Article review: “Community Dwelling Elderly Women and Meal Preparation” by Eckel (2012)

Article review: “Community Dwelling Elderly Women and Meal Preparation” by Eckel (2012)

The researchers sought to identify which tasks in meal preparation were the most demanding for elderly women, and how they overcame these to continue preparing meals as they aged. Meal preparation was meaningful to the women as it was an important part of their self-identity.

prepping dinner of sea urchins.jpg

The COMP model was used to identify which tasks were important to the women. The PEOP model was then used by the researchers to carry out activity analyses for the chosen tasks.

They found that the difficulty in completing tasks as the women aged was not just due to biomedical functioning decreasing, but also environmental barriers. Often the women had carried out tasks habitually for a long time and when their physical functioning declined slightly it id not occur to them to change the environment to facilitate easier task completion. In this way the environment had become disabling since if it was altered the women would be able to carry out the tasks even with their decreased functioning.

This shows an example of the biopsychosocial (BSP) model in practice as it highlights the social/environmental factors affecting individuals (and influencing their physical functioning) as well as the traditional physical/medical factors according to the biomedical model, and highlights how other factors can influence or cause biomedical problems rather than them be the starting point.



Eckel E (2012) ‘Community Dwelling Elderly Women and Meal Preparation’ Physical & Occupational Therapy In Geriatrics 30(4) pp 344-360