Food to Improve Immunity During COVID


Having a nutritious diet and great immune system can never go wrong for anybody. Like most people, you would want to have a healthy immune system. Also, you would want your body to be safeguarded from all kinds of diseases including the dangerous coronavirus.

Of course, with the vaccination available, you still would and even can build immunity through a safer and easier way. When you have enough vitamin and food, and just trying to add to your diet would be a great thing. After all you are fighting the infectious disease.

Getting Your Immunity on Track

Sometimes you would have to talk to your doctor and nutritionists regarding COVID-19 and even take into account the healthiest means, especially the ones that allow you to go through the least symptoms and side effects. Keep in mind that your immune system is the only thing that can help you to fight the disease.

Even all other therapies would be of a good support for your immune system. Might be that your immune system would be weak or overtaxed along with the current conditions, and these include obesity and diabetes, thereby over-reacting and creating the cytokine storm of the inflammation leading to the cascade of complications. This can make it hard for your body to self-regulate as and when it tries to create antibodies for the virus.

Immunity is created when your body requires fighting off all the things from everyday aging to infections. The building blocks of the immunity are assisted through the micronutrients present in your food like vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals, etc. Nothing delivers these items better than vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and seeds.

There is even the flip side, where studies show that diet high in processed food and meat lead to inflammation. In the case of the COVID-19, inflammation is the major enemy. Most of the patients that are confronted with the virus are the ones who are overweight, and they are even people suffering from high blood pressure, inflammation, and ones that have compromised their immune.

Many doctors treating patients suffering from coronavirus feel that a diet that is mostly plant-based works wonder. Fruits and vegetables having high amount of necessary vitamins and nutritious compounds, have somewhat scientifically proved to create immunity and counterattack the viral attackers.

Food Is a Higher Power for Improving Your Immunity

More than 2, 500 years ago, Hippocrates stated that food would be the medicine and medicine in turn would become food. No doubt, both the nutrient intake and incidence of the disease can influence the nutrition status and that is common for developing nations. In such nations, there is always a shortage of food.

Inadequate diet along with infectious disease can lead to huge malnutrition. Currently, COVID-19 pandemic is one of the major challenges throughout the globe. Researchers and scientist are trying to develop specific vaccine for the virus. However, they have been hugely successfully but not fully. Even though even if the vaccination method works, there is a huge possibility that other antimicrobial resistant infection would prevail in the society. As per many of the nutritionist one must maintain a strong immune system against the virus.

There are certain factors like age, lifestyle, health status, sex and medication that would affect the nutritional status of the person. During the coronavirus pandemic, nutritional status of a person is the major measure of the resilience to the destabilization. Optimal dietary nutrient and nutrition would create a huge impact on the immune system and that too from cell activation, expression, and signalling molecules modification.

Furthermore, many dietary ingredients are the major determinants of the gut microbial composition. They would help to shape the immune responses of our body. The current evidence does suggest that the only sustainable method for surviving in the current situation is through the strengthening the immune system.

When you have an adequate intake of iron, zinc, vitamin A, B, 12, B6, C and E is important for the maintenance of the immune functions. Currently, COVID-19 has put up new types of challenges for many people that want to maintain a healthy diet. Even the state of the lockdown and self-isolation along with social distancing are necessary measures for flattening the curve of the disease, even though these measures would have huge repercussions on the life of the individual.

The major act for confining to one’s home can have a huge impact on the health, and these include the changes in the eating pattern, physical activity, and sleeping habits. Also, this would promote sedentary behaviours affecting the physical and mental health, thereby leading to increasing the risk of being obese.

Anxiety and fear may lead to changes to the dietary habits that lead to unhealthy dietary patterns and the desire for eating less and even with the less enjoyment during the consumption of the food.

With a balanced diet, you are guaranteed to have a strong immune system that can allow you to withstand any type of assault through the virus. Even there are currently no proper evidence to support that any type of supplement would be able to boosts the immune system and even treat and prevent any kind of viral infections, besides Vitamin C. Vitamin C is one of the main constituents of the water-soluble vitamins that can make your immune system stronger.

Doctors recommend that you need to have at least 90mg/d of vitamin for men and 75mg/d for women. Here in the current situation, it is important to be aware of the major types of food that can help to improve the immune system for combating the COVID-19.

Improving the Diet

The food that you eat plays a major aspect on determining the whole health and immunity. When you are eating, try to go for low carbs-based diets as that can assist you in controlling your blood sugar and even the pressure. With a low carb based diet, you can slow down the chances of getting diabetes and try to focus on something that is rich in proteins and one that can keep you in good shape.

When you are regularly consuming veggies, and fruits like the Beta carotene, Ascorbic acid and other major vitamin filled ones, you get the required energy. Food stuffs like tomato, mushrooms, bell pepper, green veggies such as spinach, broccoli, etc are the perfect option for building good resilience to your body against all kinds of infections.

Furthermore, you can try to have supplements that are rich in Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids for your daily dosage. Sometimes stepping out for purchasing groceries will not be an option during social distancing. In that case, you can try some natural immunity supplements like ginger, gooseberries, and turmeric.

