It’s been two years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and while research has primarily focused on vaccine production, boosters and anti-viral medications, scientists have also emphasized the importance of boosting the immune system through nutrition. Your health depends on an adequate intake of essential nutrients which will support a properly functioning immune system. Essential micronutrients (such as vitamins A, D, E, C, B6, B12, folate), trace elements (such as iron, copper, zinc, and selenium), and omega-3 fatty acids aid the body’s ability to fight infections. In fact, research studies have confirmed that micronutrient deficiencies are associated with a weakened immune system and increased susceptibility to infections. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has led to a new set of challenges in regards to maintaining a healthy diet. Research has confirmed that COVID-19 is linked with several unhealthy eating behaviors, which can potentially leave us more susceptible to infection or a poor outcome. Fear, anxiety, social isolation, stress, alcohol use, and lack of exercise are just some of the factors that may negatively impact healthy eating. A balanced and healthy diet, along with nutritional supplements, where necessary, can help meet your daily allowance for essential nutrients. Supplementing your diet with the proper nutrients in the right amounts may help ensure you maintain optimal immune function and give your body the best chance at combating COVID-19 or any other viral infection that comes your way.
1) Akhtar, Saeed, et al. “Nutritional Perspectives for the Prevention and Mitigation of COVID-19.” Nutrition Reviews, vol. 79, no. 3, 2020, pp. 289–300., https://doi.org/10.1093/nutrit/nuaa063.
2) Aman, Faseeha, and Sadia Masood. “How Nutrition Can Help to Fight against COVID-19 Pandemic.” Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, vol. 36, no. COVID19-S4, 2020, https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.36.covid19-s4.2776.
3) “COVID-19 Pandemic Has Been Linked with Six Unhealthy Eating Behaviors.” ScienceDaily, ScienceDaily, 12 Apr. 2021, https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/04/210412114740.htm.
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