Plant-based diets support immunity which may decrease the risk of severe COVID-19 infection, according to an article from Physicians Committee researchers published in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. The article explores lessons learned from the H1N1 influenza outbreak from 1918. Populations with overall better fitness and diets focused on fruits, vegetables, grains, and other fiber-rich foods did not develop severe complications due to infection. Recent studies comparing nutrition to COVID-19 outcomes show similar results with plant-based diets supporting a lower risk for moderate-to-severe COVID-19 symptoms. Plant-based foods are rich in nitrates and antioxidants which support heart health and improved immunity against respiratory infections. Public safety measures should recommend plant-based nutrition as a way to reduce the spread and improve outcomes of COVID-19.
Kahleova H, Barnard N. The role of nutrition in Covid-19: taking a lesson from the 1918 H1N1 pandemic. Am J Life Med. Published online May 2, 2022. doi:10.1177/15598276221097621