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Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection causing a severe flu-like illness. Diseases like dengue can directly impact the platelet count in one's body, which makes this fever life threatening. If affected by this virus, the platelet count in the body can easily drop to as low as 20,000 which can damage the immune system. There is no vaccine to prevent Dengue and that's why natural and easy remedies in treating dengue are extremely important. While there are various treatments available on early detection, a common home remedy which is believed to work like miracle is drinking the juice of papaya leaves and goat milk. We all receive plethora of information on social networking and messaging sites, some true and some untrue. We also receive a lot of so-called fact-based messages but caution needs to be exercised while believing this. Here we help you understand facts from the fibs about Dengue.
Will drinking papaya leaves juice helps?
Papaya & its leaves are power packed source of antioxidants and it makes wonders in boosting our immunity. Recent studies state that consuming approx. 25 ml papaya leaf extract diluted with water & sugar (if required) minimum twice a day helps increasing the platelet count. Papaya fruit also content Vitamin "A" & Vitamin "C" which makes this fruit rick in its nutrient contents.
Papaya leaf is rich in enzymes that increase the platelet count in the body. Antioxidant properties of papaya leaf extract makes it beneficial against hemolysis (breaking down of red blood cells) effect of dengue virus & hence it's useful in treating dengue induced thrombocytopenia (reduced platelet count). Thus, having freshly ground papaya leaves work best and this extract should be consumed once or twice a day.
According to Ayurveda, you catch the fever because of a misbalance in your system. Papaya leaf juice is rich in anti-oxidants, heal wounds, bring down fever, boost protective white blood cells and build the body's immune system. Anything that is bitter and astringent will help one combat the disease. There are three herbs and plants that are particularly good out of which one is the papaya leaf juice.
Will drinking goat milk helps?
Goat milk is known to help in the recovery of Dengue fever but no evidences relate its use in increasing platelet count. There are no sufficient evidences to prove use of goat milk for dengue patients. Goats milk is rich in selenium (a mineral), and is beneficial anyway. But its effectiveness in dengue patients is unknown. In the books of Ayurveda, goat milk helps in recovering fast from dengue fever as the milk is light and easy to digest. However, there is no mention that it increases platelet count. Read: National Dengue Day 2018: Diet tips for dengue patients
Papaya leaves juice extract is considered beneficial for dengue patients. But more scientific backing is needed to prove that it increases platelet count. However, similar claims for goat's milk have not been scientifically proven till date. Nutrients present in papaya leaves have proven to help reduce the adverse effects of Dengue. There is enough evidence to show the beneficial effects of papaya juice in the treatment of dengue. It is an ancient home remedy, being followed for ages. Besides, it has no side effects to be worried about. Many traditional healers do suggest that goat milk may be beneficial to people infected with dengue. However, allopathic doctors are not very impressed with the efficacy of goat milk for treating dengue. Read:Some people may be responsible for spreading of dengue virus, says study
By: Rasika Parab, HOD-Nutrition therapy, Fortis Hospital, Mulund and Dr Rajeshwari Shetty, head of dietetics, SL Raheja Fortis Hospital.
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