Why did my surgeon tell me to eat pineapple?
Updated: Jul 15, 2022
Many surgeons recommend eating pineapple and drinking pineapple juice after cosmetic surgery. Have you ever wondered why? It's actually very interesting! Pineapple contains bromelain, which is a type of enzyme called a proteolytic enzyme. Bromelain causes the body to make substances that fight PAIN and SWELLING! Studies have also shown that bromelain may reduce bruising and facilitate more rapid healing after cosmetic surgery and is often used to reduce inflammation from tendinitis, sprains and strains and other minor muscle injuries. Bromelain is also available in supplement form which may be a better option following surgery. Since you have most likely spent a pretty penny for lipo-suction, a tummy tuck or other procedures, the calories and sugar in pineapple juice could easily pack the weight right back on!
Heal Fast Post-Op Formula is a very popular supplement recommended by Dr. Daniel Barrett, of Barrett Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills, California as well as many surgeons in Miami, Florida. Heal Fast Post-Op Formula contains several vitamins, minerals and bromelain. There are also other popular bromelain supplements including Vitalzyme, Wobenzyme and several more which are conveniently available on Amazon. Research, read reviews and decide which one might be best for your needs.
The FDA in the United States recognizes bromelain as generally safe and has categorized it as a food additive. The recommended dosage varies between 500 to 1500 milligrams per day following surgery but you should check with your healthcare provider before starting any new medications or supplements. Fun fact - it seems to have a more intense affect when taken on an empty stomach!
Proteolytic enzymes are also known to break down scar tissue. According to the Journal of Pharmeceutical Analysis, "an enzyme known as serratiopeptidase, was originally isolated from the silk worm and allows the emerging moth to dissolve its cocoon. This particular enzyme is said to digest dead tissue, blood clots, cysts and arterial plaques. Research conducted in Europe and Japan propose that serratiopeptidase is the most effective agent in reducing inflammation among all enzyme preparations." This enzyme is particularly desirable in the aiding of treatment for fibrosis that has developed, especially after lipo-suction.
NOTE - Bromelain can be a natural blood thinner and should not be taken within 2 weeks BEFORE any surgical procedure! Again - consult with your physician.
To summarize: Fresh pineapple is mouthwatering and has a beautiful, fragrant and delightful flavor. It also has amazing healing properties so enjoy it sensibly after your surgery! And lastly, do some research on the effects of using enzyme supplements following surgical procedures.