The right diet can have a huge impact on skin health, tissue regeneration, and overall wound healing.
There are quite a few factors that impact how wounds heal. Aside from pre-existing conditions, body type and certain medications, nutrition can have some of the biggest effects on a person’s wound healing capabilities. According to St. Luke’s Clinic, proper wound healing begins with proteins for new tissue and vitamins like A and B for collagen formation. Understanding the rule nutrition plays is essential to effective wound care outcomes. Here is some valuable insight:
Consider smaller meals
As mentioned above, your body requires certain chemical components – like vitamins and proteins – to heal wounds properly. But it also requires energy, and that’s why the Cleveland Clinic suggested eating several smaller meals per day. By eating every few hours, without overdoing it, you’re ensuring your body has the fuel needed to help heal wounds fully. Just avoid sugary snacks; the National Institutes of Health suggested plenty of tasty proteins, including beans, Greek yogurt, eggs and lean meats.
Good food is only part of the equation. Your body needs to have plenty of reserves if it’s going to handle its normal functions, including wound healing. If you really want to make sure you’re consuming plenty of essential vitamins and minerals, you might also consider taking a daily supplement. Vitamins A and C, not to mention zinc, are hugely important for wound healing and can help with processes like epithelization. Just be sure to talk with your doctor before beginning any supplement regimen.
Begin with good habits
Part of maintaining a proper nutrition plan is to develop the right habits or behaviors. Most doctors will tell you that it’s important to have the right calories-per-pound ratio, and anywhere between 15 and 20 is optimal. Too much and you risk other health risks, while too few can lead to malnutrition, and that can also impede your body’s wound healing functions.
It’s also essential you balance your food intake, with equal attention for fruits, whole grains, lean meats and dairy products. Finally, good nutrition means staying hydrated, and while there is no exact amount, aiming for eight cups of water per day is a good start.
Bring on the superfoods
Aside from eating plenty of proteins, dairy, fruit and other healthy food items, you may also want to explore the option of so-called superfoods. These aptly named foods are chock full of of all kinds of beneficial proteins and vitamins.
Soy, for instance, features the vitamins A, C, D, E and K, all of which contribute to skin health. Broccoli, meanwhile, features antioxidants that can prevent inflammation and improve your immune system. Tomatoes are equally as super, and the lycopene within can prevent certain wound infections. Even chocolate can aid in wound healing, not to mention reduce high blood pressure and aid with oxygen saturation.
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