Foods for Typhoid – What to Eat and What to Avoid?

By Nikita Banerjee +2 more

Typhoid is an infectious disease that is caused by Salmonella bacteria and is an extremely prevalent malady during the monsoon season.

Some common symptoms of the disease include:

  • Chills and fever
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Fever
  • Enlargement of the spleen and liver

Many patients also experience nausea and an acute loss of appetite. However, it is extremely essential to consume small portions of food at regular intervals to give the body some much-needed strength and energy. Therefore, high-calorie foods for typhoid is recommended.

Quick guide to typhoid fever:

Cause It is caused by the Salmonella typhi bacteria through contaminated food or water.
Who Typically people who do not maintain good hygiene (especially during food preparation/consumption) are highly susceptible to this bacteria.
Treatment Antibiotic tablet medication for 7-14 days, for severe cases, intravenous injection of antibiotics may also be done in the hospital. Complications may arise for untreated typhoid infection such as long term typhoid, relapse and internal bleeding.
Diagnosis If you have a fever that continues to get higher each day and/or you have travelled to a place where typhoid is common then your doctor may request blood, stool or urine samples to be sent for a lab test. This will show whether the bacteria is present in your body. A bone marrow test may also be requested since this is more accurate.

So, what kind of diet should a typhoid patient adhere to? Let’s learn more about foods good for typhoid patients below:

Food for typhoid

Doctors generally recommend the healthy foods for typhoid below:

  1. Up the intake of carbohydrates. Porridge, soft rice, baked potatoes are all good food items to add to a typhoid patient’s diet.
  1. Make it a point to give the patient semi-solid food since it is easy to digest. Semi-solid foods you can eat during typhoid include boiled potatoes, khichdi, porridge, boiled rice, and yoghurt.
  1. It is also vital to provide the body with as much fluid as possible. Deadly typhoid has a tendency to cause severe dehydration, so it’s best to give the patient adequate proportions of fruit juices, lassi, glucose water, lime juice, and coconut water. Alternatively, you can also give him/her good servings of water-rich fruits.
  1. Generally, a high-calorie diet is also suggested. This includes food items such as bananas, potatoes etc.
  1. Up the consumption of dairy products such as milk and yogurt.
  1. Soups such as spinach soup, vegetable soup, carrot soup, chicken soup, and mushroom soup can also be given.
  1. Ensure that the patient drinks adequate water. The drinking water should be boiled and filtered properly.
  1. Simple boiled yellow daal can also be given. These make for healthy foods for typhoid.
  1. Ensure that there is adequate consumption of proteins.
  1. The meals should be light, easy to digest and frequent in nature.
  2. Cooked vegetables can be consumed during typhoid so that the body receives vital nutrients to get stronger. Well cooked or boiled vegetables like potatoes, carrots, beets, raw papaya and squash can be consumed. They are easy to digest and provide nutrients.
  3. Herbal tea such as a mix of neem, yarrow, sage, sage steeped in water can also be helpful for improving hydration while also having antimicrobial properties. Note that while this concoction may be one of the best foods for typhoid, it cannot be used as a substitute for medication. However, it can be used as additional help for your treatment.
  4. Honey is a healthy way to meet your sugar requirement while you are down with typhoid fever. It is both healthy and is famously antibacterial, being used in traditional medicine since ancient times. Additionally, when consumed with warm water, honey is thought to ease the digestive system. This can contribute to a faster recovery making honey one of the sweeter foods for typhoid fever.

Food items to avoid

  1. Avoid food items that are high in fiber. Food which is high in fiber content is difficult to digest and puts pressure on the digestive system that gets weakened due to typhoid. Thus avoiding it during the disease can ease any pressure on it.
  2. Spicy food, fried items are a strict No. Spicy food items can irritate the digestive system and the intestine. The ailment already affects the digestive system and further, inflammation should be avoided.  
  3. Avoid food items that cause gas and bloating of the stomach. Certain vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and asparagus can cause gas and bloat the stomach. Avoiding digestive pressure on the system is better to be avoided.  
  4. Control the intake of ghee and butter. Fatty food is harder to digest and can cause complications during typhoid.
  5. While dry fruits are considered to be healthy in general, they tend to be high in fibre. Fibre is good during normal circumstances, but it is not great during typhoid. Similarly, almonds, walnuts and pistachios should also be avoided or reduced due to their fibre content.
  6. Legumes like chickpeas, lentils and kidney beans may result in a gassy stomach, under normal circumstances this wouldn’t be a problem. But you’ll want to avoid gassy foods for typhoid, it may make you feel worse while you get through the fever.  

Conclusion:

It is important to note that typhoid is a serious medical condition. Always inform your doctor about your symptoms and seek their professional medical advice regarding medication, and dietary changes. All the above mentioned foods are only an added help for typhoid recovery and should not be considered as a replacement for medication.

FAQs

  • How long does typhoid stay in your body?

As typhoid is an enteric infection, it affects the intestine and the symptoms one experiences are related to digestion. The symptoms of typhoid fever start showing up gradually over a period of 10-14 days after exposure to the bacteria and last for about 3-4 weeks. In case your symptoms don’t improve after proper treatment and medication, consult a doctor.

  • Why is typhoid reinfection common?

Some people who are treated for typhoid fever experience a relapse. The symptoms may return around a week after the antibiotic treatment is over. You must wash the fruit and vegetables before eating, and continue to maintain good hygiene. Some people continue to harbour the bacteria even after their symptoms have gone.  

  • How can I prevent infecting others?

If you’re recovering from typhoid fever, you must follow your doctor’s instructions and take antibiotics as prescribed, maintain good hygiene because it is a contagious illness and avoid handling food.

Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.

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Sapna Shah

Good tips f all d disease.

Gordon nikwiah

thanks for the information. I have Learnt so many things from it. God bless you

Ashir Sahal

You are most welcome. Hope you found it useful.

Ngam Immaculate Nchini

God bless you for this post, it has taught me a lot

Ashir Sahal

Thank you, glad you liked it.

Ankrah

Thanks it really helped

Ashir Sahal

You are most welcome. Glad you found it useful.

Faith

Thanks I have learned alot
Cos I use to take alot of fried food
I never knew it was not good,

Ashir Sahal

You are most welcome. Hope you found it useful.

LAVALIE Mustapha

Thank you very much for this concept

Ashir Sahal

You are most welcome. Hope you found it useful.