Food & Love = Health

ICS provider God's Love We Deliver (GLWD) cooks and delivers meals that are tailored to an individual’s medical needs.

When a special diet is needed, God’s Love We Deliver is there.

ICS provider God’s Love We Deliver (GLWD) cooks and delivers meals that are tailored to an individual’s medical needs. While most ICS members do not need meal deliveries, for those who do, this service can be a real blessing. For more than 30 years, the organization has helped New Yorkers manage their health by providing the right kinds of food.

Most ICS members’ meals are prepared by their home care aides or family caregivers. Some members are able to prepare their own food. There are exceptions, however, where a member’s needs are very specific, that call for meal delivery services.

“During my first conversation with ICS member Carol S, she mentioned that because she also helps care for her husband, she hardly has time to cook,” said ICS care manager Jovana Nestorovic. “While Carol receives food stamps, she only qualifies for a very minimal amount and she often found herself having difficulty buying enough food for the entire month.

“With limited mobility and resources, Carol was at risk for malnutrition. God’s Love We Deliver helped her fill in the gaps with nutritious, healthy meals,” Jovana added.

In a case like Carol’s, tailored meal deliveries are an important intervention. As we’ve discussed before, many older adults and people with disabilities suffer from malnutrition that neither they nor their doctors are aware of, but that can have severe consequences.

Without proper nutrition our bodies cannot effectively fight infection, heal wounds or move without pain. Malnutrition also threatens our cognitive abilities and emotional wellbeing. As one person put it, malnutrition can “turn a manageable chronic condition into an acute medical crisis.”

It’s also important to know that it is common for someone to be experiencing malnutrition without appearing to be underweight, which means it’s easy to have the condition go undiagnosed. Plus, it is not something doctors routinely screen patients for.

God’s Love We Deliver considers attention to the details of nutrition the heart of its mission. The agency prepares more than one million individually-tailored meals each year. Because they believe that food is medicine, and a critical part of managing chronic illness, everything is made fresh, from scratch, in the nonprofit’s kitchen, with no preservatives or fillers.

At ICS we understand the importance of healthy food; that’s why we recently partnered with the Center for Independence of the Disabled to bring groups of our members to New York City greenmarkets to learn how fresh food is not only healthy, but can also be quite affordable. And it’s why we turn to God’s Love We Deliver when a member needs specialized meal delivery services. Not only do their dietitians work with members to develop tailored meal plans that help manage their illnesses, medication and side effects; they also offer nutrition counseling and education.

Most people are aware of the important role that nutrition plays in managing common ailments such as diabetes and heart disease, but a tailored diet is also important for people with Alzheimer’s Disease, many types of cancer, Parkinson’s Disease, HIV/AIDs, and conditions of the kidneys, liver, and intestines.

God’s Love We Deliver employs a team of registered dietitians who are experts in the role food can play in managing these and other medical conditions. They can also accommodate people who, for reasons of religion, preference, or allergy, need to avoid certain foods.

Whether or not a member needs specialized meal delivery services, God’s Love We Deliver has great resources for helping to manage medical conditions with the right foods. These are available free to anyone who wants to ask their home care aide, family caregiver, or whoever is preparing their meals to follow the best nutritional guidelines for their condition. Want to know more? Check out their free nutrition guides for specific illnesses, which you can read or print right here.

 

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