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What is Good Nutrition for a Mommy Makeover-Pre-Op/Post-OP?

What can I do to prepare for a mommy makeover? I have begun taking a multi-vitamin and vitamin C per doc's orders. What else can I do to optimize healing? I am currently on Medifast but will stop one month prior to surgery? What should my pre-op nutrition look like? What should my post-op nutrition look like? I use Jay Robb Natural Whey protein drinks.

Doctor Answers 12

Nutrition before and after Mommy Makeover

Thank you for the question.

There is no specific “recommended diet” for the pre or post-tummy tuck patient. A well-balanced diet with high fiber and a good protein source would obviously be helpful. Adding a protein shake ( to each meal) if necessary may also be helpful especially if your appetite is curtailed ( which often happens during this period). Frequent hydration is also important.

Some other advice I give to patients prior to major surgery may be helpful to you: 

1. Make sure you are doing the procedure for the right reasons (for yourself)  and that you have realistic expectations.  Be aware that an improvement in the “problem area” may not translate to an overall improvement in your life   situation.  You are bound to be disappointed with results of the procedure if your motivation for doing the surgery is not internally driven.

2. Time your surgery carefully; generally, it is not a good idea to have surgery done during or immediately after a stressful period in life (for example divorce or death of a loved one). The additional stress of surgery will undoubtedly be  more challenging to deal with if a patient's emotional reserves our already exhausted. Remember, that an improvement in your physical appearance will not translate to an improvement in your life situation.

3. If possible speak to patients who have undergone similar procedures and query them about the toughest times of their recovery period. Any practical hints previous patients can provide may be very helpful.

4. Make sure you are aware of potential complications that may arise how to reach your surgeon if necessary.
5. Make sure you have a strong and patient support system (several people if possible) in place who have time/patience to take care of you. Arrange for professional nursing if any doubt exists regarding the availability and/or stamina  of your caretakers.

6. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. It may also take many months/year to see the end results of your surgery.

7. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies.

8. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work, school or chores too early and let others take care of you (for a change).

9. Pick your surgeon carefully (a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon) and trust in his/her advice. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the   emotional swings that you may experience.

10. Resume all medications that you were using preoperatively when cleared by your plastic surgeon and stop the use of narcotics and sedatives as soon as feasible after surgery.

11. Keep in mind the end results as you go through the tougher emotional times after your surgery.
I hope this helps.

A well-balanced diet is always important.

It’s important that Mommy Makeover patients maintain good nutrition in the pre- and post-operative periods.Although we prefer that patients be within 10% of their ideal body weight, we don’t want patients to be dieting in the pre-operative period.During this time, it’s important that they have adequate calories, protein, vitamins and trace elements.
A well balanced, high protein diet is necessary for several reasons.It’s very clear that poor nutrition can lead to wound healing problems in the post-operative period.In some cases, it may even cause wound breakdown and separation.
Protein shakes and other sources of protein are essential for optimal wound healing.We also recommend that patients avoid heavy and spicy foods which may lead to indigestion following surgery.Patients should also minimize salt intake which can lead to prolonged post-operative swelling.Patients should work hard to maintain good hydration.This helps decrease the incidence of constipation in patients already on narcotic pain relievers.
It’s important that these issues be discussed with your plastic surgeon if you have concerns.Your surgeon should be able to be more specific about your treatment plan.

What is good nutrition for a Mommy Make Over preop/postop?

