It is important to eat a balanced diet to provide your body with the nutrients that you need to fight TB. The diet should be simple, easily digestible, and to the liking of the patient to encourage consumption. Meals should be small, but at frequent intervals. Larger meals can be given if the condition of the patient improves. Fluid intake should be sufficient. It is particularly important to avoid drinking any alcohol during the entire course of your treatment as this could result in treatment complications and side-effects.
Weight gain generally improves during TB treatment and appropriate nutritional supplementation. It is very important that children with TB get enough energy and nutrients, since children have increased requirements as a result of both growth and TB. TB disease often adversely affects nutritional intake, due to poor appetite, putting patients at risk for malnutrition. Six smaller meals per day are advised instead of three meals. The meals should provide enough energy and protein, and be appetizing in appearance and taste so as to encourage the patient to eat. People with HIV and/or (active) TB need more calories and nutrients in their diet, but they may also have lower appetites and be less able to absorb the nutrients in their food. Force-feeding of the patient to gain extra weight is known to do more harm than good. Too much food – especially fat – frequently causes gastric upsets and diarrhoea. During treatment for TB, eat healthy foods and get enough sleep and some exercise to help your body fight the infection.