Fever is one of the most common illnesses that affects both children and adults. When fever strikes, many people turn to home remedies like curd rice to help relieve symptoms. But is curd rice good for fever? Are there reasons to avoid it when you’re running a temperature?
We analyzed the latest nutrition science to bring you a research-backed evaluation of the pros and cons of curd rice for fever from multiple health perspectives. Read on to learn whether curd rice lives up to its reputation as an age-old remedy, plus expert tips on additional foods to focus on and to avoid when you’re ill.
Do read the People Also Ask (FAQs) about this topic.
|Curd rice provides hydration and electrolytes
|As a soft, cold, semiliquid food, curd rice is gentle on sensitive stomachs to digest and retain nutrients well.
|Curd rice supplies vitamins and minerals
|Rice provides carbs for energy. Yogurt adds protein for tissue repair and vitamins/minerals like A, C, zinc, calcium, and magnesium to support immunity and healing.
|Probiotics in curd rice may reinforce gut health
|Probiotics can help immune defences, reduce inflammation involved in fever episodes, prevent pathogen-induced diarrhoea, and alleviate nausea/stomach pain.
|Curd rice is easily digestible
|People with milk allergies, lactose intolerance or avoiding dairy should not consume standard curd rice but can try substitutes.
|Those with dairy issues should avoid curd rice
|Curd rice has high-carb content
|Curd rice has a high-carb content
|The carb load from rice and yogurt may be a concern for people monitoring blood sugar levels during fever. Small portions are best.
|Raw dairy risks pathogens
|Raw or mishandled dairy can transmit foodborne illness pathogens. Use only pasteurized products handled with care.
Is Curd Rice Good for Fever?
Yes, curd rice is beneficial during a fever. Curd rice is typically considered good to eat when one has a fever. The yogurt helps provide protein and nutrients that can help strengthen the immune system to fight off illness. Additionally, the rice is easy to digest and provides carbohydrates to restore energy. So in moderation, curd rice can be a soothing food to help recover from fever or illness
Here are 6 reasons why:
- Probiotics in curd help improve gut health and boost immunity. The healthy gut bacteria fight infection and inflammation that causes fever.
- Curd has a cooling effect on the body. Its cold temperature and hydrating quality bring down body heat caused by fever.
- Curd is easy to digest and the carbs in rice provide energy when the body is fighting infection.
- Curd provides protein and nutrients like calcium, and vitamin B12 which help strengthen the body.
- The mint leaves and curry leaves mixed with curd rice have antimicrobial and fever-reducing properties.
- Rice gruel is easy on the stomach and provides strength when fever causes weakness or loss of appetite. Its bland taste is appealing when the sense of taste is altered.
Understanding Fever’s Impact on the Body
Before delving into the specifics of curd rice and fever, it’s useful to comprehend what transpires in the body during a fever.
A fever is characterized by a temporary increase in internal body temperature above the normal range of 36.5–37°C (97.7–98.6°F). Fevers are instigated by substances in the body known as pyrogens, which are released as part of the inflammatory response to infections or illnesses. Common pyrogens include proteins produced by immune system cells to assist in combating pathogens.
When you have a fever, several things occur:
- Metabolic rate increases, necessitating higher energy and nutritional needs
- Excess mucus production can lead to potential nausea, diarrhoea, and loss of appetite
- Increased risk of dehydration due to increased sweating as the body attempts to cool itself
Consequently, a fever places stress on the body when more support is required to restore health. This underscores the importance of nutrition and hydration.
Why Curd Rice is Good for Fever
Curd rice has been a long-standing home remedy for fever in India and other cultures. It’s often one of the “comfort foods” people turn to when they’re feeling unwell. But what does science say about the potential benefits?
1. Rich Source of Electrolytes and Hydration
Curd rice is prepared by mixing rice with yogurt (curd) and often includes other additions like mint, cucumber, ginger, and salt. The primary benefit it offers during fever is hydration, thanks to its liquidy, cold form and electrolyte content.
The yogurt contains about 80% water to aid fluid intake. Cucumbers and yogurt also enhance hydration and replace electrolytes lost through sweat, urine, diarrhoea, and/or vomiting during a fever. Electrolytes such as sodium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, and potassium regulate fluid levels and aid in the proper functioning of muscles, including the heart. Maintaining these levels is crucial during a fever.
2. Vitamins and Minerals for Immunity and Healing
By combining yogurt and rice, curd rice provides a nutritionally balanced light meal. Rice supplies the carbohydrates needed for the additional energy vital when fever increases metabolic rate by up to 8% for every degree Celsius rise in body temperature. The yogurt adds in protein for tissue repair, along with vitamins and minerals like:
- Vitamin A: Supports immunity
- Zinc: Aids in immune cell production
- Vitamin C: Enhances immunity and provides antioxidants for healing
- Calcium: Promotes muscle, heart, and digestive health
- Magnesium: Supports muscle and heart health
- Selenium: Acts as an antioxidant for immunity
3. Soothing Probiotics for Gut Health
The yogurt in curd rice contains beneficial live cultures known as probiotics. While more research is still needed, early studies suggest certain strains of probiotics may help:
- Reinforce gut immune defences to support recovery
- Reduce inflammation involved in fever episodes
- Prevent diarrhoea triggered by pathogens or antibiotics
- Alleviate nausea and stomach pain symptoms
By opting for full-fat, homemade yogurt when possible, you maximize probiotic gut benefits. Some store-bought brands only contain a few strains compared to the diverse profile of homemade curd.
4. Light, Easily Digestible Comfort Meal
Due to higher metabolic demands during fever, nutrition intake matters. However, low appetite, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea often accompany infection-related fevers, making eating a challenge.
