The Covid-19 pandemic has been a global concern for the past two years. The Delta variant surge is still wreaking havoc in many parts of the world. And as we all grapple with the looming dangers this virus poses to humanity, there are few key actions individuals can take to combat this disease.
“While it’s crucial to mention the inevitable practices like social distancing and maintaining good hand hygiene, there are some ways to improve your immunity as well, which is paramount right now. People with certain pre-existing conditions like diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and breathing problems are at a higher risk of having complications from Covid 19, this also gets worse with age because the general immunity declines with age, ”says Dr Charu Dutt Arora, infectious disease specialist and home care manager, Asian Institute of Medical Sciences, Faridabad.
The food you eat plays a key role in determining your overall health and immunity.
– Eat low carbohydrate diets as this will help control high blood sugar and blood pressure.
-Focus on a high protein diet to stay in shape.
– Consume vegetables and fruits rich in beta-carotene, ascorbic acid and other essential vitamins. Certain foods like mushrooms, papaya, tomato, bell pepper, and green vegetables like broccoli, spinach are also good options.
-Supplements high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids can also be added for your daily dose, if going out for groceries is not an option during social distancing.
-Ginger, gooseberries (amla) and turmeric are natural protectors of immunity. Some of these superfoods are common ingredients in Indian cuisine. There are several herbs that help boost immunity like garlic, Basel leaves, and black cumin. Some seeds and nuts like sunflower seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, and melon seeds are great sources of protein and vitamin E.
-Probiotics like yogurt and fermented foods are also great sources for rejuvenating the composition of gut bacteria, which is important for nutrient absorption by the body. They are also good options for the older generation.
-Avoid food outside. With the current season of preventable monsoon diseases such as typhoid and gastroenteritis, it is advisable not to eat out.
A good night’s sleep: 7-8 hours is the best way to boost your immunity. Lack of sleep impairs brain activity and makes you tired.
Hydrant : Stay hydrated. Drink around 10 to 14 glasses of water a day which will help flush toxins out of your body.
Exercise: Light 30-minute exercises such as walking, yoga, stretching, and cardio build your endurance and help keep you energized throughout the day.
Mindfulness: Practice meditation which releases your stress and checks the cortisol levels in your body.
Avoid smoking, alcohol and other addictive substances: Certain habits like smoking, hookah, alcohol consumption and drug addiction have a direct correlation between weakened body defenses and respiratory illnesses. Smoking has been shown to weaken your lung capacity and destroy the cells that line your airways, these cells are crucial in fighting viruses that enter through your nasal openings. New research claims that people who drink a lot of alcohol tend to suffer from ARDS (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome), one of the conditions caused by a viral infection.
“As the battle against Covid-19 is fought by the front lines, there is an increase in influenza, dengue fever and gastrointestinal illness, and we can do our part by limiting our exposure to the virus by staying out. indoors, by taking social distances, by eating healthily, by hydrating ourselves and by following the basic hygiene protocol ”, says the doctor.