World-renowned biochemist Dr. T. Colin Campbell says a vegan diet may help “minimize the severity” of coronavirus infection.
The plant-based nutritional expert is well-known for completing one of the most comprehensive studies on human nutrition. Dr. Campbell—along with his son, Thomas M. Campbell— found dietary links between the consumption of animal-based foods like meat, dairy, and eggs and certain diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.
The findings were based on studies conducted in the 1980s in 65 Chinese counties where plant-based diets were common. They were published in Dr. Campbell’s 2005 book, “The China Study.” The publication is now one of America’s best-selling nutrition books.
Based on the findings, Dr. Campbell says a plant-based diet may spur the immune system into producing more antibodies. Antibodies help the body fight off viral infections.
“Our surveys in China, in 1983 to 1984 and in 1989, show quite impressively, (by several nutrient factors), that consumption of plant-based foods associates with a higher proportion of people having antibodies to the virus causing liver cancer, suggesting that acquired immunity to that virus was promoted by consuming more plant-based foods and less animal-based foods,” Dr. Campbell told LIVEKINDLY.
“I interpret this impressive association of plant-based nutrition with viral immunity for that virus (hepatitis B virus) as very likely being the same for other viruses as well,” he added.
Plant-Based Diet May ‘Minimize The Severity’ Of Coronavirus Symptoms
Although Dr. Campbell says a plant-based diet may not prevent a person from contracting COVID-19, he says it may help mitigate coronavirus symptoms in those who are at risk of infection and those who have the virus but aren’t yet showing symptoms.
“I would expect [a plant-based diet] to minimize the severity of the infection and the need for hospitalizations… The whole-food, plant-based effect is surprisingly fast—within days for certain indicators of health, ” he explained.
Dr. Campbell noted a plant-based diet may be most beneficial to people over the age of 60—particularly those with pre-existing health conditions, because they are most vulnerable to the coronavirus.
“It should be noted that most of those who acquire COVID and die are older people whose health has been seriously compromised by poor nutrition that increases the risk for degenerative diseases like heart disease, diabetes, cancer, etc.,” he said.
He added: “In brief, whole food plant-based nutrition accomplishes two things, a) increases formation of antibodies and b) minimizes [the] risk of those diseases that increase risk of the serious symptoms of COVID.”