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NUTRITION, YOGA AND AYURVEDA'S PREVENTIVE MEASURES FOR COVID -19

Updated: Nov 22, 2022

Date: April 14, 2020

Tuesday

Desiderius Erasmus "Prevention is better than Cure" in this pandemic situation; I would say, "Prevention is better than Getting infected with Corona Virus. "Currently, COVID -19 is a high-risk situation, and everyone wants to take precautions to prevent these infections. As a Nutritionist, it is the right time to share knowledge.

In this article, I try to envelop some essential yet straightforward daily routine preventive steps and have suggested some natural remedies to take precautions in the diet. I would recommend everyone that prioritizes following the "World Health Organization" (WHO) Guidelines; they mention all the information related to Corona infectious diseases and include prevention steps, and symptoms too. With all the Preventive methods suggested by WHO, we all need to go along to avoid spreading this virus. Furthermore, if anyone notices any signs in them, consult the doctor and isolate them to avert the chances of spreading.

Hence, to protect ourselves from the COVID-19 situation, we need to make some changes in our daily diet and lifestyles, which is highly advisable.




Nutrition is an essential part of having a better immune system in the body and maintaining proper health. Yoga helps to reduce stress and anxiety, and strengthen mental health; it relaxes the human body and calms the mind, especially during this pandemic period Ayurveda, is an ancient treatment that cures the roots in the human body. What if we maintain good health, a calm mind, and disease-free life? Proper Nutrition, deep breathing techniques, and simple yoga steps, the inclusion of herbs in a daily lifestyle activity, give a person fear-free days from COVID-19. People can enjoy quarantine time spectacularly.

Here, I am sharing some basic knowledge that helps anyone to adopt new changes; I hope that it is useful and works for everyone.

Below mentioned is the projection of essential ingredients that everyone can add to a daily diet, nutritional suggestions as per COVID-19 Symptoms, Ayurvedic remedies, meal preparation, and what precaution person can take for maintaining mental and physical health.

An essential list of food items and a handful of tips (COVID-19):

· Use of spices in day-to-day cooking, like Turmeric powder, Cumin seeds, Coriander, and garlic.

· Fruits: Coconuts and coconut oil, Berries, Citrus fruits, apples, tomatoes.

· Herbs: Oregano, Turmeric, Ginger Licorice root.

· Vegetables: Cabbage, Garlic, Peppers, green leafy vegetables.

· Probiotics

· Legumes, nuts, seeds

· For immunity, micronutrients and macronutrients are both required.

· Mostly, Vitamin D helps to prevent respiratory tract infection. So, sunlight is also essential.

· Consume more light foods and easily digestible foods that help to cleanse the digestive tract.

· Eat fresh and homemade foods/meals.

· Drink warm water.

· Try new healthy recipes at home during quarantine time.

· Advisable to eat vegetarian food.

Nutritional Advice based on occurring symptoms:

· Fever –

It exhibits common signs of illness, and the necessary response is to stimulate the immune system. One needs to stay hydrated.

Especially in the case of children, dehydration is common due to loss of appetite.

So, steamed vegetables, soups, and broths are good options to build the immune system in both children and adults.

Also, drinking herbal tea is ann excellentchoiceeg, adding honey and lemon to green tea enhances the taste and multiplies the nutrient content.

· Tiredness –

If people have made lifestyle changes to do with diet, stress level, and sleep but still feel tired all the time, some changes could be underlying the medical condition.

Needs the right amount of energy or calorie in the body to feel active and productive. To prevent this, Eat fresh food that's contents the right amount of nutrients.

If a person drinks soda and other carbonated drinks, try to avoid them. They contain refined sugar and artificial ingredients that can cause the body. Whole grains foods are the other best option.

Nuts and seeds- Almonds, cashew, hazelnuts, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds are mostly recommended in daily intake. (Raw is advisable)

Water- when a person drinks water, it helps to maintain the function of the body.