As a soft, semiliquid food, curd rice supplies nutrients while being gentle enough for sensitive stomachs to digest. The yogurt has a cooling effect to help soothe internal inflammation. When made without spices, the rice blends smoothly for easy consumption and retention.
Why Curd Rice Might Not Be Good for Fever:
Despite its benefits, curd rice does come with some potential cons to consider as well, depending on the individual scenario:
- Milk Allergies or Lactose Intolerance: Those with a dairy allergy, lactose intolerance, or avoiding dairy for other health reasons should not consume standard curd rice. However, vegan yogurt alternatives can be used instead.
- Interactions with Antibiotics or Other Medications: Probiotic-rich foods like curd should be avoided within two hours of taking antibiotics. The good bacteria can interact and prevent optimal antibiotic absorption and effectiveness. Those on medication should check for any contraindicated food interactions with curds or probiotics.
- High Carb Content: Each cup of cooked rice supplies about 45 grams of carbohydrates, while a cup of yogurt or curd adds another 15-20 grams. For those monitoring blood sugar levels, the carb load may be a concern, especially paired with the metabolically demanding state of fever. Opting for small, frequent portions controls carbohydrate influx.
- Potential Pathogens: Raw or improperly handled dairy opens the door to foodborne illnesses. When someone already has an infection causing fever, further pathogens can worsen and prolong symptoms. To stay safe, use only pasteurized dairy, and ensure yogurt is adequately fermented. Discard batches that smell, look or taste off.
Expert Tips: Best Foods To Eat for Fever Relief
While curd rice provides hydration and nourishment, it shouldn’t be the only food consumed when fever strikes. For optimal relief and recovery, experts recommend emphasizing these foods and liquids:
- Water: Hydration is crucial during a fever. Aim for 8-16 cups of fluids daily from water, broths, herbal teas, fresh juices, and coconut water. Avoid alcohol and sugary drinks which can exacerbate dehydration.
- Broths and Soups: Warm, soothing liquids provide hydration along with vitamins and minerals. Chicken or vegetable broth is ideal. Garlic, ginger, and turmeric add antiviral and anti-inflammatory effects.
- Fresh Fruits and Vegetables: Antioxidant-rich produce like oranges, kiwis, bell peppers, and carrots provide fever-fighting vitamin C. Bananas offer hydrating electrolytes. Low-fibre choices are the easiest to digest.
- Eggs, Chicken, Fish: Soft, flaky proteins are easy to chew/swallow and provide the amino acids needed to rebuild immunity, tissues, and strength.
- Nuts, Seeds, and Legumes: Chia, flax, and pumpkin seeds, boiled lentils, mashed beans supply more plant-based protein, vitamins, and minerals without causing GI upset.
- Probiotic Foods: Alongside curd, kefir, kombucha, kimchi, and other fermented items replenish healthy gut flora to prevent pathogen overgrowth.
Foods and Drinks to Avoid with Fever
Just as certain foods can facilitate healing, the wrong dietary choices can also exacerbate fever symptoms in some cases:
- Very Sweet or Salty Foods: Excessive sugar and salt strain bodily systems already working overtime and may increase dehydration risk.
- Spicy, Fried, or Complex Meals: Hard-to-digest foods tax the gut and may worsen nausea, diarrhoea, or appetite loss during illness.
- Caffeine and Alcohol: These drinks promote fluid loss, disrupting hydration and electrolyte stability needed when feverish.
In Moderation, Curd Rice Can Support Fever Relief. When prepared properly using quality ingredients and safe food handling, curd rice offers a soothing, hydrating meal to help counter several common fever symptoms. It supplies vital fluids, electrolytes, carbohydrates, and gut-friendly probiotics with minimal processing for weakened digestive systems. For most individuals, enjoying curd rice in moderation is unlikely to cause harm and can provide comfort alongside other nourishing foods and liquids.
However, those with underlying health conditions, allergies, or special diets may need to avoid curd rice when fever strikes. Be sure to stay adequately hydrated and include immune-boosting, whole-food sources to give your body what it needs most to recover from infection. Consulting your healthcare provider can also help determine any appropriate personalized nutrition recommendations when ill.
With the latest scientific understanding of both fever and curd rice’s signature benefits, this traditional remedy stands the test of research-backed wisdom. When prepared fresh using quality ingredients and paired with a balanced recovery diet, curd rice in moderation can be a safe, soothing way to supplement conventional care when fever comes calling.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
Q) Can I eat rice during a fever?
A) Yes, you can eat rice during a fever. Rice provides carbohydrates needed for the extra energy vital when fever increases metabolic rate. Opt for plain rice or curd rice, as the yogurt adds protein for tissue repair and probiotics for gut health.
Q) Is curd rice good for heat or cold?
A) Curd rice is good for both heat and cold symptoms. The cold, hydrating nature of curd rice helps reduce high body heat from fevers. It also provides nutrition when fighting off cold/flu symptoms. The probiotics support gut health to combat issues like diarrhoea.
Q) Can I eat yogurt while having a fever?
A) Yes, you can eat yogurt while having a fever. Yogurt provides protein for healing, vitamins and minerals to support immunity, and probiotics to improve gut health. All help fight infection and inflammation involved in fevers. Opt for plain, cold yogurt without much-added sugar.
Q) Can I eat curd during a cold?
A) Yes, you can eat curd or yogurt while having a cold. Curd supplies probiotics to reinforce your gut immune defences against cold viruses. The hydration and nutrients in yogurt also help provide strength when you have a cold. Curd rice is a good comfort meal option.