Has anyone dealt with a parent who instead of chewing and swallowing food, chews it up and spits it out? - AgingCare.com

Has anyone dealt with a parent who instead of chewing and swallowing food, chews it up and spits it out?

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Mom is in stage 3 kidney failure, has CHF, congenital heart defects and has been diagnosed as terminal. She is in hospice care in my home. Just recently she has taken to chewing her food and spitting it out. She does this less at breakfast and more as the day progresses. She tends to do it more with meat than any other food. I have asked her if the food " tastes bad" ( as this is a symptom of renal failure) she replies with" no, it doesn't . when I ask her why she is doing this..she replies " I don't know" . She will not chew up and spit out sweet things. She will swallow them normally. I can't give her a diet of
Has anyone dealt with this ? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.i am using supplemental shakes to fill in the nutritional gap. And have also consulted a renal dietician....

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If you feel you must feed her meat (I'm a vegetarian, so I'd be spitting out the meat too, LOL), I'd go with baby food, if she'd eat that. Maybe mix it with mashed potatoes or some other soft/mashed food, so it doesn't appear so much like baby food. Mix it in with mac and cheese or baked beans or something like that.
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Thank you! I will look into this. It is really exasperating!
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Mel - your dealing with "mouth-feel" which actually is a term used in food marketing. What is happening is probably due to what proteins are. Proteins like meats, fish, etc have oils which have a surface texture to them which feel heavy or "sit"on the tongue or sometimes makes one have a gag reflex. Sugars dissolve easily in the mouth and so the mouth-feel is totally different. Ditto for frozen foods.

i would suggest that you look into foods that work for cancer patients as to what foods "taste" easier or better. There is a a great cancer recipe cookbook by Holly Clegg on this whole subject, I'm sure there are also "tips" on this subject on the pharmaceuticals website that do cancer drugs too.
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Thank you both. It is such a bizarre behavior. She doesn't do it with all foods. Anything sweet she will chew and swallow. Meat comes right back out.
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My mother is advanced Alzheimer's. She can still feed herself but I do see where she picks pieces of the meat out of her mouth and puts it on her plate. It is not the same as what you are experiencing...but I wonder if pureeing the meat would help make it easier for them to chew and swallow. If you are caregiving for your mother, maybe try pulping the meat in a blender to make it softer. It is worth a try. Hugs to you!!
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