How to Prevent Gangrene — Lifestyle

  • Home
  • How to Prevent Gangrene — Lifestyle

Gangrene is the death of body tissue caused by poor circulation or severe bacterial infection leading to lack of oxygen of the tissue cells. As the primary cause of gangrene is atherosclerosis, it is very important that you manage your diet to lower your chances of developing atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is the buildup of plaque deposits (made up of cholesterol, fats, calcium etc) in the walls of the blood vessels, resulting in the narrowing of the blood vessels and reducing the blood flow towards the affected part of the body. You may be at higher risk of developing atherosclerosis if you consume foods high in fat, as these foods commonly contain high levels of cholesterol.

Therefore, one should consume a healthy diet, with low content of fat, to ensure that existing atherosclerosis will not worsen and thus decrease the chances of developing gangrene. You should avoid foods that are high in saturated fat content as they increase the risk of developing atherosclerosis. Below is a list of foods high in saturated fat content: [1]

● Butter
● Ice cream
● Cakes
● Biscuits
● Sausages, bacon and fatty cuts of meat
● Food containing coconut or palm oil
● Hard cheese
● Lard
● Cured meats (such as salami, chorizo and pancetta)
● Fried food

However, this list is not exhaustive, and there are still lots of food that have a high fat content. As such, if possible, you should always check the nutrition label on products that you purchase, and pick foods with lower saturated fat content. Here are a list of tips you should consider as you go about your grocery shopping, in order to avoid foods with high fat content which can result in atherosclerosis: [2]

● Choose grilled, baked or steamed food over fried or roasted food
● Choose leaner cuts of meat
● Control the amount of oil you use during cooking
● Choose low fat or reduced fat dairy products
● Add more vegetables and fruits into your diet

In addition, as gangrene is a medical condition which affects the skin tissue, it is also very important to protect your skin health. Additionally, it is also very important to protect your feet health, to prevent the development of chronic ulcers. Protecting your feet health is especially important for diabetic patients and patients who suffer from health conditions related to atherosclerosis, as these health conditions increase the risk of developing gangrene. Below is a list of important points you should take note of to know how to prevent gangrene: [1]

● If you have diabetes, you should have your feet checked at least once a year. However, if you have other health conditions on top of diabetes, such as a history of foot ulcers or numbness in the hands and feet, you should have them checked more than once a year.
● Check your feet daily for numbness, cuts, breaks in the skin, swelling or discolouration, and consult your GP immediately.
● Wear shoes that fit properly and ensure that they are not too tight or rub against your skin. Wearing socks with your shoes will also help to reduce trauma to the skin.
● Maintain a healthy weight. An increased weight puts you at risk of not only diabetes, but also stimulates to production of chemicals which damage the blood vessels in your body. This results in increased risk of atherosclerosis.
● Do not smoke. Often, smoking is associated with multiple cardiovascular diseases, as the components of smoke can often result in atherosclerosis. This causes the narrowing of your blood vessels due to the buildup of plaque deposits in the walls of the blood vessels, which can result in stroke and/or heart attack. This also puts you at risk of developing gangrene.
● If you have wounds, prevent infections by washing open wounds with mild soap and clean water, and try to keep the wounds dry and clean until they heal.
● Reduce your intake of alcohol. Excessive consumption of alcohol can cause your blood pressure to rise, and raises the amount of cholesterol in the blood. This puts you at higher risk of developing atherosclerosis.

In addition, you should consider regular exercise, in order to ensure not only a healthy weight, but good circulation in your body. Exercise promotes good circulation in the body and by exercising regularly, this decreases your chances of developing gangrene. Below are a few simple exercises that you can do daily to promote good circulation: [3, 4]

Walking. Walking is the simplest form of aerobic exercise that you can do daily. In addition, this form of exercise does not require any equipment, and you could do it anywhere. Be it a simple 15 minute walk around the park, doing this exercise daily will promote good circulation in your body.
Jogging. If you are up for something more intense, you should consider jogging! Much like walking, you could take a 10 to 15 minute jog each day and it would be able to easily boost the circulation in your body. In addition, jogging will also be able to train your stamina and cardio endurance.
Swimming. If you are looking for a low-impact sport, you should consider swimming, especially if you are pregnant. It is very important to maintain good circulation even through pregnancy, as it can lead to long-term medical problems such as deep vein thrombosis and insufficiency. In addition, through swimming, you can also build muscle strength, and burn calories.
Yoga. Primarily, yoga focuses on relaxing and deep breathing which can boost the circulation in your body. In addition, stretching and increasing flexibility through yoga allows for oxygenated blood to reach your organs and muscles, promoting good circulation. Through yoga exercises, you can promote good circulation.

So, now do you know how to prevent gangrene? For more information or if you think you require treatment for gangrene, head down to our clinic, the Vascular and Interventional Centre Singapore, and seek medical attention from one of our specialists. You may contact us by calling us at +65 6694 6270 or email us at [email protected].

Leave a Reply