Post by jerseyboy on Jul 8, 2013 10:13:52 GMT -8
After an SCI, your body changes and you end up with limited mobility, a slower metabolism, and your bowel and bladder functions not being what they used to be. Your diet becomes a key element in helping your life run as smoothly as possible with your injury.
Metabolism Key Points
• A poor diet, specifically a diet high in calories and fat, can cause your metabolism to slow down.
• A lack of exercise can cause your metabolism to slow down. The amount of muscle you have in your body correlates directly with your metabolism. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be because muscle burns calories at rest
• Getting older can cause your metabolism to slow down. This occurs because levels of physical activity tend to decrease with age.
• Hypothyroidism, or low thyroid hormone levels, can cause your metabolism to slow down. Thyroid hormone is produced in the thyroid gland, and is responsible for your body's metabolic rate.
With muscle paralysis, certain amounts of muscle atrophy will occur. You also can’t change the fact that you will age. What you can do is keep your metabolism up as much as possible by eating right and exercising regularly.
Now that I have your attention, I will link a few websites that I could like you to look at and maybe even bookmark for future reference. I encourage all SCIs to familiarize themselves with the food pyramid, essential nutrients that our bodies need, and which foods contain those nutrients. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to make healthier dietary choices which your body will thank you for in the short and long ‘run’. With a great diet, you can compensate for your lack of mobility by giving your body exactly what it needs. If you’re still not convinced here are some non/superficial results of a healthy diet:
• Smaller “quad” or “para” belly
• Healthier looking skin and nails
• Less UTIs
• Healthier looking face(which for some of us is the only normal part of our bodies left)
• Better mood
• Better sleep
• More energy
• Maintaining your 5 senses as you age
• Good breath
Heres a website that explains the food pyramid, a balanced diet, tips and tricks, different food groups, and serving sizes.
You must remember to make your diet based on YOUR needs, not what national averages say in your country. National averages are based on what able bodied people need to be healthy. If half of your body is paralyzed and you get little to no cardiovascular stimulation everyday, then you obviously wouldn’t need as much fuel as someone who walks around all day for work.
Heres a basic break down of carbs, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water.
How much water should you think?
Take your weight, divide it by 2, and that’s how much water you should be drinking everyday in ounces. I weigh 150lbs, so I should be drinking 75ounces of water everyday. By drinking the appropriate amount of water, you can help your bowel program run more smoothly, keep yourself feeling full so your not tempted to eat junk when your bored, and heres a link to a many other reasons.
• Always eat in moderation and drink plenty of water
• White meat is easier to digest than red meat.
• Coconut water is a great alternative to regular water if you want a change.
• It would be wise to avoid soda in your everyday life
• No meals should be eaten in the 3 hours before you sleep
• Avoid snacking, if you must then nuts, trail mix, and dates are healthy alternatives
• Fruit smoothies, vegetable juices, and protein drinks are great sources of nutrients
• Read food labels
• Experiment to see how much of each nutrient YOU need to have YOUR body performing at its peak
Healthy food ideas
Easy to make healthy foods. For the lazy, busy, and tired.
• Whole wheat bread, toast
• Chicken patties
• Canned tuna
• Peanut butter & jelly
• Fruits/fruit smoothies
• V8 vegetable juice
• Protein drinks
• Chocolate milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs
• Oatmeal, cereal
• Potatoes, sweet potatoes
• Lintels, soups
Heres a link of healthy foods if you want to get fancy:
Just because it is on the list does not mean you should be eating it. Always check food labels to make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need and are blocking out fats and other undesirables.
I encourage everyone to do their own research since everyone’s body and injury is different. If you’re really struggling with your diet, feel free to message me or look into seeing a licensed dietitian.