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Our Favorite Surgery Recovery Diet

How you treat your incision and rehabilitate from surgery encourages swift healing. What you put in your body is also essential. At Lakeland Surgical Clinic, PLLC, in Jackson, Mississippi, we recommend paying attention to your diet as you recover from your procedure.

Eating foods with high-quality nutrients helps you regain strength and recover quickly. Your diet plays a role in reducing inflammation and prolonged wound recovery. Of course, follow any specific dietary guidelines recommended by our team, especially if you have diabetes or underwent weight-loss surgery

Precise nutritional requirements are based on your age, height, weight, and gender, as well as any pre-existing medical conditions. Generally, you will likely need more calories, protein, vitamins, minerals, and healthy fluids to help you recover.

The following recommendations include foods that help you heal. 


You want plenty of protein after surgery because it aids in wound healing. Protein supports muscle retention and growth and enhances immunity. 

Good protein sources are lean, meaning they contain minimal saturated fat. Add lean meat, like flank steak and chicken breast, white fish, tofu, beans, and eggs to your daily plan.

Whole grains

Despite what many trendy diet plans say, carbohydrates are not the enemy. They are a primary source of energy for your body. Choose quality whole-grain carbohydrates like oats, brown rice, 100% whole-wheat breads, and whole-grain pasta. The fiber in these foods also helps with post-surgical constipation. 

Vegetables and fruits

Fresh produce contains essential micronutrients that promote healing. Vitamin C, for example, is critical to rebuilding collagen and soft tissue. Aim for colorful fruits and vegetables like oranges, berries, red and yellow peppers, spinach, and broccoli. Fruits and veggies also contribute to your fiber intake. 

Smart fats

Fats are an essential source of energy and support overall health. Skip saturated versions found in full-fat dairy and fatty cuts of meat. Instead, aim for fat from nuts and seeds, avocados, and olive oil. 

Iron-containing food

Iron is an essential nutrient that promotes healthy red blood cells. As many as 90% of people become iron-deficient following surgery due to blood loss. Restore your levels by adding more iron-rich foods to your diet. Include lean cuts of beef, organ meats, enriched bread and cereal, spinach, nuts, and seeds. 


Calcium is essential for strong bones and teeth, but this mineral also plays a role in blood clotting, muscle contraction, and the regulation of your heart rhythm. Dairy products are a source of calcium, but so are soy milk and tofu. Canned fish with bones and leafy green vegetables also contain this nutrient. 


Your body uses more water during wound healing. Keep up with your body’s fluid needs by drinking more than usual. Water is a good choice, but milk, soy beverages, soup, and juices also contribute to your hydration status. 

In addition to emphasizing healthy foods, minimize processed foods. Avoid sugary foods, white carbohydrates, and alcohol. Too much of these can slow the healing process and promote inflammation.

If you have questions regarding your diet following your surgery, reach out to our team at Lakeland Surgical Clinic, PLLC. Call today or use the online tool to set up your consultation.

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