Woman blending home brew for extra nutrition

Homebrews (Blender Made Formulas) For The Child Who Needs Extra Nutrition

Many children just aren't able to eat all that they need and so their nutrition suffers. This is particularly true for children with developmental delays.

High calorie beverages and puddings are now available to supplement the calories, proteins and nutrients these kids need when they can't finish their meals. A particular product can be chosen based on the patient's need for fiber in regulating bowel movements and the patient's tolerance of the product's components and taste. Many parents like the convenience and many children like the taste, because they often have a high sugar content, but other children quickly stop drinking them.

The products are expensive; and while they have good nutritional value (because they do contain additional nutrients), they either need to be given in quantity or along with other foods in order to meet the child's complete nutritional needs. And insurance companies often don't reimburse the parents for what these formulas cost.

With the assistance of a qualified pediatric dietitian, a cost effective alternative can be made by the caregiver to improve the nutritional status of these children. Pediatric dietitians can combine foods with a milk (or alternative milk base). They can adapt the beverage adding calories, fluid and fiber content, vitamin and mineral requirements, and allergy restrictions to meet a child's special needs. Potentially, these blenderized feedings or "homebrews" are less expensive and offer the caregiver the perception of providing their child "real food" and "hands on care."

Aruna Navathe has developed a consistently good "homebrew," which many patients have used successfully. The basic instructions and needed products are included here so that you can understand how the formulas are designed and prepared. While the preparation can seem difficult when you're reading the first time, the formula can actually be made in just a few minutes.

Directions for preparation of home tube-feeding

1. Measure all ingredients carefully, using measuring cups

2. Pour ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir contents to combine

3. Mix well, using blender or mixer method

Blender method: Blend at medium speed for 3 minutes or until mixed thoroughly

Mixer method: Mix at medium speed for 5 minutes or until mixed thoroughly

4. There should be no lumps in the formula

5. If the mixture is thick, thin it with water as recommended by dietitian

6. Pour formula into a clean container or individual jars. Cover and refrigerate immediately

7. The refrigerated formula may be safely used within 24–36 hours

8. Before each feeding, the amount of formula needed should be measured into a separate container, covered and warmed slightly before use

9. To warm formula: place the container with one feeding into a pan of hot water for 15–20 minutes, or use a microwave oven on a low setting for approximately 1 minute

10. Do not overheat the formula

11. Shake the formula or stir it to avoid hotspots

12. Do not use formula that has been heated or removed from the refrigerator for more than 2 hours. Discard immediately

13. Flush tube with 15–30 ml water, or as recommended

14. If any problems are noted (intolerance to formula, diarrhea, thickness of formula), please review with registered dietitian

Note: Once you know your child is tolerating this recipe, it maybe helpful to 'stock up' on all of the ingredients, because each one is important. The simple omission of one ingredient could have a serious impact, so call your dietitian if you have any questions or concerns about this recipe before changing it.

Courtesy of Aruna Navathe, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Formula instructions for parents

For: ................................. Date: ..................

Home Tube-Feeding Recipe

'Home Brew'

The feeding formula should be prepared fresh daily. To prepare this formula safely, you must always:

1. Wash your hands

2. Use clean mixing bowls, equipment and utensils

3. Sanitize the blender or mixer bowl by filling with boiling water. Allow to stand for 3 minutes and then discard water

Recipe ::

In a large clean mixing bowl or blender combine the following ingredients:

____ ounces or ____ cups of milk or formula

____ teaspoon(s) vegetable oil

____ tablespoon(s) cereal ({1/4} cup)

____ packet Carnation Instant Breakfast

____ table salt

Strained baby food ::

____ jar(s) fruit (4 oz)

____ jar(s) vegetable (4 oz)

____ jar(s) meat (2.5 oz)

Note: You may vary the selection of strained baby foods daily.

Volume :oz

Calories : cal/recipe   Per ounce: cal/oz

Protein : g/recipe   Per ounce: g/oz

Fat : g/recipe

Carbohydrate :g/recipe

kcal distribution :% protein, % fat, % carbohydrate

Rate :ml/h

Flushes :20–30 ml water

Vitamins/minerals :This will meet RDA for all nutrients.

Courtesy of Aruna Navathe, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Dr. Stan Cohen13 May 2015

Dr. Stan Cohen is one of our founders and our CEO as well as the Chairman of our Medical Advisory Board. Dr. Stan is an internationally recognized expert in Read more

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