Why do I need nectar thick (stage 1) fluids?

Thicker drinks may be easier for you to swallow than normal drinks. Thicker fluids hold together better and move more slowly, which may make them easier to control and give you more time to swallow. Thicker fluids may be less likely to ‘go down the wrong way’ and enter your windpipe/airway. This is known as aspiration.

What do they look like?

  • Nectar thick fluids are thicker than fruit nectars, but not as thick as a thick shake.
  • They can be sipped from a cup, but require effort if taken via a straw.
  • They pour quickly from a cup, but slower than regular, unmodified fluids.
  • They run freely through a fork, but leave a mild coating. A coating film of residue may also be left in the cup. 

How do I thicken my drinks? 

Any fluid can be thickened to a nectar thick consistency using “Thick and Easy®” thickening powder. If you are an inpatient at
Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, thickening powder will be provided to you as appropriate. If required after discharge, thickening
powder can be purchased from your local pharmacy.

What other fluids and foods do I need to thicken?

If nectar thick fluids have been recommended for you, soups, sauces and any dietary supplements must also be nectar thick
consistency. Foods that become thin fluids in the mouth (such as jelly and ice cream) are not recommended for people who
require nectar thick fluids.

Tips for thickening fluids:

  • 1 scoop of “Thick and Easy®” powder is required to thicken 100 mL fluid to nectar thick consistency.
  • Add the powder a little at a time, stirring briskly with a fork or a small hand whisk. Allow a few minutes for the drink to thicken.
  • Fluids with thickening powder added will become thicker after standing.

Who can I contact if I have any questions?

Speech Language Pathologist: _________________________________________________________________________________

Contact Number: ____________________________________________________________________________________________ 

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