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Celebrating disAbility Culture!


Lisa B's TMJ/D Eating Tips

animated email imageEmail Lisa B

I really became bored with a lot of recipies I had in books for no-chew diets...I wanted "real" food. So I invented a few "tools" and started eating again, not normally, but normal foods. My best friends are a food processor, and zip-lock freezer baggies.

But taking an hour or two on the weekends to prepare this food keeps me at the dinner table with my boyfriend, and lunch table with my co-workers, on time and with a feeling of having tasted real food, no matter what it looks like. It's those times "on the go" that I really want good, filling food, but don't have time to fix it and put it on a plate.

Those people who don't have jaw problems relate to the "quick burger" or pita, etc. from their local fast food. I rely on my cooler, my playtex baby bottle (a little conformed) and whatever favorite sandwich I have prepared during the weekend. For a "real" food suggestion, without raising the actual fat content of the original sandwich, I use non-fat salad dressings, water, and sometimes milk for bases, to make the sandwich palatable through a tube.

Following is an example of my favorite....

I love philly cheese subs, but haven't actually bit into one in 10 yrs. My solution, I cut up 3" sub portion from my local fav. sub shop. Put into food processor on chop. I chop this up to 1/2" pieces, granted not beautiful but still tastes the same. Then, depending on how soft I need to get the bread and sandwich filling, I add my fav. non-fat italian salad dressing. (2 tablespoons dressing and 2 tablespoons water) (and sometimes a little water to keep from "overdoing the italian) I then chop again until it is to the texture I can handle, spoon into playtex disposable bottle liners, and put into my freezer until I'm ready to use them. I use the microwave on low setting for 2-3 minutes to thaw.

If I'm having a day where I cannot open enough to get a spoon in, I will use these "sandwiches" attached to a playtex bottle. I have taken the bottle and removed all but 1" to where the cap attaches, the nipples are cut off to allow the food to pass through. I attach the sandwich pouches and squeeze, kinda like decorating a cake. I also have an old "ketchup" bottle with a screw-off top that I cut which works well.

Thankfully, I've been able to use a small spoon lately. I hope this will be a good suggestion for those "craving" times when you really, really want a sandwich or something but know you can't chew it. By the way, cake decorating bags, the large size, work well with this kind of food.

Also, when my weight has dropped low, I found a supplement that has very little fat, but what your body needs to keep going without loosing weight. I mix it with skim milk when my energy is low and weight dropping. You can get it from any General Nutrition store, called Weight Gainer 1850. Funny, there's a picture of a body builder on the front -always makes me smile, but it's 750 calories per serving, .5g of fat per serving and has all those things you need, vitamins, minerals, etc. It tastes so much better than Ensure!

Actually, there are quite a few of these types of powdered supplements - low fat - on the market, not just this one, but people seem a little intimidated by the "body builder" on the front. No, not a chance that one of us TMJ patients will look like that after drinking this supplement!! But, supplements never take the place of food...I guess TMJ patients know that very well.

by: Lisa B.© 1997

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