It’s well known eating a nutritious and well balanced diet has countless benefits for both our physical and mental health.

However, planning, shopping for and preparing healthy meals requires time and effort, meaning we sometimes don’t eat as well as we should.

If you are living with a disability the challenges when it comes to preparing meals and eating well can be even greater. One of the main goals of the NDIS is to support people to live independent and healthy lives. An important step towards achieving this goal is being able to prepare your own meals, if you are able, and to eat the food you choose. Both meal delivery and assistance with meal preparation are covered under a category referred to as ‘Core Supports: Assistance with Daily Living’ and there is a fair amount of flexibility when it comes to spending this part of your budget.

Since 2019 additional disability-related health supports are now available to purchase using NDIS funding, including nutritional support. This means eligible participants can have nutritious and affordable ready-made meals, delivered, or, alternatively fund a support worker to help them prepare their own meals at home.

Ready-made meals delivered

If your disability means you find it difficult, maybe even impossible, to prepare your own meals and ready-made meals are part of your plan, the NDIS will cover the cost of meal preparation and delivery. It  is up to you to pay for the cost of ingredients that go into preparing these meals and this is deducted by way of a small co-payment from your funding. The contribution is generally around $2.50-$4.20 per meal, but this amount varies on the type and number of meals ordered.

As an NDIS participant you can choose which provider you’d like to use for your ready- made meals, depending on your personal preferences and dietary requirements. However, the food businesses you use must be registered with the NDIS. For a business to be registered with the NDIS they must have successfully met the required quality and safeguards required and provide certification for this. With a growing number of people entering the NDIS, more and more food businesses are coming on board, becoming registered providers. For NDIS participants, this means there is a much broader range of affordable, ready-made meals to choose between.

Preparing meals yourself

If you’d prefer to and are able to prepare your own meals but need some support to do so, under the NDIS you can access funding for a support worker to come to your home and assist you in doing this.

Meal preparation comes under the NDIS category of  ‘Assistance with Daily Living’

Meal preparation may include: 

  • Having a support worker come to your home to help you prepare and cook your meals
  • Support when it comes to developing skills when it comes to food preparation and meal planning
  • Support from qualified dieticians to help you establish a nutritional meal plan and review it on a regular basis

Choice equals independence

Being able to choose meals that suit your needs and dietary requirements is important for everyone so how do you go about finding a provider that works best for you. Fortunately, there are now many providers specialising in ready-made meals that cater to a broad range of dietary preferences and needs, from vegetarian, keto and gluten free, to children’s meals, as well as modified diets for people with diabetes, digestive and other disorders. 

If you are already registered with the NDIS and have a provider who manages your plan, they will be able to help you arrange the delivery of ready-made meals, either through their own organisation or through another NDIS registered catering business.

If you’d prefer to prepare your own meals and maintain independence in this area, it’s important to find support workers and health professionals who are able to assist you in this area and ensure your choices are respected and that you are enjoying a balanced and healthy diet.

For further information about managing your NDIS funding for nutritional support, contact CareAbout on 1300 826 508.

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Explain the Care System

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Understand your needs

We’ll take the time to understand what your health, lifestyle and cultural preferences are

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Quality NDIS Providers

The providers we recommend have been carefully evaluated and selected so that you know the choice you make is one you can trust.