After you or a loved one has a stroke, it is common to have various problems with eating during the recovery period. One of the most frequent problems is dysphagia, or difficulty in swallowing. Stroke patients may have problems with fully chewing or producing enough saliva to swallow normally.

There also are other common problems that may interfere with regular eating after a stroke:

  • Depth of field and perspective problems that make it difficult to see where things are. This is especially common on the side of the body affected by stroke.
  • Difficulty identifying everyday objects and remembering how to do basic daily living functions, including using eating utensils.
  • Weakness in the hands or arms, which makes eating difficult

If you are suffering from these types of problems after your stroke, you should be evaluated by a rehabilitation specialist. You could need X-rays taken to monitor how you are swallowing, or cognitive tests to pinpoint the exact nature of your eating problems. As you recover from your stroke, your rehabilitation specialist will monitor how you are recovering, and if eating is getting easier for you.

The good news is that there are many things you can do to make eating easier after a stroke, including stroke products. For example:

  1. Eat food that is easy to taste, swallow and chew
  2. Process your foods to make them easy to swallow. For example, rather than eating an apple, have the apple cut up into small pieces that are easy to chew.
  3. As your dietitian or therapist to make thicker any liquids you drink. There are many additives available that make liquids easier to swallow for stroke victims.
  4. Do not eat foods that are too hot or cold.
  5. Use special eating techniques that prevent choking on food.
  6. Use special stroke dining aids that make eating easier.

Also, keep in mind these helpful eating tips as you recover from your stroke:

  1. Eat foods that have a pleasant aroma. Foods that smell good will stimulate your salivary glands and make it easier to chew and swallow food.
  2. Drink juice instead of water. The taste of the juice helps you to be aware that there is liquid in the mouth, and you will not choke.
  3. Do not eat sticky foods that are hard to swallow, including peanut butter, milk products or bananas.
  4. Avoid eating dry foods, such as rice, popcorn or crackers. These are very hard to swallow without ample saliva production

Use Special Stroke Dining Aids to Help You Eat

It is common to have weakness on one side of the body after a stroke. If one hand or arm is weak, holding a fork or spoon could be difficult. If you are having difficulty reaching for food, eating or drinking, there are many helpful dining aid stroke products available:


A stroke is a life-changing medical event. But with the proper knowledge, guidance from your medical professional, and the appropriate stroke supplies, eating can once again be an easy, enjoyable experience.