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Diet for Meningitis Patients

Meningitis is a condition where the protective membranes which cover the spinal cord and the brain get inflamed. This kind of inflammation can be a result of infections caused by various types of bacteria, viruses, micro-organisms and sometimes even by certain drugs. Since meningitis affects the brain and spinal cord it can be life threatening and is therefore treated as a medically emergency. Doctors generally recommend a nourishing and nutritious alkaline diet for meningitis patients. A poor diet, fast foods and junk foods can only weaken the immune system and cause further complications like meningitis.
A good meningitis diet would be one which is full of fresh fruits and vegetables. Meningitis patients should always be given more fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grain cereals. Adequate water intake is also a must to flush out harmful toxins from the body. Apart from plain water it is also safe to give patients unsweetened lemon water.

Fruits, Vegetables for Meningitis

In the case of meningitis fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamins A, B, C, D and E such as watermelon, grapefruit, cantaloupes, papaya, broccoli, carrots, cabbage and dark green leafy vegetables are very helpful in strengthening the immune system. These foods should be eaten in plenty everyday while suffering from meningitis. Fruits and vegetables also provide important antioxidants; essential fatty acids and other important nutrients which can help a person recover faster from this condition. Initially the diet of the patient should be kept as simple as possible and a normal diet should only be resumed after recovery or once the symptoms start subsiding. For a person suffering from meningitis recipes can be prepared skillfully by using nutritious foods like garlic, tomatoes, broccoli, fish like salmon, artichokes and various other healthy vegetables and condiments. By experimenting with simple recipes everyday food can be made more interesting and tasty for meningitis patients.

Foods for Meningitis

While suffering from meningitis foods should always be cooked properly to avoid further infections which can especially be true in the case of undercooked meats. It is best therefore to completely avoid meats while recovering from this disease and concentrate on eating fruits and vegetables as far as possible in their raw form. Fruits and vegetables should also be washed thoroughly before consumption to avoid further infections. Juices from citrus fruits like lemons, pineapples and oranges are also helpful. Other foods like chicken, lean meats, salmon and peanuts are also good nutritionally for a recovering meningitis patient. While recovering from meningitis foods to avoid include dairy products, meats, sugary foods, white flour foods, salt, caffeinated beverages and even alcoholic drinks. Habits like alcohol consumption and smoking should be completely avoided as they can increase the risk of infections. Deli meats, processed foods, smoked fish and sushi are other foods that must be completely avoided in a meningitis recovery diet.

In some cases the main cause of meningitis is food poisoning. Many people commonly suffer from food poisoning due to contaminated food and drinks. Food poisoning can cause conditions like Listeriosis which in turn can lead to meningitis. When water or food gets contaminated by viruses, bacteria or other harmful micro-organisms it can result in food poisoning and other problems like meningitis. The toxins produced by these bacteria and viruses are the main cause of food poisoning and can cause symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain. Therefore to avoid food poisoning and meningitis it is very important to maintain good food hygiene. It is also important to be careful while cooking and storing food to avoid infections. Personal hygiene and good eating habits go a long way in preventing chronic conditions like meningitis.
Submitted on January 16, 2014