Integrative nutrition recognizes that everything we eat and put into our bodies makes a difference in our well-being. Dr. Moldovan believes that a balanced and nutritious diet has a key role in health and healing. Clinical research has helped to identify the foods that we should be eating to get the best nutrients and phytochemicals.
As a dentist and nutritionist, Dr. Moldovan is in prime position to help patients make good decisions about diet and overall well-being. Dr. Moldovan also believes that examining and appropriately adjusting diet can often prevent, reverse or delay the onset of disease.
Some of the topics that Dr. Moldovan can advise on include food sensitivities, vegetarian eating, anti-inflammatory diets, diabetes, heart disease and weight management. She is also very knowledgeable about the vitamins, minerals and dietary choices to make to accelerate healing after surgery. If you have just had surgery, or are planning to, Dr. Moldovan can help you select a diet, vitamin and mineral regimen for optimal healing.
Diet Analysis for Optimal Healing
There are several vitamins and minerals that promote fast recovery from surgery — in particular, vitamins A, C and E. These vitamins help with tissue repair and wound recovery, and support healthy immune system function, circulation and prevention of scarring.
Vitamin C is used to heal wounds and form collagen that helps build bones, cartilage and soft tissue. Fruits — especially citrus and tropical fruits like oranges, pineapple, mango, papaya and grapefruit — are chock-full of Vitamin C; not to mention, they are tasty. Vitamin A can be found in leafy greens like kale, spinach and turnip greens, carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli and bell peppers. Vitamin E is found in a variety of foods, especially nuts, seeds and vegetable oils.
Zinc is another key nutrient to consume while healing from surgery; it helps build proteins and improve wound healing. Zinc can be found in red meat, poultry and seafood. Vegetarians can eat beans, nuts and legumes to get enough zinc.
Supplements for Surgery
Some experts believe that certain supplements are good for the body during the surgical healing process. Soreness, swelling and bruising are common after surgical procedures. Arnica Montana and Bromelain are two of the most popular post-surgery supplements to ease these side effects.
Bromelain is an enzyme found in the stem of pineapples; it is believed to reduce inflammation, swelling, pain and platelet aggregation after surgery. Bromelain is also believed to enhance the effects of antibiotics that many doctors prescribe after surgery to prevent infection. It comes in several forms and can be taken orally.
Arnica Montana, also known as mountain tobacco, is an herbal remedy that reduces inflammation, soreness and bruising after surgery. It comes in cream, ointment, liquid, injectable and pill forms. It should not be taken in raw form.
Post-Surgery Diet and Nutrition Tips
It’s fairly common to lose weight after surgery because your appetite decreases or you don’t get the nutrients that you need. Here are some general guidelines for nutrition after oral surgery:
- Eat plenty of high-protein foods.
- If you experience poor appetite during your healing phase, try taking a walk before a meal.
- If you feel nauseated after surgery, try eating ginger or taking a ginger supplement.
- Drink milk or juice to boost caloric intake.
- Try a nutritional supplement such as Boost or Ensure between meals.
- Add spices, a dash of sugar or a marinade to improve the taste of bland-tasting foods, so they are more appetizing.
- Refrain from drinking alcohol or eating acidic foods.
- Eat soft foods to prevent irritating your mouth.