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Coronavirus - healthy diet, healthy outlook

The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan’s nutritionist, Mark Gilbert, looks at the link between obesity and coronavirus, particularly in men.

There’s no harm in going on a diet in these days of coronavirus. In fact, the majority of the evidence shows that if the diet contains all of your required nutrition, it’s probably beneficial. 

Of course, we’re not making any definitive claims, because this is a new virus and there are no drugs, vaccines or lifestyle treatments that have been proven to work but judging by what we have seen with this virus in obese people and the effects of diet on immunity and viruses, there do seem to be some strong hints. 

Seven out of 10 men, according to the data released so far, who have severe symptoms of coronavirus have underlying health problems – a major one of which is obesity (which we know is also related to things like heart disease).

Emerging evidence suggests obesity may increase the risk of Covid-19 complications and that 70 per cent of sufferers who end up in intensive care are overweight or obese 

There is vast literature showing that obesity leads to increased risk and poorer outcomes from viral infections.

Also, data on confirmed cases in the UK and Italy show that those who get severe symptoms or succumb to this virus are more likely to be obese or suffer from health conditions, which are significantly more common in overweight and obese individuals.

The 1:1 Diet, which has its head office in Corby, Northamptonshire, has been shown repeatedly, in gold-standard scientific studies, to significantly reduce weight safely. It has a Steps plan which dieters follow, with one-to-one support from an independent weight loss consultant.

In the UK, in the first approximately 200 severe cases of COVID-19, more than 40 per cent were obese, meaning that obese people were significantly more likely to get severe COVID-19. More than 70 per cent were obese or overweight.

Of 3,200 COVID-19 deaths in Italy, 99 per cent had hypertension, cancer, diabetes and/or heart disease. Obesity wasn’t directly measured but statistically, these people would have been more likely to be obese or overweight. 

Obesity was mentioned as more likely in younger victims of COVID-19.

The 1:1 Diet’s steps plan has also been successfully studied in diabetics, hypertensives and those with cardiovascular risk factors.

It is now well-known that those with diabetes, hypertension, cancer and/or heart disease are at highest risk of severe disease or death. Weight loss reduces the risk factors for all of these diseases and can reverse diabetes, hypertension and vascular disease.

Looking for inspiration?

Read the stories of men who have successfully reached their goal weight on The 1:1 Diet.