So, you’re having surgery. You’ve gotten all the need-to-knows from your doctor, you have ice packs and Tylenol on standby, you’ve researched physical therapists that can help you get back to normal life ASAP. But did you know that choosing what to eat pre- and post-surgery can actually help you heal? If this is news to you (and it certainly was to us!) don’t worry, it’s not too late! Here are 10 Foods to Eat and Post-Surgery.
- Taste the Rainbow
A plate that’s healing, delicious and makes you smile? Yes please. Make sure to stock your fruit bowl with different colored fruits like oranges, apples, apricots, peaches, grapefruit and papaya. Packed with nutrients like vitamins A and C, fiber and antioxidants, that ROGYBIV fruit bowl will boost your energy and help with pesky constipation.
- Berry Powerful
Whether you blend them in a smoothie or eat them whole as a snack, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, Goji berries and strawberries boast tons of antioxidants that help the body repair damage.
- Veg Out
Loaded with Vitamins A and C, veggies like cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli are also high in fiber, helping with one of the most unpleasant side effects of pain medication and lack of mobility--constipation.
- The Root Of It
Root veggies like sweet potatoes and carrots are a healthy source of carbs, a necessary food type to stop your muscles from breaking down.
- Chew The (Healthy) Fat
Healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, seeds, and avocados help your body absorb the vitamins you’re getting from those fruits and veggies. Healthy fats also strengthen your immune system, which helps keep infection at bay. Nuts in particular are high in vitamin E, which helps healing and scars.
- It’s Alive
Yogurt, Kefir, sauerkraut and kimchi keep your digestive system healthy and happy. The healthy bacteria aka probiotics help combat the nausea and upset stomach from anesthesia and antibiotics.
- Leaf It To Greens
Dark leafy greens like spinach, bok choy, Swiss chard and kale are loaded with vitamin A, C, E, and K, which helps with blood clotting.
- Animal Protein (or substitutes)
Whether you like chicken and fish or if tofu, beans and lentils are more your speed, making sure to incorporate protein and iron into your diet post-surgery is essential.
Amino acids in protein help repair muscle damage, while iron creates new blood cells and keeps your energy up.
- A Good Egg
With six grams of protein, B complex vitamins, Riboflavin, Folic Acid, Calcium, Zinc, and more, eggs are the perfect post-surgery food for fast healing.
- Get Grain-ular
Whole grains post-surgery give your body and brain the carbs you need to help prevent muscles from degenerating. Try steel cut oats or whole wheat toast for breakfast, or load up on quinoa and wild rice with dinner to keep your energy levels up.