7 Foods to Eat after Surgery

You’ve finally had your surgery and are ready for recovery. Since the effects of surgery can extend to your digestive system, it’s important to know what to eat after you are released. Orthopaedic surgeons recommend certain elements to include in your post-surgery diet.

Simple Start

For your first meals after surgery, keep it very light and simple. Broths and soups take little time to prepare and are comforting to eat. Clear liquids will keep you hydrated too, which is always a post-surgical issue.

Grains and Fiber

Eating grains such as oatmeal and quinoa will help stimulate your digestive system and keep the system operating normally. Anesthetics can be notorious for contributing to constipation in patients, so consuming good grains counters that effect and makes you feel full. Warm oatmeal not only provides essential fiber but also acts as a comfort food.


Fruits that are high in vitamin C fight inflammation in the body. Pineapple is an especially effective food for healing as it contains bromelain, an enzyme shown to greatly help with inflammation and swelling. In addition, fruit has a high water content to assist with hydration, and antioxidants to speed healing.


For many surgeries, orthopaedic surgeons prescribe antibiotics to the patient to prevent post-surgical infection. While this certainly improves the recovery outlook, it can cause imbalance of the digestive system. Antibiotics kill both good and bad organisms in the body, so your intestinal flora can be destroyed along with the bacteria that causes infection. Probiotic foods such as yogurt with active cultures, pickles, sauerkraut, miso soup, and best of all, dark chocolate, can all aid in digestion.

Lighter Proteins

Protein is a great source of amino acids that speed healing and help the body function at its optimum level. The key to ingesting protein after surgery is to eat the right sources of protein. Avoid dense proteins such as red meat and try to take in proteins such as fish, chicken, and almonds. These lighter proteins are not only a better source of amino acids, but are also easier for the body to digest. This is especially important when your digestion is sluggish after surgery.

Orthopaedic surgeons know that the body works best with quality sources of fuel, and after surgery this is especially critical. Avoid sugar and empty calories while recovering, and take in plenty of good, healthy food. Your body will thank you for it!


  1. Tracy Martin says:

    Thank you so much for the information. I wish I would have had such guidance before I lost my appetite after knee replacement surgery 4 weeks ago. I am praying and working on getting it back…. Again thanks.?

  2. what intake do you prefer to me as i am under going revision knee replacement in december
    precations to be taken after surgery to avoid infaction to knee

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