Eating is one of our favourite topics to discuss with our readers. (Let’s face it. We just love talking about food!) We know that good nutrition is literally the foundation—if not the fountain—of youth. This is especially true of protein when it comes to wound healing after surgery.
Are You Getting Enough Protein?
You’re amazing…and so is your body. When you care for your body carefully, it will reward you by being virtually self-healing. It was designed that way. We’ve got good news. “Most Australians eat far more protein than they need,” according to a nutrition article published by the Better Health Channel.
That being said, you need to plan your protein intake carefully when you are having surgery. How much protein do you need? Height, age, and weight are all factors in determining your protein needs, but the rule of thumb is
- Women – .75 grams per kilogram of body weight
- Men – .84 grams per kilogram of body weight
5 Foods that Heal at Every Meal (Snacks, Too!)
Eating well before and after surgery is one of the best things you can do to help your wounds heal. To make sure you’re getting your protein, we suggest:
- EGGS for Breakfast – a great source of protein.
- MILK Smoothie for Mid-Morning Snack – if you don’t/can’t drink dairy milk, blend soy, almond, or coconut milk with ice and fruit for a protein-rich pick-me-up.
- BEANS for Lunch – incredibly rich in protein, and a great way to add nutrition, colour and fibre to a lunchtime salad.
- NUTS for Mid-Afternoon Snack – healthier than chips, but just as much fun to eat. Try spiced nuts for a satisfying and healthy snack.
- CHICKEN for Dinner – protein-dense and a versatile recipe ingredient, you could eat a different version every night and not repeat for a year.
When all else fails, turn to protein supplements:
- Plant-based proteins
- Soy protein
- Whey protein
These proteins are available in powder form. You simply mix a scoopful of powder with a cup of water or milk for a protein-rich snack.
The Science Is In: Eating Helps Healing
Protein is an essential component of cell regeneration, but it needs the help of many other nutrients. The researchers at the international charity Livestrong remind us, “Increasing your intake of protein alone may not be sufficient for wound healing.” A healing diet should include:
- Arginine – an amino acid that helps blood vessels relax and improves circulation.
- Calories – the body needs energy to develop new blood vessels (angiogenesis) and grow new tissue.
- Fluids – every aspect of wound healing is delayed when you aren’t adequately hydrated.
- Glutamine – the most abundant free amino acid in the body, glutamine supports immune system function.
- Minerals – Zinc aids in the division of cells, the basis of creating new tissue.
- Vitamins – Vitamin C, in particular, helps the body form new tissue and collagen. Vitamin E helps with the appearance of scars.
Feasting on Information on Plastic Surgery
Plastic surgery and cosmetic body contouring have has been more exciting. At Form and Face, our founder Dr Benjamin Norris and the rest of our team can offer you a wide range of options to change your appearance. We invite you to visit us to have all your questions answered. You’ll be treated to an unsurpassed level of patient care from the moment you call us on 02 9387 3800 or use our online enquiry form. Talk soon?