Vitamins & Diet
After hygiene and cleaning, the three most important factors for wound healing are your Immune System, Diet and Vitamins. Genetics and luck of the draw mostly dictates how strong an immune system you got handed from birth, but there are proven supplements available that have documented results (look for products with actual published test results). Diet is the fuel that keeps your body running, eat good stuff. Sleep is part of the body recovery cycle, make sure you are getting enough.
Vitamin C is very important in the healing process as it is required in the formation of collagen. Zinc is crucial for wound healing and developing of new cells - it has been documented that marginal zinc deficiency is associated with impaired wound healing. Vitamin A also plays a role in tissue repair.
The optimum amounts:
- Zinc 50 mg
- Vitamin C 2000 mg
- Vitamin A 25,000 I.U.
- Vitamin E 400 I.U.
The foods you eat also contribute, good sources for your critical healing vitamins:
Zinc: fortified cereals, red meats, and seafood
Vitamin C: citrus fruits and juices, strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, spinach, some cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage)
Vitamin A: dark green, leafy vegetables, orange or yellow vegetables, orange fruits, fortified dairy products, liver
If your daily multi-vitamin is reasonably close to these amounts there is probably no need for additional supplements. Be conservative with the amount of Zinc that you choose to take -- 50 mg might be too much for those with sensitive stomachs. If you experience any nausea drop the amount down to 25 mg.
More information about the role of vitamins in wound healing:
A high protein diet is also recommended for optimal healing, I chose to go with 60 grams of protein a day during my healing period. I hate to sound like your mother, but -- eat your fruits & veggies! Good nutrition is the best thing you can do for yourself to make healing go as quickly as possible. Skip the drive-thru and head to the sandwich shop for lunch.... It's pretty simple: stay away from all things fried.
Drink: Water, V8 Juice, Fruit Juice, Milk/Soy Milk, protein shakes
Eat: Whole grain breads, lean meats, eggs, veggies, pasta
Protein: At least 2 to 3 servings per day, beef, fish, poultry, pork, veal, lamb, eggs, cheese, milk, yogurt, dried beans and peas, nuts, seeds
So much of your health is determined by nutrition that I am going to get on my soapbox here and tell you to avoid soda, white bread, fast food, the snack foods aisle and the donut shop. Nothing you have is more important than your health and when you get into your 40's and above, you will realize the great truth of this. Eat right, and you will have energy to burn. Your skin will clear and your stomach will settle. It will be a whole new you!
Here is my daily protein shake recipe:
1/3 cup fruit (frozen or fresh)
3 tablespoons low-fat vanilla yogurt
2% milk (amount varies, probably around 1/3 cup)
Protein powder (I use Bioplex WPI (Whey Protein Isolate) because I don't digest soy based products well AND I have lactose intolerance. Bioplex is the only whey based protein I've found that is lactose free.)
1 scoop of Nanogreens (my Chiropractor turned me on to this stuff.)
Toss all into the blender and blend until smooth. This shake is about 25 grams of protein.
This page last updated: 11/07/2010