Vaccines should be paired with plant-based diets to fight COVID-19, according to a commentary published in the American Journal of Medicine. The authors with the Physicians Committee note how vaccines, while effective in slowing the spread of infections, often leave large groups with inadequate immune responses due to prior immunocompromised conditions and other health conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure, and elevated cholesterol levels. Research links these conditions to an increased risk of more severe COVID-19, as well. Plant-based diets help both alleviate chronic health conditions and lower the risk for moderate to severe COVID-19 when compared to other dietary patterns. The authors suggest doctors both educate patients on healthful dietary patterns and refer patients to registered dietitians for additional support, and for hospitals to provide nutrition information for staff, patients, and visitors as next steps toward more effective immunization.
Stancic S, Cullimore J, Barnard ND. Shoring up vaccine efficacy. Am J Med. Published online October 3, 2021. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2021.09.002