Tag Archives: blenderized diets

Another Testimonial

Ship
Us verses the Healthcare System

I got a message from a dear friend today.  I say friend but she’s more of a sister to me.  So many times I have called on her for prayer and support.  So many times she has been there for me.  Being an amazing NICU nurse is a bonus.  I can only imagine how the parents of the sickest of babies feel when their precious angels are in her care.  She has the uncanny ability to know when I am hurting even when no one else does.  Her looks and hugs speak volumes while her carefully chosen words are condensed libraries.  In my experience, she is a rare gem… A medical professional who gets it.  In the 25 years that I worked in the medical field I got to see first hand those who stand on both sides of that fence.

But now, as a parent of a medically complicated child with special needs,  I see it from the other side of the desk.  I understand on a deeper level the frustration expressed by the patients I dealt with.  Much of my time now is spent fighting a system that is caught up in codes and protocol to the demise of common sense…Fighting for what is best for my child. Thankfully,  Matt has a great group of doctors who listen and are open to my input about his care and are just as frustrated as I am when we hit a road block.  Many of you who will read this are not so fortunate.  My heart goes out to you but I am here to encourage you not to give up and not to give in.

So when her simple message read, “Sound familiar?” I knew I had to stop and read the story she had tagged me with.  As I read through “Kate’s Story” I couldn’t help but feeling it could have just as well read “Matt’s Story” and I felt a kinship to the family.  Then I found myself becoming angry.  More like frustrated.  Real food for real kids.  What a concept!  So why do so many of us find ourselves bucking a system that is supposed to want the best for our children?  Do doctors and dieticians wake up each day and say, “Hmmm.  I have 50 kids to see today.  Let me see how I can mess them up.”  Certainly not!  The doctor’s and dieticians that have spent the last 15 years helping keep Matt alive are not ill willed.  Many are simply uninformed.  Others simply lack the time due to huge case loads.  Still others find themselves with their hands tied thanks to a healthcare system that has become more about making money and less about caring for patients.

So where does that leave those of us who have the gall to insist that our tube-fed children and loved ones deserve and desperately need a diet that consists of real food?  In the battle, for better or worse.  We keep fighting, educating and spreading the word.  When it comes to blenderized and pureed diets for people with and without g-tubes, we can’t quit even when we feel we’ve hit a wall.  Our loved ones often can’t advocate for themselves.  We must be their voice.  Matt has been blessed with an amazing GI doctor.  She has seen what a whole food blended diet has done for him and other patients she has referred to me for help.  She too wants better nutritional options for families.  But, to paraphrase a comment she made to me one day, the healthcare system today is a large ship and  we are the rudder on that ship.  If we simply hold our position for long enough, the ship will turn.  Ever so slowly and often without notice.  My hope and prayer is that our voice gets so loud that big companies that sell fake nutrition for a profit will crumble and fade away.  Until then we will just keep doing what we do best…Loving. Caring. Sharing.

When you get a moment, read Kate’s Story.  It will both encourage and inspire you on your journey.

 

 

Hemp Seed

https://cdn.authoritynutrition.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/hemp-seeds-whole-and-shelled.jpg

I recently joined a group that focuses on blenderized diets. Originally my goal was to share my experience in order to help others with g-tubes live healthier lives.  Little did I know I was going to need their help as well.  Because Matthew is getting older and in need of more calories but not able to handle large volumes, I posed a question to the group regarding “milks” that were high in calorie.  Hemp seed milk (something I hadn’t heard of) was on the list.  Since this was coming from a group of people that had lot’s of experience, I began looking into it.

What I found was, it is yet another super food.  So, as always, I dug deeper.  Here’s what I found:

  • Hemp seeds have 9 grams of protein per serving.  They contain all of the essential amino acids making them a complete protein.
  • They are a good source of iron and Zinc.
  • They are an excellent source of Vitamin E, Magnesium and Phosphorus.
  • There is also 2.8mg of Manganese which is 140% of the DV.

Hemp seeds are also over 30% fat but they are rich in omega-3 and omega-6 which is more than both chia seeds and flax seeds.  These fatty acids, in balanced proportions, have been linked to a host of health benefits“The typical American diet contains 14 to 25 times more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids, which many nutritionally-oriented physicians consider to be way too high on the omega-6 side.

The Mediterranean diet, on the other hand, has a healthier balance between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Many studies have shown that people who follow this diet are less likely to develop heart disease.”

One bit of information I found was very important to know.  Matthew has a condition called Chronic Thrombocytopenia.  Due to a severe infection he had at the age of 4, Matthew has a lower than normal number of platelets in his blood.  Since platelets are the part of the blood that allows clotting to occur, it is important for me to know that the oil in hemp seed may slow blood clotting.  this is why it is so important for anyone being followed by a physician for any medical condition should research any and all super foods that hit the market and, check with and/or inform your doctor if you have or are interested in adding them to your diet.

Sometimes people have g-tubes and don’t have a lot of other medical conditions so just trying out this healthy high calorie food.  Still others, like Matthew, are so complicated medically that research has to be done before even considering it.  Healthy or not, medically complicated or not, my treat all super foods the same.  See what is being said and check it against other websites.  Health food websites tend to only give the health benefits and not the side effects or contraindications.  Medical websites will sometimes do just the opposite.  I choose to look at both sides and decide whether or not it’s something that will benefit Matthew or make conditions worse.  If I am unsure, I check with his doctors.  I especially make sure to alert his GI doctor of any dietary changes I have made.  I also don’t give him anything I haven’t tried myself.

In closing, I follow the “less is more” rule.  In other words, just because a super food has some really enticing health benefits, ingesting lots of it can cause problems.  Look for sites that will give you therapeutic doses and stick to them.  Our goal is to stay out of the doctor’s office, not end up in one.