Tom Sharon
Set up a plan to administer liquid protein supplements


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The Importance of Nutrition in Healing

Nutrition is crucial to healing. The blood albumin levels will give the physician a clue as to whether the patient has enough protein to effect healing. Food protein is the basic building block for manufacturing new cells, and that is precisely what is needed for healing.

As with everything else, you will have to chase down the nurse and physician to discuss the patient's nutritional status. When I first found my mother in the hospital, I repeatedly asked, "What is her nutritional status?" When they told me that her albumin was low, they told me that the nutritionist set up a plan to give her liquid protein supplements. There were several cans of Sustacal® sitting at the bedside, unopened like decorations. When I asked Mom why she was not drinking it, she said, "It tastes like crap!" Most people would probably agree with her. Nevertheless, I coaxed her to drink it, and she did once she understood why it was so important to her well-being.
Unfortunately, I could not rely on the hospital staff to encourage her to increase her intake. Realizing that Mom needed more incentive to eat, I brought her favorite healthy foods from outside. That is when she started to substantially increase her food intake. Her nutritional status improved within a few days, and this played a crucial role in her healing. Remember that aside from being unable to count on the hospital personnel to fully explain the importance of nutrition, you cannot rely on hospital food, because it usually is unappetizing, is unappealing, and tastes terrible. Make the effort to have food brought in if at all possible.

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