Feature Archive

Eating Right With Limited Mobility

Your guide from soup to nuts -- or smoothies, as the case may be.

By Denise Mann
WebMD Feature

Reviewed By Michael Smith

With arthritis, the simplest tasks can seem Herculean -- especially when they involve preparing and eating meals. You're not alone. Opening a carton of milk, slicing a tomato, or making a sandwich can be overwhelming to the millions of people with arthritis and other diseases and conditions that affect mobility.

So how are you supposed to eat the healthy, balanced diet that your doctors insist is part of your treatment?

"Anyone with osteoarthritis or any kind of limitation that affects their ability to walk, use their hands, or their ability to stand, as well as those with decreased general endurance and weakness that's secondary to another disease, can run into trouble when it comes to preparing and eating meals," says Susan Underwood, RN, RD, manager of nutrition services for the Visiting Nurse Service-Choice of New York. (VNS-Choice), a long-term care program serving the elderly and disabled.

"Someone's ability to cook and prepare meals is compromised if they can't stand or use their hands."

But simple strategies and tasty tips can help make cooking and eating manageable and enjoyable once again.