A professor advises: Olive oil, exercise and Mediterranean diet against the corona virus

The Professor of Immunology at the University of Jaén José J. Gaforio offers us a practical guide how to deal with the confinement situation at home and how to fight against coronavirus. Essential weapons in this guide are extra virgin olive oil consumption and exercise at home.

Our immune system is responsible for fighting the virus. Consequently, enhancing our immune defense is important for the treatment of the virus, as immune suppression is known to increase the risk of a more serious form of infection. Proper nutrition can help improve the immune system. What should we do about it?

• Follow the Mediterranean diet enriched with extra virgin olive oil, scientific evidence suggests that this way you will stay healthy and fit. The consumption of olive oil increases the number of human cells involved in the body's defense.
• Check the amount of food you eat.
• Priority for foods of plant origin to those of animal origin. Beets, celery, artichoke, eggplant, broccoli, zucchini, spinach, asparagus, leeks, mushrooms, carrots and peppers should be part of your diet.
• Eat seasonal, local and fresh foods.
• Eat salads that include lettuce, tomato, olive and onion, among others. It is important to treat the salad with virgin olive oil and vinegar, not with sauces that normally have an excessive amount of calories.
• Be careful with the salt. Pepper can be a good alternative.
• Fruits are the dessert option, do not skimp on desserts that are usually high in sugar.
• Eat meat in moderation.
• Eat fish, which is highly advisable with cold water fish such as salmon or trout, for example.
• Legumes are highly recommended.
• Use spices to taste the food.
• Now that you have more time, go to the kitchen and dare to make new dishes. If you have children involved in making food, it can be a great time to share with them and teach them good eating habits. All family members must be involved.
• Do not order ready-made food for the home. Cook! Make it like a hobby.
• No fried foods.
• Avoid processed and pre-processed foods that require a minimum preparation time before consuming.
• Enjoy your family food now that you can, giving it the time it deserves and creating a warm and enjoyable atmosphere.
• Keep adequate hydration, water and herbal tea are recommended.
• Always use extra virgin olive oil as the only source of fat in cooking.
• Finally, do some home exercises that you can share with the rest of the family. It is important to do activities together, they can be very enjoyable moments to play.