Role Of Nutrition In The Prevention And Recovery Of COVID-19

It is important to include all food groups since each one has a role in people’s health.

In this context, the expert provides important guidelines around nutrition in the prevention and recovery of COVID-19.

● Favor the consumption of antioxidant foods:

They are those that contain nutrients and essential natural componentswhich can capture and neutralize free radicals (highly oxidizing substances that damage cells and DNA), which are generated during the digestion process and by exposure to the sun ( UV rays). These nutrients are minerals and antioxidant vitamins, such as selenium, zinc, vitamin B2, or vitamin C.

How do antioxidant foods help the immune system? When the body is faced with a virus or infection, it produces a large number of free radicals as a defense mechanism; Thus, antioxidant foods are necessary to regulate these reactions and prevent damage to healthy cells.

Among the foods rich in zinc are eggs, crustaceans, liver; in vitamin B2 are dairy products, eggs, green leafy vegetables, lean meats, legumes, and nuts; in vitamin C, citrus fruits, such as oranges and grapefruit, red and green peppers, kiwi, broccoli, strawberries, melon.

Role Of Nutrition

● Increase fruit consumption :

The Food Organization of the United Nations (FAO) recommends eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables a day to maintain a strong immune system. At least three servings of fruit a day and two vegetables is the advice for the entire population, and for people with COVID-19 with mild symptoms at home.

● Balanced diet :

It is important to include all food groups since each one has a role in people’s health through the nutrients they provide to the body, so the diet must be varied, in sufficient quantities, and healthy. It is also necessary to reduce the consumption of saturated fats, simple sugars, and salt. Therefore, an adequate and balanced nutritional plan must incorporate vitamins, minerals, proteins, monounsaturated fatty acids, complex carbohydrates, high-quality proteins, and foods rich in probiotics. All this is accompanied by adequate hydration.

● Rely on probiotics and prebiotics :

Probiotics are “good” bacteria that stimulate the protective functions of the digestive tract and are also known as biotherapeutics, protectors, or prophylactics. They help prevent gastrointestinal infections and have a stimulating effect on the immune system. For their part, prebiotics is non-digestible substances, generally sugars, that favor the growth or stimulate certain microorganisms of the intestinal microbiota. That is, they help increase beneficial intestinal bacteria, improving the retention and absorption of minerals and reducing the proliferation of pathogens.

The incorporation of these recommendations in the current lifestyle is essential to promote the health of the whole family. They are easy to apply and only require discipline and will. “Once people begin to see the effects of eating a healthy diet, not only to be stronger to face COVID-19 in a better way, these habits can become a way of life that brings not only benefits to health, but also the physical and emotional state of people: they feel lighter, with more energy, with less tension, among others”, explained Arias.

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