Plant-based, pescatarian diets “may be considered for protection against severe COVID-19”

Alternatively, healthcare workers in the study who followed a low-carb, high-protein diet were more likely to experience moderate-to-severe cases of COVID-19 than those who did not follow this dietary pattern, although the difference was not statistically significant, according to the study ​published today in the online journal BMJ Nutrition Prevention & Health.

Researchers compared the dietary patterns of 2,884 frontline doctors and nurses with extensive exposure to the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19 infections working in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK and the US to the rate of infection, severity and duration of illness if contracted.

Of the 568 respondents who experienced COVID-19 symptoms or were asymptomatic but tested positive for the infection, those who followed plant-based diets or plant-based/pescatarian diets for at least one year were 73% and 59% less likely to suffer moderate to severe COVID-19 infections compared to those who didn’t follow these dietary patterns.

Those who followed a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diets were a non-significant 48% more likely to experience moderate-to-severe COVID-19 symptoms than those who did not follow this dietary pattern, and three-fold more likely to suffer moderate-to-severe cases than those who followed a plant-based diet, analysis revealed.

The associations did not change with BMI and other medical conditions or potentially influential variables, such as age, ethnicity, medical specialty or lifestyle, were factored in, according to the researchers.



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