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Momoffive
02-25-2010, 11:18 PM
I know that I have read some mentions of blenderized diets - I have a general sense of how they work and the need for the super blender, but am wondering a few things. First, is it really possible to keep track of calories fairly accurately, or is it more a general sense of how when we eat orally, it is different everyday, but balance out over a few days/a week? The only g-tube Robin has ever had is a Bard button - is it possible to use the diet with this tube? 10 1/2 years ago when he was discharged, I had actually asked the dietician if it was possible to blend what the family was eating and give it as a tube feed - her answer was that she was sure that I could figure something out! Not very helpful, and I was way too busy in the first few years keeping him breathing, and looking after 4 other kids to even try anything, then it just got so easy to use formula. We have cut back formula to 3 1/2 cans of Jevity 1.2 a day, plus 3 X 220 mL 3% milk + 30 mL whipping cream a day, and some oral intake (e.g. he'll eat the inside of a baked potato but that would be all he would eat at supper). His oral intake has increased in a big way since last summer, and he sometimes says he is hungry now. He recently noticed a bit of a change in his bowels (i.e. from being totally formula fed, changed when he added oral milk, now a difference with more reg. food). My thoughts about the blender diet would be that it would be a more natural source of nutrients - maybe better for his system? Have people whose kids need to gain weight noticed gains on this diet? (R. is about he height and weight of a 9 or 10yr old, will be 13 at the end of May). Sorry, it's long - I get carried away and I am typing and watching women's figure skating at the same time! Thanks for your time!

drct1245
02-26-2010, 12:19 AM
I am not familiar with a bard - so I can't help you in that area - sorry. But as for the BD and calories, I think it depends upon your child if you have to watch calories. We had to count the cals. After about 3-6 months, I became familiar with blends and knew the combination of food to keep him gaining weight. Every now and then I jump on nutritiondata.com to make sure I am on track.

Since you have other kids, you have an idea of approximately how much they eat. Another source of information is on the Yahoo message boards - they have one for the BD and there are a bunch of older kids on there as well as adults.

TommysMommy
02-26-2010, 08:01 AM
Aisley's mom does a blenderized diet for her. She's very detailed about it on her blog. She has several posts here http://ainsleyrae.blogspot.com/search/label/blenderized%20diet

kadiera
02-26-2010, 01:09 PM
Alexander's only g-tube feeding right now is his midnight catch-up feeding; we've been doing this in a blender since md-January, and it's working well (he's gaining weight, which he'd kind of stalled out on between November and the first of the year).

Pediasure and his digestive system don't get along, and it was about the only way for us to get 300+ calories into him in one shot without having a huge argument with the insurance.

Guilty admission: We don't have a super blender. We have a good smoothie/frozen drink blender (with the valve at the bottom to let drinks out), and we strain the resulting blend, to prevent it from clogging his g-tube extensions.

I'm getting more comfortable with the mixture of things; the calories may not be exact every night, but it's close enough to work out in the end.

Ainsley's Mom
02-26-2010, 04:54 PM
Aisley's mom does a blenderized diet for her. She's very detailed about it on her blog. She has several posts here http://ainsleyrae.blogspot.com/search/label/blenderized%20diet

Thank you Rene. I'm swamped right now, so please check out my blog. I'm in the process of a redesign which will include more blenderized diet info in an easier to find location. I would recommend starting out with a structured recipe that doesn't vary and then branching out into more complex recipes later. And I think you could feed blenderized formula through a Bard tube but you might have to make it thinner.

Alethia
02-27-2010, 04:30 AM
I started a blended diet for Angus when he was about 2. I would have done it before then, but there were so many other things to focus on. He used to go through a terrible cycle of diarrhoea followed by constipation. His poo would strip the skin from him whenever he was on formula. He had very painful, raw nappy rash for weeks at a time.

Initially I started him on baby rice mixed into his formula. Then I started adding pureed carrot and so on. A new food roughly every 3-4 days to see how he tolerated it. Once I had enough different foods, I ditched the formula and made up meals with those foods and additional oil like extra virgin olive oil or hempseed oil for calories. He did brilliantly on this. His stools became formed and comfortable for the first time in two years and he really thrived. I wished I'd done it sooner. I didn't bother with counting calories. Eventually I would put food on a small plate and look at it. If it looked the right amount for a child his age/size, I'd blend it with water and give it to him. This worked out fine. As he gained speech, he used to tell me when he felt full.

