Remembering to eat and drink regularly

Remembering to eat and drink regularly

Neglecting to eat and drink sufficiently on an ongoing basis can lead to malnurition. Just a slight reduction in food intake can result in significant weight loss. This may not be just because of forgetting to prepare a meal or drink. Loss of appetite is common for individuals who have experienced recent bereavement, in people who are socially isolated and among people whom are low in mood and haven't the motivation to shop and prepare food for themselves.

Individuals who are malnourised may not look thin. Other indications include: unplanned weight loss in the past 3-6 months; reduced food intake; and a loss of appetite or loss of interest in food and meals. Malnutrition can cause:

- Prolonged recovery from illness
- Impaired immune response
- Delayed wound healing
- Muscle wasting and weakness affecting mobility, cardiac and respiratory function
- Increased risk of pressure sores
- Increased tiredness, lack of concentration, apathy
- Depression, self neglect and reduced social interactions

If you regularly find that you have missed a meal or two then a telecare system may be able to provide prompts that you need to eat. This could work by using a sensor in your kitchen which will alert your help centre if you do not enter the kitchen for several hours. They can then contact you to check you are ok and suggest you prepare a meal or snack. To view activity sensors click on the picture below.

You could also consider 'Activity monitoring systems'. To view these click on the picture below.

All advice is either supported by references (cited in the text) or is based upon peer reviewed professional opinion. Our advice is impartial and not influenced by sponsors or product suppliers listed on the site.
Conflict of interest statement