Unidine will roll out Fresh Bites, a nutrition program designed for senior living communities serving memory care residents, to its existing senior living clients and new partners beginning in early 2016.
The approach delivers nutritionally dense, bite-sized meals designed to reduce the weight loss associated with the progression of dementia. “We heard from our senior living clients that weight loss and the inability to eat independently was often a catalyst for dementia disease progression,” explained Richard B. Schenkel, Unidine CEO and founder. “So we began working on a solution that would increase nutritional intake and provide a more dignified approach to dining for memory care [residents].”
The program underwent 18 months of research and testing. The resulting food is designed to be eaten without the need for utensils, because many memory care residents lose motor skills and often wander during mealtimes. Gone are dry fillings, because they often fall apart, and boiled vegetables, which can be too slippery. Ingredients that have shown promise in improving cognitive function have been incorporated into recipes: the spice turmeric, broccoli, cabbage, green tea, blueberries and dark chocolate.