NUTRITION FOR INJURIES
During the recovery period for injuries athletes often lose focus on a vital part of the healing process, that of nutrition. Since athletes are unable to train after significant injuries that either require surgery or at minimum a cast, losing muscle mass is a foregone conclusion.
However there are ways to limit the destruction of losing strength during the recovery period.
“Athletes need to try and maintain their weight as best as possible during the early stages of their recovery,” says Brett Singer, certified sports dietitian for Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute.
“They need to be careful that they do not gain too much weight or lose too much weight during their recovery time.”
When it comes to bone or cartilage repair the typical healing process can be up to three months which includes rehabilitation services, according to the New England Journal of Medicine.
An important point to consider is the quality of nutrition can affect the recovery process.
“The athlete needs make sure that their nutrition is well balanced and managed during their injury period,” says Singer.
“Keeping up their daily regimen of fruits, vegetables, and especially protein will help against the natural process of losing muscle mass during this inactive period.”
During an injury period the body does not produce as much proteins from our typical diet through regeneration of strength training.
“The injured athlete should be consuming between 20 and 30 grams of protein during each meal,” says Singer.
“This will allow the body to minimize the loss of muscle mass during their recovery period.”
For more information on Sport Nutrition and Diets contact Brett Singer MS, RD, CSCS, LD of the Memorial Hermann IRONMAN Sports Medicine Institute of Houston.
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To listen to the full version of Brett Singer’s interview on Injury Nutrition click the play button below.