8 Foods To Eat After Prostate Surgery

If you decide to get prostate surgery, you probably have a lot of questions about what to do before and after surgery to promote healing.

One of the natural ways you can encourage healing after prostate surgery is by eating a healthy diet. 

Your diet can help you regain strength after surgery, reduce discomfort, and promote wound healing.

Considerations for your diet after surgery 

Prostate surgery is major surgery, so you’ll likely feel quite sore during your recovery. You’ll want to make adjustments to your diet that help aid in recovery and reduce discomfort.

The best foods to eat after prostate surgery should be those that don’t cause bloating, promote bowel regularity, and support your immune system. Protein is also important since it aids in wound healing and muscle growth after major surgery.

If you can, try to get help with meals or make some before your surgery. Standing for prolonged periods to prepare a meal can put stress on your pelvic floor, which needs rest after prostate surgery.

Unlike oral surgery or surgeries impacting your digestive system, you don’t necessarily need a soft diet after prostate surgery. Soft diets can be low in fiber, which increases your risk of constipation. If you strain to have a bowel movement due to constipation, it can increase pressure near your incision site and cause discomfort.

That being said, you should eat soft food in your post surgery diet if your healthcare provider recommends it for other reasons. Otherwise, you’ll likely do well with solid food that is higher in fiber. Be sure to take pain medication with food to reduce stomach upset as well.

RELATED: How to Reduce Your Risk of Infection After Prostate Surgery.

8 best foods to eat after prostate surgery

1. Whole grains

Whole grains are a good source of fiber which promotes bowel regularity and prevents constipation. They are also higher in nutrients compared to refined grains.

Oatmeal, whole wheat bread, whole-wheat pasta, and whole-grain crackers are all examples of whole grains, which are great foods to eat after prostate surgery.

You should aim to get at least 30 grams of fiber per day. Foods with at least three grams of fiber per serving are considered food sources of fiber and can help you meet that daily requirement.

2. Chicken breast

Chicken is an excellent source of protein. Your protein needs increase after major surgery as your body recovers and heals. Chicken breast is low in saturated fat, making it a heart-healthy protein source.

Like other types of meat, chicken breast is a good source of iron. Iron is a mineral that helps build oxygen-rich red blood cells, which can help reduce your chance of developing anemia after blood loss from surgery.

3. Citrus fruits

Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C, which helps support your immune system. Vitamin C also helps synthesize collagen, an important protein for skin growth. If your body produces more collagen, you may be less likely to scar from your incision.

vitamin c for erectile dysfunction

4. Nuts

Nuts like almonds, walnuts, and pistachios are a great source of protein, fiber, and healthy fat. They’re also convenient to have on hand for a snack while you’re resting in bed or for a protein boost in the car on the way to post-op check-ups.

Nuts are also a good source of zinc, a mineral important for wound healing and immune health. Other sources of zinc include:

  • Oysters
  • Crab
  • Oats
  • Vegetables
  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Lobster
  • Chickpeas

5. Legumes

Legumes like lentils, black beans, garbanzo beans, and pinto beans (among many other types of beans) are packed with plant-based protein

Your body needs around one gram of protein per kilogram of body weight during your recovery and to promote healing. This would equal around 82 grams per day for a 180-pound person. 

One-half cup of cooked black beans provides around eight grams of protein, which is almost 10% of your entire day’s requirement.

That same serving size of black beans contains an impressive seven grams of fiber, which helps prevent constipation. You might suffer from constipation after surgery due to the anesthesia, pain medication, and inactivity related to prostate surgery, which is why legumes are among some of the best foods to eat after prostate surgery.

6. Strawberries

Citrus fruits are the most well-known vitamin C-rich food, but strawberries shouldn’t be overlooked for their vitamin C content. One cup of strawberries provides over 140% of the recommended amount of vitamin C.

Vitamin C levels fall in your body after surgery. To replenish depleted vitamin C levels and support your immune health, make sure you’re eating foods C-rich foods like strawberries in your diet after prostate surgery.

7. Salmon

Fatty fish like salmon are rich in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids may help prevent muscle atrophy, according to a study

Muscle atrophy can occur when your activity level is lower than normal, such as when you’re resting more as you recover from prostate surgery.

Salmon is high in fat, but it’s considered a healthy fat. Healthy fats can help promote bowel regularity (in addition to fiber) to help prevent post-surgery constipation. Fish is also a great source of protein, and salmon is especially rich in vitamin D.

salmon salad recipe

8. Vegetables

Vegetables are rich in fiber as well as antioxidants that help prevent inflammation. To err on the safe side, avoid eating large amounts of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower, which can cause gas and possible bloating during the initial phase of your recovery.

Some of the best vegetables that don’t usually cause gas include leafy green vegetables (spinach, kale, etc.), bell peppers, green beans, and zucchini.

Conclusion 

Along with following your healthcare provider’s post-surgery recommendations, eating a well-balanced diet can help you recover from prostate surgery. 

The best foods to eat after prostate surgery are rich in protein, nutrients that support wound healing (vitamin C, zinc), and fiber to help support digestive health.

The best foods to eat after surgery are also beneficial to your health regardless of whether you’ve had prostate surgery. Aim to include these types of foods in your daily diet to promote your overall health and wellness.

Explore More

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7 Foods To Avoid After Prostate Surgery.

Sources

  1. Fukushima R, Yamazaki E. Vitamin C requirement in surgical patients. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2010. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20689415/
  2. McGlory C, Calder PC, Nunes EA. The Influence of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Skeletal Muscle Protein Turnover in Health, Disuse, and Disease. Front Nutr. 2019. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6742725/

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