I honestly believe everyone of us is responsible for his or her own health. I am one hundred percent aware that my thoughts are controversial. But I am also convinced I am not the only one here thinking that by living a healthy life and following a healthy diet, I can protect myself from contracting Covid-19.
I live in Buenos Aires and this city had been under lock down for almost 6 months at the time I wrote this article. As I run a small boutique hotel, I continued hosting guests on their way out of the country and returning to their home countries. French, Belgians, Norwegians, people from Brazil… during the months of March and April ‘we’ were over fourthy on a daily basis. I cooked for them 3 times a day because restaurants & bars were closed. Inside the hotel no one was wearing masks. I made sure the food I was going to serve was rich in vitamins and minerals, that there would be plenty of fruits and vegetables on the table, all combined with a healthy dose of fish, meat and carbohydrates.
All of my guests were healthy people, young, old and older.
The guests organized some sports activities like aqua gym in the rooftop pool, an Olympiads of which part was running up and down the stairs. We all understood that being in good shape is part of the stay-healthy process.
We are just NOT free to eat whatever we think suit. A healthy diet and lifestyle will not only protect us from common diseases, cancer, Alzheimer’s, I am convinced it DOES protect us from COVID-19 too.
This article will answer certain questions. It will, however, raise some too.
No to Covid : Dietary Common Sense!
For a start, I agree with Lynne Anderson where she states in her article that there are no miracle foods to cure or prevent Covid-19. The pandemic hit us all at a moment we were expecting it least. Caught in our daily routine, our hectic lives, stressful jobs, packed holidays, good, bad or worse eating habits… all of a sudden, Covid was there and we did not see it coming.
We did not see it coming cause we did not want to see it coming. We were not looking for it. We were living our lives as we were invincible. As if, whatever we would do or not do, eat or not eat, it would not make a difference.
But a different it makes ! It really does ! Health and conscious dieting matters ! A healthy diet is all about common sense. Common sense which does not require huge efforts. It is common sense built in your daily routine.
My diet contains several super foods but I am not a fanatic. Right after I wake up I have freshly squeezed grapefruit juice from organic fruit when available. I take 500 mg of spirulina and one capsule of curcumina with that. I elaborated on the positive effect of curcumina on Covid in another article.
“Turmeric against Corona : too good to be true”
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I am a 55-year old woman. On rare occasions I eat meat. The other day I presented myself as a blood donor. I was refused for just not being anemic.
Studies have shown that aging is physiologically associated with a variable decline in several changes of the hematopoietic system, including anemia and immunosenescence. The latter is coined as the aging of the immune system and is characterized by a reduced activity against infections.
Spirulina is amongst the most ‘nutritionally packed’ dietary supplement available. With respect to immunity, it modulates the production of cytokines by human peripheral blood mono nuclear cells, not surprising given the rich content of flavanoids and sulfa lipids. In simple words, spirulina boosts immunity by positively impacting antioxidant activity & immune markers in your body’s cells. Spirulina products contain bio active proteins with the ability to stimulate the intestinal immune system to enhance the responsiveness to vaccines and improve allergic rhinitis.
Spirulina can be bought in capsules or in powder. Both are equally effective. Capsules can be easily taken with liquid whereas you can mix the powder in your smoothies.
Superior in nutrition, Hawaiian Spirulina is full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and contains some of the highest levels of protein of any plant or animal source. This super food contains up to 70% digestible, complete protein, high levels of iron, beta carotene, and other healthful nutrients including B12, vitamin K, chlorophyll, and phycocyanin.
Ideas for your morning Smoothie: watch the video here
What is black Garlic?
Black garlic is a type of aged garlic whose browning is attributable to the Maillard reaction rather than caramelization, first used as a food ingredient in Asian cuisine. It is made by heating whole bulbs of garlic (Allium sativum) over the course of several weeks, a process that results in black cloves. The taste is sweet and syrupy with hints of balsamic vinegar or tamarind. Black garlic’s popularity has spread to the United States and the rest of the world as it has become a sought-after ingredient used in high-end cuisine.
