Nutrition is that branch of science that deals with nutrients and nutrition in relation to human being. It is the steps taken to provide important nutrients for growth and health.
The food and what we drink help to make us healthy or unhealthy.It is a basic human necessity for nutritional needs to change as our body grows and make changes based on wellness or illness. Food provide nutrients to both the mind and our body. Is eating a political statement, source of happiness ,basic necessity or ,a very important component in health and wellness. Nutrition involves a lot in our lives such as energy expenditure, and balance, adequate food intake.A balanced meal will include carbohydrates, protein and lipd.It become very important for the Registered Nurse upon patients admission to the hospital to evaluate the nutritional value of the patient. How does the body handle nutrients and how does it affect our behavior in response to nourishment. Does good nutrition depend on socioeconomic status and the process of socialization?.No matter how you look at it.Nutrition is part of nursing and incorporated into Nursing assessment. Nutrition is one of the courses taken in the University as a nursing students. Do you remember the food pyramid?.
WHEN SHOULD PATIENTS BE ASSESSED FOR NUTRITIONAL NEEDS?
All patients should be screened during admission. The initial screening should be upon admission and high risk individuals should be referred to the hospital Registered Dietitian for evaluation and recommendation. According to Studies 20 to 50% of patients are malnourished. What is the Gold Standard use to identify malnourished patients?.
The most common gold standard for nutritional assessment use by doctors and dietitians is the BLOOD TEST:Blood test is most accurate when compared to the other none analytical approach. For example in most cases if a patient has sufficiency of a specific nutrient it will reflect it’s storage in the body and like wise if patient for example has low vitamin D,or low vitamin b6 it will show in the blood test. The Dietitian will recommend replacement and the physician will order it.So blood test is very important in evaluating our nutritional needs.
WHAT IS THE IMPORTANCE OF GOOD NUTRITION:
Good nutrition will reduce the deterioration in mental and physical functions.
Reduce the complications and severity of malnutrition.
All patients with nutritional risks should be assessed by the Registered Dietitian within 24 to 48hours of admission to the hospital.
Here are some factors that will contribute to high risk individuals:
(1)Dental problems: Unfitted dentures or missing teeth or oral cancer.This makes it difficult for patients to Chew their food. They have no teeth and cannot chew. Eating healthy is very important for our general wellbeing.
(2)Swallow problem: Patient has dysphagia and cannot swallow. Swallow evaluation ordered by the doctor. The Speech therapist sees the order and evaluate patient to see if the patient can swallow through series of test.If patient cannot swallow the doctor might order NGT a temporary method of feeding the patient with food,water and medication. Or the doctor might order TPN.Everything is factored in, including patient laboratory results, and his or her guts.
(3)Diabetes Complications:Diabetes nutritional therapy is needed. Laboratory test such as Hgba1c level will reveal if patient is Prediabetic,Diabetic. Normal A1C is less than 5.7.If your A1C is greater than >5.7,you are Prediabetic. Which foods have carbohydrates and which foods don’t. Is carbohydrate counting important. 15grams of Carbohydrates is usually recommended for diabetic patients. Proverbs 25:27 It is not good to eat too much honey.
(4) Decubitus Ulcer: Patient came in with wound. Nutrition Consultation is needed. Patient Braden Scale noted.A Braden scale of 9 to 13 is high risk,and less than 9 is very high risk.
(5)Congestive heart failure patients also need Registered Dietitian recommendations. Low sodium intake and fluid restriction.
Nutrition involves interdisciplinary team which include the doctors, nurses, Registered Dietitians, Physical therapy.
World Health Organization (2019,October 2016)http://www.euro.who.int/en/health- topics/disease- prevention/nutrition/a- healthy-lifestyle/body – mass – index- bmi