Published: 10/16/2011 - Updated: 09/15/2018
Hernias occur when the lining of the abdominal cavity (peritoneum) is weakened, forming very weak areas that can lead to rupture or holes, as if it was a sack worn that cannot deal with the thing it contains within. When this happens, internal organs, such as the intestine, hang or get out of these weak or broken areas, invading areas that do not belong and causing bumps visible to the eye depending on where they appear.
There are several types of hernias: femoral (a bulge in the upper thigh), hiatal (shown in the upper stomach) hernia (which appears after a scar if you have had abdominal surgery in the past), inguinal hernia (shown in the groin) and umbilical hernia (which appears when the muscle around the navel does not close completely).
To treat, prevent or aid recovery after a hernia operation, it is essential to lead a proper diet, since abdominal area is affected or at risk, it is best to try to keep the abdominal area nourished.
The foods to avoid in these cases are those that don’t nourish but swell, create toxins and weaken the tissues. These foods are flour and refined sugars (white bread, cookies, sodas, candy, etc.), processed (junk food), sausages, fried, cow's milk and derivatives.
Foods that you should eat are: vegetables in salads or vegetable juices, which help to create healthy and strong tissues and organs. Sprouts are great, as well as grains and vegetable milks. You should drink at least two liters of water a day, and often include extra virgin olive oil, flaxseed, sunflower and sesame seeds, almonds and amaranth, especially if you've just been operated. In this case, also increase the intake of vitamin C which is very good healing and helps correct tissue repair. Oranges, lemons, broccoli and dark green leafy vegetables are great in this case.
Tips for rapid recovery from a hernia operation
- In addition to following the diet in a strict way, it is recommended to do gentle exercise that does not require much effort, like walking.
- Practice breathing exercises, gently inhaling and exhaling very slowly, and as you exhale, gently contract your abdomen.
- Take aloe vera or cranberry juice to help the speedy healing.
- Do not forget to drink at least two liters of pure water a day.
- Practice meditation, visualizing the affected area very healthy and recovered. You can visualize a healing light surrounding the affected area.
- Rest as much as possible and avoid strong emotions.
- Do not disclose, drink alcohol, smoke or take irritants things such as vinegars, mustards, etc.
- Watch your weight and try to stay in shape.
Tips to prevent hernias
- It is important to maintain strong abdominal muscles, so we advise you to follow a routine of exercises to strengthen your abdomen, spend at least 30 minutes daily in abdominal exercises. In addition, practice yoga to keep a good flexibility, both in your muscles as your internal organs.
- Avoid lifting heavy things.
- Pat every morning your belly while you contract it, this will make it strong and help keep your abdomen in place.
- Correct your posture, do not slouch and keep your abdomen tight and in place during the day.
- If you are overweight, it is important to get off the extra kilos and do a cleansing diet.
- Try to understand what you feel, because the contained emotions, resentment, excess liability, etc. cause severe internal stresses that can weaken and erode the abdominal muscles.
It is important to note that any activity or health problem that increases the pressure in the tissue and muscles of the abdominal area can cause a hernia.
The causes can be:
- Chronic constipation and too much effort to evacuate.
- Having strong and prolonged cough.
- Cystic fibrosis
- Enlarged prostate or straining to urinate
- Heavy lifting
- Poor nutrition
- Make physical exertion
- There are usually no symptoms, unless a pain to load something heavy or recharged somewhere.
- There may be a bump on the skin according to the area and the size of the hernia. The lump size generally increases when you cough, bear down, you make any effort or lift things. In infants and children, hernias are usually not very visible, but also grow if the child coughs or makes some effort.
Hernias in infants and children
Hernias can be present from birth, but often you cannot notice until later. This type of hernia occurs when the lining around the abdominal organs does not close properly before the baby is born. Umbilical hernias usually heal by themselves, but if it does not heal until the child is 5 years old, you can resort to surgery.
Are hernias dangerous?
They usually cause discomfort and should be discussed and treated to avoid other complications. However, if the hernia is large, it can be throttled, i.e., that the tissue is stuck inside the hole and its blood supply is zero. If this happens, surgery is needed urgently.
Is surgery necessary?
Only if the hernia is painful or enlarged. The operation repairs the weakened tissue of the abdominal wall and closes any break with patches or a special cloth.