Diet in Chikungunya
It is a viral disease spread by bite of infected mosquitoes . Clinically it resembles dengue fever. So you may be asking what does nutrition have to do with this disease? Well , good nutrition is important in building a strong immune system - not to prevent chikungunya but to lessen the effects of symptoms. It has been proven that persons with a strong immunity system recover much faster from chikungunya.
How it is transmitted?
Mosquitoes usually transmit the disease by biting an infected person and then biting someone else. It is not a contagious disease. This disease carrying mosquito also bites during the day time.
How they breed?
They breed in anything that holds clean water including tyres,flower pots,storage pans etc.
Symptoms- Chickenguniya symptoms are quite similar to dengue fever & is hardly life threatening. Its symptoms last for 3-7 days. Most patients recover fully ,but in some cases the joint pains may persist for weeks or months.
-Feelings of vomiting
By Blood test (Elisa)
Liquid based foods are excellent for early recovery from chikungunya. So drink soups, thin dals etc.
Due to poor digestion eat lots of leafy vegetables . These are easy to digest and prevent building up of free radicals.
As chikungunya brings a high fever which contributes significantly to dehydration, putting your muscles at further risk for cramping.
Drink water or electrolyte mixture . Make your own electrolyte mixture with six cups of water, one cup of sugar and two tsp of salt.
Do not take citrus fruits such as oranges etc . Take fibrous rich food such as apples . It will help to clean your stomach. Eat vitamin C rich foods like guavas, kiwis, broccoli, strawberries, tomatoes.
Coconut water helps in detoxification. So drink coconut water daily. It has antiviral components.
Intake of ½ tsp of turmeric (haldi) powder with milk or with water helps in pain and swelling.
Eating 2-3 garlic slices to get relief from pain.
Neem giloye juice is also very effective in this (5-10 ml juice twice a day)
Aloevera juice also helps in joint pain.
Consume ginger tea or green tea which can help relieve inflammation.
Boil water with 5-6 tulsi leaves and have it after food. This will bring down the fever and also boost your immunity.
Follow a light nutritious diet , less in oils and spices. The key is to easy digestion as much as possible so that maximum food can be assimilated by the body and directed to strengthen the body.
Do not eat and drink at the same time, eat about 15 to 30 minutes before drinking or vice – versa
Light massage of joints with coconut oil may provide relief in joint pain.
You can also use hot water bottle on painful joints.
The only & perhaps best option available is to maintain hygiene . One should keep the surroundings clean, remove all open containers with stagnant water to prevent mosquito breeding, the transmitter of disease.
In fogging , we should use an insecticide that has an immediate knock down effect on adult mosquitoes.
Dr. Suman Setia BAMS DNHE PGDHHM