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What Not to Eat or Drink When You’re Sick

Experts weigh-in on what to add and subtract to your diet for a healthy immune system.

Most of us can say that we at least try to eat a healthy diet  full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and all of the other recommended superfoods that aid in warding off illness. While this should always be a top priority, there’s no time like the present to ensure your immune system is in fighting condition and to know what not to eat or drink when you’re sick—especially when the  coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading like wildfire across the globe.

If there has been one consistent message regarding COVID-19 it is that those with weaker immune systems are at far greater risk of contracting the most severe symptomatic consequences, While our nutritional status may not dissuade this foreign and novel invader from entering our body, how healthy we are can mean less severe symptoms and a better prognosis for recovery. Whether or not you’re sick, proper nutrition is essential for keeping your body healthy both in the short and long-term. When we eat a nutrient-rich diet, we give our body the tools it needs to support a healthy response to inflammation, which includes keeping us protected from antigens like bacteria and viruses.

If you do fall ill, what you eat becomes even more pivotal—as well as what you don’t eat. Abstaining from certain foods and beverages can lift an extra burden from your body, which is already weak, Dr. Luther notes, medical director and formulator for Care/of. Here’s a guide for what foods and drinks you should avoid when you’re sick.

  1. Soda and Juice
  2. Fried and Greasy Foods
  3. Coffee
  4. Gluten

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