G6PD – Food to Avoid

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Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenises deficiency is an X-linked recessive hereditary disease characterized by abnormally low levels of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenises, which is a metabolic enzyme involved in the pentose phosphate pathway, and is especially important in red blood cell metabolism. Individuals with the disease may exhibit immune hemolytic anemia in response to a number of causes, most commonly infection or exposure to certain medications or chemicals.
G6PD deficiency is closely linked to favism, a disorder characterized by a hemolytic reaction to consumption of broad beans, also known as fava beans. The name favism is sometimes used to refer to the enzyme deficiency as a whole, although this is misleading, as not all people with G6PD deficiency will manifest a physically observable reaction to consumption of broad beans. As you can see, with G6PD, foods to avoid definitely include broad beans.
G6PD deficiency is the most common human enzyme defect. However, most individuals with this disease are asymptomatic. Symptomatic patients are almost exclusively male, due to the X-linked pattern of inheritance, but female carriers can be clinically affected due to unfavorable Lyonization, where random inactivation of an X-chromosome in certain cells creates a population of G6PD-deficient red blood cells coexisting with normal red cells. Abnormal red blood cell breakdown in G6PD deficiency can manifest in a number of ways, but treatments are readily available and highly effective.
Many substances are potentially harmful to people with this disease, but variations in response to these substances makes individual predictions difficult. Antimalarial drugs that can cause acute haemolysis in people with G6PD deficiency. There is evidence that other antimalarials may also exacerbate this disease, but only at higher doses. Sulfonamides, thiazolesulfone, methylene blue and naphthalene should also be avoided by people with this disease, as should certain analgesics and a few non-sulfa antibiotics. Other G6PD foods to avoid include sugar, alcohol, and simple carbohydrates, as these can also irritate the condition. Stick to a simple diet of fresh fruits and vegetables, with plenty of water, and you should be fine.

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