Eating for Health
While there is no cure for mono, it can only help your immune system if you eat well while you are recovering. Similarly, it is possible that maintaining a balanced and healthy diet can help you to avoid getting mono all together.
Your Diet During Acute Mono
If you are in the acute stages of the infection and are experiencing symptoms such as fever, sore throat, swollen glands and more, you should eat lightly.Following a healthy diet can help speed recovery and help you regain your energy. Holistic nutrition plays a very important role.
Perhaps enjoy a liquid-only diet for a few days, nurturing your body with broths, soups, hot teas, and water. This diet will give your body the nutrition it needs, without putting added strain on the stomach, and will allow your body to rest and to focus on healing.
Drink plenty of water to help rid the body of toxins. Add some lemon to your water to help dilute the excess mucus. Look for healthy recipes for soups that are soothing and easy to digest.
Include lots of ginger and garlic in your soup for their antiviral properties, as well as orange and green vegetables (carrots, sweet potato, pumpkin, kale, swiss chard, parsley, etc) for natural sources of beta-carotene, iron and vitamin C. Enjoy miso soup, chicken soup, and herb teas such as fenugreek, ginger, boneset and coltsfoot.
Stay Away From Carbohydrates & More
Foods such as bread, cereal, biscuits, pasta and rice can trigger inflammation in your body and worsen your symptoms such as sort throat, muscle aches and fatigue.
They can also cause a fluctuation in your blood sugar which may leave you tired and craving sugar. Sugar is a particularly bad choice when you are recovering from mono, because it suppresses white blood cell activity.
You need your white blood cells to help you to get rid of the mono. In addition, you should certainly avoid caffeinated beverages, alcohol and processed foods. These foods are devoid of the nutrients that you need and they offer empty calories.
Finally, try to remember to drink a good deal of water during the day. At least eight cups of water will help you to flush toxins away.
Split up your meals into smaller portions and eat four to six small meals each day, if it is difficult for you to eat too much at one time. Take a dietary supplement as well, which should include Vitamin A, Vitamin B-complex, Vitamin C, Magnesium, Potassium and Calcium.
With these diet suggestions to counter mono, you should be on your way to health as your body fights off mono and gains strength.
Follow a healthy, low fat diet
Natural medicine practitioners also advocate for a diet based on whole grains, fruits, vegetables and lean proteins (avoid red meat). Avoid fatty foods and eat as many green vegetables as possible to boost your immune system. Nutritional supplements such as Green Magma, spirulina, and chlorella may be useful, especially if your appetite is weak.
Additional helpful vitamins and nutritional supplements include vitamin C (1,000 mg every hour) and a vitamin B-complex for regaining overall strength. Herbal medicine practitioners also recommend echinacea and astralagus for enhancing the immune system. The following herbs also have antiviral properties and can be taken as a tea: lemon balm, elderberry, licorice, hyssop and chrysanthemum flowers.
Alcohol is a bad idea
You should make sure to avoid alcohol. While most people won't feel like being the life of the party anyway when they have mono, not everyone understands how dangerous this mix can be.
The Dangers of Mono and Alcohol
When you have mono, one of the side effects is often an inflamed liver. Alcohol enters the liver and can make your inflammation even worse. This is because alcohol forces your liver to work harder than it is usually used to working.
This will put undo stress on your body and can cause other consequences as well. Most people would naturally avoid alcohol when they feel as ill as mono often makes people feel. Drinking can be incredibly dangerous and toxic for you and your system.
How Long Should You Stay Away?
Certainly, during the time that you have acute symptoms, you should avoid alcohol consumption. You should be in contact with your doctor and should have your symptoms monitored.
If your doctor has found that your liver is functioning in a normal way, and your symptoms have started to ease, you can go back to having a drink once in a while. This isn't to say that you can go out partying however!
Most doctors will recommend that you avoid alcohol for anywhere between two months and a year after your diagnosis with mono.
Some people actually find that they develop an intolerance to alcohol after they've had mono or Epstein Barr. This means that even a small amount of alcohol might make you relapse or bring back your symptoms.
While most people can handle being drunk, and can rebound within a day or so, the person with mono or Epstein Barr may find that it takes much longer to recover. They may feel quite ill for awhile and weak, making it very unappealing to drink at all.
It is certainly important to take a look at your alcohol consumption if you are dealing with this illness, or if you've had it in the past. While you might be fine, and be able to hold your alcohol, you may find that it's too much for you to drink even the smallest amount anymore.
Make sure to get plenty of rest!
Perhaps one of the most important elements of any treatment plan for mono is bed rest. Get as much rest as you possibly can and do not push yourself. Resume your regular activities slowly to prevent a relapse. Continue to follow a healthy, low fat diet, and eliminate red meat for several months to avoid stressing the liver.
After the Acute Stage
When you start to feel better and your appetite returns, you should start an immune-boosting diet to help you to recover. Make sure to have protein with each meal.
Such proteins could include chicken, fish, tofu, lean red meat, cheese and eggs. If you are a vegetarian, or can't stomach heavy proteins at the moment, try legumes, tofu or tempeh.
By breaking up your protein intake into three meals during the day, you maintain your blood sugar levels and give yourself energy throughout the day.
In addition, treat yourself to a plethora of fresh fruits and vegetables. This should make up about 80% of your diet, and they will help to cleanse toxins from your system.
Make delicious vegetable soups, hearty salads, and cooked vegetable dishes. There are some anti-inflammatory foods that can help as well. These include ginger, turmeric, cayenne and fresh pineapple. Add in some important fats as well through nuts, seeds, avocados and natural oils such as olive oil.
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