The pancreas is an elongated organ, which is located behind the stomach. It releases important digestive enzymes and hormones. The enzymes secreted by it support the digestion and absorption of the food, which has been consumed. The release of hormones from it helps to properly regulate the blood sugar levels.
Pancreatitis is a disease, which is an inflammation of the pancreas. A purposeful, strict healthy diet, which is rich in antioxidants, can help keep the pancreas in good health and prevent the development of pancreatitis. According to a study by the University of Maryland Medical Center, the following foods are good for this small but extremely important organ.
Whole grain foods
Highly nutritious whole grain foods are naturally low in fat and provide the body with the necessary vitamins. According to a 2009 study published in the American Journal of Physiology, adequate and regular intake of thiamine is essential for the release of endocrine hormones from the pancreas. Beneficial whole grain foods for the pancreas include: whole grain bread, whole grain, ready-to-eat cereals, oats, buckwheat, brown rice, wild rice, popcorn, triticale, bulgur, millet, quinoa, sorghum, whole grain pastries and whole grain biscuits.
Fruit and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables contain large amounts of vitamin C and vitamin A, as well as important antioxidants. A 1990 study published in Food Pharmacology and Therapy indicated, that oxidative stress and the accumulation of unhealthy substances in the body may be the initiating factor for the onset of pancreatitis. Antioxidant consumption has been shown to reduce the symptoms of this inflammation. Frequent intake can keep the pancreas healthy and prevent the development of the disease and complications. Nutrient-rich fruit and vegetables will help strengthen the whole body. Your daily menu must include: melons, oranges, peppers, tomatoes, spinach, broccoli, sweet potatoes, carrots and cabbage.
Lean meat and legumes
Lipase is an enzyme, which is secreted by the pancreas. It is responsible for helping to digest fats from food. When you have a pancreas disease, its exhaustion from frequent functioning and secretion must be reduced. We can keep it in excellent health by limiting enzyme excretion and reducing the intake of fatty meats. It is advisable to choose to add more light meats in your daily menu such as: poultry and chicken, fish, pork fillet, beef fillet and lamb chops.
Consumption of beans can be a healthy substitute for meat, since beans have two main advantages: they are low in fat and they are a source of proteins, which are important to the human body. Beans also provide us with healthy dietary fiber and B complex vitamins. Foods, which are suitable for your pancreas include: beans, black beans, mixed beans and lentils.
Like meat, dairy products are also a major source of body fat. To keep your pancreas functioning normally, choose low-fat and fat-free dairy foods. Healthy choices on your menu include: skimmed milk - about 1% milk fat, skimmed and low-fat yogurt and low-fat white cheese.
High calorie and high protein diet
The main symptom of inflammation of the pancreas is drastic weight loss due to impaired digestion and absorption of nutrients from food consumption, as there is a lack of normal secretion of pancreatic enzymes. If your pancreas is inflamed, eat high-calorie and high-protein foods to gain weight and prevent the effects of malnutrition and general fatigue.
Some high-calorie foods such as pasta, white rice, mashed potatoes, pumpkin, oatmeal, low-fat cream and wheat are ideal choices. The list of high-protein products includes: fish, lean meat, soy and poultry. However, if your symptoms worsen and the disease becomes more complicated, you may be prescribed pancreatic enzymes, which should be taken with each meal to help with food digestion.