The power of food in wound healing.

The power of food in wound healing.
Written by TEWSV

Nutrition plays a vital role in wound healing and wound care. Indeed, nutritional support should be considered a key part of wound management. Poor nutrition before or during the healing process can delay it and alter the strength of the wound. Making it more vulnerable to breakage. There is a significant body of evidence supporting the power of nutrition in wound healing.

To better understand the wound healing process.

Scarring is a complex process: in a nutshell, it is the replacement of damaged tissue with new tissue produced by the body. This requires a higher consumption of energy and specific nutrients, including proteins and kilojoules. When the body is injured, it releases stress hormones and the metabolism changes to provide the injured area with the nutrients it needs to heal. This phase is called the catabolic phase. If the catabolic phase is prolonged and / or if the body does not receive adequate nutrients, the body can enter a state of protein-energy malnutrition (PEM).

We speak of protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) when the absorption of proteins and energy is inadequate or impaired. PEM can be directly linked to sores that don’t heal. It can be defined as low body mass index (BMI) or significant unintended weight loss associated with loss of subcutaneous fat and / or muscle wasting.

Did you know what kind of nutrients have a big impact on the wound healing process?


Proteins are essential for the maintenance and regeneration of body tissues. Additionally, low protein levels lead to reduced collagen development. This slows down the healing process. Adequate levels of protein help achieve optimal healing rates. Overall energy intake is also important because if energy needs are not met, the body will use protein for energy rather than for healing.

Sources of protein include red and white meats, fish, eggs, liver, dairy products (milk, cheese, and yogurt), soy, legumes, nuts and seeds.

Carbohydrates and lipids:

The main sources of energy for the human body – and for wound healing – are carbohydrates and fats. The main energy requirement of a wound is produced by the synthesis of collagen. The energy requirement required for healing is greater depending on the size and complexity of the wound.


Fats, including mono and polyunsaturated fats, provide vital fuel for wound healing. They are a safe and concentrated source of energy. Adequate fats are needed to prevent the body from using protein for energy. Fatty acids are an important component of cell membranes and the demand for essential fatty acids increases after injury.

Good sources of fats to promote wound healing are: meat, fatty dairy products such as milk, cheese, butter, cream, yogurt, ice cream, and oils and fats used for cooking or as a spread.

It is important to aim for weight maintenance while the wound heals. If a person is overweight, he shouldn’t try to lose weight until the wound has completely healed. An underweight person should try to gain enough weight to return to normal.

Vitamins also contribute to wound healing. Here they are !

C vitamin:

Vitamin C plays an important role in collagen synthesis and its subsequent cross-linking. The same goes for the formation of new blood vessels (angiogenesis). Adequate levels of vitamin C will help support wound healing. Vitamin C deficiency has been found to impair wound healing and has also been associated with an increased risk of wound infection.

Vitamin A:

Vitamin A increases the inflammatory response in wounds and stimulates collagen synthesis. Low levels of vitamin A can lead to delayed wound healing and susceptibility to infections. Severe stress or injury can cause an increased need for vitamin A. Although the mechanisms of vitamin A in wound healing are not yet fully understood, it clearly plays an important role. Vitamin A supplementation requires caution, as there is a risk of toxicity.

A better wound healing process cannot be achieved without trace elements.


Zinc is a trace element, present in small quantities in the body. It also plays an important role in wound healing.

Zinc participates in the synthesis of proteins and collagen. But also to the proliferation and healing of tissues. Zinc deficiency has been associated with delayed wound healing, reduced skin cell production and reduced wound strength. Sources of zinc in the diet are red meat, fish and shellfish, dairy products, poultry and eggs.

Iron :

Iron is a mineral that supplies oxygen to the wound site. Therefore, iron (hemoglobin) deficiency can prevent wound healing. As it can also lead to reduced collagen production and wound resistance.

* Presse Santé is committed to transmitting health knowledge in a language accessible to all. IN NO EVENT, the information provided cannot replace the advice of a healthcare professional.

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