Health Benefits of Black Garlic
Wikipedia does not mention a word about the health benefits of black garlic. Yet, they are numerous and exceed those of regular garlic by far and large. Black garlic :
- Increases the body’s defenses and prevents diseases.
- It is good for asthma and respiratory problems.
- Increases defenses in allergy processes.
- It is a natural antioxidant. So it fights the oxidation produced by free radicals.
- It cleans the kidneys and protects the arteries, as it helps prevent calcification.
- It regularizes sleep.
- It helps in wound healing and bone strengthening.
- It fights diabetes by increasing the level of insulin.
Black garlic far exceeds the qualities of a super food. Nowadays you can easily buy black garlic in tablets or as an entire head of garlic . Black garlic can be eaten alone, on bread, or used in soups, sauces, crushed into a mayonnaise or simply tossed into a vegetable dish. A vinaigrette can be made with black garlic, sherry vinegar, soy, a neutral oil, and Dijon mustard. Its softness increases with water content.
What one needs to remember here is that it acts as a natural antioxidant, hence black garlic helps to improve our immunity.
Few people living outside of Argentina, and I have to admit, few people living IN the country, actually know the best black garlic is found in the province of Mendoza, Argentina.
“Essential amino acids are those substances that the body cannot generate by itself, which is why we must incorporate them with our diet. There are twenty amino acids of which black garlic provides eighteen. The lack of them lowers our defenses against diseases and brings us decay. In addition to that, there are eight essential amino acids that the body needs to enjoy good health and in the Black Garlic Oro Rubí ( links to the text in Spanish )we find them all. For all this and given its many properties, black garlic is considered a super food.
Quit Sugar, Gluten and Lactose
I am not done with the ‘bad’news’. If you want to strengthen your immunity system & be ready for a covid-attack, then quit consuming sugar, gluten and lactose right now. For decades people suffering from diabetes have been ordered to slow down on sugar. What they have NOT been told is to skip gluten and lactose as well.
The Glycemic Index
What this trio has in common is their glycemic index. The Glycemic Index (GI) is a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Carbohydrates with a low GI value (55 or less) are more slowly digested, absorbed and metabolized and cause a lower and slower rise in blood glucose and, therefore usually, insulin levels.
Why does a slow rise in blood glucose matters?
All three: sugar, lactose and gluten have one lethal thing in common: their GI is the highest of all foods. The higher the GI, the faster the rise in blood glucose will be. I hope that at this point you are wondering: why does this matter? What harm can it do? I could send you right through to chapter 6 of a book I have called my Bible on several previous occasions.
Here is that book again ! Do yourself a favor, buy it, read it. Then make up your mind. And if you are really serious about your health, then buy the three of them.
Here is the answer I am almost certain you will not like. Your health starts in your microbioma. And the health of your microbioma (alias intestines or gut ) literally starts with what you put into your mouth. By taking care of your gut, you take care of your brain and your overall health condition. The modern human diet is responsible for most of the common diseases and these diseases are directly related to the condition of your gut. Your overall health starts in your gut.
The higher the GI index of your food intake, the stronger the attack on your gut and thus on your overall health.
57% of all structural variations in the intestinal microbiota is due to dietary changes whereas only 12% is related to genetics. That’s how important our diet is for our microbioma health. And then in turn, a healthy gut defines it all: a healthy and strong immune system. One that can take it all. One that should not fear covid.
I am asking no one to listen to me. I am asking you to listen to yourselves. Would you rather wait & see, and then react when it’s too late?
Life can/could be so easy. I love food, I love to eat. I even keep another blog ‘Buenos Aires Gourmet’. That’s how bad it gets. But I know for sure nothing gets through my mouth I suspect could do some harm to me.
If you think refraining from eating from whatever you might be craving for limits your freedom, than think like this:
“My health IS my freedom. My health means I do not fear Covid. I do not fear contracting it cause I know I can fight it, beat it. I know I am stronger than Covid claims to be !
Now it’s up to you !
And if you wonder how this blog and post came about, I owe it to WA, for guiding and encouraging me.