From the second you hit the ground or get hit by something or someone, you are in a race against space and time. When a soft tissue injury occurs, the body engorges the traumatized area with fluid, especially in the joints, to minimize further movement and further damage. As soon as the injury is incurred, the clock starts ticking on your ability to facilitate recovery.
It is normal and natural for the injured area to swell up with inflammation. Inflammation is the body’s protective response to infection, injury, and even intense physical activity. It is a critical part of the repair process which brings healthy nutrients and cells to the affected site. Although the body’s natural inflammatory process is necessary for proper healing, minimizing the associated damage and discomfort can be addressed with rest, ice, compression, elevation, and nutrition.
When addressing soft tissue damage, you are encouraged to eat a wide variety of antioxidant-rich foods while avoiding foods that can contribute to inflammation such as processed foods and those containing an excessive amount of saturated or trans fats.