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FAQ - Glandular Fever

By Kelly Walker DipION

Expert nutritionists share their frequently asked questions…

Q "My cousin’s daughter of 16 has been diagnosed with glandular fever – can you help with advice for extra vitamins please? She is a very active, sporty girl and is finding it hard to cope with the tiredness."

A - Glandular fever is thought to be caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Common symptoms include sore throat, swollen glands and extreme fatigue.

These symptoms may persist for many months and, even after an apparent recovery, symptoms may reappear, as the virus may remain dormant and surface when the immune system is under pressure.

I would suggest the following immune-supporting nutrients: vitamin C, zinc and antioxidants, such as vitamins A and E, help to support the immune system. A good multivitamin and mineral supplement can provide some of these, while berries like blackcurrants, bilberries and black elderberry are particularly rich in antioxidants. It may also be useful to take olive leaf, which is thought to support strong, healthy immune function.

Energy levels may be supported through a good, balanced, healthy diet rich in complex carbohydrates such as oats, brown rice, fruit and vegetables, and good quality protein such as eggs, chicken, oily fish, turkey, quinoa and white fish. Eating three main meals daily and two snacks ensure that energy is released from food over a long period. It would also be useful to avoid sugars and sugary foods, such as fizzy drinks and confectionary, as these may have a negative impact upon energy levels and the immune system.

Co-enzyme Q10 is essential for us to produce energy from our cells and a supplement of this may assist with fatigue.  Many people with glandular fever find rest is important and your cousin’s daughter may find resting when needed may assist her with a speedier recovery. 

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