The constant pain, the feeling of being unwell, yellow skin and eyes, loss of appetite, nausea…all associated with jaundice. Jaundice is the accumulation of a yellow pigment called bilirubin in the blood. This bilirubin gets deposited in cells of the body because of which the eyes and skin turn yellow. Read on to know about the Jaundice Diet plan (Indian Menu).
Ideally, the liver removes the bilirubin from the system and does not let it accumulate. But if there is some liver function disorder, it affects the bilirubin levels in the blood. Jaundice is not a disease but it is an underlying condition that might indicate some liver-related disorder like Fatty Liver. Jaundice is a metabolic disorder accompanied by nausea, vomiting, indigestion, dark urine, pain in the abdomen, and pale stools.
Different people will give a hundred solutions and eating rules to treat jaundice which adds to the pain and misery of the situation. Let us see what can we ideally include and avoid in our diet to treat jaundice. Here is a Food Science and research-based Jaundice diet plan (Indian Menu).
Jaundice Diet plan (Indian Menu)
Foods to eat in Jaundice diet plan:
Consuming fluids up to 2.5 to 3 liters is essential. Fluids help to flush out excess bilirubin from the system via urine. Fluids include water, tea, daal, fruit juices, soups, infused water, concoctions, and any liquid gravy.
Plain water might get boring and tasteless in this condition. This is where coconut water comes to the rescue. Coconut water is rich in vitamins and minerals. Daily a serving of coconut will help reduce bilirubin in the blood.
The fiber in the diet helps to bind excess bile pigment and remove it via feces. Include fiber-rich foods like whole-grain cereals, whole fruits, and vegetables, bran-rich flours, psyllium, chia seeds, sprouts, etc.
Fruits and vegetables:
Fruits and vegetables as mentioned above are rich in fiber. Also, the vitamins and minerals present in them help to recover faster from jaundice. Fruits and vegetables provide antioxidants that help reduce the jaundice-induced stress on the body. They help the regeneration of the liver and ease digestion. Fruits and vegetables naturally have a high content of water which helps increase fluid intake. Consume at least 4 – 5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily.
Fruits with natural enzymes:
Fruits like mango, papaya, avocado, grapefruit are rich in digestive enzymes. These help easy digestion and absorption of food.
Good quality proteins:
Proteins help liver regeneration. It helps in retaining the gut muscle integrity along with providing energy to the body. Consume curd or yogurt which is high in probiotics. Probiotics improve liver function which is affected by jaundice. Also include daals, pulses, sprouts, and eggs as per requirement. Include a minimum of 3 servings of good quality proteins.
Nuts and Seeds:
Nuts and seeds are rich in good quality fats along with proteins and fiber. With jaundice and a compromised liver, the body is unable to digest fats. The diet is low in visible fats for the same reason. But nuts and seeds will provide digestible fats that provide energy to the body. Consume at least 1 serving of nuts daily. Soaked almonds can be of help.
Whole grain cereals:
Whole grain cereals along with the right amount of proteins make the availability of the nutrients very easy. It helps remove excess bile from the system. Consume a minimum of 5 – 6 servings of whole-grain cereals daily. Include whole wheat flour, millets, oats, quinoa, etc.
Foods to avoid in Jaundice diet plan:
Alcohol hinders the function of the liver. It further worsens the excretion of excess bile. Alcoholism is a major contributor to liver malfunction leading to jaundice.
Refined carbs put an excessive load in the liver for its metabolism. It also leads to excess bile production for its digestion. Replacing refined carbs with whole grain cereals is the smart move one can make to combat jaundice. Avoid sweets, canned foods, and bakery products
Fried and high-calorie junk food:
High-calorie foods or fried foods are very high in fats and refined carbohydrates. These worsen jaundice by putting an extra load on the liver for its digestion. High-fat content in the foods leads to indigestion, diarrhea, loss of fluid from the body, and weakness. Replace these with good quality fat.
Canned and tinned products are very high in salts, sugar, and fats. These products lead to excess bile production in the body. The sodium in canned foods leads to water retention in the body. The water retention in the liver further deteriorates liver function and health.
Red meat along with being high in proteins is very high in saturated fats. Thus this high saturated fat content puts an extra load on the liver for its digestion. It interferes with the liver function and excretion of excess bile.
Excess salt in the daily diet leads to water retention in the body. As discussed earlier, water retention worsens liver function. It requires fluid restriction, which is not advisable for jaundice. Hence creating a tricky situation to treat jaundice.
Jaundice Diet plan (Indian Menu)
Sample diet Plan:
Empty Stomach: 6 soaked almonds + coconut water/lemon water.
Breakfast: 1 Cup Oats or Daliya With milk + 2 Dates
Mid-Morning: ½ Cup Grilled Paneer or 2 Egg whites
Lunch: 1 Cup Vegetable Soup or Chicken Broth + 2 Chapatis + 1 Cup Sauté Vegetables OR 1 Cup Curd Rice or Khichdi or Dal Rice
Evening Snack: 1 cup Coffee or Green Tea + 1 Cup Roasted Kurmura or 1 Khakra or Boiled Moong or Boiled Sprouts
Mid-evening Snack: 1 Fruit
Dinner: 1 Cup Vegetable Soup + 1 Cup Vegetable Khichdi or Bissibelle Rice or Sambar Rice or Veg Pulao + 1 Cup Curd
Bed Time: 1 Glass buttermilk or Lemon Water with 2 – 3 teaspoons psyllium husk
This Jaundice Diet plan (Indian Menu) is a low-fat diet. Its adequate fiber along with ample fluids is the key to tackle the high levels of bilirubin. For the body to completely recover from jaundice it takes at least 2 to 4 weeks. Ample rest along with medicines speeds up the recovery of the liver.