Recovering from surgery can be quite painful, especially if you don’t follow the doctor’s orders on how to properly care for yourself in the days following the procedure. No matter what kind of surgery is involved, from minor outpatient surgery to inpatient major procedures, you will always be given specific instructions to follow, which include instructions on what you can eat and when it’s safest to begin eating post-op. Sometimes, you are only allowed ice chips to keep your lips moistened and other times clear liquids or soft foods. Ice chips also help regulate the amount of fluid you are ingesting. Each and every surgical procedure has different post-surgical diets to follow and if you want to heal well, you’ll do what the doctor orders.
Instructions on What and When You Can Eat and Drink
There are times when you will not be allowed to eat or drink for a certain period of time after the operation. Two surgeries come to mind. For example, if you have any kind of stomach surgery involving the intestines, you will almost always not be allowed any kind of solid foods for a while, even soft foods. Of course, you’ll be in the hospital, so the nurses on the floor won’t let you have anything you are not allowed, so don’t even bother asking!
As well, prior to surgery when the surgical tech is helping to prepare you for surgery, you may want a drink of water or a cracker but, of course, you probably aren’t allowed anything whatsoever by mouth. That surgical tech studied at one of the best schools listed on bestsurgicaltechschools.com and will know the importance of both pre-op and post-op diets. When you are finally able to eat, it’s like heaven on earth. Unfortunately, you may not think so after the first few bites.
Gaining Your Strength and Healing Are the Main Focus
After surgery, the best foods to eat aid in healing and help to restore your strength. One of the main complaints after surgery is constipation. Most anesthetics and painkillers hinder peristalsis, the movement of foods through the intestines, and so it is vital to restoring regular digestion. Foods high in fiber are typically recommended. Try to avoid:
- Red meat
- Dairy (milk, cheese, etc.)
- Dehydrated foods
- Processed foods
- Sweets or sugary foods
You will, however, need the amino acid complex of proteins. Even though you can’t eat red meat, you can enjoy a nice piece of fish or lean meats such as chicken, turkey, fish, seafood, and even a bit of pork. Have you seen those commercials that advertise pork as “the other white meat”? Just try to eat anything that solid and relatively hard to digest to a minimum. Other good sources of protein are nuts, eggs, and tofu. Nuts may not be a good choice, however, if you have had colon surgery or suffer from diverticulosis.
Since protein promotes the healing of wounds, make sure to get sufficient amounts in your daily diet. The whole reason for post-surgical diets is to ensure you don’t cause any complications, as well as to help you heal quickly. If you don’t understand any instructions you are given, ask your doctor or nurse. As the old saying goes, it’s better to be safe than sorry.