Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a new type of coronavirus. It can cause persistent cough, fever, decrease/change in sense of smell or taste.

Coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in individuals with weakened immune systems, older people, and people with long-term conditions such as diabetes, cancer, chronic lung disease and heart disease.

Proper nutrition and hydration are important to combat this disease and help manage symptoms. A well-balanced diet can optimize immune system function, improve metabolism and help prevent the development of chronic symptoms associated with COVID-19.

It is recommended that a diet be followed with a proliferation of fresh and unprocessed foods daily to provide the body with essential vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, protein and antioxidants. A right diet will ensure that the body is in proper condition to defeat the virus!

However, apart from dietary management guidelines – food safety management, and smart food practices are key to contain the spread of the virus.

Some modifications to your routine that can help with a good recovery include:

protein rich diet

Adequate protein intake is essential to prevent muscle loss and maintain metabolic functions. Loss of muscle can lead to weakness, fatigue and an inability to perform daily activities.

Protein deficiency is additionally associated with impaired immune system function and can worsen symptoms and result in an extended recovery time.

Try to include a portion of protein-rich food at every meal. Vegetarians can include 2-3 servings/day of lentils, lentils, soy, milk and milk products, nuts and seeds.

Also gram flour, sattu, khichdi, peanuts, paneer, curd and mushrooms are good choices. Non-vegetarians can include all of these in their diet along with lean meats such as eggs, chicken and fish.

healthy fats

Reduce excessive fat intake and choose cooking methods that require little or no fat, such as steaming, grilling, or roasting foods instead of frying them. Choose foods that contain healthy sources of unsaturated fats, such as fish and nuts.

To limit saturated fat, trim excess fat from meat and poultry and choose skinless options. Scale back on foods like red and fatty meats, butter and full-fat dairy products, palm oil, shortening and lard. Avoid adding trans fats to your diet as much as possible.

plenty of fruits and vegetables

The vitamins, minerals and antioxidants present in colorful fruits and vegetables help in faster recovery. Try to include at least 5-6 servings of fruits and vegetables in your daily meal plan. You can add fruits to your milkshakes or smoothies and consume seasonal vegetables by cooking, roasting, steaming or boiling them.

Note: Make sure the raw product is thoroughly cleaned and proper hygiene is followed.


Recent research suggests that probiotics may help boost the immune system. The healthy bacteria found in probiotics will help the gut and intestinal tract fight disease-causing germs. Yogurt, kefir, pickles, kimchi and kombucha are rich in probiotics.

Probiotics support the growth of good bacteria, which play an important role in balancing your body’s good bacteria and deposits in the gut. These healthy bacteria help balance your digestion, immunity and metabolism.

Super Fighter Vitamin C

Vitamin C protects you from infection by stimulating the formation of antibodies and boosting immunity. As an antioxidant, vitamin C fights free radicals present in the body.

Add more vitamin C to your diet with citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits, and tangerines, or red bell peppers, papayas, strawberries, tomatoes, guavas, broccoli, kiwis, and peppers.

Zinc Rich Foods

Adequate zinc is important for the development and function of the immune system and can help wounds heal. Zinc can be found in lean meat, poultry, seafood, milk, whole grain products, beans, pumpkin seeds and nuts.


occurs in eggs selenium, a powerful antioxidant that plays an important role in cell health. Other sources include seafood, Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, grains and dairy products.

small frequent meals

Eat after every 2-3 hours, it helps in meeting your nutritional requirement as well as prevents GI related complications like bloating, gastritis, bloating, heaviness, acidity.


It’s important to stay hydrated with plenty of water and clear fluids, even if you don’t feel thirsty to replace fluid loss and thin respiratory secretions. If the respiratory secretion is not diluted, it can lead to pneumonia. So, take sips of water, and also try drinking water with fruits, mint, lemon for better taste.

Add diluted fruit juices, clear soups, rasams, smoothies to meet calorie and water requirements. Avoid too much tea/coffee as caffeine increases heart rate and dehydration.

herbal immune booster

A lot of herbs and spices can be used during this phase, as they are likely to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiviral properties.