Bananas are having potassium, fiber, vitamins, and the perfect amount of carbohydrates that provide the person high boost of fiber energy.

Oats-content fibre and some amount of protein that gives power.

· Dry cough –

It is caused by respiratory tract infection and is affected by gastroesophageal reflux (GERD). It can alleviate by diet. Consuming honey, probiotics, which have lactobacillus content, is used to reduce the likelihood of a cold or flu.

Drinking Licorice root tea is nothing but a traditional and effective treatment for cough and sore throat.

Gargling is old and scientifically proven method that is effective at preventing respiratory tract infections in healthy people.

Gargling with salt water is another effective way that only requires taking a half teaspoon of salt in a full glass of Luke-warm water.

Practice hand washing at regular intervals to avoid the spreading of infection.

Avoid foods like dairy products when the person is suffering from a dry cough.

· Shortness of breath-

The medical terminology used for Shortness of breath is Dyspnea. It requires deep breathing techniques, i.e., breathing in deeply through the abdomen, which can help manage their breathlessness.

Intake of black coffee helps to treat breathlessness, as caffeine can reduce Tiredness in the muscle of a person's airway.

Consuming fresh ginger in warm water helps to minimize Shortness of breath caused by a respiratory infection.

· Aches and pains –

Muscle pains can reduce by drinking ginger tea. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that an excellent remedy for both muscle and joint pain.

Further, turmeric contains the active ingredient curcumin which is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, so a pinch of it can be added to regular meals.

Secondly, garlic is rich in sulfur and selenium, both of which can help to relieve joint and muscle pain. Sulfur in garlic helps to alleviate inflammation, and selenium has an antirheumatic effect.

· Sore throat-

It refers to pain, itchiness, or irritation of the throat. Which can be reduced by using honey with tea or can take it independently.

A study has found that honey is a wound healer and is very effective at controlling nighttime coughs. (Not advisable for children less than one year)

Consuming peppermint as it contains menthol, which helps thin mucus and calm sore throats and coughs. It has anti-inflammatory properties, which help to heal.

Fenugreek seeds help to relieve pain and kill the bacteria that cause irritation or inflammation its acts as an anti-fungal. (Not advisable for pregnant women)

Licorice root is beneficial for a sore throat when it's mixed with water to create a solution for gargling. (Not advisable for pregnant and lactating women)

Moreover, garlic contains allicin, an organosulfur compound known for its fight against infection. Studies show that garlic supplements regularly could prevent the common cold virus. In the daily diet, fresh garlic helps to gain antimicrobial properties.

Eating a single clove of garlic also helps to treat sore throat, owing to its healing actions.

Immunity Enhancer Ayurvedic recipes:

· Herbal tea/drink -

Boil water with the addition of mint(2-3 leaves), grated ginger, basil(2-3 leaves) and use lemon water(1 tsp), cumin seeds powder (½ small tsp), black salt (pinch to enhance the taste), 1 cup -200 ml boiled water (or store in the bottle and drink throughout the day)

· Herbal punch:

Take lemon juice (1-3 tsp), Orange pulp (80 ml), ginger juice (½ -1 tsp), cumin seed powder (1 tsp), sugar/honey (1-2 tsp) (as per desired sweetness), mint juice (1 – ½ tsp). This antioxidant-rich drink is advantageous for people of all ages.

· Golden Milk:

Take turmeric powder (1/2 tsp) in one cup of milk (150 ml). Add some grated ginger and basil leaves. Boil properly and add sugar/ honey (1-2tsp) as a sweetener. (Alternative for a diabetic person –Use soya milk, or system'salmond milk)

Honey and ginger are antioxidants that contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Honey activates the immune system response to infections and prevents cell proliferation. Similarly, ginger helps with anti-inflammatory effects and helps with muscle pain.

· Masala Buttermilk:

Take curd/yogurt (80 gm), black salt (½ tsp), and cumin seeds powder (1 tsp). Add some water to make acceptive consistency for one glass. Lactobacillus is also present in the curd. It is called a ,probiotic drink natural homemade ancient remedy.

