6 nutrients that optimally prepare you for surgery
Written by Michelle Feijen
Patients often ask me what nutrients they need for surgery. We are also often asked why the nutrients we recommend prior to surgery differ from the nutrients we recommend during recovery from surgery or trauma. It’s high time to dedicate a blog to these questions!
Which nutrients optimally prepare a patient for surgery?
The need for vitamins before surgery differs from the need after surgery. To properly prepare your body for surgery, you need the following 6 vitamins, minerals and amino acids: Vitamin B – Essential in energy metabolism
All B vitamins play an important role in energy metabolism. Carbohydrates, fats and proteins are converted into energy with the help of vitamin B. When there is a deficiency in the body of B vitamins, the body cannot properly convert the available food sources into energy, which is hampered for, for example, cell division and wound healing. 3
Vitamin D – Healthy bones and resistance
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and important for strong bones and teeth. In addition, it promotes the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, which means that it has an important effect in building muscle and bone. 7, 8 Vitamin D also has a positive effect on the immune system, supports the immune response and contributes to the production of new cells and tissues. This contributes to a quick recovery. However, we often do not get enough vitamin D from our diet. 5 A vitamin D deficiency is associated with, among other things, an increase in complications after surgery, including a poorer recovery after hip surgery. 9, 10
Zinc – Involved in wound healing
Zinc is needed in building proteins, DNA synthesis and cell division. It is involved in as many as 70 enzyme systems that are important in wound healing. Because zinc is involved in tissue growth and renewal, it contributes to an optimal preparation for surgery 11. In addition, zinc makes an important contribution to the maintenance of cognitive functions and normal hormone balance.
Magnesium – Antioxidant
Magnesium is a very important mineral. It is necessary for the energy metabolism in our body and the proper functioning of the muscles. 12
Magnesium, together with vitamin D and calcium, contributes to stronger bone density. A magnesium deficiency has a negative influence on all bone tissue cells, making it difficult for new cells to be made, which reduces the structure and makes the bone break faster. Postmenopausal women and older men benefit from additional magnesium in addition to a healthy diet. 13
In addition, it has a beneficial effect on the reduction of fatigue, 12 has a positive effect on pain after surgery, and has been shown to improve wound healing in patients with diabetes.
Omega-3 – Anti-Inflammatory
Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids. The most important role is played by EPA and DHA, which have an anti-inflammatory effect. Research shows that wound healing is faster in the group taking omega-3 fatty acids than the control group, even when omega-3 is taken alone before surgery. 14
Arginine – most important amino acid for wound healing
One of the most important amino acids is arginine. Arginine has a variety of functions in the body, including supporting the immune system, supporting normal blood circulation, building muscle mass and promoting recovery from illness. It has a unique effect on wound and intestinal healing. In fact, it appears that the right amount of arginine can lower the risk of infections after surgery by more than 40%. Nutrients for surgery Now you know which nutrients are needed to put your body in an optimal nutritional state for surgery. Please share this post with anyone who could benefit from this information so we can help as many people as possible prepare for their surgery.
The food supplement Recover Prepare contains all these vitamins, minerals and amino acids and helps you to optimally prepare your body for surgery.
Curious about the nutrients that help you to recover optimally after surgery? Then click here to the next blog