"Your Diet is a Bank Account; Good Food Choices are Good Investment"; COVID-19 and Dieting
Objective: To gain insight into the relationship between dieting and unhealthy eating habits with COVID-19 infections and complications.
Study Design: Cross-sectional survey.
Place and Duration of Study: Pak Emirates Military Hospital, Rawalpindi Pakistan during the month of Jan 2021.
Methodology: This study was carried out through a web-based survey. Google forms were used. It included questions exploring dietary habits, weight changes, weight loss methods, COVID-19 status and severity of symptoms, including ten Open-ended questions and seven closed-ended questions.
Results: A total of 314 participants responded to the survey. They were divided into two groups, Group-A and Group-B. The mean age of the participants was 24.3±4.9 years. Group-A participants were doing dieting during last three years off and on as well as had more severe symptoms of COVID-19. On the other hand, Group-B had mild symptoms of COVID-19. Regarding COVID-19 status, 294(92%) participants in the study recovered from COVID-19, and 30(9.5%) participants suffered from COVID-19 at the time of the survey. The results concluded a positive correlation between the type and duration of dieting and severity of COVID-19 symptoms as well as in weight loss of more than 8kg with COVID-19 symptoms.
Conclusion: Among various factors contributing to the extension and severity of COVID-19, dieting represents one of the possible causes of the severity of symptoms of COVID-19. Understanding its importance is of paramount significance and needs further evaluation.