Living Well With HIV/AIDS – a manual on nutritional care and support for people living with HIV/AIDS
The manual highlights at the outset that malnutrition is a serious danger for people living with HIV/AIDS. Even at the early stages of HIV infection when no symptoms are apparent, HIV makes demands on the body’s nutritional status. The risk of malnutrition increases significantly during the course of the infection.
Good nutrition cannot cure AIDS or prevent HIV infection, but it can help and improve the nutritional status of a person with HIV/AIDS and delay progression from HIV to AIDS-related diseases. It can therefore improve the quality of life of a person living with HIV/AIDS. Nutritional care and support are important from the early stages of the infection to prevent the development of nutritional deficiencies. Many of the conditions associated with HIV/AIDS affect food intake, digestion and absorption, while others influence the functions of the body. Many of the symptoms of these conditions are manageable with appropriate nutrition.
The manual provides practical recommendations for a healthy and balanced diet for people living with HIV/AIDS in countries or areas with a low resource base. It aims at improving nutrition in a home-based setting. It is also applicable for people with HIV/AIDS in hospitals and other institutional settings, including hospices.
The manual consists of guidelines with accompanying information and explanations intended for use by:
- Health service providers and other extension workers as well as those involved at the national and community level in the many different aspects of counselling and home-based care
- Community-based organisations working with people with HIV/AIDS who need information for programming and counselling purposes
- Planners in the health, social and nutrition services so they can develop national or local guidelines for nutritional care and support for people living with HIV/AIDS
- International agencies that support national and community-based support programmes for people with HIV/AIDS
The manual also contains summary sheets that can be used as handouts, listing the main points for each key topic. These summary sheets and leaflets are designed for use by those people who are living with HIV/AIDS or who are caring for a person living with HIV/AIDS, who want to be better informed.
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