Diet

Healthy eating lifestyle: the best weapon against infection

As of April 27, 2020, there has been close to 3,025,726 confirmed cases of the 2019 novel coronavirus Acute Respiratory Disease, now officially named by the World Health Organization as COVID-19 in the world. It has been declared a pandemic and it has swept through the world like a wildfire.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and other health experts are working hard to contain the virus and search for possible cure. However, we as individuals can contribute by guiding, preventing, safeguarding ourselves from acquiring this infection. Viral infections are caused by the virus in the body. Depending on the type of virus and the person’s current state of health, various viruses can infect almost any type of body tissue from the brain to the skin.

Healthy eating and lifestyle to help fight against common viral infections including this current coronavirus epidemic.
Encouraging the public to do the following can help curtail infectious diseases:

A.   Eat healthy
Minimizing processed or fast foods. Consuming at least five servings of fruits and vegetables everyday helps the body. Fruits and vegetable are loaded with Vitamin C. This vitamin is one of the biggest immune system boosters of all. In fact, a lack of vitamin C can even make you more prone to illness. It serves many functions in the body. It is vital for the growth and repair of body tissues. It is necessary to heal wounds and form scar tissues, and it aids in the formation of collagen that is needed to make skin, tendons, and ligaments. It is also an important antioxidant that blocks some of the harm caused by free radicals in the body. These destructive molecules are believed to play a role in the aging progress and are suspect in the cause of cancer and heart disease. Foods rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits like oranges, lime, grape and lemon help fight against disease. They are also rich in folate (folic acid) and dietary fiber and other antioxidants. Green leafy vegetables like green peas, broccoli, turnip green e.t.c are also good sources of dietary fiber, Vitamins A, C and K, and minerals such as iron and calcium that help boost our immune system along with fruits.
Load yourself with foods rich in Vitamin A. This immune boosting vitamin examples include sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli, spinach, red bell peppers, eggs, and vitamin A fortified foods like milk and cereals.
Include foods high in Vitamin E in your daily diet. This vitamin improves immune function by neutralizing free radicals. Vegetable oils, nuts such as peanuts, almonds, seeds and green leafy vegetables are rich source of this essential vitamin.
Let’s not forget Zinc. This mineral helps the immune system and wards off viruses. Zinc can be sourced from meats, shellfish, legumes like beans, seeds, nuts, dairy products, eggs and whole grains.
The WHO has also been reminding the public to be wary of raw food. It is therefore recommended to lessen the consumption raw or uncooked foods and avoiding crowded areas as much as possible to lessen the possibility of acquiring such infections like covid19.

B.   Exercise regularly and be physically fit
Another healthy reminder is to exercise and be physically fit. Exercise and physical activities help maintain the body weight as well as reduces blood sugar and cholesterol level. At least 30 minutes of exercise or an hour of physical activity is recommended daily for a healthy life.

C.   Keep hydrated
Keeping our body hydrated is one very essential reminder to fight against infections. Fluids in the body needs to be constantly replenished to keep your tissues healthy. At least eight (8) glasses of water should be taken every day.

D.   A good rest is essential
Healthy diet and regular exercise partnered with a well-rested body does not only strengthen the immune system but also improves cardiovascular health, lowers blood pressure, helps control body weight, and protects against a variety of diseases including viral infections. Therefore, eight hours of sleep should be maintained daily.

To date, vast number of viral infections cannot be cured with drugs. In fact, most human viral infections can be effectively fought by the body’s own immune system. Thus, strengthening our immune system should be our steppingstone towards prevention. Because prevention is a lot less costly than cure.

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