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Title: Dementia and food : towards an understanding of food-related processes within dementia care
Author: Papachristou, Iliatha Georgina
ISNI:       0000 0004 2747 8688
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2012
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In the dementia and food literature, the focus is on eating in institutional settings; from formal caregivers’ perspectives (Watson & Green, 2006). The current thesis aims to investigate the phenomenon of dementia and food processes (shopping, preparation and eating) from caregivers’ perspectives, using four different research methodologies. In Study 1a and 1b, a qualitative study was carried out in which twenty caregivers’ narratives on dementia progression and food processes and needs for food services were analysed using Thematic Analysis. Results from Study 1a revealed a set pattern of decline in dementia and food, as the ability to shop for food declined first, then preparation and lastly the ability to eat declined. Caregivers transitioned into a new food role by adapting to these changes. From Study 1b results revealed three points of view; most needing information support on food and dementia. In Study 2, in order to assess dementia, food processes and affect it has on satisfaction with food-related life, a quantitative study was designed, operationalised from the results obtained in Study 1. Results indicated a significant relation with adapting to changes more in food shopping and preparation than eating. Also, seeking information and education was significant with satisfaction with food-related life. In Study 3, an audit was conducted to ascertain food and dementia material, using Thematic Analysis. Results revealed that most information was on eating, some on preparation and least on shopping and that materials were scarce. Finally, Study 4a was carried out using a Think-Aloud method, in which two sets of caregivers fed back on two different booklets on food and dementia. One booklet was from Study 3 and another newly devised booklet was operationalised from the results obtained from Study 1a and 3. It was found that caregivers judged the new booklet more beneficial, as it contained all food processes. It is concluded that by receiving focused information and support services as dementia progresses, caregivers and the cared for can maintain satisfaction with food-related life.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available