WorldFish and partners in Zambia have found evidence suggesting the introduction of fish into the diet can help prevent or slow the onset of AIDS-related illnesses among HIV sufferers.
Clinical trials found strong indications that adding 2.5 kg of dried fish powder per month to the diet of people living with HIV sustainably improves their response to antiretroviral therapy.
Children with HIV were found to be particularly responsive to nutritional enhancement during the trials, which took place in Lusaka, Zambia.
Such fish powder supplements cost under US$60 per person per year, though this can be reduced if locally sourced fish (such as Kapenta, Limnothrissa miodon) is available to patients. Additional calories are required to avoid weight loss.
The link between nutrition and HIV is particularly critical in subequatorial Africa, where poverty and malnutrition mean HIV leads to AIDS more quickly than elsewhere. Nutrition improves response to antiretroviral therapies.
In response, WorldFish, the Swedish International Development Agency and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs are attempting to identify ways in which to put fish into the diet of HIV/AIDS sufferers in the region.
WorldFish, a member of the CGIAR Consortium, is an international, nonprofit research organization committed to reducing poverty and hunger through fisheries and aquaculture.
CGIAR is a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future. Its science is carried out by the 15 research centers who are members of the CGIAR Consortium in collaboration with hundreds of partner organizations.
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