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Scott Med J. 2001 Dec;46(6):171-2.

Preferences for different high-energy foods in elderly medical in-patients.

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Department of Medicine, Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee, DDI 9SY United Kingdom.


Malnourishment is a common finding in hospitalised elderly patients. It is often addressed by the provision of nutritional supplements, in the form of sip-feeds. Patients' intake of these is frequently inadequate. We assessed the palatability of sip-feed nutritional supplements and other high-energy foods to elderly medical in-patients. Using the Lickhert Scale, 49 subjects rated the taste of a previously selected sip-feed supplement and five other high-energy foods, cheese biscuit, plain potato crisps, chocolate, cherry-flavoured cereal bar and stout beer. Subjects rated the taste of sip-feeds as favourably as all other offered foods, with the exception of the lower rated stout beer (p = 0.0001). Taste alone is unlikely to account for the poor intake of sip-feed nutritional supplements by elderly hospital patients.

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