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The use of finger foods in care settings: An integrative review

The use of finger foods in care settings: An integrative review
The use of finger foods in care settings: An integrative review

Background

Reduced food intake is prevalent in people in residential and hospital care settings. Little is known about the use of finger foods (i.e. foods eaten without cutlery) with respect to increasing feeding independence and food intake. The Social Care Institute for Excellence (Malnutrition Task Force: State of the Nation, 2017) recommends the use of finger foods to enable mealtime independence and to prevent loss of dignity and embarrassment when eating in front of others. The aim of this review is to identify and evaluate the existing literature regarding the use and effectiveness of finger foods among adults in health and social care settings.

Methods

An integrative review methodology was used. A systematic search of electronic databases for published empirical research was undertaken in October 2018. Following screening of titles and abstracts, the full texts of publications, which investigated outcomes associated with the provision of finger foods in adult care settings, were retrieved and assessed for inclusion. Two independent investigators conducted data extraction and quality assessment using Critical Appraisal Skills Programme checklists. Thematic analysis was used to summarise the findings.

Results

Six studies met the inclusion criteria. Four themes were identified: Finger food menu implementation; Importance of a team approach; Effect on nutrition; and Influence on wellbeing. Study designs were poorly reported, with small sample sizes.

Conclusions

There is some evidence that the provision of finger foods may positively affect patient outcomes in long‐term care settings. There is a paucity of research evaluating the use of a finger food menu in acute care settings, including economic evaluation. Future high quality trials are required.
0952-3871
Heelan, M.
42722473-458a-40e5-8326-42758d665613
Prieto, J.
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Roberts, H.
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Gallant, N.
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Barnes, C.
89e9d258-23a6-438e-841a-daf4c4f7ea37
Green, S.
bfc312c9-261e-474d-ad68-b36712330976
Heelan, M.
42722473-458a-40e5-8326-42758d665613
Prieto, J.
47dd42cd-35d5-4ece-8fc6-fdb8fe1f01cc
Roberts, H.
5ea688b1-ef7a-4173-9da0-26290e18f253
Gallant, N.
a7f75a9b-6a3b-4307-9fb6-404c663c1c85
Barnes, C.
89e9d258-23a6-438e-841a-daf4c4f7ea37
Green, S.
bfc312c9-261e-474d-ad68-b36712330976

Heelan, M., Prieto, J., Roberts, H., Gallant, N., Barnes, C. and Green, S. (2019) The use of finger foods in care settings: An integrative review. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics. (doi:10.1111/jhn.12725).

Record type: Article

Abstract


Background

Reduced food intake is prevalent in people in residential and hospital care settings. Little is known about the use of finger foods (i.e. foods eaten without cutlery) with respect to increasing feeding independence and food intake. The Social Care Institute for Excellence (Malnutrition Task Force: State of the Nation, 2017) recommends the use of finger foods to enable mealtime independence and to prevent loss of dignity and embarrassment when eating in front of others. The aim of this review is to identify and evaluate the existing literature regarding the use and effectiveness of finger foods among adults in health and social care settings.

Methods

An integrative review methodology was used. A systematic search of electronic databases for published empirical research was undertaken in October 2018. Following screening of titles and abstracts, the full texts of publications, which investigated outcomes associated with the provision of finger foods in adult care settings, were retrieved and assessed for inclusion. Two independent investigators conducted data extraction and quality assessment using Critical Appraisal Skills Programme checklists. Thematic analysis was used to summarise the findings.

Results

Six studies met the inclusion criteria. Four themes were identified: Finger food menu implementation; Importance of a team approach; Effect on nutrition; and Influence on wellbeing. Study designs were poorly reported, with small sample sizes.

Conclusions

There is some evidence that the provision of finger foods may positively affect patient outcomes in long‐term care settings. There is a paucity of research evaluating the use of a finger food menu in acute care settings, including economic evaluation. Future high quality trials are required.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 13 November 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 9 December 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 436558
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/436558
ISSN: 0952-3871
PURE UUID: 11ec5deb-d72e-439b-9257-1831f155593f
ORCID for M. Heelan: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0026-2687
ORCID for J. Prieto: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5524-6775
ORCID for H. Roberts: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5291-1880

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 13 Dec 2019 17:30
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 06:54

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Contributors

Author: M. Heelan ORCID iD
Author: J. Prieto ORCID iD
Author: H. Roberts ORCID iD
Author: N. Gallant
Author: C. Barnes
Author: S. Green

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