Eating the right foods as part of a balanced diet has a positive effect on your general well-being and can enable you to better manage specific MS symptoms.
Our nutrition team help people to self-manage their diet and nutrition, by providing information, practical advice about food types and the effects of different foods on our body plus psychological tips and strategies to ensure success. They can help with practical advice on meal preparation for those who find making a nutritious meal a little bit harder than others due to symptoms of MS. Advice can also be given regarding managing food and drink from a chewing and swallowing point of view to enable you to eat more easily and safely if this is an area of difficulty for you.
The team is made up of a Dietitian, a Speech & Language Therapist, a Clinical Counsellor, an Occupational Therapist and an Expert Service User.
The team provides the following support:
Information –on a wide range of topics from dietary advice, healthy foods, weight loss, food and fatigue and meal plans. They also provide dietary guidelines for people taking Tecfidera and other medicationor with other co-morbidities to the MS.
Workshops –our practical workshops help to educate people on the benefits of a healthy diet, practical tips on preparing meals more easily, the mechanics behind swallowing, managing symptoms through diet, psychological approaches and many other related topics. These workshops are open to people with MS, their families and carers.
Clinics -these individual sessions help to identify possible nutritional issues, such as low calcium and iron intakes, low fibre and fluid intakes. They also help to identify other contributing factors affecting the practical elements of shopping, food preparation and eating including fatigue, psychological and motivation issues, cognitive difficulties, swallowing problems and mobility problems. Relevant tailored advice and practical support can then be offered.
Weight loss programme –we run a weight lossgroup to help advice and support people to be able to lose weight in order to improve their MS symptoms.
Advice pathways –whilst we aim for people to be able to self-manage their diet, sometimes it is necessary to provide information on other services that can help if people require extra support. These can includeNHS services like the gastrointestinal & diabetes clinics, commercial weight management programmes, or other therapies such as speech & language, occupational therapy or counselling.
HOW COULD THE NUTRITION TEAM BENEFIT ME?
If you are worried about your nutrition, or are having problems in preparing or eating meals, then we would advise that you either attend one of their advertised events or ask for a referral to the team.
HOW TO ACCESS NUTRITION TEAM SERVICES?
Requirements for nutritional advice will often be identified in your initial and review assessments. Based on the referral our administration team will get in touch to offer a clinic appointment to identify your goals and treatment plan. Depending on your goals you may be offered a course of treatment or signposted to other related services.
Both MS members and carer members can also access the workshop programme by signing up to individual events when advertised. Some healthy eating information leaflets are also available for all to pick up by the lift near the canteen.
If you have any questions regarding our Nutrition Team or the services they offer, please call 01296 696133.