Hydration and nutrition are important for keeping skin healthy, which is why a conscious, balanced diet can be critical for accelerating the wound healing process. If diet is ignored, the skin may become malnourished and dehydrated, which can increase the risk that infections or pressure ulcers will develop during the wound recovery period.
Many health care providers urge hospitals to provide proper nutrition for patients, including the United Kingdom’s National Health Service. As part of a Stop the Pressure campaign, the NHS worked with dietitians and specialist nurses to release a list of top dietary tips for maintaining skin health and preventing pressure ulcers.
Important to focus on nutrition
The first tip highlights what should be included in a healthy, balanced diet for proper wound recovery, which includes carbohydrates and proteins in each meal, and at least five portions of fruits and vegetables each day. Patients should also increase their fluid intake to six to eight drinks a day.
The recommendations further focused on patients in different situations. If they have a poor appetite, they can eat smaller portions of food several times a day. Overweight patients should follow the same balanced diet, but with more portion control and fewer high sugar foods. Finally, if they cannot eat independently, the health care facility or family should provide proper support and encouragement.
Foods for wound healing
In addition to these NHS recommendations, clinicians worldwide can offer patients advice on what to eat at home to promote faster healing for even the mildest injuries. High-protein foods, such as beans, nuts, eggs, chicken, milk and supplements, can speed up the wound healing process. According to LIVESTRONG, foods with vitamin A, vitamin C and zinc can also help heal wounds. This includes dark leafy greens, berries, citrus, asparagus and broccoli.
When patients are aware of the foods with potential healing benefits, they may be more likely to follow a healthy, mindful diet. Additionally, the quality of care in hospitals could improve when nurses and doctors provide patients with the proper nutrition for a speedy recovery.
Advanced Tissue is the nation’s leader in delivering specialized wound care supplies to patients, delivering to both homes and long-term care facilities.