What should be Your Diet Plan after Liver Transplant

May 26th, 2018
What should be Your Diet Plan after Liver Transplant

Liver is the largest internal organ performing the several crucial functions like processing of nutrition, production of bile a fluid that helps the body to absorb fats and cholesterol, making proteins, regulating the functions of immune system etc. Due to several risk factors like excessive alcohol consumption, obesity, diabetes, unprotected sex or genetic reasons the liver of the person may get affected. The liver is the only body organ that holds the capacity of regenerating itself. However, when this capacity of the liver is lost the treatment options like lifestyle changes, medications and surgery are used. At the initial stages of damage, a doctor may recommend the patient to make some lifestyle changes and take medications. But, when no other treatment option is able to provide relief to the patient, as a last resort liver transplant treatment is chosen. It is an end-stage chronic liver condition treatment wherein the damaged liver of the patient is replaced with the healthy liver of the donor.

The right kind of nutrition plays a major role in helping the body to recover fast. During the initial phase oftransplant,it is imperative for the patient to eat food items rich in calories and protein as they help the body to heal, fight infection, and provide you the required energy. Moreover, your healthy diet after the liver transplant shall comprise of the food items that will keep a check on your body weight. Let us take a complete list of the things to be included and excluded from your ideal diet plan.

Food items to be included

1. Proteins- The most important part of your diet must be protein as it helps heal the wounds of body and rebuilding the muscles that may be damaged during the treatment. Following items are the good source of protein-

  • Fish
  • Poultry items like chicken, turkey
  • Lean meat like beef, pork, lamb
  • Eggs
  • Legumes or lentils like kidney beans, chickpeas, black beans, navy beans, etc
  • Dairy products like milk, yogurt, cheese, cottage cheese.
  • Soy products like tofu, soy milk, soybeans
  • Nuts, seeds and nut butter like peanut butter, almond butter, etc.

Anyone these items must mandatorily be included in your diet.

healthy diet after liver transplant

2. Fiber-Make sure to include high fiber food items in your daily meals. Some of the items rich in fiber include the following-

  • Vegetables
  • Legumes (black beans, kidney beans, lentils),
  • Whole grains (100% whole wheat bread, pasta, cereal)
  • Fruits

3. Calcium- Due to use of steroids during the treatment a person’s bones may become week increasing the risk of fractures.  Thus, it is essential for the patient to intake the diet high in calcium and vitamin D. Some of the good sources of calcium and Vitamin D includes the following-

  • Milk
  • Cheese
  • Yogurts
  • Rich in calcium soya products and tofu
  • Oily fish
  • Eggs
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

Foods items to be avoided

1. Sugar- A medicine called prednisoneused after the transplant may result in high blood sugar level. It is important for you to manage the blood sugar level and limit the intake of carbohydrates. Some of the food items to be excluded from your diet are as follows-

  • Sugar (brown, white, cane, etc.)
  • Regular fruit juice
  • Desserts, biscuits, cakes, pastries
  • Candy, chocolate
  • Jam, honey

2. Raw or undercooked meats, raw seafood/shellfish/sushi.

3. Unpasteurized milk/dairy products.

4. Unpasteurized fruit juices and ciders.

5. Fresh (uncooked) bean sprouts/alfalfa sprouts.

Apart from taking the healthy diet after the liver transplant, several important measures must be undertaken while preparing and storing the food. Some of these precautions include the following-

  • Wash your hands properly before making the food.
  • Wash the utensils, work surfaces, and raw food properly to avoid contamination.
  • Make sure to keep the meat and poultry items in the refrigerator.
  • Never reheat your food more than once
  • Cover the food
  • Keep the raw and cooked food separately.

Also Read: diet after bone marrow transplant



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