If you are trying to recover from a surgery or an illness, your recovery can be hindered or helped by the types of beverages and foods you take in. A variety of foods, which include protein sources, healthy fats, vegetables, and fruits, have been proven to promote healing, improve immune function, reduce inflammation, and provide the fuel needed to boost the recovery process. These are the top foods to eat that can help speed up your body’s recovery;
For your recovery, you must eat healthy high carb foods like sweet potatoes. Besides providing your cells with the energy needed for healing, carbs also provide enzymes like citrate synthase and hexokinase that help in wound repair. That being said, if you don’t take in a sufficient amount of carbs, it would delay recovery and impair wound healing. Sweet potatoes are rich in carbs and are loaded with anti-inflammatory plant compounds, minerals, and vitamins, which include manganese, carotenoids, and Vitamin C. All these help your body recover while optimizing immune response.
Kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower are all examples of cruciferous vegetables that have been shown to have amazing health benefits. They can help boost your body’s recovery process due to their possession of a wide array of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins.
These vegetables contain compounds known as glucosinolates, which is converted by your body into isothiocyanates. Research shows that isothiocyanates boost immune health by inducing death in infected cells, activating immune defenses, and suppressing inflammation. Also, these vegetables are rich in a variety of nutrients needed by your body in the recovery period, like B vitamins and Vitamin C.
Certain specific amino acids are known as the building blocks of protein, and they have crucial roles to play in immune function and wound healing. Poultry like turkey and chicken contain arginine and glutamine, which are amino acids that can help in healing and recovery.
Glutamine offers cellular protection while you are going through stress, like during the times of an injury or illness, while arginine aids wound healing and collagen production. You must take in arginine during these times since it is depleted rapidly in times of illness, injury, and stress.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds like hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, pecans, and almonds are great choices to fuel your body while recovering. These foods give you plant-based minerals and vitamins, healthy fats, and protein that aid healing.
For instance, nuts and seeds are an excellent source of magnesium, manganese, vitamin E, and zinc. Vitamin E serves as an antioxidant in the body and protects against cellular damage. It is vital for immune health. Research has shown that having optimal vitamin E levels can help boost the function of protective immune cells like natural killer cells, which aid in the fight of disease and infection.
Berries are packed with nutrients and plant compounds that can be very supportive when your body is in the recovery period. For example, berries give you ample vitamin C, which aids wound healing as it stimulates collagen production, which is the protein that is most abundant in the body. They also contain antioxidants such as anthocyanins, which are responsible for their color as well as providing immune-supporting, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory effects.
Salmon is rich in zinc, iron, selenium, B vitamins, protein, and omega-3 fats. A lot of research has shown that omega-3 fats can reduce inflammation, boost immune response, and aid in wound healing when it is taken in supplement form.
Also, about 85g of wild-caught salmon provides you with more than 70% of your daily requirement of selenium, which is a mineral that is responsible for the regulation of inflammation and immune response.
While it is safe to eat salmon, you must discuss with your doctor before taking fish oil supplements pre-surgery or post-surgery.
Leafy green vegetables
Leafy green vegetables like Swiss chard, mustard greens, arugula, spinach, and kale contain nutrients that improve wound healing, enhance immune function, and decrease inflammation, which is why you should opt for them if you are looking to speed up your body’s recovery.
These vegetables are all packed with provitamin A, folate, magnesium, manganese, and vitamin C, which are important for immune function and overall health. Also, vitamin C is very useful when it comes to wound healing, which makes leafy green vegetables an excellent choice for post-surgery recuperation.