The benefits of good nutrition when trying to combat long Covid

Dr Mabel Blades, public governor for East Northamptonshire and freelance dietitian, writes long Covid and nutrition

By Dr Mabel Blades
Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 4:51 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 4:52 pm
Simple snacks like fruit, nuts or plain biscuits are helpful
Simple snacks like fruit, nuts or plain biscuits are helpful

This is an evolving area, but I have learned:

Sufferers often feel very frustrated that there is no simple solution and sometimes people do not understand the condition

Many find filling in diet diaries, other forms and reading long pieces of information difficult due to brain fog

Sign up to our daily newsletter

People can be so fatigued that they find shopping, cooking and even eating exhausting. Three regular meals based on easily prepared items each day plus simple snacks like fruit, nuts or plain biscuits are helpful.

Advice from doctors, nurses, dietitians, physiotherapists and occupational therapists can be invaluable to individuals.

Patience is needed as recovery can be slow

Any loss of taste and smell can put people off eating so different textures and flavours can be tried. A zinc supplement may help.

Adequate fluid (2 litres each day) can help with alertness

A vitamin D supplement 10 micrograms per day is advised for adults

Omega 3s are helpful for brain function so include oily fish like salmon, sardines, pilchards, and mackerel

Plenty of vegetables and fruit are recommended, and some research suggests this helps with recovery.

If the diet is unbalanced supplements of multivitamins and minerals can help

Monitor weight and if excess weight is lost snacks such as high protein yoghurts, milk shakes and other items may help

Kettering General Hospital is planning a virtual event on this topic in spring 2022

PLEASE NOTE For specific advice on diet please consult your dietitian, doctor, or health professional.