When the doctor first told my husband that he was going to need a permanent feeding tube, my mind went blank. I thought, “How is he going to eat? What will he eat? How will this affect our life?”
I left the hospital with a million questions going through my head. When I got home, I did what any sane person would do. I googled it. I researched and read everything I could find about living with a feeding tube.
I found lots of information about blended diets for kids, but not much for grown-ups. Being a retired librarian, I was not deterred. I read comments about experiences and the pros and cons of a blended diet. Nutritionists will “poo-poo” the blended diet because it is not balanced. But who really eats a 100% balanced diet?Blenders
OK, now I was feeling a little less overwhelmed. This might work. Hubby loves to cook so being able to eat the foods he normally eats will be as psychologically beneficial as nutritionally beneficial.
On my next visit to the hospital, I reported my findings about a blended diet to my husband and he was excited with the prospect. Life might be normal after all.
Now to figure out HOW to blend the food. Back to the Internet. Various bloggers talked about using their home blender, an immersion blender, blenders for juicing and making smoothies, Ninjas, and Vitamix blenders. I went to the Vitamix website to read about their blenders. The first thing that I noticed was the price. I won’t kid you, they are pricey blenders. I debated spending that amount of money but Hubby always says, “You can do any job if you have the right tools.” Considering we would be using this blender every day, maybe multiple times a day, for the foreseeable future, we decided we needed a blender that could handle the work.
What convinced me was the comments from one blogger who eats a blended diet. He said that he had tried all the blenders and the only one that did the job with all types of foods was the Vitamix. He said, “Bite the bullet and spend the money on a Vitamix. By the time you try all the lower priced ones, you could have bought a Vitamix.”
When Hubby came home from the hospital, he “ate” the canned formula they prescribed. It was sad for him as he loves to cook and food is his artistic medium. The idea that he would only consume the formula was depressing. We had to try something different. So, the first thing we tried was our home blender and it was a no go. Then I told him what I found out about the blenders that Vitamix offer. Not knowing how all this would work, he choose the most expensive one that has 8 settings on it. The nice thing about the programmed settings is you turn it on, choose your setting and push start. The blender starts running and stops when the programmed cycle is finished.
It also has a clean cycle on it. Just add water and a drop of dish liquid and turn it on. When finished, rinse it out. Hubby is old fashioned so he cleans it by hand. You must be careful because the blades are sharp.
This blender also works well for a visually impaired person (which he is) because the programming does all the thinking for you.
We bought our Vitamix from a local kitchen store so we could use it immediately. All new Vitamix blenders have a seven-year guarantee and if it breaks down, you can send it in for repair and they will send you a replacement to use till yours is fixed.
Vitamix also has a medical needs program. If you get a medical needs letter from your doctor, they have reconditioned blenders available at a much lower price. Details are on their website.
Now to be honest we could have bought a cheaper Vitamix with three programmed settings on it and it would do what we need it to do because it has the same settings we use. I don’t regret our purchase. It has truly been a lifesaver for Hubby. Life is much more enjoyable being able to eat foods you normally eat. The only difference is that the blender does the chewing for you. (And Hubby cooks my dinner for me again.)