Boosting the Immune System Could Help Fight COVID-19 Effects, Says Chief Medical Officer

Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 29, 2020 (SKNIS): The immune system performs a remarkable job at fighting off foreign cells to protect us against illnesses. Against this backdrop, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Hazel Laws appealed to citizens and residents to boost their immune systems to help fight the effects of COVID-19.

“While there is currently no cure for the Coronavirus there are some steps everyone can take to help support their natural defenses against viruses like this one. The body’s immune system is what helps to fight off those pathogens. There are several ways in which you can support your immune system to make it as strong and effective as possible,” said Dr. Laws.

In giving the health report at the April 29 edition of the National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) Daily COVID-19 Briefing, CMO Laws encouraged persons to eat right, sleep well and get enough natural vitamins to name a few.

“Eat more fruits, vegetables and leafy greens. Fruits and vegetables contain high levels of antioxidants and nutrients which boost the production of cells which support the immune system. Aim to consume at least three (3) servings of fruits and vegetables daily,” said the CMO. “Get more sleep. While we sleep our body repairs and builds our immune system to fight off viruses so aim to get at least six (6) to eight (8) hours of sleep daily.”

Dr. Laws encouraged persons to aim to get one (1) to two (2) hours of direct sunlight daily preferably at the beginning and end of each day as “sunshine increases Vitamin D. Our body creates Vitamin D from direct sunlight on our skin when we are outdoors. Studies show that Vitamin D activates the cells which help to fight infection,” she added.

The CMO reminded citizens and residents of the importance of good hygiene and health practices.

“Proper hygiene such as washing hands regularly, using a disposable tissue when blowing nose or coughing into your flexed elbow will help to decrease the spread of viruses. Aim to wash your hands after touching contaminated surfaces,” said Dr. Laws. “Reduce stress levels. This can be done by developing coping mechanisms such as keeping in contact with close friends and relatives who produce positive emotional support to reduce stress levels and avoid unnecessary worry about things you have no control over. Stay positive, a positive attitude can improve your immune system and may help you to live longer.”

She appealed to the general public to continue to “engage in the social distancing measures” currently in place and reiterated the need to eat well, boost immune systems and engage in effective hand-washing practices. Dr. Laws implored all to wear their masks in public spaces, noting that by “adhering to these practices we will see positive outcomes and win the fight against this invisible enemy.”

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