Learn more about self-testing for HIV. Learn more about the importance of viral supression. Visit coronavirus. Good nutrition is important to all people—whether or not they are living with HIV. Eating well is key to maintaining strength, energy, and a healthy immune system. In addition, because HIV can lead to immune suppression, food safety and proper hygiene are concerns when it comes to preventing infections. A healthy diet is essential to maintaining good health across your lifespan. The U. Food and Drug Administration FDA defines a healthy diet as one that: provides enough of each essential nutrient; contains a variety of foods from all of the basic food groups; provides adequate energy to maintain a healthy weight; and does not contain excess fat, sugar, salt, or alcohol. There are six essential nutrients.
Nutrition plays an important role in the health of the immune system and its ability to fight infection. Healthy eating also helps you become and stay a healthy weight, and can help reduce the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer and osteoporosis. But eating the right foods can make you feel better, have more energy and can keep your heart and bones healthy as you get older. If you have concerns or questions, your clinic will usually be able to put you in touch with a dietitian. Dietitians can also help you to manage your weight or problems like high cholesterol, or manage any side-effects from HIV treatment that affect how you eat like nausea or diarrhoea. Side-effects from HIV treatment are often mild and lessen or go away completely with time. Starchy foods include bread, cassava, cereals, green banana, millet, maize meal, potatoes, pasta, couscous, rice and yam. Starchy foods should form the basis of your diet — about a third of your food intake each day. They provide carbohydrates for energy, fibre, calcium, iron and B vitamins. If you have a gluten allergy or coeliac disease and need to exclude gluten from your diet, there are many gluten-free versions of foods available including pastas and breads. Try to choose wholegrain versions over refined carbohydrates where possible. Wholegrain versions of rice, pasta, couscous, cereals and bread contain more fibre and often more vitamins and minerals as well.
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