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What to eat when you have a viral infection

A viral infection is not always identified, but can cause symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea and treatment consists of rest and good hydration. A good way to fight viruses is to follow medical advice and eat properly to prevent dehydration and provide the body with energy to accelerate recovery.

In the first 3 days of diarrhea, you should avoid eating food that can cause obstipation, such as guava and bananas, because the virus must be eliminated through your stools. After this period, symptoms should subside and consumption of foods that can help control diarrhea are recommended.

What to eat when you have a viral infection

What to eat if you have a viral infection

You should choose foods that are easily digestible to avoid malaise, so they should be low in fiber and always cooked, seedless and shelled foods are recommended. In addition, small amounts of food should be consumed every 3 hours or so, which facilitates digestion of food as well as digestion.

Therefore, foods that can be included in your diet are carrots, zucchini, green beans, potatoes, yams, skinless apples, green bananas, skinless pears, skinless peaches and green guava.

Preference should also be given to white cheese, toast, white bread, cornstarch, rice porridge, cornmeal, tapioca, crackers, French bread, rice, pasta and low fat meats such as chicken, fish and turkey.

You can drink coconut water or natural juices, as well as natural teas like chamomile, guava or anise. To maintain hydration you can make use of the homemade serum.

What not to eat if you have a viral infection

Foods that should be avoided while experiencing symptoms of viral infections that can make diarrhea worse are:

  • Fruits with peel or pomace, because they can stimulate your bowel, such as papaya, orange, plum, avocado, ripe banana, fig and kiwi;
  • Sausages and ham;
  • Yellow cheese and curd as well as milk products;
  • Ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard sauces;
  • Pepper or spicy foods;
  • Cube seasoning;
  • Alcoholic beverages;
  • Coffee and caffeinated beverages as they stimulate and irritate the intestines;
  • Dry fruits.

In addition, you should avoid high fat foods, fried foods, ready meals, sugar, honey and foods that contain it, such as cakes, stuffed cookies, chocolates, sodas and pasteurized juices.

Menu example to treat a viral infection

Below, is an example of a 3-day menu of an easily digestible diet to recover faster from a viral infection:

Main mealsDay 1Day 2Day 3

1 cup of rice porridge + 1 cup of chamomile tea

1 cup of cornstarch + 1 cup of guava tea2 slices of bread with white cheese + 1 cup of peppermint tea
Morning snack1 cup of jelly1/2 cup of cooked apple jam (unsweetened)1 cooked pear
Lunch/DinnerChicken broth without fat60 a 90 g of boneless skinless chicken + 1/2 cup mashed potatoes + cooked carrots90 g skinless turkey + 4 tablespoons of rice with grated carrots and cooked zucchini
Afternoon snack1 green banana1 salted cracker package with white cheese3 Maize biscuits

It is important to mention that menu quantities vary from person to person as it depends on age, gender, weight and whether or not the person has any associated disease. If you want an individualized diet, you should seek the advice of a nutritionist to make the assessment.

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