The journal of nutrition, health & aging

, Volume 22, Issue 10, pp 1205–1210 | Cite as

Dairy-Based and Energy-Enriched Berry-Based Snacks Improve or Maintain Nutritional and Functional Status in Older People in Home Care

  • Irma NykänenEmail author
  • R. Törrönen
  • U. Schwab



Consumption of energy- and nutrient-dense snacks are recommended for older people to maintain adequate nutrition. We evaluated the effects of dairy-based and energy-enriched berry products consumed as snacks on nutritional and functional status among vulnerable older people receiving home care services.


Randomised controlled study.

Setting and participants

The study sample consisted of 85 home care clients, with mean age of 81.9 (SD 7.1) years in the intervention group (n=50) and 83.7 (SD 8.1) years in the control group (n=35), and 72% women in both groups.


In the intervention group, the participants consumed both high-protein dairy-based products and energy-enriched berry purées for three months. The snack products provided nearly 300 kcal and 14 g protein per day.


The Mini Nutritional Assessment (MNA), body mass index (BMI), mid-arm muscular area (MAMA) and concentrations of plasma albumin and prealbumin and blood haemoglobin were used to determine nutritional status, and handgrip strength was used to determine functional status at baseline and after the intervention. Results: After adjustment for age and gender, the intervention showed a significant effect on MNA scores (2.1, 95% [CI]: 1.0 to 3.3) (p=0.003), albumin concentration (2.0 g/L, 95% [CI]: 1.1 to 3.2) (p=0.006) and handgrip strength of the right hand in women (2.4 kg, 95% [CI]: 1.2 to 3.3) (p=0.007). The MNA scores improved in the intervention group, while albumin concentration and handgrip strength decreased in the control group.


Regular use of dairy- and energy-enriched berry-based snacks may improve or maintain nutritional and functional status among older people in home care.

Key words

Older people home care dairy protein berries MNA 

Supplementary material

12603_2018_1076_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (66 kb)
Figure 3. Flowchart of the Study


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Copyright information

© Serdi and Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Public Health and Clinical NutritionUniversity of Eastern FinlandKuopioFinland
  2. 2.Institute of Clinical Medicine, Internal MedicineKuopio University HospitalKuopioFinland

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