Most of us are on overload with information from media, friends, and the internet. It is essential that we all stay informed and able to differentiate vital information from hear-say. These websites provide reliable, science-based information:
- CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/
- FDA https://www.fda.gov/emergencypreparedness-and-response/mcm-issues/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19
- NIH https://www.nih.gov/health-information/coronavirus
- WHO https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus
Practice Food Safety
- Wash hands before preparing or eating food. Use soap and scrub for at least 20 seconds.
- Wash hands after coughing, sneezing, blowing your nose, or using the bathroom.
- Clean and disinfect countertops, doorknobs, refrigerator doors, and cabinet doors daily.
- There is currently no evidence to suggest that Covid-19 can be transmitted through food or water systems.
- Avoid sharing food and beverages.
- Refrigerate foods promptly, keeping raw and cooked foods separate.
- Heat food to the appropriate internal temperature.
Access to Food – Advice from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
- During this public health emergency, government agencies have developed flexibilities to help individuals who use programs such as the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has also developed plans for children who participate in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs so that they are able to have continued access to food during prolonged school closures.
- Older adults and other individuals who are considered at increased risk for complications from COVID-19 should evaluate the foods they have at home. If you are at high-risk or are unable to get the items you need, consider contacting family or friends to assist. Meal delivery and grocery delivery services may be available as an alternative option, and many businesses are offering additional precautions to help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
Supplements and Claims for Cures
- Currently, there are no known cures for COVID-19, though research is underway to develop a vaccine. In its continuing efforts to protect consumers, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been monitoring and warning companies that offer fraudulent products which claim to help prevent, diagnose, treat or cure COVID-19. Untested supplements and other products touted as a prevention or cure to COVID-19 that are not regulated by the FDA may be dangerous and potentially life threatening.
Staying Healthy with Food
Here are some tips that I’m providing for my clients and that can be applied to those with MSUD and their families.
- Include foods that support the immune system:
Nutrients such as protein, vitamin A, D, C, E, and
the minerals zinc, copper, and iron are among those involved in immunity. But nutrition is a team
sport and all players are needed to win the game.
Eat a wide variety of foods including fruits and
vegetables of different color (eating the rainbow)
to ensure that you’re getting what you need.
- For those with MSUD, consuming all prescribed formula is critical.
- Eat foods, not supplements: The abundance
of research clearly shows that foods, with their
combination of nutrients and phytochemicals,
are the key to good health and superior to
dietary supplements. As noted in a recent report
on Natural Remedies and Supplements for
Coronavirus by ConsumerLabs.com, supplements
will likely benefit only those who are deficient.
- MSUD formulas provide all essential vitamins and minerals.
- This does not refer to isoleucine, valine, and other dietary supplements that may have been prescribed by your metabolic team.
- The virus is not foodborne. You will therefore not contract it by eating food. Be aware, though, that the virus can be transmitted by touching a food that was touched or breathed upon by someone with the virus and then touching your face. Wash hands before and after touching food. Scrub with soap for 20 seconds before rinsing.
- Wash fresh produce carefully and use soap when possible. Wash oranges and other whole fruit before cutting. Consider soaking items like greens in soapy water and then rinsing thoroughly, especially if you plan to eat them raw. Cooking will destroy the virus.
- Frozen and canned fruits and vegetables are good alternatives. Frozen foods are packed shortly after being picked and retain their nutrients.
- Moderate exercise helps our immune system. Try to include 30-60 minutes of moderate intensity exercise such as a walk or bike ride daily. Exercise classes are also available online.