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Eat yourself well

Marika Walker is a Nutritional Therapist at Katie Bell Physiotherapy and Wellness. Here she talks about eating whilst injured and the importance of good nutrition:

‘Nutrition is one way to counter the negative impact of an exercise-induced injury.  For example, when injuries are severe enough for immobilization of a limb to be recommended, this can result in loss of muscle mass and reduced muscle strength and function. Higher protein intakes (2–2.5g/kg/day) are recommended during immobilization. At the very least, care should be taken not to reduce the absolute amount of protein intake when your energy intake is reduced. There is promising evidence for the use of omega-3 fatty acids and creatine to counter muscle loss and enhance hypertrophy, respectively. The overriding nutritional recommendation for injured exercisers should be to consume a well-balanced diet based on whole, minimally processed foods or ingredients made from whole foods.

My top tips:

  • Eat adequate protein – minimally processed meats, legumes, eggs, fish, plant based proteins such as lentils, beans, protein powders
  • Eat the rainbow – include colourful vegetables and fruit – aim for 10 handfuls a day
  • Eat enough carbs; you need fewer carbs than when training but enough to support recovery; include minimally processed carbs like root vegetables, oats, whole grain rice, sprouted grain breads and quinoa.
  • Eat more anti-inflammatory fats like: olive oil, avocados, fish like mackarel, salmon, sardines, mixed nuts and seeds.
  • Avoid pro-inflammatory things like: processed foods, vegetable oils like corn, sunflower, soybean, and foods with transfats (ready made biscuits, cakes, pies, margarines etc)
  • Include inflammation managing herbs and spices like: turmeric, garlic, bromelain from pineapple and cocoa, green tea and berries.

Marika’s a member of the professional organisation BANT (British Association for Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy), and the CNHC (Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council). Contact the Client Care Team for more information and to book a session with Marika info@katiebellphysio.com or call 0114 327 2080.

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