Q&A About Covid-19 – Diet, Nutrtion and Immunity

Q1.COVID is a viral infection, what can be the role of diet in preventing or treating/coping with covid?

ANS Eating a balanced diet with all nutrients is very important in preventing or recovering from covid 19 effects. Our diet can affect our body’s ability to prevent, fight and recover from infections by supporting the immune system. Always remember undernourished dehydrated body will catch infections easily and will take time to recover.

Q2.Can you please list out certain dietary supplements that have proven to be effective in dealing with COVID?

ANS- Eating a rainbow diet is beneficial in strengthening the immune system.

Essential supplements that will help in boosting immunity and may protect against  symptoms of covid are

1 Vit C- 1000 mg twice a day

2 Zinc- 50 mg. 2wice a day

3 Vit D3- 60000 iu tab in every 3 days for two weeks

4 Vit B12 – 500 mcg once a day

5 Omega 3-1000 mg once a day

6. Curcumin -500 mg once a day for mild symptoms and if the patient has strong symptoms of chest congestion then 500 mg twice a day.

Q3. Are some of these nutritional boosters contraindicated for patients with conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease etc.?

ANS- All diseases have a different line of treatment for every patient. If a person is suffering from any disease and taking some kind of medication then get your Doctor’s approval before taking dietary supplements in place of, or in combination with, prescribed treatment or medicines. The supplements mentioned above are safe but many supplements contain active ingredients that can have strong effects on the body. It’s advisable to be alert to the possibility of a bad reaction or overdosage especially when you are on medications.

Q4.Is there a difference in the way dietary supplements affect men vs women? 

ANS- Maintaining a healthy diet by eating a variety of foods from all food groups and dietary supplements are similar for men and women. These general recommendations apply to everyone. Dietary supplement requirements depend upon the height, weight and medical condition of a person. But as men and women have different body type, hormones, calorie-burning capacity so more detailed nutrition and exercise plan recommendations do vary by gender.

Q5. What is the impact of alcohol on immunity generation, especially post COVID-19 vaccination?

ANS- Alcohol consumption is directly related to weak gut health and immune system as it has a direct impact on the liver. Alcohol can prevent immune cells from working properly and also cause inflammation in the body. It can also increase the risk of certain infectious diseases and hurt mental health.

Its advised not to have alcohol after Vaccination as mixing alcohol with some antibiotics or medicines can slow its effectiveness and also cause adverse effects on health like nausea, headache, vomiting, fainting, liver damage and internal organ bleeding as well.

Q6.Is there a commonality between the pathway of disease progression across most of these viral infections such as SARS, MERS, Common cold, influenza etc and thus the assumption that immune supplements proven to be effective in these infections will also be helpful in the case of covid? 

ANS- A healthy diet or supplement which help our body to develop a healthy immune system and fight against all these viruses are proven to be effective. Large scientific evidence supports that a healthy body will give a better immune response to respiratory viruses and reduce inflammation

Q7. How can diet help one rebuild muscle and gain energy lost due to covid? What specific food groups help achieve this?

ANS- We are what we eat! A healthy diet is essential for maintaining good health status rebuilding muscle and gaining energy back particularly at this point of time when your immune system is weak after being infected with the coronavirus. When the body is recovering from an infection, it naturally needs the right amount of nutrients for better health. We can do these with a strict diet and a healthy lifestyle. Consuming plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, nuts, protein-rich food and drinking water regularly is essential for recovery. Avoid outside food and practice good food hygiene. For a healthy lifestyle eat a balanced diet, do exercise, watch the intake of sugar, salt, alcohol and fat.

Q8. Is there any specific dietary requirement for children who contract Covid?

ANS- Make sure that the Child is having enough water and the diet should comprise all the vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre, protein and antioxidants. A colourful diet of fruits and vegetables, as well as grains and proteins (lentil, eggs, beans, sprouts, nuts, seeds, meat, chicken, fish), will help in boosting immunity. Dark green leafy vegetables and Vit c rich fruit and vegetables are especially good for their immunity like kiwi, sweet lime, broccoli and amla. Strict no to preserved food with high sugar, spices or fat.

Q9. What are the foods one should avoid if diagnosed with Covid?

ANS- All kind of preserved foods, sugar, salt and fat. Alcohol and any other kind of drug consumption should be avoided. Avoid

overcooking vegetables and fruit to avoid the loss of important vitamins and minerals

Q10. Can you talk about Vit D about Covid? Vit D deficiency has been linked to the severity of coronavirus. Enumerate.

ANS- Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to your body’s ability to fight respiratory infections and decreasing lung function. Having enough vitamin D can help with a healthy immune system and may protect against respiratory illnesses. Vitamin D deficiency may compromise immune response and increase your risk of infection and disease.

Q11.Can better nutrition prevent Covid infection? 

ANS- Better nutrition and a healthy lifestyle can prevent severe effects on the body caused by covid infection and accelerate our recovery with a stronger immune system.

Q12. What should be the nutritional intake in terms of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, once infected with Covid and post-infection?

ANS- Portion size varies from person to person and existing body condition. The customized diet plan is the best option for better results.

In general  daily portion recommendations:

270 gm of fruits -2 cups ( 4 servings)

400 gm of vegetables- 3 cups (5 servings)

200 gm – carbs ( grains )(3 servings)

150 gm protein (beans/meat )  (2 servings )

Healthy Fat – 15-20 gm

Q13. What role can diet play before and after vaccinations against Covid? 

ANS- A healthy lifestyle can make the antibody mechanism more powerful hence making vaccinations more effective. Before and after Vaccination keep check on your sleep. Do rest properly and consume a balanced diet Stay hydrated and strictly avoid alcohol  Consume zinc supplement zinc-rich foods like pumpkin seeds, walnuts, almonds, lentils, dairy products, whole grains or sesame seeds .

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