Foods That Promote Wound Healing

Diet post-surgery is essential. Certain foods trigger uncomfortable complications while others help you recover quicker.

This article will suggest you certain foods that promote wound healing!

Post-surgery, your healthcare provider will specify the foods you should eat or avoid depending on your pre-existing health condition or the type of surgery.

However, your appetite and ability to tolerate foods might be lower during recovery. A regular diet may not be enough for wound healing. Try these!

What Foods To Eat After Surgery To Promote Healing?

1. Garlic[1]National Library Of Medicine
Garlic: a review of potential therapeutic effects
“Different compounds in garlic are thought to reduce the risk for cardiovascular diseases, have anti-tumor and anti-microbial effects, and show benefit on high blood glucose concentration.”
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Garlic is a well-known natural remedy for colds and flu.

It effectively promotes healing due to its antibacterial and anti-viral properties. Garlic also has different compounds that reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Garlic is known for its anti-tumor and anti-microbial effects. It also reduces blood glucose concentration.


2. Ginger[2]National Library Of Medicine
The Amazing and Mighty Ginger
“Ginger has been purported to exert a variety of powerful therapeutic and preventive effects and has been used for thousands of years for the treatment of hundreds of ailments from colds to cancer.”
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Ginger is another natural remedy that effectively treats nausea, vomiting, and motion sickness.

It has anti-inflammatory properties that promote healing.


Ginger has been used for thousands of years to treat arthritis, migraines, and hypertension.


3. Turmeric[3]National Library Of Medicine
Turmeric, the Golden Spice
“turmeric is a potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic, antimicrobial, and anticancer agen”
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Turmeric is a spice well known to reduce pain.

A wide range of ailments, like inflammation and pain, can be treated with turmeric.

It also has strong anti-microbial properties that prevent bacterial infections in and around surgical wounds.

4. Fish oil[4]National Library Of Medicine
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
“mega-3 dietary supplements may help lessen some of the symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, childhood allergies, and cystic fibrosis.”
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It is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial in promoting healing.

Omega-3 fatty acids help to reduce inflammation and promote tissue regeneration.


5. Coconut[5]Pubmed
Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.: Arecaceae): in health promotion and disease prevention
“coconut kernel and tender coconut water have numerous medicinal properties such as antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, antiparasitic, antidermatophytic, antioxidant,”
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Coconut oil can be used as a moisturizer, anti-bacterial cream, or to heal wound marks.

Further, it is also effective in healing the skin due to its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

6. Aloe vera[6]IJMS
The Effect of Aloe Vera Clinical Trials on Prevention and Healing of Skin Wound: A Systematic Review
“Aloe vera has been used to prevent skin ulcers and to treat burn wounds, postoperative wounds, cracked nipples, genital herpes, psoriasis, and chronic wounds including pressure ulcers.”
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It is a plant well known for its healing sunburns, skin irritations, and especially scars or stitch marks post-surgery.

Likewise, it is very effective against bacterial skin infections.


Aloe vera gel also is widely used to soothe the burning sensations around the wounds.


7. Honey[7]Pubmed
Honey: its medicinal property and antibacterial activity
“reports of honey being very effective as dressing of wounds, burns, skin ulcers and inflammations; the antibacterial properties of honey speed up the growth of new tissue to heal the wound”
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It is a natural sweetener that has many health benefits.

Honey can not only be eaten, but you can also apply it to the skin.

Similarly, it effectively promotes healing due to its anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties.

Which Foods To Avoid During Wound Healing?

Foods like sugar, caffeine, and alcohol can harm your surgical wound.

Most importantly, avoid excessive consumption of unhealthy fats and carbohydrates, sugar, and salt.

These include doughnuts, cookies, fried foods, candy, and regular soda.


Along with food, lifestyle changes are also essential.

Above all, rest is also vital. It promotes quicker recovery from any illness or surgery.[8]Pub Med Central
Sleep, recovery, and metaregulation: explaining the benefits of sleep
“ one of the functions of sleep is to provide recovery, and that the need to sleep or sleep debt reflects the need to obtain sufficient recovery.”
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Lack of sleep causes the immune function to be latent and delays recovery.


Additionally, it is best to avoid smoking or consuming alcohol during recovery.

Smoking and drinking are known to suppress your immune system and could promote infections.[9]National Library Of Medicine
Smoking, Chronic Wound Healing, and Implications for Evidence-Based Practice
“A higher incidence of wound complications associated with smoking include prolonged wound healing times,dehiscence,tissue flap necrosis, anastomotic leakage, decreased wound tensile strength,and infection”
View in Article[10]PubMed Central
The importance of hydration in wound healing: reinvigorating the clinical perspective
“The discovery that a moist environment actively supports the healing response compared to a dry environment highlights the importance of water and good hydration levels for optimal healing. ”
View in Article

Staying hydrated is also very essential.



What drinks help heal wounds?

