Diet for Jaundice: What to eat when you are suffering from Jaundice

People who are suffering from or are recovering from jaundice need to be very careful about what they eat. Consuming the wrong type of foods not only aggravates the condition, but could also lead to a deteriorate the recovery.

Updated: August 18, 2020

Treatment of jaundice will vary widely aiming at addressing the underlying condition and not at treating jaundice as the cause of jaundice include several factors associated with the liver.

In addition to medical treatment, it is important to make some particular changes to lifestyle and diet also. People who are suffering from or are recovering from jaundice need to be very careful about what they eat. Consuming the wrong type of foods not only aggravates the condition but could also lead to a deteriorating the recovery. To expedite the recovery process, it is important to follow the tips and guidelines for jaundice nutrition.


What to Eat During Jaundice?

There are no specific foods that are recommended during jaundice, but you can make some dietary changes and follow some guidelines when you are suffering from, or recovering from the condition. This can help in tissue regeneration and prevent further liver damage. 

For the first four to five days of treatment, jaundice patients are advised to follow a liquid diet which includes vegetable and fruit juices mostly. Beetroot, carrot, and spinach can be used as vegetable juices. Oranges, lemons, sugarcane, and grapes may be used for juices. This prevents the chances of dehydration and at the same time provides the body with foods that are very high in nutrition and easy to digest. The liquid diet also helps to cleanse the body by increasing the elimination of bilirubin through urination and excretion. Lukewarm water enema is also recommended for proper bowel elimination. The liquid diet may also be extended, till the acute symptoms of jaundice subside.

After the juice diet, the patient is recommended for an all-fruit diet for about 3 to 5 days. This includes fresh fruits such as apples, pineapples, grapes, pears, and oranges. Bananas should never be included in the jaundice diet

After the fruit diet, a diet that contains normal foods cooked with no oil or minimal oils and spices can be included. Alcohol, caffeine, whole dairy products, sweets, and red meats should be strictly avoided by a jaundice patient until the condition is completely cured.
At least for two weeks, all fatty diets such as butter, cream, and oils must be avoided. Butter and olive oil may be included in the diet in a limited quantity after two weeks. A light carbohydrate diet can be obtained from vegetables and fruits should be taken. 
Barley water, drunk several times during the day is considered a good remedy for jaundice which can be prepared by boiling one cup of barley with six pints of water for three hours in low flame.

Bilirubin is a yellowish-brown substance found in bile, which is produced when the liver breaks the old red blood cells. It is eliminated from the body in the form of feces and it is the substance that gives the stool its normal color. There are several factors that can cause bilirubin in the body to increase, such as alcohol, spices, certain medication, and acidic foods.  A high level of bilirubin in the body results in the yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes.  An excess of bilirubin in the body can lead to jaundice. Therefore following a healthy bilirubin diet is important, which limits the consumption of excessively rich foods, oil, spices, and alcohol. Foods that should be a part of a healthy bilirubin diet are coconut water, radishes, dried fruits, and tomatoes.  

If all essential nutrients are adequately supplied, the liver has an excellent capacity to regenerate itself.  Diets high in proteins, Vitamin C, B, choline, and vitamin E can help its regeneration.

Even after recovery, it is recommended to maintain the diet for a long period to prevent the recurrence of the condition. Your body resistance is low while you are recovering. Therefore consume foods that are prepared with the highest levels of hygiene which can be ensured by homemade food only.


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