it’s important that consumers feel full, so our adjustment often centers on upping the fiber content of meals. Because vegetables are an important part of getting enough fiber, we suggest engaging the consumer (or all of your consumers in the house) in choosing vegetables he/she likes and flavoring vegetables to their liking (using My25’s Bump Up Veggie Flavor Chart for ideas). We’ve seen throughout the years that “when you make it, you own it” really is quite powerful and gets even the most reluctant consumers eating the likes of broccoli and peas.
For those consumers needing to gain weight, we often increase portion sizes and make a few menu adjustments (such as whole milk instead of skim, two slices of cheese in a sandwich instead of one, creamy salad dressing instead of vinaigrette, etc.) for these individuals—again, menu adjustments that we can easily handle once we have the health status in hand and an understanding regarding choice-based food likes/dislikes.