Food is a wonderful thing. It’s nutritious, it’s delicious, and certain food items can provide benefits above and beyond simply fuelling your body with goodness. It turns out that the things you eat while you have a fresh tattoo can either help or hinder the healing process, so we’re here to help make sure you do it right. While comfort food like burgers and fries may seem like a good idea when you’re in pain (and it often is, let’s be honest), these kinds of food items can play a negative role in how your tattoo healing goes down. Read on to find out all about the best and worst foods to eat when you have a new tattoo.
When you’re sick, the things that you put into your body can help make you feel and get better quicker, and the same goes for healing your skin. A tattoo is essentially a wound, albeit on a small scale, but a wound nonetheless, so it makes sense that what you eat can help the healing process. There are some essentials you want to make sure you’re getting in your diet for the first 14-30 days after getting fresh ink to help fight potential infection and keep your healing on the right track. Foods that are high in protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, and zinc can be especially beneficial when you have a fresh tattoo. Foods that boost your immune system are essentially what you want to strive for.
In terms of some foodsspecific food items, there are some things that you want to make sure you’re eating if you’re trying to keep up your immune system and keep your healing tattoo healthy by watching your diet. Pomegranate, for one, contains a ton a vitamins A and C, and has anti inflammatory properties. Pineapple is a great immune booster full of antioxidants, vitamins, and manganese to help keep your energy up, which is key in helping your body maintain its healing powers. Oranges are another great source of vitamin C, which not only boosts your system into healing overdrive, but also helps your skin build new proteins. If you’re looking for more savory foods to add to your diet, pack in garlic wherever you can. It’s an underestimated super food that does so many beneficial things for the body, not the least of which is to strengthen your immune system, bones, and energy levels.
You might think that what you eat doesn’t have a negative impact on your skin unless you have allergies, but you would be wrong! For tattoos, especially those that are fresh and still in the healing process, what you eat can very much effect how your ink heals. Certain foods can actually slow down the healing process, because they’re tougher for your body to digest. Things like dairy and sugar are considered foods that should be limited when you have a wound that’s healing because it slows down that process. This also goes for high fat foods, even seemingly healthy ones like seafood, because it requires more energy for your body to process and digest that could be used for healing your damaged skin. That’s not to say that you should avoid sugar altogether for a month after getting a tattoo, but limit your intake during that time.
Even some food alternatives, like agave, are best to be limited while your tattoo is healing, or avoided if at all possible. This is because agave breaks down collagen, an essential component in skin tissue, which can take away from the healing of damaged skin that comes from getting a new tattoo. Margarine can also falls into the category of foods to avoid when your ink is fresh, because it interferes with the hydration process in the body, something that you don’t want to mess with if you’re trying to keep dry, healing skin more hydrated than not.
Some other things to keep in mind if you have a fresh tattoo is not to go crazy with foods that affect your body heat or raise the temperature of your skin. A spike in body temp can lead to things like pimples or rashes around your new tattoo, so try to limit spicy foods for the first few weeks after your tattoo appointment. We’re not calling for a total ban on spice, but keep in mind that the spicy coconut curry you’ve been craving may affect the look of your new tattoo if you’re not careful.
Your skin is one of the first things to react to allergens and tattoos, both old and new, can be affected by these kinds of triggers. Eating something you have an allergy or an intolerance to can result in a variety of skin reactions like rashes, bumps, hives, or blistering, depending on the severity of the reaction you’re getting. If you have a new tattoo and you eat something that you have even a mild allergy to, the area around your new ink could still be affected. This, in turn, could slow down the healing process and potentially lead to some complications like infection. If you know you have an intolerance or mild allergy to a specific food item, it’s best to avoid that food for a good few weeks after your tattoo to ensure that it heals properly, and without any nasty bumps or blisters.
What you eat can have more of an impact on your skin and tattoos that you might realize. Eating the right foods can put you on the fast track to healing, while eating certain other foods might slow down or complicate that process. In order to be sure that your tattoo will heal well and look it’s best, alter your diet to include as many of the aforementioned nutritional goodies as possible, at least for a couple weeks after your appointment.
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