Here’s more incentive to eat a healthy diet: it’s associated with a reduced risk of developing COVID-19 and its serious complications, according to a study published online Sept. 6, 2021, by the journal Gut. Researchers asked about 593,000 adults (mostly middle-aged and older) what they ate in February 2020, and then followed their health through September. Scientists found that people who reported eating the most fruits, vegetables, and legumes had a 9% lower risk of getting COVID and a 41% lower risk of developing severe COVID during the study period, compared with people who reported eating the least fruits and vegetables.

Researchers also found a link between COVID and a poor diet or socioeconomic disadvantages. “If you could remove just one of those factors — diet or disadvantage — we think nearly a third of the COVID-19 cases could have been prevented,” notes Jordi Merino, the study’s lead author and a research associate at the Diabetes Unit and Center for Genomic Medicine at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. The study was observational and doesn’t prove conclusively that a healthy diet prevents COVID. Researchers point out that getting vaccinated and wearing a mask in indoor settings are still the most important approaches to ward off the disease.

Bible verses for today’s meditation and inspiration: Matthew E. McLaren

Mark 11:25
And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

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1 Kings 8:50
And forgive your people, who have sinned against you; forgive all the offenses they have committed against you, and cause their captors to show them mercy;

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Luke 24:47
and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

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Luke 3:3
He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

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Acts 13:38
“Therefore, my friends, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you.

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