Typhoid is a common but potentially fatal bacterial infection that is contracted by almost 21.5 million people every year all across the world. It is caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhimurium (S. typhi).
It is often passed on through contaminated food and drinking water, and it is more prevalent in places where handwashing is less frequent and where sanitation facilities are poor.
The two major symptoms of typhoid are fever and rash. Other symptoms can include weakness, abdominal pain, constipation and headache.
If typhoid is caught early, it can be successfully treated with antibiotics. However, if it is not treated, typhoid can be fatal. Thus it is necessary to follow proper guidelines and measures if one is suffering from the infection.
What to avoid?
1. Raw food
Avoid raw, unpeeled fruits and vegetables that may have been washed with contaminated water, especially lettuce and fruits like berries that can’t be peeled. Bananas, avocados, and oranges make better choices, but be sure you peel them yourself.
2. Spicy and oily food
Foods that contain spices, seasonings, oil, and acetic acid can aggravate the inflammation in the intestines. It is thus advisable to avoid food items such as chilli, pepper, vinegar, hot sauce, salad dressings, canned fruits and vegetables.
3. Vegetables that cause bloating
Vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, asparagus, and cauliflower are known to cause excess gas. These vegetables contain raffinose, which is a complex sugar that the body has trouble digesting. Thus, they must be avoided.
4. Onion and garlic
You should avoid foods with strong flavours such as onions and garlic as they may lead to inflammation.
5. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids
6. Carbohydrate-rich foods
Foods high in carbohydrates are necessary to provide energy to the body. Because energy is lost during typhoid fever, semi-solid food is a better option for recovering patients as they are easier to digest. Foods like porridge, fruit custards, poached eggs, baked potato, honey, and boiled rice must be consumed.
7. High water content fluids and fruits
Fluids and fruits help in restoring the water content in the body that gets depleted during typhoid fever and cause dehydration. Thus, consume adequate fluids in the form of fresh fruit juices, coconut water, lime juice etc. and add water content-rich fruits such as watermelons, grapes, and apricots to the diet.
What to eat?
9. High fibre food
Foods high in fibre can drastically distress the digestive system. Hence, stay away from fibrous food like barley, oats, broccoli, etc. until recovery.
10. Dairy products
Dairy products constitute an important part of the diet when suffering from typhoid fever. If you don’t have an appetite for milk, you can always have it in the form of yoghurt and buttermilk.
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