Spinal cord injuries impact your dietary needs

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We have said many times that a spinal cord injury can impact every part of your life. Have you ever thought about how your eating habits might have to change if you suffer a spinal cord injury? If not, take a few moments to think about these points.

The foods you eat provide your body with what it needs to function. After a spinal cord injury, there are some parts of your body that will need more care than others, and you have to balance the needs of those parts of the body with the new caloric needs of your body.

Weight gain is a consideration after a spinal cord injury because you don’t want to gain a lot of weight. Weight gain that puts you above a healthy weight can place a toll on your body that it can’t handle because of your injury. This means that you have to be careful about what you eat so that you aren’t overdoing it, especially since you can’t just up the exercise you do daily to compensate for a higher calorie diet.

You need to make sure that your diet includes foods that help to keep your skin healthy. Bed sores are a real concern for people who have suffered a spinal cord injury. Ideally, you will eat a diet that is rich in vitamin C. This includes eating foods like citrus fruits. But, that can also lead to gastrointestinal troubles that are caused by eating too much fruit. It all comes down to a balancing act between your dietary needs and what your body can handle.

Hiring a dietitian might help you to determine an eating plan that will work for your needs. This is only of the experts that you might need on your care team. If your injury was caused by an accident, you might choose to seek compensation as a way to get the funding you need for the experts who can help.

Source: Spinal Cord Injury Association of Illinois, “Nutrition & Diet,” Jean Stork, R.D., accessed Oct. 05, 2016

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