These are certain superfoods that are very much common in Asian dishes and snacks. There are many kinds of herbs that help in boosting immunity like garlic, basil leaves and black cumin. Certain seeds and nuts like sunflower seeds, Flax seed, pumpkin seeds, and melon seeds are excellent sources of protein and vitamin E.

Probiotics like Yoghurt, Yakult and fermented food are the best sources to rejuvenate the composition of gut bacteria, which is important for nutrient absorption by the body. These are good options for the older generation too.

Never Compromise on Your Sleep

A good sleep that ranges from seven to eight hours would be the best method for your body to create immunity. Less sleep will make you tired and reduce the activity of your brain. The lack of sleep avoids the body from taking rest and that can impair other major bodily functions. This would have a direct impact on your immunity. Even lack of sleep affects the action of the flu vaccine.

Being Hydrated

Have at least eight to ten glasses of water every day. That can help you to become hydrated.

Hydration would help to flush out the toxins from the body and lower the chances of flu. There are other alternatives include juices made of citrus fruits and coconut water, to beat the heat.

Avoid Skipping on Exercise

Always follow a good diet with some of the best exercise routine. Try to keep in mind that you should exercise regularly. A light exercise can do wonders for you and even help in relaxing the toxins present in your body.

Various doctors and physicians recommended exercising for 30 to 4o minutes each day. This is based on one’s stamina. If you have not started exercising yet, now is the best time to begin. You would come across various online channels, videos, and apps that can help you exercise at home. Regular exercise would improve one’s metabolism, and this would have a direct correlation with body’s immunity.

Try to Destress You Body and Mind

During these testing times and the prolonged period of being indoors, there would be implications on your mental wellbeing. The increasing anxiety around the pandemic is another concern that is affecting millions across the globe. Such uncertainty would be overwhelming, there are few steps you can follow regularly to help relieve our stress. Many people know that stress can have an adverse effect on immunity.

Foods to Have for Boosting Immunity

Vitamin C Like Greens and Citrus Fruits

Try to consume food stuffs high in vitamin C like grapefruits, oranges, tangerines, sweet red pepper, broccoli, strawberries, kale, and kiwifruit. These would increase white blood cell production, which is key to fighting infection.

Beta-Carotene Like Root Veggies

Frankly, Beta-carotene increases vitamin A, which is an anti-inflammatory vitamin that can help your antibodies respond to toxins, such as a virus. Food stuffs like carrots, apricots, spinach, kale, sweet potato, squash and cantaloupe are all great sources of beta-carotene. Do you know vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin? That means when you consume foods with healthy fats, it can aid in its absorption. A great immune-boosting combination would be carrots with traditional hummus or a spinach salad with avocado or olive oil in the dressing.

Vitamin E Stuffs Like Seeds, Nuts, Greens, Etc

Unlike other vitamins, vitamin E is the fat-soluble vitamin. This is the key for regulating and supporting immune system function. Food items rich in vitamin E consists of avocado, seeds nuts, spinach, etc.

Antioxidants Like Green Tea

Green tea is a great drink that is packed with antioxidants. They help to enhance immune system function. Besides that, it also contains amino acids that may aid in the production of germ-fighting compounds in your T-cells, which reduces inflammation in the body and helps fight infection. Green tea can be consumed hot, cold or as matcha powder.

Vitamin D Food Items Like Eggs and Fish

Do you know vitamin D is essential for immune functions? They help in regulating the body’s immune response. Vitamin D is most found in salmon, canned tuna, egg yolks, and mushrooms. Your body can also synthesize vitamin D with just 13-15 minutes of sunshine three times a week.

Go for Probiotics to Be Healthy and Immune

Many food stuffs like Kombucha, Yogurt, pickles, kimchi, Sauerkraut, etc are the best probiotics for your body. Certain kind of cheeses has live cultures, also known as probiotics, which are thought to help stimulate the immune system to fight off disease. The microbiome or the good bacteria present in your digestive system finds out how other nutrients and harmful bacteria are processed in your body. This makes probiotics perhaps one of the most important functions for immunity. The microbiome assists you in processing the nutrients required for your body.

Vitamin B-6 Food Stuffs Like Lymphatic System Helpers to Boost Red Blood Cells

Vitamin B-6 is necessary for the formation of new and healthy red blood cells. They help in maintaining the lymphatic system. Chicken, turkey, cold-water fish (salmon and tuna), chickpeas (traditional hummus), bananas, fortified breakfast cereal, and nutritional yeast are great options for consuming vitamin B-6.


Well, food is the greatest source of necessary element that can help in fighting of the COVID-19 disease. You could even go for the immunity-based injections, but a good diet can help in preparing your immune system.

A right balance of nutritious food, exercise and proper medical care can come to your rescue during this pandemic.


Saravavan Nadarajan (Vanan)

Vanan, fitness expert and leader at EzFit Singapore, specializes in holistic training—home-based, boot camps, and corporate fitness—with over a decade of industry experience.

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