Healing diet for broken bones
A bone fracture can happen at any time to anyone. Falls, accidents, various diseases, chronic conditions, sports injuries, etc. are the most common reasons for bone fractures. With advanced treatment for bone fractures and with some changes in lifestyle & nutritional habits, fractured bones can be fixed. There are several ways to boost the healing of a bone fracture.
After a fracture, your body starts to heal and rebuild the bone. A healthy and nutrients rich diet can accelerate the healing of your fractured bone.
Bone Fracture Healing Supplements
Dr. Vasudeva Juvvadi, an Orthopedic Specialist in Hyderabad, says that a patient should take supplements only if the doctor recommends it. A well-balanced diet is an excellent choice to get the required nutrition and not a pill.
Here are some of the key vitamins and nutrients recommended to consume when you have broken bone for faster healing.
Healing diet for broken bones
Nearly half of your boney structure is built with proteins. When you have had a bone fracture, your body requires more proteins to rebuild new bone. It also improves the assimilation of calcium(another essential nutrient for healthy bones) during the rebuilding process.
Good Protein Sources: Meat, fish, milk, eggs, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, cheese, nuts & seeds, soy products, legumes/beans, and fortified cereals, etc.
Calcium is an essential mineral that helps you to build stronger bones. Foods rich in calcium can help your fracture bone in healing. Adults should consume around 1,000 to 1,200 milligrams of calcium every day. The doctor suggests that you take calcium supplements only when you need them.
Good Calcium Sources: Milk, yogurt, cheese, and other dairy products, green leafy vegetables like curly kale, turnip, broccoli, okra and spinach, bok choy, soy, beans, almond milk, fish like tuna or salmon with bones, and fortified cereals, etc.
Vitamin D plays an essential role in your fracture healing. It helps your blood to absorb and use calcium to restore the minerals in your bones. Low levels of vitamin D can hinder your fractured bone healing and slow down your recovery. However, adequate levels of vitamin D can boost and fortify the healing process.
Sunlight is a rich source of vitamin D. Our skin has the ability to absorb necessary vitamin D from sunlight. If you spend 10-15 minutes in sunlight every day, you can get the required vitamin D.
However, if you are not able to get into sunlight daily, there are other options, such as eating natural food sources rich in vitamin D.
Good Vitamin D Sources: Flesh of fatty fish swordfish, salmon, tuna and cod liver oil, sardines, beef liver, egg yolks, and fortified foods such as juice, milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.
C vitamin plays a crucial role in bone healing. Vitamin C is an antioxidant, and antioxidants can restore the damage caused by free radicals. The free radicals which are released when the tissue is damaged can continuously cause damage unless prevented by antioxidants. C Vitamin is a powerful antioxidant and crucial in restoring the damaged tissue during a fracture.
Vitamin C also helps to produce collagen, a vital protein found in bone. It plays a dominant role in your bone fracture healing. The deficiency of vitamin C leads to the low production of collagen, which alters the healing process. For a healthy and faster recovery, you need more Vitamin C.
Good Vitamin C Sources: Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, berries, kiwi fruit, tomatoes, spinach, sweet potatoes, and green leafy vegetables.
Iron deficiency is not a good thing at any stage, especially you should not have it while recovering from a fracture. Iron deficiency results in anaemia (lack of red blood cells), which causes extreme fatigue. Anaemia slows the healing process. Iron can help your body to produce collagen, which rebuilds bone. It also carries oxygen to your bones and helps them heal.
Good Iron Sources: Red meat, chicken or turkey, oily fish, eggs, dry fruits, green leafy vegetables, whole-grain bread, and fortified cereals, etc.
Include sufficient potassium in your diet, and it prevents the excretion of more calcium through urine. You can get potassium from fresh fruits.
Good Potassium Sources: Bananas, oranges, sweet potatoes, apricots, cooked broccoli, potatoes, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, fish, meat, and milk.
Foods to Avoid with Broken Bones
Foods you should avoid to heal a bone fracture
It’s better to cut back or skip alcohol, smoking, salt, and coffee.
Alcohol: If you don’t stop taking alcohol after a fracture, it slows down the process of bone healing. Your body can’t build new bone faster to fix the fracture. Too much alcohol also makes you unsteady, and you are more likely to fall.
Salt: High sodium diet can excrete more calcium through your urine. One teaspoon or 6 grams of salt a day is good enough. You need calcium for building stronger bones.
Coffee: More caffeine in a day can slow down the healing of your bone. It might make you urinate more, that means more calcium is going out of your body, which is important for bone health.
When can supplements help?
Healing diet for broken bones: When recommended by a doctor, supplements can fill gaps in nutrition during your recovery. However, the best place to start is to focus on your diet.
After an injury or any kind of recovery, loss of appetite is common. You might find that your appetite is reduced if you meet any of these scenarios:
When you are on medication: Some medications reduce your appetite, making it harder for your body to eat the nutritious food it needs. In such cases, doctors suggest supplements.
If your fracture requires surgery: After surgery, appetite loss is common in many patients. You may not be able to eat a good meal for a few days. The best thing is to be nutritionally ready before surgery. However, fractures happen suddenly, and surgery goes unplanned.
When you are older
Our appetite changes as we age with time. Loss of appetite is common in older age due to many reasons, such as chronic illness, medications, and other biological changes. Doctors suggest nutritional supplements in such cases.
Nutrition is very important in the healing process; supplements can provide the necessary nutrition when your appetite is low. For more information, or have a fracture that is taking a long time to heal, contact Dr. Vasudeva Juvvadi, one of the best doctors for fracture treatment in Hyderabad. He has more than 10 years of experience in treating malunion fractures and nonunion fractures.