Some people with dementia may have a poor appetite or lose interest in food altogether. Everything from the way you set up a table, the colour of the table cloth, the type of crockery used or even playing music, can help to encourage a person to feel comfortable and confident at mealtimes.

Sometimes people living with dementia can struggle with handling cutlery or crockery, so it can be helpful to consider providing smaller knives and forks and using high rimmed plates to help them eat. Playing a person’s favourite music can also help them to relax and encourage them to enjoy eating.

In care home settings carers often build a rapport with the families of residents in order to understand their eating habits and food preferences to ensure that they are eating healthily. Care home staff can also try to blend in with residents and appear as if they’re eating with them to help preserve their dignity.

Mealtimes are an important part of daily life in Anchor’s care homes. We decorate all our care home dining areas in colours that are warm and inviting, that stimulate the appetite and encourage eating at mealtimes. We pride ourselves on the quality of our catering and our professional chefs ensure they understand the nutritional requirements and food preferences of all our residents. Find out more catering in Anchor’s care homes.

Download our free full guide to supporting a loved one with dementia (800 KB)

Helpful links

> What is dementia?
> Spotting the early signs of dementia
> How to get a diagnosis of dementia
> Adapting living environments for people with dementia
> Activities for people living with dementia
Meeting the emotional needs of people living with dementia
> Dementia care options