- Eat a Healthy & Well Balanced DietOne of the most important ways for a person with hepatitis B to live a longer, healthier life is to focus on maintaining an adequate nutritional balance with whole foods and anti-inflammatory diet. Eating foods that contain chlorophyll can also be beneficial for reducing oxidative
- stress and liver damage. Some of the most beneficial, detoxifying, liver-cleansing and cancer-fighting foods
- leafy green vegetables, like spinach, kale, arugula, collard greens and romaine lettuce
- cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts
- root vegetables, like carrots, sweet potatoes, beets and butternut squash
- fresh fruit, especially blueberries, strawberries, goji berries and citrus fruits
- fresh herbs, like basil, parsley, oregano and ginger
- organic meat and wild-caught fish
- grass-fed cattle or chicken liver
- probiotic dairies, like kefir, cottage cheese and yoghurt
- nuts and seeds, especially walnuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds
- unrefined oils, such as healthy coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil
Some common symptoms of acute hepatitis B are nausea and vomiting. It may be helpful to eat a more substantial breakfast. Then keep your lunch and dinner on the lighter side if you experience an upset stomach. You can also add 1–2 drops of peppermint oil to a glass of water to help get rid of nausea naturally. To be sure that you’re getting adequate nutrients and fluids, try fruit and vegetable juices or smoothies instead of heavier meals. This will be easier for you to digest and using immune-boosting ingredients will help you to recover.
- Avoid Inflammatory Foods and Drinks
To help prevent the spread of the hepatitis B virus and ease the symptoms of an acute infection, avoid consuming foods and drinks that increase inflammation. This includes sugar, refined oils, refined carbohydrates, conventional dairy products and farm-raised meats. Try not to eat processed foods that typically contain refined ingredients and additives. It’s also very important to avoid drinking alcohol or using over-the-counter drugs, especially acetaminophen. They can worsen liver damage, which is a concern for people with hepatitis B.
- Stay Hydrated
Vomiting is a common symptom of hepatitis B, which can cause dehydration. You need to make sure you’re drinking enough fluids throughout the day so that you don’t become dehydrated. Drink plenty of water. Have at least an 8-ounce glass with every meal and water between meals, too. Drinking fresh fruit and veggie juices can be helpful. So can consuming bone broth, which is full of essential nutrients that will boost your immune system and help you to fight the virus. Instead of turning to sports drinks that are full of sugar and artificial flavours, drink coconut water, which will help you to avoid an electrolyte imbalance.
- Reduce Stress
To help relieve hepatitis B symptoms and prevent the spread of the virus, you have to reduce stress levels and take it easy. Don’t engage in strenuous activities, especially if you are feeling tired and low energy. Allow your body to rest. Try some natural stress relievers, like taking a short walk outside, doing some gentle yoga. Take a warm bath or read an uplifting book. Another easy way to reduce stress and bring on feelings of peace is to diffuse lavender essential oil at home or work. If you don’t have a diffuser, just tub 1–2 drops of lavender oil into your temples or inhale it directly from the bottle.
- Try Milk Thistle
Milk thistle benefits and supports the liver. It’s a powerful detoxifier. It helps rebuild liver cells while removing bodily toxins that are processed through the liver. The silymarin found in milk thistle acts as an antioxidant by reducing free radical production and oxidative stress. It even acts as a toxin blockade agent that inhibits the binding of toxins in liver cells. Research on milk thistle shows it can be used to treat acute and chronic viral hepatitis and liver disease.
- Boost your Glutathione Levels
Scientific research shows there’s a direct correlation between glutathione levels and viral activity for both hepatitis B and C. Glutathione is a peptide that consists of three amino acids, L-cysteine, L-glutamic acid and glycine. It is known as the “mother of all antioxidants” because it supports vital body functions, including liver detoxification. The liver uses glutathione to break down toxins. This is why glutathione levels decrease when the viral load increases. If you have chronic hepatitis B for more than 90 days, ask your healthcare provider to check your glutathione levels. If they are low, you can take L-cysteine (NAC), a-Lipoic acid and L-glutamine to help restore your glutathione levels.
If you have chronic hepatitis B and symptoms of acute or chronic liver disease, do not use herbal supplements without consulting with your healthcare provider or nutritionist first. These supplements must pass through the liver. They can cause more damage if you don’t take them correctly. Always alter your diet and lifestyle first. Make sure to eat whole foods that will help to reduce inflammation and support your liver. If you drink alcohol or do drugs, quit immediately — that should be your first line of defence.
(By Kojo Ankrah)