Ben Hmad HalimaUniversity Mahmoud Elmatri, Tunisia
Title: Use of vitamin and mineral supplements in the prevention and/or treatment of covid-19: health benefits and risks
The objective of this study was to evaluate the nutritional status of people who took dietary supplements (DS) either as a preventive or curative measure of COVID-19. 160 patients were divided into 3 groups (G1: 83 people who had contracted COVID-19 and had taken DS during the attack, G2: 41 people who had been infected but had not taken DS, and G3: 36 people who had taken DS and had not contracted the virus. Data collection was done through a questionnaire and a dietary survey. The age of the patients varied from 18 to 60 years. The most common symptoms were fatigue, loss of smell, loss of taste, headache, fever, muscle pain and diarrhea. The DS most consumed by the patients were: vitamin C, zinc and vitamin D. Assessment of nutritional status showed that macronutrient intakes were insufficient compared with recommendations. Intakes of some nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, sodium, iron and vitamin B9 were inadequate and did not meet recommendations; however, intakes of vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B1 and zinc were excessive. Our study also recorded differences between women and men contaminated with COVID 19. This disparity showed that men were less resistant to COVID 19 than women. The pandemic raises the stakes for DS consumers. But these products cannot replace a healthy, balanced diet, which is considered the basis for a well-functioning immune system.
Halima BEN HMAS is currently a doctor researcher of physiology department at the University Mahmoud Elmatri. She received her thesis in physiology at 2016. Her research interest includes physiology and nutrition. She is the author and coauthor of more than 12 papers in international refereed journals.