Staff, relatives, friends and users of mental health services at St James’ Hospital are this week being treated to some samples of food provided on the wards as part of an initiative to show the link between nutrition and health.
The awareness session, will take place in The Orchards on Thursday 25 October from 11am to 3pm. It is provided by Solent NHS Trust, local specialists in high quality community and mental health services.
Jaqui Guile, Clinical Matron for Adult Mental Health Services, said, “The event will highlight the importance of physical health in mental health. We are planning to give an open and rounded experience to our visitors. The food we provide to our patients is locally sourced and cooked on St James’ Hospital site and we would like everyone, to gain more knowledge about food provenance, nutrition and the important link to physical and mental health. There will be opportunity’s to visit our kitchen to experience how the food is prepared on offer.”
Jaqui and her team, who work with adults with severe and enduring mental health issues, will be joined by other Solent NHS Trust services to talk about healthy weight and how to appropriately calculate Body Mass Index.
“This is a very important day for everyone involved in mental health as we are aiming to provide a wealth of information, including how to reduce the risks of physical health complications in mental health. We will also be talking about how we protect mealtimes for patients, so we can demonstrate how as a service we make sure food and nutrition are serious matters that are factored into the care package we give to our patients.”
To demonstrate how meals have changed for the better, the session will also have sample menus from years ago. A chef will be providing samples from the healthier food options available throughout the hospital.
Other services available for visitors will include a sexual health nurse, who will be able to offer support and guidance on services, a pharmacist to discuss medication and physical health, a dietician who will be on hand to offer advice about health and good food for mental health