The purpose of the Neuro-Friendly Restaurant Initiative is to further community inclusion for those living with a neurological injury and to promote healthy eating habits to assist with the prevention and recovery of certain neurological injuries, such as strokes and traumatic brain injuries. Often, these individuals struggle with understanding their new diet restrictions and finding local restaurants and/or other local venues that provide an inclusive environment as it relates to their injuries.
The goal is to provide more options for individuals living with “invisible injuries” through restaurant dining. These are deficits that may be mild to severe in presentation but that cannot be seen until interacting with an individual.
Each restaurant that participates in the program must meet certain criteria, which includes training staff in order to strengthen skills with working with individuals from these communities, pictorial menu books, assistive utensils (at some participating restaurants), modifications to food (at some participating restaurants), low traffic hours and meal options identified by the three following categories.
High cholesterol, high blood pressure (hypertension) and diabetes are some of the leading causes of a stroke. Choosing meal options that support heart-health, stable blood sugar levels and brain wellness can support individuals in the recovery stage following a brain injury such as a stroke or traumatic brain injury and/or those seeking to lower their risk of having a stroke or improve their brain performance through food.
A heart healthy diet can help reduce cholesterol, manage blood pressure and lower risk of stroke or heart disease.
Nutrition plays an important role in the management of diabetes and prediabetes, and certain foods can help promote stable blood sugar levels.
Foods can have an impact on the brain. Brain wellness through nutrition means improved memory, mood and thinking skills.