Injuries often cause considerable disruption in our lifestyles. We don’t typically realize the amount of inconvenience they create until we experience the reality of hobbling around on our one good leg or can’t extend our arm to reach an item on a top kitchen shelf. Daily activities can seem like monumental obstacles, and healing becomes our number one priority. You may be seeking to discover how to use diet and nutrition to assist and speed injury recovery. Indeed, the right foods can make a substantial difference in injury recovery.
Employ a Nutrition Plan for Repair and Recovery
Nutrition planning can be an effective method to counter the negative impact of an injury. Deficiencies of energy, protein, and other nutrients should be avoided. Following an injury, the body initiates an inflammatory response. While excess inflammation may be harmful, the inflammatory process is vital for wound healing and focusing on reducing all inflammation may not be ideal for optimal injury recovery. Energy balance is critical, and higher protein intakes are often required to boost tissue repair. Using supplemental omega-3 fatty acids and creatine may counter muscle loss and enhance muscle mass, respectively.
The overriding nutritional recommendation for injured patients should be to consume a well-balanced diet based on whole, minimally processed foods or ingredients made from whole foods. The composition of the diet should be carefully assessed and changes considered as the injury heals and activity levels change.
Nutrients for Repair and Recovery
Increasing your intake of healthy nutrients can help the body repair itself and recover from injury. Look for foods with the following nutrients that play a role in healing injuries:
- Vitamin C: Helpful for its antioxidant, wound healing, and tissue repair properties. Boosts immune function.
- Vitamin A: Helpful for cell growth and development. Boosts immune function.
- Vitamin D: Promotes calcium absorption and supports bone health. Reduces inflammation.
- Calcium: Supports skeletal structure and function
- Magnesium: Assists in nucleic acid and protein synthesis. Increases absorption and metabolism of calcium and vitamin D. Improves circulation.
- Zinc: Encourages wound healing, protein synthesis, and healthy immune function.
- Copper: Aids red blood cell formation, immune function, and bone health. Regenerates elastin.
- Anthocyanins: Work to reduce inflammation, decrease muscle pain, and reduce soreness.
- High-quality protein: Reduces muscle damage and sports muscle health.
- Omega-3 fatty acids: Reduce inflammation and support brain health.
Ultimately, employing a nutrition plan that includes a well-balanced and diverse diet from various whole foods, can be one of the best healing strategies. Supplements may be beneficial to add to a nutrition plan along with meals and snacks. Meeting with a nutritional counselor can help you determine which foods are best to speed your recovery and which supplements can safely fit into your nutrition plan.
Consult with a nutritional counselor as soon as possible after an injury to have an evaluation. If you’ve been injured in an accident and are filling a personal injury lawsuit, make sure to let both your counselor and your personal injury attorney know about the circumstances so they can coordinate their efforts.