Precautions during meal Preparation:

  • Handwashing is the first step in reducing the spread of any infection. Always wash hands before preparing or eating any food, thoroughly with clean water and use antibacterial soap for a minimum of 20 seconds.

  • Advisable or cooking, use fresh food.

  • Used own bags to minimize the infection from local stores.

  • Before storing the food wash it properly with warm water

  • Wash and chop vegetables, blanch in boiling water for a minute, then immediately place under cold running water to deactivate the enzymes.

  • Place all plants with a

high-water content like lettuces, tomatoes, and cucumbers such that it does not freeze. On the other hand, place asparagus, green beans, carrots, sprouts, and green leafy vegetables to freeze well.

  • Fruits can store in the refrigerator such as apples (for months can save), but perishable fruits like bananas, all berries, cantaloupe, and pineapples require to be frozen well. (can chop them into small pieces and place them in a freezer bag and store it.)

  • Place fresh poultry or fish in an airtight plastic freezer bag, label it with the current date, and freeze.

Physical and Mental health precautions:

  • Do some simple yoga steps (if you are a beginner), and breathing techniques (Pranayama, deep inhale, and exhale breath) to overcome your anxiety and boredom and, in turn, make your day productive.

  • Do meditation for at least 30 mins each day.

  • Maintaining mental health is essential to measure when people are facing anxiety and stress.

  • To take care of self; eat healthy and balanced meals, do yoga, do a creative activity, and do breathing exercises.

  • Avoid emotional eating and anxiety; take deep breaths and do not overeat and help release stress and boredom.

  • Choose a healthy meal and light-calorie food.

  • If anyone has a kid/s at home, prepare kids' friendly, healthy recipes, and involve kids to make delicious foods and assist them.

  • Encourage the family to walk in the neighborhood only with maintaining social distancing. (At least 6 feet/2 mt).

  • Get plenty of sleep.

  • It is the best time to do hobbies.

  • Express feelings with creative work during this pandemic time. (Coronavirus, 2020)

  • Check in with family and friends through social media. Playing games with family is the golden time to spend quality time with family and friends and connect emotionally again.

Avoid/do not do:

· Dairy products, Junk foods, fatty foods, smoking, alcoholic drink, processed food, preservatives, frozen foods, and Non-vegetarian products.

Note: Make sure that everyone intakes food as per the requirements of the body. To check the recommended daily requirements of nutrients and other nutritional counseling, please consult the Nutritionist/Dietitian.

Be Safe and Stay at Home.

Ayurveda, yoga, and Nutrition are way "Samskara" (an act of making perfect) lifestyle.

Kuntal Patel

Nutritionist

Email ID: patelkuntal31dec@gmail.com


References:

Burgess, L. (2017a, August 30). Seven home remedies for Shortness of breath. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319175#treating-shortness-of-breath-at-home

Burgess, L. (2017b, August 30). Seven home remedies for Shortness of breath. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319175#treating-shortness-of-breath-at-home

Chang, J. S., Wang, K. C., Yeh, C. F., Shieh, D. E., & Chiang, L. C. (2013). Fresh ginger (Zingiber officinale) has anti-viral activity against the human respiratory syncytial virus in human respiratory tract cell lines. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 145(1), 146–151. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2012.10.043

Fenugreek. (n.d.). Retrieved September 12, 2019, from https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/fenugreek

Gutter, A. A. S. C. M. (2019, March 8). 12 Natural Remedies for Sore Throat. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/cold-flu/sore-throat-natural-remedies#otc-treatments

Paul, I. M. (2007). Effect of Honey, Dextromethorphan, and No Treatment on Nocturnal Cough and Sleep Quality for Coughing Children and Their Parents. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 161(12), 1140. https://doi.org/10.1001/archpedi.161.12.1140

Who.int. 2020. Coronavirus. [online] Available at: <https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus#tab=tab_1> [Accessed 17 April 2020].

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