10 simple, easy and healthy food options for covid-19 positive individuals

India is currently witnessing a huge surge in covid-19 cases with the highest number of positive cases recorded in this week (second week of April 2021) since the pandemic began. While experts are struggling to blame this to the new covid strains or laxity in covid appropriate behavior by citizens; fact remains that we are again in a struggling position. While home quarantine is one of the major and widely used strategies to curb the chain of infection; there arises a question about healthy food options for covid-19 positive individuals who are under quarantine.

Covid patients may experience a number of symptoms ranging from fever, body pain, headaches, nausea, loss of taste and/or smell, diarrhea, etc. In this blog, we wish to throw some light on food options that can be eaten safely during quarantine period. Before starting, it is crucial to state that during infectious conditions it is vital to:
• eat foods that are well cooked
• prefer a combination of cereals and pulses
• prefer adequate proteins
• prefer healthy nuts
• amongst spices, prefer turmeric with pepper (black or white) and prefer adding garlic wherever possible
• prefer water that is boiled for at least 20 mins.

10 simple, easy and healthy food options for Covid-19 infected individuals:

1. Idli with sambar: Idli is an excellent cereal and pulse combination. Children and young ones can eat idli with ghee greased on it. Sambar is a healthy fluid option. All vegetables too that are added in it like onion, tomato, lauki, pumpkin, drumstick make it a wholesome recipe.

2. Dalia khichdi with muli kadi: Dalia is broken wheat and provides healthy calories. When dalia is combined with dal, it too becomes a healthy cereal and pulse combination. Our grandmom\’s usually say we should not have curds during episodes of fever, so kadi is a better replacement for curd. Kadi is a healthy fluid and several vegetables can be added to it like muli (raddish)/ onion/ ladies finger/ etc. Another winter special ingredient (as it is available only during winter season)i.e. fresh turmeric too can be added to kadi. Dalia khichdi can be altered with oats khichdi or jowar and bajra khichdi or buckwheat khichdi for ones who are on a diabetic diet and need other options to dalia.

This option is one of the most healthy food options for covid-19 positive individuals who are either overweight/ obese or have high blood pressure or high cholesterol problems. To know more about quarantine special meal options for individuals with diabetes or heart disease, click here.

3. Palak and mint pulao with tomato and basil soup: Green leafy vegetables are essential for vitamins and minerals and one can easily incorporate them in diet through cereals like rice. Soups need to be homemade and not packaged. Addition of flavouring agents like basil, mint, pepper (black or white), roasted jeera powder, ajwain, cinnamon, etc can help in enhancing the taste as usually most of patients struggle with taste during infectious episodes.

4. Methi paratha with dahi wale aloo: Adding methi to parathas is a good way of incorporating green leafy vegetables in diet. Dahi wale aloo is another twist for incorporating healthy and proteinaceous curd in the diet. Curd offers growth of good intestinal bacteria that help in digestion, so one should prefer it in daily routine. An alternate to dahi wale aloo is dahi wale baingan, dahi wali fulgobhi or dahi wali bhindi.

5. Bisi bele rice with rasam: Bisi bele rice is a combination of rice and dal with plenty of vegetables cooked in tamarind pulp. It can be served with raita; however, for precautionary measure we have opted for rasam instead of raita. Rasam is a tasty, tangy soup made up of dal. Bisi bele bhat with rasam makes a perfect quarantine dinner.

6. Kurmura and sprouts upma: This upma is made by soaking kurmura (puffed rice) in water and then cooking it like upma. Sprouts (well cooked) can be added in quantity similar to onion. This recipe can be eaten as an evening snack which is healthy as well as tasty and quick to prepare. If sprouts are not handy, one can add paneer.

7. Pesuruttu: Pesurruttu or pesarattu is a simple, quick and easy recipe. It consists of single pulse i.e. moong (green gram). It is a nutritious recipe that can be had for breakfast or evening during quarantine period. It is also an easily digestible healthy food option for covid-19 infected children or adults.

8. Masala egg omlette: Simple omlettes can be a great savior during illness. As they are simple and quick to prepare and do not need much expertise, they can be preferred daily. Eggs are rich in good quality proteins, they help to boost your body\’s defense mechanism.

9. Scrambled egg with whole wheat toast: Scrambled egg can be preferred with either whole wheat toast or egg fried rice. Scrambled eggs too are quick and simple to cook. Toppings of green leafy vegetables like sauteed palak, tomatoes, onion may help in imparting good taste as well as enhancing the nutritive value.

10. Egg parathas: Egg parathas are healthy mini meal options and can be preferred with a vegetable curry. They may also be prefered with egg bhurji or paneer bhurji or bhuna soya masala. To keep it simple and light, one can prefer egg parathas with freshly made raw mango and garlic chutney.

Special attention: Avoid the above recipes in case you have loose motions. Prefer curd rice/ curd with moong dal khichdi/ curd poha/ curd and rawa upma, till loose motions persist. All patients should avoid commercially prepared foods as they may be high in salt, sugar, spices and fats.

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