Hippocrates said it best, "Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food." When Covid first came on the scene, so did fear and worry - What is this novel virus? - Is it going to kill me? - What can I do to not get it?! We wanted to do whatever it took to make sure we were safe, and pharmaceuticals quickly became what we turned to first. Now, 2 years later, we have learned so much, and multiple studies have helped us to see that we don't need to be so afraid. They have shown us our best bet is a healthy immune system!
Purchase one of our grow towers and put a produce section in your home today.Although pharmaceuticals are definitely necessary in some cases, practicing healthy living, including eating a diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables, can help prevent and treat Covid, and minimize or even prevent serious complications if you do contract it. It's easy to want to turn to the quick fixes, but there's a better way! Getting back to the basics, listening to our "gut", and living the way our incredibly wise forefathers taught us.
"Scientists found that people who reported eating the most fruits, vegetables, and legumes had a 9% lower risk of getting COVID and a 41% lower risk of developing severe COVID during the study period, compared with people who reported eating the least fruits and vegetables" (1).
There are SO many herbs, fruits and vegetables with powerful medicinal properties. In fact, the Food and Agriculture Organization estimated in 2002 that over 50,000 medicinal plants are used across the world (2). Needless to say, that's way more than we can list here. Almost every nation has traditional folk medicines for using plants. Plants as natural medicines have been around for a long time, particularly in some nations such as China, India, Egypt, and Greece (3). Our forefathers may not have known the scientific compounds contained in the plant that caused the healing, they just knew it worked.
The Power of Phytonutrients
Today we know that plants contain phytonutrients, which are nutrients contained in plants (Greek origin - phyton - plant) with specific biological activities that support human health (3). Phytonutrients can help protect us from disease, the effects of aging and more. Carotenoids are found in orange fruits and vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes and apricots. Flavonoids are found in red, purple and blue produce such as blueberries, eggplant and grapes. Allicin is found in white/green produce, like onions, leeks, and garlic, and Lutein and Zeaxanthin are found in green and yellow vegetables like leafy greens, broccoli, and olives. All of these are examples of phytonutrients (4). Each of these phytonutrients contain their own medicinal properties, including anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, cancer-fighting and so much more! There's a reason we should "Eat the Rainbow!"
When it comes to COVID-19, Flavonoids seem to be the ones that can pack the most punch, containing antiviral and antibacterial properties (5). Curcumin (found in turmeric), Kaempferol (found in spinach, cabbage, dill, kale, beans, tea (high amounts of flavonoids in oolong, green and black tea) and broccoli), Quercetin (found in onions, grapes, tea, ginkgo biloba + more), Apigenin (found in parsley, celery, onion, oranges, and herbs) are all examples of flavonoids. These powerful compounds contain antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties that may help your body be better equipped for the fight against Covid (6), and so many other diseases and health concerns. Let's not forget about red wine and dark chocolate that also share this compound (7)!
Listen to your "Gut"
You can also make your fruits and vegetables even more powerful by fermenting them. Fermented foods like cabbage allow you to not only get those awesome Flavonoids, but you also are getting powerful probiotics to aid in gut health. Hippocrates also said, "All disease begins in the gut" and the studies are showing this to be true. He truly was a wise man!
"The gut microbiota is now considered as one of the key elements contributing to the regulation of host health" (8).
There are also other ways to maximize nutrients, like soaking and sprouting nuts and grains to help remove anti-nutrients. Even simple actions like cooking your vegetables prior to eating to "pre-digest" (9) them will help your body better absorb all those awesome nutrients! The more nutrients our body has available for the fight, the healthier we will be.
God's creation is amazing! Plants are powerful - more powerful than we even realize. We, as humans, have so much to learn here! There may not be one magic plant to cure Covid -although it may be out there and we just haven't discovered it yet - check out Nigella Sativa (Black cumin seeds) for some "medicine" for thought; however, when you eat a diet rich in organic fruits, vegetable and herbs, the evidence is showing (10) that this is one of your best tools for the fight against Covid and to protect your overall health!
We highly encourage you to do your own research to find herbs/plants related to helping your specific symptoms. Yarrow and mullein are great for respiratory issues (11), and spices and herbs like turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, and basil have shown to play a role against Covid (12, 13). So many fantastic options. The world is your plant "oyster." Let's all first reach, myself included, for the plants that have been known to heal for ages, before we reach for the medicine cabinet. Our bodies will thank us!
"It has been proven by many studies that the ginger and its bioactive compounds showed effective antiviral activity against SARS‐CoV‐2, Influenza virus" (13).
At Eden we are passionate about giving you the ability to grow your own food - and this especially includes growing food for your health and the health of your family! If you are interested in learning more about how we are creating partnerships to make this happen, check out our most recent press release featuring our partnerships with Grand Farm and Dr. Kalidas Shetty with North Dakota State University, where they will be growing medicinal herbs in the Eden Grow Tower! Together we can not only feed the future, but help the future thrive!
Be sure to also check out our latest posts...
1). Harvard study: Healthy diet associated with lower COVID-19 risk and severity - Harvard Health
2). Medicinal plants - Wikipedia
4). Phytonutrients: Why You Should “Eat a Rainbow” | OhioHealth
5). 10 Foods High in Flavonoids and Why You Need Them (webmd.com)
6). Phytonutrient and Nutraceutical Action against COVID-19: Current Review of Characteristics and Benefits (nih.gov)
7). 10 Foods High in Flavonoids and Why You Need Them (webmd.com)
8). Gut microbiome and health: mechanistic insights - PubMed (nih.gov)
9). On a raw food diet? Cook or ferment these veggies for maximum nutrition (bodyecology.com)
10). Diet quality and risk and severity of COVID-19: a prospective cohort study | Gut (bmj.com)
11). 11 Best Herbs to Support Lung and Respiratory Health: Gaia Herbs®
12). Diet quality and risk and severity of COVID-19: a prospective cohort study | Gut (bmj.com)
13). Spices and herbs: Potential antiviral preventives and immunity boosters during COVID‐19 (nih.gov)
Alicia Raymond is a Content Creator for Eden Grow Systems. Alicia is passionate about helping others live healthy lives and believes growing your own fruits and vegetables is one of the best ways to achieve this. She loves to cook with the food she and her husband grow on their 20-acre homestead in the Pacific NW, where they have also documented their adventures of building and operating a self-sustaining off-grid food habitat on their YouTube channel, therealmartian.com. This effort has now turned into Eden Grow Systems, an indoor grow company. Alicia has experience growing microgreens for profit, and food blogging. She is a former registered nurse, holding a B.S. in Nursing.