The COVID 19 Coronavirus Threat: How Can Organic Food Respond?
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The world is changing extremely fast nowadays in response of this pandemic Coronavirus (COVID 19), It seems like a shock that is affecting every creature in this world and the question is what will happen in the future and how can we strength our immune system to prevent ourselves in the light of this crisis.
The crisis did not only affect the economic and social system, but it also made disturbance in the whole system and people started to think about solutions to reduce potential risk and find a way out trying to get adapted to the current situation and mitigate the risk as possible. People started to rethink about their way of living and search for new tools to make them more resilient against the virus considering that there is not approved medicine yet but the pandemic virus is spreading incredibly fast and affecting people very rapidly.
Today 7th April is the World Health Day and it would be our pleasure in ORGANIC EGYPT to seize this opportunity as a global health awareness day to shed light on the benefits of Organic foods in increasing the immune system against COVID 19. It is pretty much important noting that no specific research has been done on foods that help fight against COVID-19, however ORAGANIC EGYPT provides a general overview concerning the importance of organic food as a helpful prevention against COVID 19 based on reviewing scientific approved publications.
For the most up-to-date news and information about COVID 19, there are recent publications focusing on the importance of having a strong immunity system to resist the effects of Coronavirus. As a matter of fact, if the person got infected, there would be a great interest to look for potential food as a key to improve the immune system. Focusing on what kind of food that we are eating and the source of it is more important than any time before. Different UN agencies advised to shift our consumption to healthy food (1) .
Based on a study that was conducted on February 2020 on the main vitamins that could have a role during the current situation, the study emphasized on the importance of Vitamin B and Vitamin C and this could be chosen as a basic option to resist COVID 19 (2) . Maintaining a healthy diet helps boost the immune system which may also give an edge. However, previous studies have found that eating certain foods can improve health and strengthen the body’s ability to fight other invasive viruses.
Organic foods have exploded in popularity over the last two decades. They have been grown or farmed without the use of artificial chemicals, hormones, antibiotics or genetically modified organisms. Based on a study that was conducted in 2012 on the benefits of organic foods especially organic carrots on health, consumption of more organic carrots induced some changes in lymphocyte population including increase in regulatory T Cells which called suppressor T cells that modulate the immune system, maintain tolerance to self-antigens and suggest positive effect compared to conventional carrot, said Dr. Roselli (3) . Organic crops have additionally more phenolic compounds which are consider as anti-oxidants for the human body. Carotenoids (found in yellow, orange, and red plants) are another example of anti-oxidants that are essential for the development of cells that attack bacteria and foreign viruses (4) .
On the other hand, organic dairy products have a higher content of omega-3 fatty acids compared to conventional products, although this difference is most likely of marginal nutritional significance. Antibiotic use is less intensive in organic production (5) . A recently completed, European Union funded projects, four-year study found that organic fruits and vegetables contained as much as 40 percent more antioxidants and had higher levels of beneficial minerals, such as iron and zinc which consequently boost one’s immune system. Levels of antioxidants in milk from organic herds were up to 90 percent higher than in milk from conventional herds (6) .
We believe that this is the time that we need to change our way of food consumption and think wisely before buying our food because this will affect not just us but also our families. Healthy food is an ideal choice for now and for the future to have a healthy life and to improve our immune defences as a preventive measure against COVID 19 and other Immune System Threats.
Written by: Omar Abdellatif
Sustainable Agriculture Expert – Organic Egypt Project