As a provider of dysphagia nutrition solutions, it is important to keep a finger on the pulse of what consumers, healthcare professionals, and foodservice providers in the market want and need. This knowledge guides the Thick-It® team on its mission to create quality products that simplify the lives of those with swallowing difficulties and their caregivers.
One way the Thick-It® team stays informed is by participating in conferences and research events, like The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Food & Nutrition Convention & Expo (FNCE), the world’s largest meeting of food and nutrition experts. This year, more than 11,000 attendees, representing 54 countries, 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, gathered to explore innovations and issues regarding nutrition and dietetics.
Attending this event allows the Thick-It® team to hear from top experts and thought leaders. It also provides an opportunity to educate attendees, including students, on swallowing disorders, dysphagia nutrition solutions, and the International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI), of which the Thick-It® brand is a gold sponsor.
While the majority of healthcare professionals who stopped by the Thick-It® booth at FNCE 2019 were familiar with IDDSI guidelines, many were interested in learning more about how to implement the guidelines within their facilities. This gave the Thick-It® team an opportunity to discuss the brand’s downloadable IDDSI training presentation, which was created to assist healthcare professionals during the IDDSI framework transition. It also gave the team a chance to introduce the convenience of the Thick-It® Clear Advantage® ready-to-drink beverages. This product line is pre-thickened, therefore requires no mixing, and is always IDDSI compliant, whether heated, chilled, frozen, or thawed.
At the brand’s booth, the Thick-It® team engaged and interacted with attendees through a friendly game of Flip-Cup using the aforementioned Thick-It® Clear Advantage® ready-to-drink beverages. Additionally, a visual display of Thick-It® Purées – both in its packaged form as well as plated using purée molds – sparked interest from attendees, with many noting their resemblance to real food.
As many larger facilities are looking to create or enhance their puréed meal offerings for those with dysphagia, FNCE attendees felt strongly that creating a positive mealtime and an overall enjoyable dining experience is key for the patient to thrive. The Thick-It® team agrees, and they look forward to using the feedback and conversations had at FNCE to continue developing products to do just that.
Are you a healthcare professional looking for more resources on IDDSI and dysphagia? Download the Thick-It® brand’s free guide to IDDSI, which was designed to help you continue to provide the best care for your patients.