What to Eat When You Have a Sick Day

Your body needs fuel to help you cope with stress and recover from illness or injury. Aim for about 150 grams of carbohydrate each day.

You can get carbohydrates from the drinks and foods that are ready to use and easy to prepare, such as those listed below.


Clear Liquids Other Liquids Soft Foods
About 25 grams of carbohydrates:
• 8 ounce Sprite
About 30 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1/2 cup sorbet
About 40 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1 can liquid Ensure or Boost
About 15 grams of carbohydrates:
• 6 ounces (1/2 can) 7-Up
• 1/2 cup apple juice
• 3-ounce fruit juice popsicle
• 8 ounces Gatorade
• 6 ounces (1/2 can) ginger ale
• 1/2 cup regular Jell-O
About 25 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1/2 cup frozen vanilla yogurt

About 20 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1/2 cup vanilla pudding
About 15 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1/2 cup cream of wheat or cream of rice
• 1 slice white bread or toast
• 5 saltine crackers
• 1/2 cup mashed potatoes
• 1/3 cup cooked rice
• 1 cup cream soup
• 1-1/2 cups broth with noodles or rice
About 5 grams of carbohydrates:
• 1 juice bar with no sugar added
• 1/2 regular popsicle
About 15 grams carbohydrates:
• 1/2 cup ice cream
• 1/2 cup custard
• 1 cup milk

Clinical review by David McCulloch, MD
Group Health
Reviewed 03/01/2014