We recently had a conversation with Janet McKee, MS, RD, CSG, LD/N, DAPWCA, president and owner of Nutritious Lifestyles, Inc. Janet and her firm provide food nutrition education and consulting services to the acute and post acute healthcare industries. Janet is an expert in geriatric and adult care nutrition and has done consulting work with Thrive Ice Cream.
TIC: What is the biggest challenge healthcare dietitians face today?
JM: The biggest challenge is finding nutritional foods and meal supplements that appeal to patients’ taste buds, deliver nutrition and calories, and are affordable. Patients and residents of long-term care and nursing facilities get tired of the same old products. It’s very difficult to find “real food” that answers all of these requirements.
TIC: Why is Thrive Ice Cream a good option for health care?
JM: Thrive is “complete” nutrition and delicious so patients/residents eat right up! By complete nutrition I mean that a six-ounce serving contains 24 vitamins and minerals, nine grams of protein, six grams of fiber, four probiotic cultures, and natural flavors and colors. It’s also appropriate for kosher and gluten-free diets. Both regular Thrive Ice Cream and no sugar added are options for those with diabetes. Because it’s ice cream and does not have a medicinal taste like liquid supplements, there is typically no issue with patient compliance. Additionally, a dietitian can add it to a patient’s meals without a physician order.
TIC: What medical conditions benefit from Thrive Ice Cream?
JM: Thrive can be used for a wide range of medical conditions. Because it melts to either a honey or nectar consistency, Thrive is very good for dysphagia and stroke patients/residents who may be experiencing difficulty eating or swallowing. Patients/residents with digestive disorders such as Crohns disease, colitis and IBS, as well as C-diff, pressure ulcers and slow healing wounds benefit. Conditions are like dementia, cardiac and pulmonary diseases that correlate with loss of appetite and weight loss may also benefit from Thrive. Additionally, Thrive Ice Cream has proven successful in helping patients/resident avoid involuntary weight loss and malnutrition, which is a tremendous concern of dietitians and caregivers.
TIC: Can patients use Thrive Ice Cream post discharge?
JM: Definitely! People can continue to benefit from Thrive’s nutrition, protein, and calories they need to maintain weight and promote healing post discharge from a hospital or nursing facility. It’s also a huge benefit to family caregivers as well as professional caregivers who are challenged to keep loved ones/patients eating and receiving proper nutrition. There are not too many people who will pass up ice cream, which makes it easy to use Thrive as a meal supplement or replacement. The good news is Thrive is available at a growing number of supermarkets nationwide, at all military commissaries and can be purchased on-line for home delivery.
TIC: Do you have any advice for dietitians and other dietary professionals attending the FNCE 2016 Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo in Boston in October?
JM: I would encourage them to visit the Thrive Ice Cream booth and taste how great their ice cream is and compare it to what they are currently using at their facility. I think they will appreciate the nutritional content and recognize the superior taste that pleases patients/residents and caregivers.
TIC: Do you have a favorite flavor of Thrive Ice Cream?
JM: Salted Caramel – I love it!
To learn more about Thrive or to order online, visit our website.