The normal hospital diet which provides a patient with the energy and nutrients is intended for the patient whose condition does not require a therapeutic diet. This regular diet may be modified with regard to selection, methods of preparation and consistency for patients who cannot tolerate a regular diet but do require a therapeutic diet. These modifications of the regular diet are liquid diets, light/soft diet and semisolid diet.
Liquid diets are indicated in febrile states, Post-operative or when the patient is unable to tolerate solid foods. Depending upon the acuteness of particular illness, the liquid diets are divided into:-
(a) Clear fluid diets (b) Full fluid diets.
Clear fluid diets
Indicated in severe acute and other infections, diarrhea and acute intestinal post-operative inflammatory conditions.
This diet is non-residual, not-irritating, non-distending and non-stimulating. A clear fluid diet is usually sued for 1-2 days, at the end of which time the patient is commonly able to retain and utilize a more liberal liquid diet.
This diet includes plain tea, coffee, fat free clear soups, lemon water, fat fee whey water, cereal, honey water, strained fruit juices and coconut water.
The amount of fluid given to the patients and the interval of feeding depends upon the conditions of the patients. This diet normally helps to replace the fluid loss.
Full fluid diet
This diet is indicated whenever a patient is acutely ill or is unable to chew or swallow solids. It bridges the gap between clear fluid and soft diet. It is used in acute infections, gastritis and diarrhea when milk is permitted and following surgery, if required for prolonged therapy, this diet can be made nutritionally adequate by the addition of certain additives, the following food item are included in this diet-
1. Milk + Horlick, Milk + Complan, Milk + Protinex, Milk + Bouranvita, Milk + Spert.
2. Fruit Juices:- Lemon/Orange/Mousambi/Malta/Anar/Pineapple/Apple/Sugar- Cane. to this may be added salt, glucose, sugar, honey etc.
3. Vegetable:- Tamota/Lettuce/Palak/Cabbage.
a. Mashed processed cheese b. Grated processed cheese
c. Butter and corn flour d. Sk. Milk powder
e. Egg white
Some times the patient is required to be given fluid diet only because there is oral injury, difficulty in swallowing or in the absence of teeth, for such cases normal bland diet can be liquidized in a blender and given to the patient via tube. Avoid giving all solid state foods and spicy liquids.
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