Balanced nutrition is important for keeping skin healthy and healing wounds. Wound healing requires higher caloric intake due to greater demands during the process. Eating enough calories, drinking enough fluids and eating fruits, vegetables, low-fat milk, whole grains and lean meats are important.
Some tips for a balanced meal:
Eat 3 meals a day and 1-2 snacks, if needed
Choose foods from each of the food groups every day
Drink plenty of fluids
Limit processed or pre-packaged meals to control added sodium and fat
When choosing what to eat, focus on the food groups.
Breads, grains and cereals: Any food made from wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal, barley or other grains
5-7 ounces per day. Make at least half “whole” grain. Choose a variety each day.
Vegetables and fruit: Fresh, frozen or canned. Limit fruit or vegetable juice to 1 cup total per day.
2-3 cups of each per day
Choose a rainbow of colors. Focus on whole fruits and vegetables (apple vs. applesauce or juice) for added nutrition and fiber.
Milk/Dairy: Milk, yogurt, pudding, cheese
2-3 cups per day
Choose low-fat (1%) or fat free (skim) whenever possible for the most nutrition.
Meats and beans: All protein sources: eggs, dry beans/peas, lean beef, pork, skinless poultry, fish, soy, nuts and seeds
5-7 ounces per day (2 servings size of deck of cards)
Choose lean or low-fat sources such as “loin” and “round” cuts when choosing meats. Bake, broil, or grill whenever possible. Avoid high fat and high salt proteins such as bacon, sausage, ham, etc.
Drink plenty of fluids, including water, broth-based soups, juices, milk, tea and coffee.
Aim for 8-12 glasses each day with 4-6 of them plain water
Avoid caffeine and calorie containing beverages
Exercise is also important to increase blood flow and promote wound healing.
Take mini-walks (5-10 minutes) every couple of hours
If unable to walk, make sure to move in your chair or bed to increase blood flow
Talk with your doctor before starting any physical activity to determine what is safe for you to do