Food, Nutrition and Hydration

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Food, Nutrition and Hydration

Nutrition Matters 

You need to eat and drink as much as you can to help your recovery. Food gives your body energy, protein, vitamins and minerals and when you are ill you may need more of these to help you recover. 

Nutrition Screening 

Nutrition screening is where a nurse or other member of staff checks your weight and asks about any recent changes in your weight and appetite.  This will tell us if you are getting enough nutrition to meet your needs.  Screening is done when you are admitted and then your weight will be checked once a week.  if you are not meeting your nutritional needs, we will start you on a plan to improve this.  A dietitian may assess and advise you.  You may also be automatically referred to a dietitian on admission, depending on your diagnosis e.g., head and neck cancer.  

Meal Times       

Breakfast          8.00am                   Mid-day Meal  12.15pm                 Evening Meal    5.00pm

There is a different menu each week for 3 weeks and then it goes back to the original menu. 

To order your meals, catering staff will come to your bedside and give you a menu of the food choices available each day. This information will be written down by the catering staff and sent to the kitchen where your food will be prepared. If there is nothing you like, we wil try our best to suit your food preferences. 

Our food is cooked fresh daily and is put on plates in our kitchen. It is served from a trolley on the ward.  During meal times, we want you eat and drink as much as you can. We try to reduce interruptions while you are eating, for example, relatives visiting or us calling you out for tests.  We only allow visitors to stay with you if they are helping you to eat or drink.   If you miss a meal, catering staff will provide you with a replacement meal.  

Special Dietary Needs 

If you need a special diet, for example, gluten-free or renal diet, or if you have a known food allergy, please tell one of the nurses when you are admitted. Our menu shows the allergens in each food to help you make safe choices. We can provide meals if you have a cultural, ethnic or religious dietary requirement.  

If you find it hard to swallow, or if you notice coughing or choking when you eat or drink, a speech and language therapist may assess you. They may prescribe changes to the texture of food you eat.  

Texture modified diets you can get in hospital.

  • Soft and bite-sized
  • Minced and moist
  • Pureed
  • Liquidised

If you are on a texture-modified diet or thickened drinks at home, please tell the nursing staff when you are admitted. 

If you need help to eat and drink, nursing and health care staff will help you. We may give you a coloured tray to show you need help. 

Please note the availability of Dietitian and Speech and Language Therapist services may differ from the above if you are admitted to Ward A or Ward C Transitional Care Units.