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Understanding the role of nutrition in successful wound healing

Our bodies are super machines that are always working to keep us in a good state. It is no wonder that the many biological processes within us remain baffling to scientists and researchers. However, with continued research, there has been a better understanding of how our body functions. One of the most incredible ways our bodies ensure we are in good shape is through wound healing. Generally, your body is ingrained to take action immediately after you have an injury by triggering the four phases of wound healing. 

This complicated and multifaceted process is critical in keeping us alive as it helps avoid too much blood loss and bacterial infections.

The Stages of Wound Healing

The Homeostasis Phase

The homeostasis phase is activated once your body receives the shock of an injury. It initiates your blood clotting system and shifts your body’s focus on healing the wound.

The Defensive Phase

The defensive phase is largely focused on destroying bacteria and preparation of the wound bed for new tissues.

The Proliferative Phase

The proliferative phase supports the new cells at the wound site by forming a protective barrier around them.

The Remodeling Phase

The remodeling phase is the phase where your skin collagen matures and closes on the wound site.

While each wound healing stage has a distinct purpose, they all cause the body to work on overdrive. As your body is working tirelessly to help your wounds heal, your caloric demands also rise. 

Essentially, this means that successful wound healing and proper nutrition are interrelated. 

How Nutritional Deficiencies Can Affect the Progression of Wound Healing

According to a study carried out by Lisa Logan, a Certified Nutrition Support Clinician (CNSC), nutrition has been the forgotten element of wound healing for too long. The far-reaching impacts of nutrition deficiencies in wound healing are always evident as:

Slow-healing wounds

If the high caloric demands of the body are not met during wound healing, wounds that would heal in a short period take longer. Because your body lacks a sufficient amount of energy to help repair its damaged tissues.

Chronic Non-healing Wounds

The normal pathway for wound healing is severely impacted when you have nutritional deficiencies. Once your body cannot meet the caloric demands during this process, you will have incomplete wound healing stages, this leads to weak wound tensile strength and higher risks of infections that leave you with a wound that does not heal.

Nutrients that Play an Important Role in Wound Healing

You need a proper diet that provides you with the right nutrients for wound healing. The power of the right food choices will give you the much-needed boost for better and quicker recovery of your wounds. Here are the most important nutrients that you need to include in your diet:

The Importance of Protein in Wound Care

Studies have found out that proteins are the most important dietary component for a healing wound. Because proteins are the ‘building blocks for creating new tissues. 

Proteins also contain important enzymes and antibodies that help maintain your body’s immune functions. Most importantly, your skin is mainly made up of protein collagens.

In turn, protein deficiency will lead to protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) stage, which will cause the body to break down its protein for energy use leading to muscle wasting and loss of subcutaneous fat. 

As you continue to lose lean body mass (LBM), this process worsens as your wound starts competing with muscles for energy. This will leave you with a slow-healing or non-healing wound.

What Are the Roles of Carbohydrates And Fats?

Carbohydrates and fats are also crucial for wound healing as they are broken down to provide the energy used during this process. 

Forget about the fad diets that have cut out anything with fat elements; your body needs the right balance of carbohydrates and fats. Your body gets calories from carbohydrates, and once these have been used up, you rely on fats for calories.

Fats also help your body absorb fat-soluble vitamins that include; vitamins A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are very important, especially vitamin K that is required for blood clotting and smooth progression of wound healing phases.

Zinc for Skin Cell Production

Finally, you also need the mineral zinc for wound healing as it aids the body in synthesizing proteins and developing stronger collagen. 

Zinc is also essential for skin cell production and building keratin. In turn, zinc deficiency will lead to rough skin and slow-healing wounds.

While these three remain some of the top nutrients your body needs, the list isn’t complete. Many other nutrients are crucial to the body. 

Are you unsure of where to find the right balance? The experts at have various effective solutions to help boost your immunity for successful wound healing and other health concerns. 

Photo by Ella Olsson on Unsplash
Photo by Ella Olsson on Unsplash

Nutrition Guidelines to Improve Wound Healing

Wound healing does not happen by chance. Instead, it is a properly coordinated process that takes a toll on the body and needs to be backed with the proper nutrition.  

Your body is always running thousands of biological processes to keep you in the best state, and the least you could do is give it a boost of calories and energy. To improve wound healing, you need to focus on your diet and have meals that primarily consist of:

High-protein Foods

These include;

  • Dairy products
  • Fish, chicken, and meat
  • Beans and legumes
  • Eggs

Foods High In Carbohydrates And Fat

These include:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Cereals
  • Sugary products
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Soy and soy milk
  • Peanut butter

Foods High in Zinc And Vitamins

These include;

  • Red meat
  • Milk products
  • Fish, shellfish, and other seafood
  • Fortified cereals
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Leafy greens

Get Extra Nutrition for Wound Healing.

Proper diet is the secret to enhancing wound healing, and it is your mandate to make this possible. 

At times, it might appear daunting to develop a diet plan that will provide you with extra nutrition. This is why it would be best to turn to professionals. 

Nutrition Realm is one of the top-rated places where you can get healthy recipes and nutritional guides provided by registered dietarians and certified nutritionists. These guides will help refine your diet and offer you a better foundation for providing your body with the nutrients and calories required for healing. 

You will further love the variety of health guides and nutritional facts available to help you with healthy eating for wound healing and improve your wellness.

Featured Photo by Diana Polekhina on Unsplash