Deakin University

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Nutrient intake and plate waste from an Australian residential care facility

journal contribution
posted on 2007-01-01, 00:00 authored by Jessica Grieger, Caryl NowsonCaryl Nowson
Objective: To determine the plate waste, energy and selected-nutrient intake, from elderly residents living in a high-level care (HLC) and low-level care (LLC) facility.

Design: Three, single, whole day assessments of plate waste, energy, and selected nutrients, using a visual rating plate waste scale.

Setting: Long-term residential care establishment.

Subjects: One hundred and sixty-nine (93 HLC and 76 LLC) individual daily intakes.

Main findings: The mean energy wasted throughout the whole day was 17%. The energy wasted from main meals (16%) was significantly less than the energy wasted at mid-meals (22%, P=0.049). The lowest mean energy wastage occurred at breakfast (8%) compared to lunch (22%) and dinner (25%, P<0.001). The mean (s.d.) daily energy served and consumed was 8.1 (2.0) and 6.6 (2.2) MJ, respectively. There was no difference in energy served or consumed between HLC and LLC residents. On the observation day, 60% of residents consumed less than their estimated energy requirement. The mean calcium intake was 796 (346) mg, and the median (inter-quartile range) vitamin D intake was 1.78 (2.05) μg.

Conclusion: On 1 day, more than half the residents surveyed were at risk of consuming an inadequate energy intake, which over-time, may result in body weight loss. Although wastage was not excessive and energy served was adequate, the amount of food eaten was insufficient to meet energy and calcium requirements for a significant number of residents and it is not possible to consume sufficient vitamin D through food sources.



European journal of clinical nutrition




655 - 663


Nature Publishing Group


London, England








published online 6 December 2006

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2007, Nature Publishing Group