Client Tina

Tina’s Story

Medically Tailored Meals

In early May of 2019, Tina was feeling seriously ill — a friend urged her to go to the hospital. The doctor quickly diagnosed her with congestive heart failure and told her that her heart was pumping at just 10% of its capacity.

“The diagnosis was a big wake up call,” said Tina.

Tina knew that she hadn’t been taking care of herself or eating well. She was smoking a lot and eating lots of fast food. She knew that she would need to make major lifestyle changes if she wanted to survive.

A friend mentioned that she might be eligible for the Medically Tailored Meals (MTM) Program, which provides meals to Medi-Cal patients with congestive heart failure. After making a few calls, Tina connected with Food For Thought and spoke with Nina Redman, client services director and registered dietician.

Nina explained how the program worked and helped her through the process of how to request a referral from her doctor. Once Tina completed the paperwork, Food For Thought’s client services team walked her through the specifics of the program and enrolled her.

The program includes two meetings with a dietician, nutrition education, in-person and phone wellness check ins and ends with an assessment of the program.

Since starting the Medically Tailored Meals Program, Tina has noticed a significant improvement in the way she feels and she really appreciates the support that she receives from Food For Thought’s staff and volunteers. She also really likes the food and doesn’t ever feel deprived or want to add extra salt or unhealthy condiments. At the completion of the three-month MTM program, Tina looks forward to transitioning to FFT’s standard food program for two more months.

“It feels like I have a whole team helping me to heal my heart,” said Tina. “The support I receive is very inspirational and it has helped me to make better lifestyle choices.” Since joining the program Tina has started swimming regularly and hasn’t touched a cigarette.

Tina is optimistic about the lifestyle changes she is making and looks forward to enjoying more time with the important people in her life. “I have a wonderful son who is a firefighter and I want to be around to spend more time with him.”

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