Call Us Now

+91 9606900005 / 04

For Enquiry

Nutrition and Tuberculosis (TB) Prevention


Recently, two studies conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and published in prestigious journals such as The Lancet and The Lancet Global Health, have unveiled a pivotal connection between nutrition and tuberculosis (TB) prevention.


GS II: Health

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Key Findings from the Studies on Nutrient-Dense Food for TB Patients
  2. Tuberculosis

Key Findings from the Studies on Nutrient-Dense Food for TB Patients

  • Participant Demographics: The studies involved a total of 5,621 participants who received nutrient-dense food for a year, and 4,724 participants who received regular food parcels with no additional nutrition.
  • TB Incidence Reduction: The intervention group receiving nutrient-dense food experienced a significant reduction in tuberculosis (TB) incidence, with a 39% lower incidence compared to the control group.
  • Impact of Weight Gain: In severely malnourished TB patients in Jharkhand, weight gain was associated with decreased risks of tuberculosis mortality.
  • Effect of Weight Gain: A 1% increase in weight was linked to a 13% reduction in the instantaneous risk of death, while a 5% increase in weight led to a substantial 61% reduction in this risk.
  • Study Sample: The study focused on 2,800 severely malnourished TB patients in Jharkhand, where 4 out of 5 patients were found to have undernutrition.
  • Nutritional Support Duration: Nutritional support was provided for six months to individuals responding to TB drugs, while those with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis received support for 12 months.
  • Early Weight Gain: Patients who experienced weight gain during the first two months of treatment had a significantly lower risk of TB mortality, with a 60% reduction.
  • Treatment Success: Patients receiving nutrient-dense food showed higher rates of treatment success, better weight gain, and lower rates of weight loss during follow-up periods.


  • TB remains the world’s deadliest infectious killer.
  • Each day, over 4000 people lose their lives to TB and close to 30,000 people fall ill with this preventable and curable disease
  • TB is caused by bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that most often affect the lungs.
  • Transmission: TB is spread from person to person through the air. When people with TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air.
  • Symptoms: Cough with sputum and blood at times, chest pains, weakness, weight loss, fever and night sweats.
  • Treatment: TB is a treatable and curable disease. It is treated with a standard 6 month course of 4 antimicrobial drugs that are provided with information, supervision and support to the patient by a health worker or trained volunteer.
  • Anti-TB medicines have been used for decades and strains that are resistant to 1 or more of the medicines have been documented in every country surveyed.
  • Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is a form of TB caused by bacteria that do not respond to isoniazid and rifampicin, the 2 most powerful, first-line anti-TB drugs. MDR-TB is treatable and curable by using second-line drugs.
  • Extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) is a more serious form of MDR-TB caused by bacteria that do not respond to the most effective second-line anti-TB drugs, often leaving patients without any further treatment options

-Source: The Hindu

April 2024