Caused by a bacterial infection, strep throat will cause you a sore throat and flu-like symptoms, including chills, fever, and aches. Children ages 5 to 15 are at a greater risk of developing this infection, but it can also affect anyone irrespective of age. You experience symptoms usually within five days of becoming infected. Along with antibiotics, you also need to take complete rest and know what to eat with strep throat to recover fast. Let's find out more about the foods suitable to strep throat.
What to Eat When You Suffer from Strep Throat?
Drinking cold fluids helps keep your throat moist and prevent irritation. You can try a number of options here. For instance:
l You can drink plenty of juice and water to relieve pain and promote hydration.
l You can try other hydrating options as well, such as a chilled veggie soup, ice chips, popsicles, and chilled gelatin.
Moreover, eating frozen foods help relieve pain caused by your strep throat. It is also a good idea to prepare your own frozen treats simply by keeping containers of yogurt or fruit juice in the refrigerator. You can also enjoy ice cream and popsicles (Avoid popsicles that have not been made using all-natural juices) to help reduce inflammation in your throat.
You may also try warm fluids to soothe your throat pain.
l Honey or lemon tea works amazingly well in this situation, and so do warm milk, hot cocoa, and soups.
l Chicken broth is another nice option – you can make it even better by adding vegetables to it. Veggies help boost your immune system and provide you with energy to fight the infection.
l Another great option is to prepare chicken broth by boiling chicken breasts. You can use canned chicken broth as well, but ensure it does not have any preservatives.
l Starches, such as cereal, bread, potatoes, and rice, are allowed when you are dealing with strep throat. These starches provide you with glucose which brings you energy to fight your infection.
l Mashed potatoes and cooked cereal are two great choices because they are easy on your throat.
l Other options include well-cooked pasta, soft tortillas, white rice, mashed sweet potatoes, and soft breads.
When thinking about what to eat with strep throat, you can also try protein-rich foods, but you should make a conscious effort to include bland protein sources in your diet. Crispy or high-fat sources of protein can make your pain and inflammation worse.
l You can eat scrambled eggs, low-fat yogurt, skinless chicken breasts, and cottage cheese and tofu.
l You can also enjoy soft-bread sandwiches, soups, and tortilla wraps.
What Foods Should You Avoid?
Knowing what you can eat with strep throat is important, but it is equally important to have an idea about what foods to avoid when you have an infection. Basically, you need to avoid foods that may irritate your throat, such as crusty bread, crackers, spicy seasonings, coffee, sodas, alcohol, and raw veggies. You should also avoid the following foods:
Dry snack foods, including pretzels, potato chips, and popcorn.
Acidic fruits, such as lemons, oranges, tomatoes, lime, and grapefruits.
Frozen beverages with high acidic juices, such as cranberry or orange juice.
More Ways to Soothe Strep Throat Discomfort
Take an OTC Pain Reliever
Your doctor will order a lab test to help confirm your diagnosis. While waiting for the test to arrive, you can take OTC pain relievers to reduce pain and inflammation. Pain relievers, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, can also help reduce fever and make pain more manageable. Do not give aspirin to your child under the age of 18.
Get Plenty of Sleep
You need to take plenty of rest to give your body some time to clear the infection. Be sure to take as much sleep as you can because it boosts your immune system and makes antibiotics more effective. You should sleep extra 4-5 hours during the day to recover more efficiently – you should also take at least 8 hours of sleep at night. Avoid overhead fans because they can cause postnasal drip.
Install a Humidifier
It is important to keep your throat moist to avoid pain and reduce swelling. You can do it by having a humidifier installed in your house. Increasing humidity in the air also makes it easier for you to sleep at night. Just make sure to clean the humidifier on a daily basis – you should follow the manufacturer's instructions while cleaning the humidifier. If you do not have a humidifier, you can simply keep several dishes of water in your room to humidify the air.
Suck on Herbal Cough Drops
Many types of herbal cough drops and lozenges are now available to relieve throat pain. However, don’t give lozenges to your child who has the risk of choking on it. For children, you can also find sprays that work quite well like cough drops and lozenges because they contain similar ingredients.
Limit Exposure to Throat Irritants
Along with taking steps to reduce sore throat pain, you should also limit your exposure to anything that may irritate your throat. Irritants like cigarette smoke and air pollution can make inflammation worse. This will aggravate your symptoms. Moreover, you should stop smoking at least until you recover completely.