Hepatitis C
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Articles by
Dr. Zhang
TCM and MCM Theory Related to Common Liver Disease Blood Test Markers

Low Dose Interferon Patient Experiment

Hepatitis A Prevention Reminder

Hepatitis: Causes of Pain in Liver Region 

The Need to Monitor Your Chronic Hepatitis

Liver Enzyme Fluctuation during Allergy Season 

What are the Serum Markers of Hepatitis B and What do They Mean?

Enterogenous Endotoxemia in Chronic Hepatitis–
Part 2

Enterogenous Endotoxemia in Chronic Hepatitis–
Part 1

Chronic Hepatitis and "Blood Activating and Stasis Expelling" (BASE) Therapy -
Part 2

Chronic Hepatitis and "Blood Activating and Stasis Expelling" (BASE) Therapy
Part 1

What Causes Gastrointestinal Bleeding in Cirrhotic Liver Disease

Dietary Support for Cirrhotic Liver Diseases

Ascites - A Complication of De-Compensated Liver Cirrhosis

Liver Cirrhosis - Portal Vein Hypertension Complications

Liver Cirrhosis Overview

PG-IFN and Ribavirin Treatments

Antibiotics and Chronic Liver Diseases

Why is Alcohol Harmful for People with Hepatitis?

Co-infections and Super-infections of Viral Hepatitis

Beware of Medications That Can Cause Liver Damage

Bile Retention and Its Clinical Manifestations (MCM) part 4

Modern Chinese Medicine (MCM) Part 3 
Jaundice and Chronic Viral Hepatitis

Modern Chinese Medicine (MCM) Anti-Liver-Fibrosis Treatments - Part 2

Modern Chinese Medicine (MCM) Anti-Liver-Fibrosis Treatments - Part 1

What is Liver Fibrosis and How is It Different from Cirrhosis?

How does the liver change as we get older?

How is that my LFTs are so good when my viral load is seemly so high?

Comprehensive Care for Chronic Viral Hepatitis

What can Cause Liver Inflammation?  

What Are the Major Functions that the Liver Carries?


Dietary Considerations

It is inappropriate to recommend that people with Hepatitis C or any other liver disease change their diet in a radical manner.  However, having a consistent diet of healthy nutrients will greatly assist your energy levels.  Combine this with regular low to moderate exercise and you will notice your general feeling of well being begin to increase.

One perhaps ludicrously simple and overlooked technique of improving digestive function is to encourage proper chewing of food and to eat under restful conditions.  People too often in our stressed-out culture, will bolt their food.  This does affect the next stage of digestion in the stomach and in turn the absorption of nutrients later in the digestive process.  Eating under relaxed conditions maximizes parasympathetic nervous system function and allows for maximum nutrient digestion and absorption.

A very important benefit of eating fresh whole foods is that they contain enzymes.  These are substances that help the body digest food and are found only in living food.  High temperatures kill enzymes so most processed food require a lot more effort by the liver to  digest them.  The use of certain spices such as ginger, is another simple way of enhancing digestive and liver function.  Hot spices such as pepper or chilli are contra-indicated in Hepatitis C but other slightly warm to neutral (energetically) spices such as ginger, fennel, cardamon or cumin are warranted in any diet for Hepatitis C.  Bitter foods and ginger are also very good in helping to alleviate nausea and in stimulating the appetite.

Dairy foods are often not tolerated well by people with liver dysfunction.  A simple way of determining if dairy foods are having an affect upon your health is to abstain from dairy foods for a period of 4-6 weeks.  Carefully observe any differences in health, such as abdominal bloating, gas, fullness, stool consistency, tiredness, depression, skin rashes etc.  After the end of the period of abstinence, you should then have a thorough splurge on dairy products and once again compare your sense of well being.

Drinking 2-3 liters of water each day is universally recommended for good health, but also protects against lymphatic congestion - which can put further strain on the liver.  As with other suggestions it is advisable to tune into the needs of your own body as there may be individual differences.

The four golden rules for ensuring good immune function are:

1. Get some protein at every meal.

2. Include some essential fats in your diet each day.

3. Eat at least 2 cups of salad or vegetables each day.

4. Avoid excessive sugar and hydrogenated fat.

It is recommended that there be an emphasis on as wide a variety of fruits and vegetables as possible in the diet.  Research is constantly validating that vegetables are a rich source of anti-oxidants which are most important for minimizing free radical damage within the body.  This is particularly so in any condition of chronic inflammation like hepatitis.  It’s a good idea to eat fruits and vegetables that are in season

Vegetable juices (fresh whenever possible, otherwise preservative free) have a particular  nature that helps lessen the bloated and stagnant feelings often associated with liver conditions.  Vegetable juices act to flush out the body and relieve some of the symptoms that people with liver disease experience such as heaviness and lethargy.  There are no strict proportions to be followed so experiment for yourself.  Some juices are very strong so you may like to dilute them initially with water.  The only caution is with carrot juice (high levels of Vitamin A can irritate the liver), or spinach juice (high levels of oxalic acid).  Best vegetable juices are celery, cucumber, broccoli and beetroot (tops and bottoms).  Best fruit juices are lemon juice, apple, pineapple, pear, paw-paw, mango and melons as well as red berries.  It has been suggested that it is best to drink melon juice on its own and not mixed with any other fruit.

Eat more wholegrains, rice and legumes (beans, lentils, barley, split peas).  These give you better quality energy.  Some people describe symptoms such as bloating, gas and indigestion after eating some of these foods.  If you experience these or other problems after eating particular foods either reduce your intake of the food or cut it out altogether.  Wholegrains and their products are an important source of vitamins from the B group and minerals like zinc that are essential for so many functions within our bodies, inclusive of liver and proper immune function.  Processed grains and their subsequent products are definitely not as nutritious as wholegrain.

Try and buy organic foods if you can afford them - they have less added chemicals, therefore cause less stress on the liver.  Naturopathically the emphasis is on eating free range chicken to minimize the amount of chemical and hormonal residues that are in chickens raised under modern commercial methods.  The liver of a person with Hepatitis C does not need any further toxins to deal with, especially from a regular source like food.

Red meats are very potent foods and require a lot of effort to digest; nutritionally excellent in moderation, but often high in fats and toxins.  Meat will take a minimum of 8-10 hours to be digested, often sitting in the bowel the whole night adding a further burden to your body.

Generally you should try to broaden your diet and keep away from food that requires the liver to work harder

For more detailed information on diet, we recommend Dr. Andrew Weil's book Eating Well for Optimum Health)


Return Home
About HCV
Causes and Transmission

Diagnostic Tests
Viral Load

Viral Genotyping

Major Signs
Liver Inflammation

Peripheral Signs and Symptoms
Bile Retention
Joint Pains and Skin Rashes
Blood Sugar Instability
Portal Vein Hypertension

Important Liver Function Test Markers
PT (Prothrombin Time)
Liver Biopsy
Inflammation Grade
Fibrosis Stage
Interferon Based Treatment
Ideal Candidate
Possible Side-effects
Liver Support with TCM
Liver Enzymes
Serum Albumin
Blood Clotting Factors
Bile metabolism
Dietary Considerations
Essential Fats




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