Following an accident or injury, you might become worried that you will need surgery to…
The Role Diet has in Your Injury Recovery
After an accident, an obvious step to take is seeking medical help. People are often searching for exercises and rehab to practice, or for diagnoses. Another way that healthcare professionals can help you recover is by recommending diet changes that can help you recover more quickly in conjunction with other interventions. The role diet has in your recovery is a big one, and we’re here to break it down for you with a few important ways that you can use food to your advantage. Here are a few ways that diet places a role in your recovery after an accident.
One of the first things people work on after an accident is reducing swelling and inflammation in the affected area. This is especially common in sprains and strains or overuse injuries. Inflammation becomes an issue and prevents healing when it causes the tissues in the area to become more rigid. This can lead to weakened muscles and increased soreness. While a small amount of inflammation can be beneficial to the healing process by promoting blood flow, it’s important to keep it under control.
One easy way to help your body reduce the amount of unhealthy inflammation and make you feel better is by eating the right foods. While foods such as pastries, fried foods, and red meat tend to increase inflammation, certain fruits, nuts, oils, and fatty fish have been known to reduce inflammation. A good rule of thumb is to try and follow a Mediterranean diet while recovering from an injury that’s caused by inflammation.
Inflammation is just one of the ways that your body loses muscle mass after an accident. While rest is important and allows your body to heal properly, it can also cause your muscles to be dormant, decrease in size, and become stiff if left still for too long. This is called muscle atrophy, and it’s one of the biggest consequences that a physical therapist works to help you avoid.
While there are multiple factors that go into the amount of muscle atrophy that occurs, diet can make a big difference. Protein intake should be increased while recovering from an injury. This can be as straightforward as making protein shakes, or you can make smaller changes such as adding more eggs, lean meat, and dairy to your diet. The added protein helps support muscle maintenance and increases energy consumption, the perfect recipe for your healthy recovery.
Whether or not you broke a bone in your accident, there are many important reasons to strengthen your bones while in recovery. Bones are living tissue and they bear a lot of weight. After an impact, it’s important to increase your bone density and keep them strong in order to enhance balance, flexibility, and overall strength. It also helps prevent the risk of future injuries or osteoporosis.
Foods that you should focus on while recovering in order to strengthen your bones go beyond drinking milk. Protein is also a great nutrient for strengthening your bones in addition to your muscles. Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of magnesium, potassium, and folate, all of which are building blocks for strong bones.
Recovery is an exhausting process at times. Your body has to release more growth hormones in order to repair the damage, and you need more blood flow to heal the affected areas. Depending on your accident, it can also take an emotional toll that causes your brain to temporarily slow down in order to process the event. With all of the increased demands on your body, you’re likely feeling sluggish and low on energy.
In order to fight these feelings and provide your body with the power it needs to work on recovering, you should pay extra attention to your diet and try to get more sleep. Some foods that aid in your search for more energy include yogurt, beans, avocados, and sweet potatoes. While it’s true that carbs equal energy, not all carbs are created equal and you should look for complex carbohydrates as opposed to ones high in sugars and starches. Following these guidelines will help you cure your lagging energy.
Food education is an essential tool in one’s physical health, whether that be after an accident or in daily life. Considering how you are fueling your body will help set you up for success in any endeavor, and will make your doctors’ jobs much easier. Chiropractors and physical therapists are able to help you in their offices, but the work is yours to do at home. If you’re looking for someone to coach you through your recovery process, look no further than Accident Treatment Centers, where we are experienced in all sorts of injuries. We’ll help you get back to your old self in no time.
Contact us here to start your treatment and recovery journey.