Here are a few tea and juices[11]Health Central
Drinks That Warm You Up and Heal You at the Same Time
“ Chamomile & these teas have anti-inflammatory properties can be beneficial for people suffering from chronic inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. ”
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that help heal wounds quicker –

Name Of The Drink Healing Properties
Chamomile Tea Anti-inflammatory Properties
Ginger Tea Helps in Reducing Pain
Moringa Tea/ Juice Anti-bacterial Properties
Celery Juice Anti-fungal and Anti-inflammatory Properties
Turmeric Latte/ Milk Anti-inflammatory Properties + Helps In Reducing Pain

Is dairy good for healing?

Many dairy products[12]Science Direct
Wound healing property of milk in full thickness wound model of rabbit
“Milk as a rich nutrient proved to be a good candidate for novel wound healing formulations ”
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like milk, curd, and cheese facilitate wound healing and repair damaged tissues in a short time. They fight against infections and restore the tissue’s original integrity.

Milk is a rich nutrient. Moreover, it is also a good candidate for novel wound-healing formulations.

On the other hand, you should avoid dairy products during wound healing if you are lactose intolerant or have dairy allergies.

What stops wound healing?

Chronic wound healing can be delayed due to infections and abnormal bacterial presence, pressure on the wound, and trauma.

In addition, the healing process can be affected by diabetes, arteriosclerosis, malnutrition, and malignancies.

Above all,  take good care of the wound by cleaning it regularly and drying it. However, if you notice any abnormal discharge or pus, you should immediately contact your doctor.

What types of fats & carbohydrates should be included in a healthy diet?

You can include the following healthy fats & carbohydrates –

Healthy Fats

While we always associate the consumption of fats with unhealthy, there are a few natural fats foods that promote wound healing.[13]PubMed Central
A healthy approach to dietary fats: understanding the science and taking action to reduce consumer confusion
“Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats have important health benefits.”
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When consumed in a balanced quantity, healthy fats exhibit favorable properties that enhance the process of acute and chronic wound healing.[14]PubMed Central
Nutrition, Anabolism, and the Wound Healing Process: An Overview
“Adequate fats are essential to wound healing of acute and chronic wounds.”
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Unhealthy Fats

Moderately Healthy Fats

Healthy Fats

Butter Corn oil Canola oil
Pork Fat Fish oils Almond oil
Red Meat Soybean oil Walnut oil
Poultry Safflower oil Olive oil
Palm Kernel Oil Sesame oil Peanut oil
Margarine Cottonseed oil Avocado
Dairy foods (other than skim) Sunflower oil Olives
Partially hydrogenated oils Nuts and seeds Peanut butter

Healthy Carbohydrates

According to the University of Nottingham[15]The University Of Nottingham
Nutrition in Wound Healing
“Providing energy for leucocytes and macrophages (white blood cells). Stimulates fibroblast growth. Stimulates the production of collagen (the framework for new tissue). Creating adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The majority of ATP is created from glucose in the body’s mitochondria in the cells and provides the cells with the chemical energy and heat that they require for functioning.”
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, healthy Carbohydrates will also benefit you in the following ways-

  • Providing energy for leukocytes and macrophages (white blood cells).
  • Stimulates fibroblast growth.
  • It enhances collagen production (the framework for new tissue).
  • Glucose (digested carbohydrates) provides energy for white blood cells.

Healthy Carbohydrates[16]NCBI
Dietary carbohydrates: role of quality and quantity in chronic disease
“Table 1”
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Moderately Healthy Carbohydrates

Unhealthy Carbohydrates

Bran cereals Pearled barley Baked potato
Fruits Brown rice French fries
Vegetables Oatmeal Refined breakfast cereal
Kidney beans Bulgur Sugar
Wheat tortilla Rice cakes Candy bars
Lentils Whole-grain bread White rice
Dry Fruits Whole-grain pasta White-flour pasta


We hope this article will help you choose the best food to complement your medications and fasten the healing process.

Get in touch with us today to plan your surgery abroad!



NIH – Garlic: a review of potential therapeutic effects

NIH – The Amazing and Mighty Ginger

NCBI – Turmeric, the Golden Spice

NIH – Omega-3 Fatty Acids

PMC – Coconut: in health promotion and disease prevention

IJMS – The Effect of Aloe Vera Clinical Trials on Prevention and Healing of Skin Wound: A Systematic Review

PMC – Honey: its medicinal property and antibacterial activity

PMC – Sleep, recovery, and meta regulation: explaining the benefits of sleep

NIH – Smoking, Chronic Wound Healing, and Implications for Evidence-Based Practice

PMC – The importance of hydration in wound healing: reinvigorating the clinical perspective

Health Central – Drinks That Warm You Up and Heal You at the Same Time

Science Direct – Wound healing property of milk in full-thickness wound model of rabbit

Nottingham University – Nutrition in Wound Healing