Healthy Habits, Foods, Supplements for the COVID-19 Pandemic

Healthy Habits, Foods, Supplements for the COVID-19 Pandemic

You didn’t get a cold this winter, did you? That’s what my general practicioner asked me at our last appointment, which occurred eight days before every single large gathering of people in the month of March and April got cancelled. He’s completely right, and what he was referring to was the Vitamin C and Vitamin D that he had prescribed me, months prior, to fight off a very stubborn plantar wart.

I haven’t had a common cold, or anything of that variety since mid 2019, and that’s a wonderful thing given how closely COVID-19 symptoms resemble those of seasonal flu or colds, and hence create high anxiety for anyone experiencing them. So what can you do to keep your immune system in tip top shape right now? Let’s run through some habits and supplements.


First off it’s good to eat foods rich in Vitamin C like oranges, and obviously, drink orange juice. It’s also a great time to become acquainted, or perhaps further familiar, with organic Cannabidiol products like premium hemp flower, CBD oils, tinctures, topicals and extracts. Even America’s founding father, George Washington himself, grew hemp on his plantation, and thus saw the virtues of the plant. Another food that boosts immunity against bacterial types of infections is plain yogurt; due to its being high in concentration of the good types of bacteria. 

It’s also important to state right now, although we really hope we don’t have to, how there is no known effective and safe therapeutic for coronavirus. Right here in Chicago, Gilead Sciences Inc’s remdesivir has shown a lot of promise, but that’s only in a limited study.

It was extremely effective, but only anecdotally, and the stock market’s positive overreaction to this bit of positive news was all about hype, not substance. 


However, what you can do is take care of yourself the best that you can, and that starts with sleep. The nutritional specialist at my gym told myself and small group back in February: “the most important thing you can do, individually, for your health is to consistently get a lot of sleep each night; and yes, this is a dietician telling you this.”

That’s obviously much easier said than done, but there are steps you can take. Too much alcohol can disrupt your sleep, and the sauce is botoriously known to deplete your immune system. It’s also a good idea to turn your gadgets off long before you go to sleep- the lights from your smartphone and computer will only keep you up. In terms of exercise, take the stairs wherever and whenever possible.

Who sponsors the stair climb races of the Sears Tower and John Hancock Center here? That’s right, the American Lung Association, so you can draw a straight line on this one.


Finally, and perhaps most importantly, wear a mask in public. The stigma on that is long gone! The New York Times has a great guide as to what kind of masks you should wear at this link. Most importantly, stay home and help #FlattenTheCurve! #StayHomeSaveLives #StayHomeSaveLives

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC and Chicago on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link.

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