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Constipation, pressure ulcers and weight gain. Learn how to reduce risk.

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When you are in a wheelchair, you need to pay extra attention to your diet to prevent constipation and keep your body healthy. With less physical activity, you burn off fewer calories and may gain weight or possibly maintain weight but replace muscle with fat. Excess weight adds stress on your heart and may make weight shifts and transfers more difficult. This can contribute to skin breakdown or pressure ulcers. One thing that you can do to reduce some of these risks is to maintain a healthy diet.

 

Maintaining your health - important consideration:

Avoid constipation

Get enough fiber. Fruit, vegetables and whole grain products are best. Remember to drink enough fluids as fiber alone can make your constipation worse.

Avoiding pressure ulcers and lean body mass (muscles)

Ensure that you get enough protein that is leaner. Beans are a good substitute for meat – and provides fiber as well. Move as much as you can with weight shifts and position changes.

Avoiding weight gain

Take in calories that are healthier choices and drink enough fluids to remain well hydrated. Make the high calorie, fatty foods an occasional treat and drink more water than soda.

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