National Norwegian guidelines for the prevention and treatment of malnutrition refer to a survey of nutritional status in patients undergoing surgery in Oslo showed that 39% of patients were either moderately or seriously malnourished. A study at St. Olavs Hospital documented that two thirds of cancer patients admitted to the department of palliative care were malnourished. A prospective study of elderly patients over 70 at a medical department in Oslo showed that nearly 60% of patients were at risk of malnutrition when admitted.
Nutritional treatment of malnutrition
There are several disease conditions that often lead to malnutrition. Malnutrition increases the risk of complications, affects the immune system, and increases risk of infections. Omega-3 and vitamin D have been shown to positively affect the immune defence. The acidity from juice stimulates salivation and may stimulate appetite. Using nutritional supplements may:
- Increase muscle strength
- Reduce infections
- Reduce ill health
- Reduce mortality
- Increase quality of life and provide improved sense of well-being.
Patients who are particularly susceptible to malnutrition are the elderly, patients with dementia, psychiatric patients, people living alone, patients with impaired general health, and patients with dysphagia (difficulty swallowing).
Nutrifriend 600 and Nutrifriend 1100 are useful in treatment of malnutrition:
- High fiber content improves the bowel health and reduces the risk of constipation
- Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA improve the balance between pro-inflammatory omega-6 and anti-inflammatory omega-3
- EPA/DHA and vitamin D3 strengthen the immune response
- High degree of whey protein provides useful calories and strengthens the muscles
In order to avoid malnutrition in the patient groups, it is important to maintain a varied diet containing all the nutrients the body needs. Malnutrition is often characterized by an unbalanced consumption of food products. A diet consisting of a lot of refined sugar, additives and preservatives is highly detrimental over a longer period.