Hepatitis C Diet
Hepatitis C is a type of liver disease caused by hepatitis C virus. This virus is one of the six unidentified hepatitis virus among the others which include A, B, D, E and G. Like other viruses, hepatitis C virus also causes the liver to become inflamed and thus interferes with its normal ability to function. It is the most serious virus than any other hepatitis virus, because unlike other hepatitis infections; hepatitis C can not get better by itself and can lead to liver cirrhosis or liver cancer. Hepatitis C virus often attacks the liver silently and most of the people don’t complain about any symptoms.
In fact in many cases the liver damage is diagnosed during routine medical tests after decades. There is no vaccine developed for hepatitis C yet, so as soon as a person identifies this disease it becomes important to follow appropriate medications and a proper hepatitis diet.
Diet for Hepatitis C
Along with the course of medications prescribed by your specialist it is very important to maintain a healthy diet which focuses on fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Liver is the hub organ in the body and is involved to change the food in to stored energy and chemicals required for life. It is essential to maintain a healthy body weight because with over weight individuals the chances of developing fatty liver increases.
If you only have hepatitis C then there is no need for a special hepatitis C diet with restriction; but if a person has cirrhosis of liver along with hepatitis C or a person with hepatitis C is treated with interferon then certain diet modifications are essential.
- As liver disease progress to cirrhosis of liver a person may become very tired, lose appetite and have a tough time eating. This can make them malnourished, thin with low immune system to fight off the disease. Limiting salt intake in the diet of such patients can help to prevent fluid retention especially in the abdomen and legs.
- A person with hepatitis C treated on interferon can cause many side effects like sore mouth and throat, lack of appetite, nausea, vomiting and metallic taste. These effects can make food consumption difficult.
Tips to Eat Regular Balanced Meals
- Instead of just 2 meals try to include short meals at regular intervals (at least 3-4 meals a day). Eating often can not only help prevent nausea and vomiting but also supply good nutrients and boost your immune system to fight the disease.
- Eat plenty of whole cereals, grains and its products. Also a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables should be emphasized. These foods will provide the necessary nutrients and antioxidants to fight cell damage.
- One should go easy on salty, fatty and sugary foods and minimize its consumption as far as possible.
- Gain adequate protein from fat-free or low-fat dairy products, beans, sprouts, fish, egg white and soy.
- Drink enough water to prevent dehydration caused by vomiting or diarrhea.
- Completely avoid alcohol.
- Milk thistle is an herb used to rebuild and heal the liver, but before taking any supplements talk to your specialist for correct guidance and also make sure that it won’t interact with other medications.