Q and A


How can I improve my CD4 count when I am already on treatment?

How to improve my CD4 count of 210? Is it dangerous at this stage? I was stressed and it has never been so low. I take daily Truvada (tenofovir and FTC) and Viramune (nevirapine). How can I improve it? Will more sleep help? I eat healty foods.

Thank you.


Thank you for your question.

I am sorry to hear that you are stressed at the moment and that it is affecting your CD4 count. A CD4 count of 210 isn’t bad at all and is nothing to worry about.

How long have you been on medication? If you have recently started then it is possible that as you continue taking your meds your CD4 count will increase. Trying to reduce your stress levels or learning to manage your stress better could also help.

Other things that can help to increase CD4 counts include the same things that are advised for general health. Try to eat a balanced diet, sleep well, exercise, stop smoking, and only use alcohol or recreational drugs in moderation.

It is also possible that your CD4 count is just fluctuating and that it will naturally go back up on its own. Either way it is nothing to worry about. Once you have started treatment the most important thing to monitor is your viral load. As long as that remains undetectable your treatment is working.

Information on this website is provided by treatment advocates and offered as a guide only. Decisions about your treatment should always be taken in consultation with your doctor.


  1. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Samu,

    Do you know what your viral load is? If this hasn’t changed then its very likely that your CD4 result is a blip. For more info please see here:


  2. Samu


    I have recently done my blood assessment and have found out that my CD4 count has decreased drastically its at 475 now from the last review which was 695. I have been under a lot of stress in the past two months. I eat healthy balanced meals and I exercise regularly and I take vitamins but I was surprised when my results came back with such low CD4 count, should I be worried? I have been on treatment for the past six years and it has never been this low. Please help.

  3. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Abang,

    Neither eating coconuts or using their oil will help a person to control their HIV. Only meds can do this. Therefore, unless you like eating coconuts, there’s no reason to use/have them.

  4. abang

    I have a patient who started drugs 7months ago he is healthy though his CD4 count by then was 198. The Dr adviced him to take coconut and I prefer to squeeze out the oil, I wonder if the oil is better than the coconut itself?

  5. Lisa Thorley

    Hi John,

    Could you please be more specific in relation to risk?

  6. John

    My CD4 count was 140 when I started meds. What is the risk here?

  7. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Odiri,

    The only thing that can increase a persons CD4 is ARVs. If you’re already on these, then you’re already doing the right thing.

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