Sometimes overlooked in the world of surgery, particularly in the faster pace and turnover of the outpatient setting, is the need to prepare patients' bodies for the physical demands of an operation. After all, even the least invasive of surgeries and mildest of anesthetics inflict some degree of trauma or distress on the patient's body. On some level, great or small, surgery's a shock to the system.
Rejecting the time-honored "fast after midnight" approach, a growing number of doctors, industry organizations and experts believe that more rigorous and thoughtful pre-op nutrition lasting from weeks before to just 2 hours before surgery can help bodies not only accommodate the stresses of surgery, but heal faster, too. Here's a look at the latest science behind pre-op nutrition, as well as a roundup of beverages (see "A Bounty of Pre-op Nutrition Drinks" here).