Fact sheetDiet specifications

Published on 1 Nov 2012

Energy diet (high)

This document is part of the ACI Diet Specifications for Paediatric Inpatients. It is not to be used for patient education.


To provide a diet containing approximately 120% energy than can be achieved on the Full diet alone.


Full diet plus addition of added fats, carbohydrate, and protein to foods; availability of extra foods, extra serves and extra mid-meals. Nutritional supplements may be used. Often combined with a high-protein diet.

Typical default mid-meals:

AM: Half sandwich with protein-containing filling+ full fat milk + extra as desired

PM: Cheese and biscuits + full fat milk + extras as desired

Supper: Full fat milk + cake/muffin + extras as desired


To be used for patients requiring above normal energy intake.

  • failure to thrive
  • inability to eat sufficient volume (e.g. disability, may be combined with texture modified)
  • oncology
  • burns
  • respiratory conditions
  • congenital cardiac anomalies
  • unintentional weight loss or decreased food intake
  • in combination with other therapeutic diets which may result in a reduced energy intake (e.g. low protein).

For Cystic Fibrosis, see Energy diet - cystic fibrosis.

Nutritional adequacy

Nutritionally adequate.


Dietitians may need to consider ordering high-energy nutritional supplements. An additional protein source (e.g. a boiled egg) may be offered at a main meal for people with high protein requirements.

Not to be combined with diets that restrict fat or sugar.

May be combined with high protein diet.

Not to be used for anorexia nervosa or other eating disorders in paediatrics.

Specific menu planning guidelines

Allowed Not allowed
Hot main dishes


Extra serves to be available

Serve with extra oil/PC margarine or butter/ high fat dressing

Sauces, gravies


Include white sauces, cheese sauces

Starchy vegetables/pasta/rice


High energy mashed potato made on milk and margarine


All, with added margarine

SoupsAll to be Band 1 with at least 360kJ/serve or served with thin cream/sour cream/margarine-
SandwichesAll Band 1 providing at least 800kJ/serve and at least 10g protein/serve or spread with high fat spread (margarine/cream cheese/mayonnaise)


Salads, dressingsSalads – one Band 1 choice per day containing at least 20g protein, all others to be Band 2 providing at least 10g protein per serve and served with high fat dressing Low fat dressings
Breads, cereals

All bread

Serve with extra spread PC

Cereals served with cream



Send extra 1 portion control spread with each meal

Hot breakfast choices



Canned fruit in syrup + glucose/dextrose polymer available at all meals

Serve all with custard, yoghurt, cream, ice-cream


Full fat yoghurts

Low fat and diet yoghurt


All others

Offer one Band 1 choice dessert containing at least 500kJ and at least 4g protein at 2 meals per day

Serve all with cream (thin, thick or double) or ice-cream

Fruit or jelly served without milk dessert, ice-cream or cream

Milk and cheese

All full fat

BeveragesAll othersLow joule cordial, low joule soft drink
BiscuitsAll, serve crackers with high fat spread-

Extra serves and larger serves to be available

Extra midmeals to be available – offer one choice per midmeal of Band 1 sandwich or Band 1 dessert among other choices

Fat/glucose supplements may be added to foods and beverages

Nutritional supplements as prescribed by dietitian


Sachets of artificial sweetener


  1. Agency for Clinical Innovation. Nutrition standards for paediatric inpatients in NSW hospitals. Sydney 2011.
  2. Agency for Clinical Innovation. Nutrition standards for adult inpatients in NSW hospitals. Sydney 2011.
  3. Dietitians Association of Australia. 2009. Nutrition manual 8th ed. Canberra: DAA.
  4. American Dietetic Association. Paediatric Nutrition Care Manual. Chicago: ADA.
  5. Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network fact sheets:
  6. Shaw V and Lawson M. Clinical Paediatric Dietetics. 3rd Edition. 2007. Blackwell Publishing.
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