We’re most familiar with the long-haul symptoms of being ill: coughing, sneezing, achy limbs. But what about the way we become ravenous for food and drink? Biologists now understand that fever is part of the immune system’s attempt to beat the bugs. The sickness response kicks into gear when the white blood cells detect that a bacterium or virus has invaded our bodies.
You might be wondering why do you burn more calories when sick. This is a common question, but not all the answers are easy to find. However, there are some simple ways to increase your metabolic rate and keep yourself healthy while you are sick. Get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water, and avoid eating foods that contain excess sugar and fat. Once you have a fever, your body will be much more efficient at burning fat than normal.
Why your body burns more calories when you’re sick
The reason your body burns more calories when you’ve got the flu or a cold is simple – your body is working extra hard to fight off the infection. In addition, your appetite is suppressed, so you may eat on an empty stomach. This may lead to temporary weight loss. Additionally, your body is using additional resources to fight off the virus or bacteria. Your body’s temperature may also be lower when you’re sick, which makes it difficult to eat much.
Sickness increases your body’s resting metabolic rate, which is why you burn more calories when you’re sick. You also use up protein as an energy source and increase your heat production during this time. Eating more protein is also a good idea during a fever, as it helps your body fight off the infection and recover. Besides eating more, you should also exercise when you’re sick.
Getting plenty of rest
You should always get plenty of rest when you’re sick. You’ll need more energy to fight an infection, and you don’t want to deprive your body of essential nutrients. To stay healthy, eat plenty of good-quality calories. Besides helping your immune system, these calories will fuel your body and keep you energized. You should also avoid overexertion while you’re sick, but if you’re ill, you should still take care of your diet and drink plenty of water. This way, you won’t lose muscle mass.
Your body needs more calories when sick. Fever increases your energy requirements, so eat extra calories to meet this need. Also, try to eat foods high in protein and electrolytes. When you’re sick, your body needs more protein and electrolytes. Soup is an excellent choice to eat when you’re sick. You can add vegetables to your soup to help you recover faster.
Getting plenty of fluids
When you’re sick, making sure you’re getting enough fluids is important for your health, and this is especially important if you’re dehydrated. Even if you’re not vomiting or diarrhea, you can easily dehydrate yourself by avoiding normal fluid intake. When you’re dehydrated, you also have low blood pressure, which can prevent blood from flowing to your vital organs. Getting plenty of fluids will help you feel better, and hydration may even increase your immunity.
If you’re dehydrated, drinking plenty of fluids is an important part of your recovery. It is also important to have thin mucus, as it helps the ciliary transport system work properly. Aside from water, fruit juices and flavored drinks are great sources of water. Foods rich in water, such as
beef and eggs, can also boost your fluid intake. Aim for 50 percent water content in these foods.
Avoiding sugar and fat
While you may feel sick, your body isn’t exactly running on empty. During illness, your body is actively working to fight off infection and burn more calories. Eating less than your maintenance calories increases your body’s use of proteins as fuel and oxygen. You’re also more susceptible to infections, which can lengthen your sickness and prevent you from regaining your health. In order to make the most of these times, you should avoid fat and sugar while sick.
While it might seem difficult to avoid sugar and fat while sick, a diet high in protein can help you burn more calories. Protein and vitamins are crucial for a strong immune system, and eating foods rich in them can help your body fight infection. Consuming high-protein foods will help your body recover faster. Try to eat two palms worth of protein-rich foods each day. Also, avoid processed foods that have high glycemic indexes.