How many of us have heard the phrase ‘You are what you eat’? Probably too many times to count. When taking this phrase literally it may not be exactly true but the reality is that how we feel and function is often related to how we fuel our bodies and our nutrition status. It is especially important to make sure that when we are preparing for surgery that we have been building our bodies up so they can repair as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Surgery creates stress to our bodies. If we enter the state of stress with a malnourished body, it will be more difficult to repair and can create further breakdown in our bodies. Malnutrition, or lack of proper nutrition, can be caused by not eating enough, or by not eating enough of the right foods. Many people who are overweight and obese may be considered malnourished because of this. Those who are malnourished before surgery have a greater chance of longer hospital stays and longer recovery times.
Before your surgery you may have a long to do list. Consider taking a few minutes each day to consider if you are accomplishing the following:
- Drink at least 64 oz of fluid daily
- Take in at least 60 grams of protein daily
- Stay active and increase activity level as able
- Eat a balanced diet consisting of lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
- Consider taking a daily Multivitamin
Written by: Gigi Ravenhall