The Food Watch group surveyed 2,240 patients in England, and found that more than one-third of those surveyed just went hungry rather than eat hospital food, and 40 percent of hospital attendees had food brought in by visitors.
Additionally, about 26 percent who needed help with eating did not receive any, and 22 percent of survey responders said their meals were too hot or cold when served to them. About 18 percent of those questioned in the survey indicated that they did not always have their choice of meal, and 81 percent said they had no choice of meals in advance as well.
Sharon Grant -- chair of the Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health -- said that the findings were disappointing: "Proper nutrition is essential to recovery both physically and psychologically."
She added that "Patients have every right to expect food that is nutritious, served at the appropriate temperature, meets their dietary needs and help to eat if they need it."
"The failure of hospitals to provide fresh, healing foods to patients is indicative of the utter failure of western medicine to help patients improve their health at all," said Mike Adams, a consumer health advocate and author of "The Seven Laws of Nutrition."
"Hospitals should be embracing food-based medicine by feeding patients nourishing meals that boost surgery recovery speeds and immune function, and yet what they usually deliver is over-cooked, over-processed foods, laced with toxic chemicals and lacking any real nutrition -- all on orders from the doctor. All of this just goes to demonstrate the degree to which practitioners of conventional medicine remain nutritionally illiterate."