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What you need to know about nutrition after knee replacement surgery

Good nutrition is essential for your recovery. Eating well-balanced meals will help you recover quickly and help you feel your best.

What you eat after surgery affects your well-being. If you don't eat enough of the right foods, you will become tired and less able to take care of yourself.

Be sure to drink six to eight glasses of fluids (especially water) each day.

Dietary guidelines

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans (food guide pyramid) gives science-based advice on food choices for health. The guide describes a healthy diet as one that:

  • focuses on fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products
  • includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs and nuts
  • is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt and added sugars.

Tips to help you:

  • Make half of your grains whole.
  • Vary your vegetables.
  • Focus on fruit.
  • Eat foods rich in calcium.
  • Eat lean proteins.
  • Find your balance between food and physical activity.

For complete information about the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005, go to www.MyPyramid.gov. The Web site contains tips and resources, guidelines, and a food and activity pyramid based on your age, gender and physical activity.

For specific questions about your health and nutrition, talk with your doctor.

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Source: Allina Patient Education, Total Knee Replacement, third edition, ortho-ahc-90140

First published: 10/01/2000
Last updated: 12/01/2006

Reviewed by: Allina Patient Education experts