As the UK addresses ‘living with COVID’ post lockdown, a series of free talks is taking place to share advice on the best nutrition to aid recovery.
Hosted by the University of Plymouth, thanks to funding from the British Dietetic Association, the talks are open to everyone and particularly aimed at people who have or are living with the effects of COVID-19, and their carers.
Co-organised by University College London, Bournemouth University, Imperial College London, and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, the talks address questions such as:
The talks will be released weekly from Wednesday 19 May, with the first talk by Professor Philip Calder from the University of Southampton.
Professor in Dietetics at the University of Plymouth, Mary Hickson, said: “Eating the right diet is crucial to keep well physically and mentally, and a key part of recovery from COVID-19 is to make sure your diet is healthy. This series of talks aims to answer questions on what to eat and why. We also look at how to check and manage your diet and health, which is vitally important, and we hope to welcome as many people along as possible. COVID-19 has changed everyone’s lives, so the more we can do to educate and get this information out there, the better.”
Amy Mullineux from London, who is living with long COVID after contracting it early in 2020 and is still unable to work as a result, has been part of patient groups exploring nutrition and COVID-19.
She said: “I lost my sense of taste and smell after flying back from Australia in January 2020 and in March I had some of the worst illness I’ve ever experienced, with migraines, dizziness, upset stomach, followed by ongoing exhaustion. While for many, that would be the end of COVID, I’m still living with it now.
“While there have been relapses, I’ve found that certain foods and supplements and diets have been vital in relieving symptoms – for example, Vitamin D, Vitamin B and probiotics . It’s important that we hear about the research into nutrition and clear advice from experts, so these talks are vital in understanding and moving forward.”
Suki Newman from Surrey, who also left her job due to the effects of long COVID, said: “People think we’re coming out the other side of the virus, but for many it’s an ongoing battle. As long COVID is a new and unpredictable condition, there hasn’t been a lot of information available on living with it long term, and I’ve had to seek a lot out myself. So events like this that can reliably inform and empower people are really important.”