What is the Mechanical Soft Diet?
A mechanical soft diet is a diet that is gentle on your jaw and teeth – it does not require hard biting or chewing. A soft diet generally consists of foods that are soft enough to chew gently, while others can be processed or cooked in order to make them softer.
Foods that are restricted on a soft diet may include:
- Raw vegetables such as carrots and celery.
- Raw whole fruits, such as apples and pears.
- Popcorn and corn on the cob.
- Crackers, chips, and hard breads.
- Cold cereals (dry).
- Chewy or large portions of meats, such as steak.
Because fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as some proteins, are restricted on soft diets, it is important that those on soft diets pay close attention to their intake of calories, vitamins, and nutrients. It is normal to lose 5-10 pounds while on a soft diet simply because some foods are restricted.
Soft Diet Meal Ideas and Snack Ideas
- Hot cereals like oatmeal, grits, and porridge.
- Cold cereals soaked in milk.
- Waffles and pancakes.
- Scrambled eggs.
- Soft potatoes or hash browns.
- Smoked salmon.
- Cottage cheese.
For lunch and dinner:
- Canned meat and ground meat.
- Well-cooked meat with extra sauce or gravy.
- Well-cooked pasta.
- Mashed or baked potatoes.
- Baked or refried beans.
- Soft cheeses.
- Creamed corn and spinach.
- Pureed or well-cooked fruits and vegetables.
- Soft fruits like bananas, melons and avocados.
- Soups and stews.
- Nut butters.
Note that liquids like fruit juice, vegetable juice, and milk are great ways to get healthy calories and nutrients that may be harder to come by with your soft diet. Sauces and gravies are also great ways to make foods easier to chew. Many foods can be adapted to be soft diet foods simply by cooking them longer, mashing them, pureeing them, or preparing them in a broth or sauce.
Jaw Surgery at the Surgical Arts Centre
At the Surgical Arts Centre, our care does not stop after your procedure is over. Our team of medical professionals will guide you through your recovery, from your first day post-op until you are fully recovered and healthy. To learn more about our corrective jaw surgeries, to speak with a physician, or to schedule a consultation, please call us today at (406) 549-6600 or fill out our contact form.