The role of exercise and proper rest is well understood when it comes to rehabilitation, but what is often overlooked is the role food and diet plays as well.
If you are not eating enough food, and in the right proportions, you could be delaying your rehabilitation process.
What can bodybuilders teach us about rehabilitation?
Many people might not realize that bodybuilders spent more time in the kitchen that they do the weight room. This is because they know that their bodies will not grow unless they provide it with the proper amount of resources.
The same principle applies to therapy as well. You could be performing all the right exercises and getting your eight hours of sleep a night, but if your body is not getting enough food it will not heal itself as quickly as it could.
Physiotherapy clinics in Ontario such as Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Centres of Ontario (PARC) understand this as well. PARC want to provide you not only with the care that you need, but also the knowledge you will need to get back to being your old self again.
Isn’t counting calories only for weight loss?
Calorie counting for weight loss is a common misconception. Counting calories is just a method to ensure you are getting the right amount of energy and resources for your particular set of needs.
Your body will burn off a certain amount of calories over the course of the day. This is what is known as your maintenance level. If you eat at exactly maintenance you will neither gain nor lose weight.
The extra calories will allow your body to heal itself as quickly as it possibly can.
On the other hand, though, if you consume too much food your body will not be able to put it all to good use and convert some of it to fat. The extra can also hinder the rehabilitation process.
Be sure to check in with PARC so they can help you understand what is the best diet for your individual needs.
You can just eat whatever you want then?
If only it were that simple! Your body can intake calories from three different dietary sources:
High protein diets are recommended in order to maximize your body’s ability to recover
This diet can be broken down into a ratio of calories consumed from these three different sources.
One common high protein diet ratio might look like this:
- Protein: 30%
- Carbohydrates: 45%
- Fat: 25%
A simplified way of thinking about this breakdown is that fats and carbohydrates provide your body with the energy it needs to perform various tasks. While protein is the actual building blocks that make up your body and are what is needed to repair the damage.
If you aren’t getting the right amount of carbohydrates or fat, the body might not have the energy to heal you as quickly as it could. And if you are not consuming enough protein then your body might not have enough resources with which to carry out repairs.
So, be sure you are eating the proper amount of food and in the proper ratios so your body can optimize the healing process.