A liquid or pureed diet is necessary for anyone who can't chew or whose mouth is immobilized. This includes after tooth extraction especially wisdom teeth, a broken jaw or facial injuries to the lips, cheeks or nose. It is also useful for anyone unable to chew and swallow properly due to dry mouth, mouth ulcers, mouth problems, braces, dental work or post-operatively.
Any food can be included, provided it is pureed to a semi-solid consistency in a food processor or blender. It can be thinned down with gravy, stock, milk or water and fed to the patient with a wide straw or spoon.
Frequently, the patient is hungry and loses weight, especially if young and male, and ensuring that they receive enough kilojoules/calories each day can be a problem.
A liquid diet soon becomes monotonous and boring, so encouragement and variety of liquids is important.
In a saucepan, place chicken breast or 100g diced chicken pieces with a peeled, diced potato and one stick of celery. Cover with just enough water or stock, a few sprigs of parsley and a bay leaf. Cook over low heat for 20-30 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Remove celery, parsley and bay leaf, then puree in a food processor, adding sufficient of the cooking stock to make smooth and liquid.
Break 2 eggs into a blender or food processor. Add 3 or 4 drops of vanilla essence, 2 teaspoons of sugar or honey, a pinch of nutmeg (optional) and 2 cups (500ml) of milk. Blend for 30 seconds until frothy. Store in the refrigerator and drink when required. Note: To increase the protein and kilojoule count, add in 3 or 4 tablespoons of full-cream milk powder OR commerical powders such as Sustagen or Ensure.
Follow these suggestions when you're ready to start eating more solid food:
Aim to transition to liquids for 2 or 3 days - think smoothies, juices and thin pureed soups as well as coffee, herbal teas, teas or water. If you know you have surgery coming up, you could make batches of soup ahead and store in the freezer in single serve portions.
When your mouth or teeth are better, then move onto purees like:
Start on soft foods like:
If you need to keep your weight up (like active sporty types do), then I suggest a 1 kg tin of Sustagen or Ensure powder. Add it to milk or smoothies to boost your kilojoule/calorie intake as well as getting vitamins and minerals.