Momoffive
02-27-2010, 12:24 PM
Thanks everyone, this is a great start. Susan, I read some of your blog and watched your videos - great to see someone actually making the diet! Kate, I wondered about just getting the proportions from what Robin's twin Logan would eat, and bumping it up with some high calorie additions, so that sounds like what you would do with the plate of food. I am going to do some more research (particularly on sources for a blender) - we are working with a new dietician so I may touch base with her but I feel this is the direction we will move in. Hope everyone is having a restful Saturday.

aydenava
03-01-2010, 09:36 AM
Ive been doing the blenderized diet for about 3 years with my son & he has a bard g-t & its perfectly safe,I got my blender from vitamix,you can google it & with a script from a dr. that your sons on a blenderized diet you will get a 50% discount
its wonderfull! purees meat it 15 sec.!,turnes peanuts into peanut butter,def worth it!good luck..........Angie

Ainsley's Mom
03-06-2010, 08:21 PM
Monica, I was wondering if you have any questions now that you watched the videos and read the blog entries. Let me know if there is any way I can help. My daughter had a sleepover party, my son got a new bed and I had a business meeting. But now I'm a little more available to help.

Momoffive
03-31-2010, 11:51 AM
As a single mom ft university student, as I'm sure you can imagine, my budget is pretty limited, so I have been trying different avenues to get some funding for a blender - I was feeling a bit discouraged today to get an e-mail from the liaison with the branch that is supposed to fund needs for families with special needs kids that will improve their situation, but are out of reach to the family (that was a pretty clumsy attempt on my part to summarize the function of the branch). The response? "We don't fund blenders." However, 10 days ago the same person called the dietician (who had had the doc write a letter which was sent to) and asked her to send more info and a price quote.....she must have known she was asking for a price quote for a BLENDER, since this was all about a BLENDER diet......So, proactive task for the day was to e-mail the liaison and ask for a copy of what they DO fund (I'm not a gambler, but would anyone like to place a bet on whether I get that or not?!) The initial letter was also sent to another agency that I have contact with so I will be pursuing them now. Otherwise, I guess I just wait until I am employed and can afford the thing myself. I did try to point out that with the blender, Robin would be using MUCH LESS FORMULA which is funded, therefore, saving out system money. In the meantime, I am continuing to plan for it happening.

Ainsley's Mom
03-31-2010, 02:42 PM
As a single mom ft university student, as I'm sure you can imagine, my budget is pretty limited, so I have been trying different avenues to get some funding for a blender - I was feeling a bit discouraged today to get an e-mail from the liaison with the branch that is supposed to fund needs for families with special needs kids that will improve their situation, but are out of reach to the family (that was a pretty clumsy attempt on my part to summarize the function of the branch). The response? "We don't fund blenders." However, 10 days ago the same person called the dietician (who had had the doc write a letter which was sent to) and asked her to send more info and a price quote.....she must have known she was asking for a price quote for a BLENDER, since this was all about a BLENDER diet......So, proactive task for the day was to e-mail the liaison and ask for a copy of what they DO fund (I'm not a gambler, but would anyone like to place a bet on whether I get that or not?!) The initial letter was also sent to another agency that I have contact with so I will be pursuing them now. Otherwise, I guess I just wait until I am employed and can afford the thing myself. I did try to point out that with the blender, Robin would be using MUCH LESS FORMULA which is funded, therefore, saving out system money. In the meantime, I am continuing to plan for it happening.

Not sure if I'm following all that 100%. But I'm assuming this is not insurance but an organization that gives money for a variety of purposes to families of special needs kids that are in need? Perhaps they don't have the information they need to understand why you are requesting funds to purchase a blender. A clear letter with some links to websites that discuss this type of feeding might help. Maybe you could link to my blog so they can see the high speed blender in action to they can see it's really not the same as a regular blender. Also, I don't know which you asked for but the Blendtec is less expensive than a Vitamix, although they sell refurbished ones for less to tube fed kids. Price might make a difference. I really hope you can figure out a way to get one.

