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Foods That Help You Recover From Cellulitis

author image Stacey Phillips
Stacey Phillips is a registered dietitian and nutrition writer. She has had articles and patient information handouts published in the "Renal Nutrition Forum" and the "Journal of Renal Nutrition." She holds a Bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana and a Masters degree at Central Michigan University.
Foods That Help You Recover From Cellulitis
Lean chicken breast on a cutting board. Photo Credit: MarianVejcik/iStock/Getty Images

You can find a variety of different forms of bacteria living on the human skin. The most common bacterial causes of cellulitis are staphylococcus and streptococcus. Symptoms include a red, swollen, painful spreading rash and an infection that may result in chills, a fever and general fatigue. Consult your physician if you suspect cellulitis development, as this diagnosis may progress into a more serious condition if left untreated. While you are recovering from this infection, diet is important. Water, vitamins C and E, zinc and probiotics can support your body's healing.

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Adequate Hydration

Getting adequate fluids -- particularly water -- is important to help your body fight off the cellulitis infection. Dividing your weight in pounds in half gives you an approximate goal in ounces of how much water you should be drinking per day. Tracking urine color is a simple method of detecting your hydration level. If you are well-hydrated, your urine should be clear. Choose juice, low-fat milk, flavored water and other noncaffeinated beverages as additional options for support of your daily fluid needs.

Sources of Vitamin C and E

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, inclusion of vitamin C and E in your dietary regimen supports cellulitis healing. Check with your physician about specific vitamin C and E amounts for supplementation. You can also include natural sources of each vitamin within your everyday diet. Vitamin C sources to be consumed are citrus fruits, watermelon, broccoli, spinach and tomatoes. Foods that contain vitamin E are leafy greens, nuts and vegetable oils.

Dietary Zinc

Zinc is an additional nutrient that aids in cellulitis healing. More specifically, zinc improves the strength of your skin cells and is important while treating this condition. In a diet with variety, many of the foods that you eat contain zinc. Beef, lobster, baked beans, whole grains, almonds and milk are good dietary sources to include to ensure zinc consumption. Discuss supplemental zinc, which may also be beneficial, with your physician.

Probiotic Support

Regular intake of foods containing probiotics, such as yogurt, is another method to help you recover from cellulitis. While antibiotics are often needed for treatment, they act to reduce your body's good and bad bacteria. Eating yogurt containing the probiotic Lactobacillus acidophilus supports the replenishment of good bacteria in your body to fight off the cellulitis infection. Read the nutrition facts label to ensure the yogurt you choose contains live and active cultures to obtain probiotic benefits.

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