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Malaria, a common disease spread by mosquitoes, is on the rise again during the summer season. Many people fall prey to it and deal with chills, fever, and lasting fatigue. However, a balanced diet may help you to recover from malaria just like any other disease.
Healthy and nutritious food not only provides you with energy but also accelerates the process of recovery by healing your body from the inside. But if this is not taken care of, then it can lead to liver and kidney failure. But paying attention to diet can help in quick recovery from malaria.
Dr Vikas Deswal, senior consultant, Internal Medicine, Medanta Hospital, Gurugram, spoke to Health Shots to share an expert advice on how to prevent malaria.
Dr Deswal says, “Malaria is caused by the bite of infected female Anopheles Mosquito infected with plasmodium parasite. Mosquitoes carry the parasite from one infected person to another. These parasites then enter the bloodstream and infect red blood cells.”
“People who get malaria are typically very sick with shaking chills, high fever, and flu-like symptoms. Patients may recover in 7-9 days, but severe malaria may take time to recover. Wear full sleeved clothes and spray insecticides to prevent breeding of mosquitoes.” adds Dr Deswal.
You need not worry as we are sharing some food and nutrition tips that will help you and your family to recover from malaria faster.
Although there is no specific diet for malaria, adequate nutrition is the key to a quick recovery. A healthy diet does not let malaria parasite affect the liver, kidney and digestive system and strengthens the immunity of the patient.
For bouncing back to health, slurp on instant energy drinks when you have a fever. Fever increases the metabolic rate of the body, thus increasing the calorie requirement. Not to forget, the calorie requirement depends on the rise of temperature. Since many patients experience a lack of appetite during malaria, calorie intake is a big challenge. In such a situation, it is important to consume foods that provide energy immediately – such as glucose, sugarcane juice, fruit juice, coconut water, shikanji.
When one is suffering from malaria, the need for protein increases because of the massive tissue loss. The right amount of protein along with a high carbohydrate diet can prove to be helpful in building tissue. Consumption of high biological value proteins like milk, curd, lassi, buttermilk, fish (stew), chicken (soup/stew), egg can prove beneficial.
Lack of water and electrolytes is very common in malaria. To maintain it, it is beneficial to consume juice, stew, soup, rice soup, lentil soup, coconut water. Foods rich in vitamins A and C such as carrots, beets, papayas, fruits especially citrus fruits (such as oranges, sweet lime, pineapples, grapes, berries, lemons may help. Supplementing yourself with vitamin B complex to boost immunity is also advised.
So ladies, a well balanced and nutritious diet is very important for malaria. Also, do not forget to keep yourself hydrated. Rest well and take medication on time!