  • pan To increase immunity, the Ministry of AYUSH has suggested to include spices like decoction of cloves, dry ginger and black pepper.
  • Turmeric Milk with Black Pepper – Recommended because of its pro-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties
  • Herb Mint, like tulsi, tulsi made into tea has antioxidants, tastes, helps improve digestion and immunity.

Diet plan for COVID-19 affected patients

Following this sample meal plan with three small, but balanced, meals and light snacks throughout the day will give you an idea of ​​what to eat as part of your quarantine protocol. You can mix and match the following as per your preference.

Morning (6-7 AM)

Diet Plan for COVID-19 Affected Patients - HealthifyMe

1 glass of lukewarm lemonade with cinnamon + five soaked almonds and walnuts.

Breakfast options (after 30 minutes)

Diet Plan for COVID-19 Affected Patients - HealthifyMe
  • Palak besan chilla with 2 nos green chutney and 1 cup curd/
  • Oats porridge with nuts, seeds + a bowl of fruit
  • Two dosa with less oil + 1 cup sambar/
  • Vegetable Omelette (2 egg whites and 1 whole egg) with 2 slices whole-wheat or multigrain bread

Mid-morning snack options (10 am – 11 am)

Diet Plan for COVID-19 Affected Patients - HealthifyMe
  • 1 bowl of fruit chia/pumpkin seeds with 1 tbsp + 1 glass of lemonade/
  • 1 glass papaya smoothie with chia and flaxseed

Lunch (1 – 2 pm)

Diet Plan for COVID-19 Affected Patients - HealthifyMe
  • 2 phulkas / 1 cup steamed rice + sabzi (beans / cauliflower / broccoli / leafy vegetable / mixed vegetable) + cup dal / chana / rajma / 1 cup paneer + 1 cup curd

After Lunch (4 PM)

Diet Plan for COVID-19 Affected Patients - HealthifyMe
  • Clove, black pepper and dry ginger decoction / tea – 1 cup

Mid-Evening Snack (5 – 6 PM)

Makhana - HealthifyMe
  • Boiled Sprouts / Pulses or Roasted Makhana / Chana – cup

Pre-Dinner Options (8 p.m.)

  • Dal Pani – 1 cup/
  • Rasam – 1 cup/
  • Carrot / Tomato / Spinach / Broccoli Soup – 1 cup

Dinner Options (8 – 9 PM)

Vegetable Khichdi - HealthifyMe
  • 1 bowl vegetable khichdi + 1 cup curd /
  • 2 moong dal with chilla paneer + garlic chutney/
  • 3 pieces of idli with vegetable sambar/
  • 2 rotis with spinach or fenugreek dal/egg curry/paneer bhurji – 1 cup

sleep time

turmeric milk
  • Low-fat milk with turmeric and black pepper, without sugar – 1 glass


Whether it is COVID 19 or any flu, proper nutrition is vital for health, especially in times when the immune system may need to fight back. Limited access to fresh foods can compromise our efforts to continue eating a healthy and varied diet.

This could potentially lead to increased consumption of highly processed foods, which are high in fat, sugars and salt. Nevertheless, even with some more limited ingredients, one should try to eat healthy and support the body in fighting the virus.

Comment: Please remember that the above tips and diet plan is not a cure or remedy for coronavirus, but a way to boost your immune system to fight the infection.

Stay indoors, stay safe and eat healthy!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. What foods should be avoided during the COVID-19 pandemic?

a. Highly processed and packaged foods, refined sugars, high-fat foods, foods rich in saturated and trans fats can not only reduce immunity but also interfere with the body’s ability to fight infections. Also, avoid red meat as they increase inflammation in the body.

Q. What are the best foods to eat during the COVID-19 pandemic?

a. Fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables, thoroughly washed, along with protein-rich pulses, pulses or lean meats and whole grains to eat during the pandemic. Yogurt, rich in these probiotics, should also be combined with good fats derived from nuts, seeds and herbs, and spices such as turmeric, ginger, garlic that have antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties.

Q. How should I wash fruits and vegetables in the time of COVID-19?

A. The best way to wash fruits and vegetables is with running water. You can soak vegetables and fruits in salt water or vinegar water to remove contaminants. If the fresh produce is not organic, you can use fruits and vegetables with a coarser peel or remove the skin.

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