What I Would Eat If I Had COVID 19

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 08/31/2023

Here, I want to talk about what I would eat if I was diagnosed with COVID-19 coronavirus.

Now, everyone is talking about precautions you should take to lower your risk of contracting COVID-19 and practices you should maintain if you get it: things like practicing social distancing, washing your hands, and staying away from others. But not enough people are talking about how your diet and daily habits can help.

Here’s everything else to consider.

In this article, I will cover my COVID-19 pandemic diet and lifestyle tips, which include:


1. Adopt a Diet that Reduces Underlying Conditions

High Fat Storing Hormone is Linked to Pre-Existing Conditions

  • Diabetes type 2
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Fat Storing Hormone resistance
  • Obesity

There are other pre-existing conditions, too, but these are the big ones. It’s important to note that all of these conditions have a common denominator: high Fat Storing Hormone. Why? Well, Fat Storing Hormone controls sugar by lowering sugar in the bloodstream. If you have too much sugar, that will be instantly converted to fat and cholesterol - that’s why sugar is one of the biggest culprits of obesity and high blood pressure.

On top of that, excess Fat Storing Hormone and Fat Storing Hormone resistance will cause diabetes type 2. In short, it’s the biggest source of a lot of these health concerns.

You Can Lower Fat Storing Hormone With Keto

Healthy keto can reduce underlying health conditions

The good news is that there’s a very simple way to deal with high Fat Storing Hormone. You go on the healthy ketogenic diet with intermittent fasting. Now, the keto diet is a low carb, moderate protein, and high-fat diet. In my version of keto, which I call healthy keto, the diet also involves a lot of vegetables, which can help you maintain a balanced diet offset many of the concerns that people usually have with the keto diet.

In general, high fats in a diet are totally fine to do as long as you keep your carbohydrates low. Here’s the link where I discuss what healthy keto is and how to do it - and here’s why intermittent fasting is super important here as well.

Getting on this diet will greatly help support healthy Fat Storing Hormone levels, and thereby help address these underlying conditions.


2. Eat Foods with the Three Most Important Nutrients

Now, the other thing I would do is start to incorporate the three most important nutrients - zinc, vitamin D, and vitamin C - into my diet.

Zinc is important for immune function

That said, there’s a huge association between having enough zinc in your body and having your immune system work properly - and the RDA for zinc is 8mg for women and 11 mg for men.

Zinc is involved at almost every single level of your immune defenses. The foods with the highest concentrations of zinc include:

  • Oysters
  • Shellfish
  • Red meat
  • Cheese

There are other foods, but these four probably have the most zinc.

Zinc is also very important in supporting a healthy thymus gland. The thymus is a training camp for certain immune cells that help fight the coronavirus and other diseases, so it’s very important. If you’re deficient in zinc, your thymus actually shrinks and your immune function weakens.

Vitamin D

The next thing I would do is make sure I have enough vitamin D. The RDA is about 600 IUs, and you can get that in:

  • Cod liver oil
  • Salmon
  • Fatty fish

That said, it’s generally very difficult to get the amount of vitamin D that you need through foods. That’s why I recommend getting enough sun. You need about 20 minutes every single day to get enough vitamin D.

So why is vitamin D one of the most important nutrients? It’s an immune modulator, meaning that It keeps the immune system from overreacting and causing so much inflammation and collateral damage that it could damage your lungs and other tissues (in what’s often known as a cytokine storm).

In other words, vitamin D is very important for keeping the immune system balanced.

And it’s something you should really keep top of mind if you’re feeling sick. Certain viruses like coronavirus or norovirus have a strategy of deliberately blocking the receptor for vitamin D so they can better attack your immune system.

Fortunately, the remedy is fairly straightforward: taking enough vitamin D can actually override that, so you can keep that immune support at a high level.

Vitamin C

Natural vitamin C can help immunity

Finally, you have to get enough vitamin C. Vitamin C is very important in supporting a healthy immune system and especially in dealing with viruses. You’ll get a lot of vitamin C in foods like:

  • Leafy greens
  • Sauerkraut (you can make your own or get high-quality sauerkraut from a farmer’s market or health food store)
  • Berries

You can get up to 700 milligrams of vitamin C from the sauerkraut, and really all you need is between 70 and 90 milligrams as the recommended daily amount (RDA).

So now, of course, that doesn’t account for all types of sauerkraut because there are different versions, but I’m just talking at the high end we’re starting at 700 mg and it’s probably going to go down there.

Now, there’s a lot of other foods that have vitamin C, but the more you cook foods or you can them, the more you’re likely to deplete nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin D, and zinc. In fact, canned foods will decrease the effectiveness of zinc by 85%.

And by the way, if you think that you’re going to consume orange juice for your vitamin C, you’re mistaken. Generally speaking, companies pasteurize or use high temperatures in processing. This cooks the orange juice and destroys the natural vitamin C. The only vitamin C that you would actually wind up consuming from that orange juice is usually just coming from an added, synthetic version called ascorbic acid. It’s my opinion that this ascorbic acid is definitely not the same as the vitamin C you’ll get from actual fruits and vegetables.


3. Reduce Stress

Lastly, let’s talk about stress. Now, this isn’t a dietary choice, but it’s certainly a day-to-day lifestyle choice that you need to think about.

I know it might be hard to believe, but some people are actually stressed out nowadays. Now, the problem is that stress increases cortisol. Chronically elevated cortisol - as in long-term stress - can severely affect your immune system. It causes your lymphatic system to shrink. It also:

  • Makes your lymph nodes decrease
  • Decreases antibody production so you lose your ability to fight infection
  • Increases your susceptibility to getting viruses and bacteria.

You don’t want any of that, which is why I would actively and aggressively do what I can to keep stress at a minimum. That would include not watching the news so much. There are so many messages that are all about doom and gloom, bad news over and over, fear - these messages increase stress, and that really makes an individual way more susceptible to getting an infection when compared to someone who is not in such a state of worry and anxiety.

If you look at those with COVID-19 and actually trace it back to right before they got that infection, I would say nearly 100% of the time they had a stress event.

Stress is a huge trigger to not only being susceptible to viruses, but also activating viruses that are already inside your body.

This explains why, when people get stressed, they get shingles, herpes, and all sorts of health problems.

So I absolutely recommend that you limit stress if you’re concerned about getting a viral or bacterial infection.


Overall, then, I recommend that you:

  • Get on the right diet to minimize underlying conditions
  • Eat foods high in the three most important nutrients (zinc, vitamin D, and vitamin C)
  • Reduce stress

If you haven’t seen my other videos on the nutrients or these pre-existing conditions, I put the links right here so you can check them out:

Disclaimer: Our educational content is not meant or intended for medical advice or treatment.

Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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