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Diet and HIV

  • By: Kimberly R. Dong & Sherwood Gorbach
  • In: Encyclopedia of Lifestyle Medicine & Health
  • Edited by: James M. Rippe
  • Subject:Health Psychology / Behavioral Medicine, Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a virus that weakens the immune system, leaving a person susceptible to many different types of opportunistic infections that can intensify and potentially lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). At the end of 2010, it was estimated that HIV affects approximately 33.3 million people worldwide. This entry briefly reviews the importance of nutrition with regard to HIV infection.

Dietary Recommendations for HIV

The goals of nutrition therapy for individuals with HIV include prevention of malnutrition, maintenance of adequate weight and protein stores, management of comorbid conditions (e.g., obesity, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia), and management of nutrition-related side effects from either HIV or disease treatment.

Studies in patients with HIV have shown a link between nutritional status and survival. Nutrition interventions can help improve the ...

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