Liver Transplant Care (Pre and post Transplant nutrition, Indian diet plan, Food tips)

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Liver transplant is a boon for those suffering from end-stage liver disease, primary liver cancer, Severe cirrhosis, and acute liver failure. The scarred liver is replaced by healthy liver cells. It sounds very easy but it is a very intricate process. This article will help you to decode Liver Transplant Care. Pre liver transplant nutrition and post-liver transplant nutrition. Indian diet plan for a liver transplant. Food tips and general nutrition advice for a liver transplant. 

Liver Transplant Care:

Liver transplant care is of utmost importance. Care has to be taken before and after the transplant. Generally, malnourishment is prevalent in pre liver transplant patients. With malnutrition, the post-surgery complications are high with reduced survival rates. Thus, malnutrition has to be addressed well before the surgery for a better prognosis. Treatment should focus on maintaining nutrient intake and correcting various nutritional deficiencies. The dietician plays an integral part of the transplant team by providing appropriate nutrition therapy for solving various nutrition problems.

 

General Nutrition Tips for Liver transplant care :

  • Consume adequate calories to correct or prevent malnutrition.
  • If you have edema, restrict sodium in the diet to less than 2,000 mg per day to prevent fluid retention.
  • Eat four to six smaller meals may help you meet your nutrition needs more comfortably.
  • Take a multivitamin supplement to prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
  • Leech the vegetables, pulses, or sprouts before use. Leeching is the process where you boil the cut vegetables and throw away the water. This removes any excess potassium in the foods. High potassium levels can hinder the liver transplant process.

Pre Liver Transplant care: 

Considering a middle-aged man with dry weight (without edema) as 60 kg having a sedentary lifestyle and no comorbidities…

Pre-transplant Nutritional requirements:

  • Energy: The calorie requirement depends on the nutritional status of the patient. You can add 20 % extra over the basal requirement. 20 % added to 1800 kcal will suffice the requirement. Approximately 2100 to 2200 kcal per day is recommended.
  • Carbohydrates: An almost 65 – 70 % of total calories should come from complex carbohydrates. Include all grains, cereals, fibrous fresh fruits and vegetables, potatoes, and sweet potato.  Check some Indian complex carb foods.
  • Proteins: 1 gram per kg dry body weight (60 gms/ day) of protein will help avoid any malnutrition or muscle loss. Include good quality proteins like milk and products, sprouts, pulses, dals, and soy.
  • Fats: A normal fat intake of 2 – 3 teaspoons per day is enough. Include good fat sources like nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil, and fish oils.
  • Sodium: Consume a low sodium diet. Restrict your salt intake to not more than 2 – 5 grams per day. This is to avoid any further edema.
  • Fluid: Restrict fluid as advised by the experts. Considering the urine output of 1000 ml we can give up to 1500 ml fluid in a day.

 

Pre Liver Transplant Care Diet Plan:

Here is a sample diet plan for pre liver transplant care. 

Early Morning4 soaked almonds
Breakfast:1 cup Oats porridge with milk
Mid-morning:1 Fruit (Apple/ Pear/ Papaya/ Guava/ Avocado)
Lunch:1 Cup Boiled Vegetable Raita +
2 Chapati or 1 cup Daliya +
½ cup Moong or Matki / 1 bowl dal +
1 Cup vegetable
Mid-afternoon½ Cup Boiled Sweet Potato
Evening2 small Nachni Dosa with tomato chutney
Dinner1 Cup Mashed Potato +
2 Chapati or 1 cup Vegetable Khichdi +
1 Cup vegetable +
1 Cup hung Curd
Bedtime1 Cup Turmeric Milk

 

Post-Liver Transplant Care:

Following a successful liver transplant, it is important to take care of long term successful outcomes after transplant.

Post-Transplant Nutritional Requirements:

  • Energy: The calorie requirement depends on the nutritional status of the patient. You can add 20 – 30 % extra over the basal requirement. Approximately 2200 to 2300 kcal per day is recommended. This helps in faster recovery post-surgery.
  • Carbohydrates: An almost 65 – 70 % of total calories should come from complex carbohydrates. Include all grains, cereals, fibrous fresh fruits and vegetables, potatoes, and sweet potato. 
  • Proteins: 1.2 – 1.5 gram per kg dry body weight (72 – 90 gms/ day) of protein will help avoid any malnutrition or muscle loss. Include good quality proteins like milk and products, sprouts, pulses, dals, and soy.
  • Fats: A moderate fat intake of 2 – 3 teaspoons per day is enough. Include good fat sources like nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil, and fish oils.
  • Sodium: Consume a low sodium diet. Restrict your salt intake to not more than 2 – 5 grams per day. This is to avoid any further edema.
  • Fluid: Consume fluids as per the restriction given by the experts.  

 

Post-Liver Transplant Care Diet Plan:

Here is a sample diet plan for post-liver transplant care. 

Early Morning 2 soaked almonds + 2 soaked Walnuts + 1 Date
Breakfast1 cup Vegetable Sevaiya / 1 bowl rawa upama
Mid-morning:1 Fruit (Apple/ Pear/ Papaya/ Guava/ Avocado)
Lunch:1 Cup Boiled Sprouts +
2 Chapati or 1 cup Khichdi +
½ cup Thick dal +
1 Cup Vegetable +
1 Cup Hung Curd
Mid-afternoon:100 gms Grilled Paneer or Grilled Chicken
+ 1 glass buttermilk ( based on fluid allowance)
Evening2 Medium Size Khakra or 1 Cup Vegetable Poha
+ 1 Cup Milk
Dinner:1 Cup Boiled Vegetable Salad +
2 Chapati or 1 cup Curd Rice +
1 Cup vegetable +
Stir-Fried Soya Chunks with Bell peppers
Bedtime:1 Cup Turmeric Cinnamon Milk

 

General Food Tips to follow pre and post-liver transplant surgery:

  • Food preparation: Wash your hands properly. Wash and dry utensils such as chopping boards between preparing cooked and raw foods to avoid cross-contamination. Wash all fresh fruits and vegetables thoroughly before preparation.
  • Cooking: Cook meat, poultry, shellfish, and eggs thoroughly if eaten. Reheat food till it is piping hot and not more than once.
  • Storing food: Store in the fridge at less than 5 degrees Celsius. Never refreeze thawed food. Cover all foods in the fridge.
  • Calcium: It is important to have enough vitamin D and calcium from your diet to keep bones strong. Good sources of calcium include milk, cheese, yogurts, calcium-enriched soy products, and tofu.
  • Salt: It is recommended you continue to follow a low salt diet to help prevent high blood pressure.

Exercise:

Regular light to moderate exercise is necessary for the patients. Deep breathing can help in expanding and strengthening the lungs. The patient can take up light cardio workout, walking, swimming, or yoga after 3 months of surgery.

Endnote:

After a full recovery, once your body weight reaches the recommended healthy range, a healthy and balanced diet fulfills all the requirements. Diet combined with exercise will help to keep you fit and healthy in the long term. I hope our information on Liver Transplant Care helps you. You can leave your queries in the comment and we will get back to you. Dont forget to subscribe to our Youtube channel.

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