A Mommy Make Over can be a truly life-changing procedure. Success of this procedure depends on patient selection, surgical planning and execution, and compliance on the part of the patient during the postoperative period. There are many things a patient can do to help ensure an ideal outcome. Preoperatively it is best to be at a stable weight and hopefully within 10 pounds of your ideal weight. You should not smoke or use any type of nicotine products for 6 weeks prior to surgery and 4 weeks after. Smoking can lead to loss of skin and severe wound healing problems. Preoperatively it is important to maintain a healthy diet high in protein to help the postoperative healing process. It is also important to make sure your diet does not promote constipation. Some surgeons will recommend a mild preoperative enema to help empty the bowel before the surgery.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

Preparation for your Mommy Makeover

I would do the followings to prepare for your procedure. 1) Keep on healthy diet and take multi-vitamins, 2) Continue with regular exercise to keep your body healthy; however, try not to lose more weight at this time. You want a stable weight, 3) No smoking, 4) No aspirin 7 days prior to your surgery, 5) Check with your plastic surgeon to find out which medications she/he wants you to avoid. Best wishes to you.

Dr Sugene Kim

The best nutrition for a Mommy Makeover is "real food", prepared at home!

Mommy Makeover surgical procedures, like all types of Plastic Surgery, require you to be at your healthiest going into surgery. 

"Health" is a complex term, but includes having a well-rounded, nutritious diet, restful sleep, limiting alcohol, salt and sugar, no smoking, doing regular exercise, and having the psychological and emotional support you need to recover from surgery.

The best type of nutritious diet is one that you can prepare at home, with natural foods, and a well-balanced variety of protein, complex carbohydrates and fat. 

Do your best to avoid overly processed foods such as deli meats, boxed items such as crackers and cookies, and consider a multi-vitamin that contains iron (such as a prenatal vitamin) if you feel you are not getting all the vitamins and minerals you require from your regular diet. 

In preparation for surgery, consider making some large batches of healthy meals that you can freeze in smaller portions for your postoperative recovery period, or ask a friend or family member to bring over a home-cooked meal while you are recovering. 

You need to "feed your body" to ensure your wounds heal well after your procedure, just like when you were pregnant and nursing your babies! 

Karen M. Horton, M.D., M.Sc., F.A.C.S., F.R.C.S.C.

Karen M. Horton, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Nutrition for surgery

There are many things you can do to enhance your healing. A good diet with high protein and low carbs is a good start. Multivitamins with extra minerals. Stay well hydrated and avoid alcohol close to surgery. Get some rest. 

Nutrition and a mommy makeover.

For any large surgery such as a mommy-makeover, it is important to maintain a healthy diet without calorie restrictions and a heavy emphasis on protein. The scar tissue that needs to form for healing requires protein, vitamin C, and zinc. A multivitamin daily is a good start. Protein supplementation can also help, particularly in the first few weeks following surgery. Certain laboratory values (albumin level, prealbumin level) can indicate protein deficiencies and may warrant checking for individuals who have undergone massive weight loss surgery or have been on extreme diets prior to surgery. In general, a balanced diet with a multivitamin and protein supplementation is fine for most patients. For specific dietary concerns in your particular case, it is important to have this discussion with your plastic surgeon.

David Bogue, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Mommy Makeover Preparation

The best advise I can give is not to be actively losing weight immediately before or after surgery. Food during this perioperative period should be considered "medicine". A balanced diet that includes adequate protein is very important. Staying away from common OTC medicines and some prescription medicines as well as supplements that can cause bruising is very important. For example, fish or flax seed oil, Vitamin E, aspirin, Advil, etc can cause excessive bruising and bleeding during your surgery delaying your recovery. 

We recommend pre-surgical vitamins/minerals designed for surgery patients as well as Arnica Montanum and Bromelain to minimize swelling and bruising. The Vita-Medica brand surgical vitamins are the brand we use in the office. If your are having problems finding these - contact our office.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Good nutrition for mommy makeover

As long as you are healthy and don't smoke, most patients heal and have great recovery without any nutritional or vitamin supplementation.

Donna Rich, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Nutrition and wound healing

You have made a good start.  The most important thing to do is to take care of yourself and have open communication with your surgeon -- which you have clearly done.  The multi-vitamin and high protein diet are key.  Also, just try to eat healthy and clean in general -- lots of fish, chicken, and green vegetables -- these habits will last a lifetime and will help you maintain your new look.  Good luck!

Anureet K. Bajaj, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.