Achy bones and painful muscles- chikungunya patients feel this and so much more the whole time. That’s not it, some of them also have horror stories of not recovering from this condition, even after a year. The biggest reason for this is not paying enough attention to your diet.
Of course, you don’t feel like eating your favorite meals too, because you feel so sick. But remember your immunity must be taken care of.
Chikungunya is a kind of disease that enters the human body through the bite of infected mosquitoes. The infected mosquitoes can be of two types – aedes aegypti and aedes albopictus. This disease affects a huge population in India every year.
The symptoms of chikungunya include the following
- Joint pain
- Muscle pain
- Swelling around joints
These symptoms appear two to six days after the mosquito bite. But just medicines won’t help, because to make them work, you need some nutrients that only a healthy diet can provide.
Here are ten foods for people suffering from chikungunya
1. Coconut water
“Coconut water detoxifies the body, in case one is suffering from chikungunya fever. It is refreshing and maintains the hydration levels in the body. One can consume it two to three times daily, as it is healthy and helps to flush out toxins from the body,” says renowned nutritionist Manisha Chopra.
2. Green leafy vegetables
Green leafy vegetables are the healthiest option to add to any diet. Loaded with numerous nutrients, green leafy vegetables help during chikungunya by controlling symptoms like joint pain and combating the disease. They are easy to digest, and are high in vitamin A and low in calories.
“Home-made fresh vegetable soups are the best to have, while suffering from chikungunya. Carrot soup, which is rich in vitamin A, and tomato soup, which is rich in Vitamin C, are the best to have, as they help in faster recovery from the disease. Broccolis are also good to have as they contain vitamin C. These soups are loaded with nutrients, which help in relieving the symptoms of chikungunya,” recommends Chopra.
4. Papaya leaf extract
This is the ram-baan for chikungunya patients. Papaya leaf extract is highly recommended since there is a rapid fall in the blood platelet count. Papaya leaf remedy is found to be highly effective in improving the platelet count within 3 hours of consuming it.
“Chewing effective herbs like tulsi leaves can help in lowering the fever and strengthening the immunity. Herbal tea made with fennel seeds, ajwain, cumin seeds, jaggery and lemon helps in relieving muscular and joint pain,” says Chopra.
6. Foods rich in Vitamin C
Foods rich in vitamin C are advised for consumption during chikungunya, as they help in boosting immunity. Since in chikungunya, the digestive system is also affected, foods rich in vitamin C like oranges, kiwis, and guava can easily be digested.
7. Giloy juice
Giloy juice is quite effective when it comes to dealing with chikungunya. It can be consumed twice a day by adding a few drops in a glass of water. Remember not to over consume it. You can also boil the giloy stems in water to extract its juice.
Barley (sattu) should be made a part of your diet, if you are suffering from chikungunya. It helps in detoxifying the liver.
Fruits like mausami, banana, papaya, apple, pear, etc. are good to have, when you are suffering from chikungunya. They are loaded with several nutrients and help in controlling the symptoms.
Porridge is light and healthy. It will help the patient in faster recovery from chikungunya. That’s because it provides a feeling of fullness, and is loaded with a lot of nutrients.
Here are foods people suffering from chikungunya MUST avoid
1. No sweets please: Though it is fine to consume a little sugar, say a candy, to change the taste of your mouth during high chikungunya fever, but do not overeat sweets, as they may act as a barrier in the immunity-building process.
2. Avoid oily and spicy food: You can add ghee or coconut oil to your food, but other oils can disturb the process of recovery from chikungunya. As chikungunya upsets the digestive system, it is important to lower or avoid the consumption of unhealthy oils and spices that may make the process of digestion complex.
3. No street or junk food: Outside food items increase the load on the digestive tract, especially since they are packed with spices. This can increase the chances of stomach infection, and may lead to other risks as well. Hence, the patient should completely avoid outside food.
4. Stick to vegetarian food: Doctors advise chikungunya patients to avoid non- vegetarian meals, as they tend to increase the load on the liver. Switching to vegetarian food choices is a better and healthier choice.
So, if you or anyone around you is suffering from chikungunya, then do spill the beans about this amazing and effective diet.