Momoffive
03-31-2010, 07:20 PM
Thanks Susan. Most of the time, I am happy with our provincial health care system, but it's times like this that try my patience. If you can afford to pay for things yourself, well, no problem. But if you are, like me, of a low income, then there are various Social Services branches that are supposed to kick in. The Dietician who sees Robin says that Vitamix is the one that they are able to help families get, which leads me to wonder if the person I am dealing with at Children's Special Services a) knows what she is talking about and/or b) is trying to pass the buck - it seems that if they know that you are involved with more than one branch, they just pass around the responsibility; ultimately it is all health care dollars, but no one wants them to come out of their little pot of money. I don't want to come across as sounding like I think I should get something for nothing, but I just fail to understand how they think this wouldn't be a win-win situation for everyone (more natural diet for Robin - less health care $ spent for his formula). Some days, I just wonder why things can't just be a little easier for families dealing with special needs.

Momoffive
06-14-2010, 10:38 AM
Well, I'm feeling a little discouraged this morning. At our last appointment, the feeding specialist re-wrote (well, added a paragraph!) her letter to include the point that funding a blender for Robin would be a cost savings in the long run, as he would then be consuming less formula (and in Manitoba, formula is covered by Provincial Health Care, regardless of your income). I thought that this might persuade one of the two groups who provide funding for special needs related expenses.

I just received a phone message that the two groups want me to use a less expensive blender for 3 months and give them some feedback on how it is working out. I actually own a pretty decent Oster blender - when I say pretty decent - well, good for blending fruit and milkshakes but even at that, chunkier "bits" get stuck at the bottom - I really do not see how it would begin to process the ingredients from a whole meal into a consistency that could be fed through a Bard button. I have no interest in making up purees of fruits, veg, and meat and then combining them (did that when all my kids were babies, they ate mostly home made baby food) - I wanted to be able to use the reg. foods that the family was eating and combine for Robin's feeds. Maybe I'm just out to lunch with my expectations, but I think it's these folks who have no idea what they are talking about. Ok, thanks for letting me vent. :mad:

rosi's mom
06-14-2010, 12:29 PM
Have you talked to someone at the Vitamix company? I know a friend of mine here got a prescription and they got her one for half the price. While it's still expensive, it's not as bad and in the long run would be the best thing for Robin. Maybe, if they knew you could get it for less the companies would be more willing to help too?
I'm sorry they want you to use a less expensive one. I've tried it and while the blender works ok this way, there are still chunks. We use it for smoothies for Rosi, but couldn't use it to put through the Bard tube, especially hers since it's so small still. And, if I get a chunk part I have to take it out because she'll gag on chunks in her smoothies.
One thing you could do is make a blenderized meal for him (not really to feed him though) and then take pictures of the chunks or even just take it in to them. Show them how that would never go through the tube. It's just not possible. Maybe a visual would help them see it won't work? Then you wouldn't have to wait 3 months.

tbhartman
06-14-2010, 12:53 PM
Thank you for this information! I was coming on here to ask the exact same thing the original poster did! I obviously need to do a lot more research (and probably wait awhile, he's only 9 mo). Do you see any reason we couldn't just take stage 1 baby foods and add it to his regular formula? If he ate normally, he'd get a mix of both. It seems like he might tolerate that better than 27 cal formula if we could substitute some of the calories for real food.

Thanks for all your help, the video was nice too. One more thing, did you get all this info from Cincinnati Childrens? If so, who did you talk to? I don't know who to go to locally for any info like this.

drct1245
06-14-2010, 03:06 PM
...I just received a phone message that the two groups want me to use a less expensive blender for 3 months and give them some feedback on how it is working out. ...

As Rosi's mom said, vitamix offers refurbished (but still has a 7 yr warrenty) blenders for about $300. The nice thing is that Vitamix does ALL the work for you.

If you need to demonstrate that a regular blender is insufficient, I can send you my recipe and you could videotape what it does (or really doesn't do). :) It would probably get their attention, but unfortunately, you will probably sacrafice a blender (and all the ingredients) to do so. :)

I regular blender will not last 3 months. I did a modified BD, since Ayden was so young, where I used jars of baby food along with like oatmeal and the blenders I had barely kept up with that. I had 2 different blenders and I think they both lasted 6 months with switching off between the two. Vitamix is night and day, even with pureeing babyfood. :)

those are my thoughts for you... hopefully you can get them to purchase a blender!
good luck!

destinyandmiracles
06-15-2010, 08:08 PM
I highly recommend going with the vitamix. This thing is the bomb of blenders for g tube feeds. And like someone above mentioned, with a doctors note you get one for $300 and a 7 year warranty. No clumps, no chunks. I have the ladies email addy if you need it.