Contribution digital nutrition coach LIZ in dietary treatment of fragile elderly at home
One in ten older adults living at home is malnourished. E-health may contribute to self-management, independency, and participation of older people in the home situation and herewith to treatment of malnutrition. However, for adoption of e-health devices, it is important that the e-health solution is applicable in daily practice. Therefore, the primary research question of this study was: ‘What are the desires and expectations of (vulnerable) older adults and of dietitians for a digital nutrition coach to improve dietary treatment in the home situation?’
This study concerns an exploratory, qualitative study in which semi-structured interviews were conducted among (frail) older adults living at home and dietitians.
Nine dietitians and 14 elderly were interviewed. In the analysis of the results five themes emerged and these were comparable for older adults and dietitians: functionalities, content, appearance, the perceived usefulness and necessity, and the financing of the digital nutrition coach. The ideal digital nutrition coach must be able to: give reminders, help reading food labels, ask and answer questions, explaining on food, disease and health, share recipes and support with the groceries. During the data collection it appeared that most older adults find it difficult and confronting to talk about the future, in which loss of function may occur.
Results of this study have been used to (further) develop a digital nutrition coach, which is now being field-tested.
Key words: digital nutrition coach, (frail) elderly, malnutrition, dietary treatment, e-health, self management