Nutrition check: What to eat to stay healthy during a pandemic

Surviving through a pandemic doesn’t mean you have to neglect your preventive health and nutrition.  In fact, now more than ever a healthy diet can help you protect yourself.

Poor nutrition and unhealthy diets can lead to diet related diseases such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes and a variety of other nutrition-related diseases, small changes can help to prevent these diseases and promote overall health. 

So what are the best things to eat to benefit your overall health? We talked with Wendy Fisher, a registered dietitian with a master’s in public health from the Arkansas Valley Regional Medical Center and 9Health Expert Dr. Payal Kohli on Facebook Live.

For immunity, Dr. Kohli says it’s important to eat enough of the vitamins A, B, C, D, and E. Some foods for each of those include:

Vitamin A: Vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach and kale are high in vitamin A, as are fruits such as pumpkin and cantaloupe.

Vitamin B: Whole grains (brown rice, barley, millet), meat (poultry, fish), eggs and dairy products (milk, cheese), legumes (beans, lentils), ​Seeds and nuts (sunflower seeds, almonds), dark leafy vegetables (broccoli, spinach, kale), fruits (citrus fruits, avocados, bananas)

Vitamin C: Citrus fruits, tomatoes and tomato juice, and potatoes are major contributors of vitamin C to the American diet. Other good food sources include red and green peppers, kiwifruit, broccoli, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, and cantaloupe.

Vitamin D: Salmon, herring and sardines, cod liver oil, canned tuna, egg yolks, mushrooms, fortified foods

Vitamin E: Wheat germ oil, sunflower, safflower, and soybean oil, sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, peanut butter, beet greens, collard greens, spinach, pumpkin, red bell pepper

Other nutrition tips include:

  • Limit salt intake to less than 1500mg/day (1.5g/day)
  • Limit saturated fats – animal products
  • Avoid trans fats – they raise bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol
  • Drink water – flushes out your system and helps you feel full

Fisher shared some ideas for limiting salt but still adding flavor to your food, click here or download using the button below.

In addition to Nutrition, 9Health is offering online assessments for:

If you have a health question you can talk to a medical professional through our 9Health Neighbors Program by calling 303-698-4455, ext. 2005. Leave a message and a 9Health Medical Volunteer will call you back within 24 hours.

9Health is a 501c-3 community non-profit empowering people to put health in their own hands by providing tools such as preventive health screenings, evidence-based, objective health education and eTools and resources for every day in your health journey.