I am suffering from hepatitis, can I eat yellow colored foods? (Query)

Is it true that you should stay away from yellow foods when suffering from hepatitis?

Hi, I am a 20-year-old female. I recently got diagnosed with hepatitis. My doctor advised me to not eat out and avoid oily food. However, my mom asked me to avoid turmeric powder and even yellow colored foods like dals because she feels that people suffering from hepatitis should not eat yellow colored foods as it might aggravate the condition. Is it true?

The query is answered by Dr Akshay Challani, Critical Care Specialist & Physician, Akshjyot Clinic, Vashi.

It is a common misconception that people suffering from jaundice or hepatitis B should avoid eating yellow colored foods. Also, most people avoid using turmeric in their foods thinking it might lead to yellowing of the skin and eyes, a common symptom of jaundice. However, it is just a myth as eating yellow colored foods doesn t increase your risk of hepatitis nor does it hinder your recovery. Instead eating bland foods like khichdi, which is made from dal and rice, benefits people suffering from hepatitis.

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Here are some diet dos and dont s to follow if you are suffering from hepatitis

Avoid junk food as it is high in salt and oil content and difficult to digest. It also increases the toxic load on the liver (which is recovering from the infection), thereby preventing you from recovering.

Oily and spicy food is a strict no-no. You might have a metallic taste due to fever and eating bland food, making you crave spicy and oily food. However, eating oily and spicy food will hinder with your liver s function and recovery.

If you drink often, say no to alcohol till you recover, because alcohol impairs liver function. When you drink alcohol, it increases the pressure on the organ. In the long run, it might lead to fatty liver disease or alcoholic hepatitis. Read more about why is alcohol bad for your liver?

Ensure your diet contains more of fresh and leafy vegetables. Wash the vegetables with tap water properly before cooking. It is a good idea to eat boiled or properly cooked food. Also, avoid eating raw vegetables as it might increase your risk of infection.

Drink loads of water to help the liver flush out harmful toxins. You can drink fresh fruit juices (not the packaged ones) or warm soups to stay hydrated. Also, ensure that the water you drink is either boiled or filtered. Also, read about bottled, boiled or filtered water: How to get pure drinking water in India?

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