Grandchild delivers groceries to grandparents during pandemic at their home - stock photo

Eating the right diet is crucial to keep well physically and mentally. A key part of recovery from COVID-19 is to make sure your diet is healthy. 

This series of talks aims to answer questions on what to eat and why. We also look at how to check and manage your diet and health.

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The talks

Is there an anti-inflammatory diet?

Philip Calder, Professor of Nutritional Immunology, University of Southampton

  • What are the links between diet and immunity?
  • Which nutrients have a role in immunity and why or how?
  • Is there an anti-inflammatory diet that I can follow to reduce inflammation in my body?

Is there a link between food and my symptoms?

Hannah Hunter, MSc, HCPC Registered Dietitian

  • How to monitor your diet and link symptoms to food
  • How to use a food diary effectively

Psychological wellbeing and communication with healthcare professionals

Chandanee Kotecha, Clinical Psychologist

  • Managing long COVID symptoms from both a mental and physical perspective
  • Managing expectations – how to feel heard and validated
  • How to communicate successfully with your healthcare professional

Diet and COVID

Dr Sarah Berry, Reader in Nutritional Sciences, Department of Nutritional Sciences, King’s College London and Elaine Anderson, Registered Dietitian (Freelance and NHS)

  • How has the pandemic disrupted our dietary habits and lifestyle?
  • How is diet related to COVID risk and severity?
  • What can help, from a nutritional perspective, to manage long COVID related symptoms?
  • Is there a specific diet or supplement that can help recovery?

Q&A Panel with all our experts

Philip Calder, Hannah Hunter, Chandanee Kotecha, Sarah Berry and Elaine Anderson are all returning to answer questions that our viewers posted following the talks.

Topics include:

  • immunity
  • vitamins
  • supplements
  • probiotics
  • guidelines.

Speaker biographies

Philip Calder, Professor of Nutritional Immunology, University of Southampton

Philip Calder is Professor of Nutritional Immunology in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton. He is an internationally recognised researcher in two related areas: 1) the metabolism and functionality of fatty acids, with an emphasis on the roles of omega-3 fatty acids, and 2) the influence of diet and nutrients on the immune and inflammatory responses. 

His research covers the life course from pre-conception to old age and includes studies in model systems and in healthy humans and patients.

Philip Calder, Professor of Nutritional Immunology, University of Southampton

Hannah Hunter, MSc, HCPC Registered Dietitian
Affiliation: Guy's and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust.

Hannah is a specialist allergy dietitian at Guy's Hospital in London, where she splits her time between outpatient clinics, research, and health professional education. She has over a decade of experience helping people manage their sensitivities to food. Hannah’s personal experience with food allergy gives her a unique perspective into the challenges people face.

Her research interests include peanut allergy, pollen food syndrome and lipid transfer protein (LTP) allergy. She recently completed her MSc in Allergy at Imperial College London with a research project investigating a novel dietary intervention for the management of eosinophilic oesophagitis (EoE).

She is the PR Officer for the Food Allergy Specialist Group of the BDA and is the dietetic representative for the BSACI council. In addition she contributes to national guidelines, including pollen food syndrome and EoE.

Hannah Hunter, Allergy Dietitian

Dr Sarah Berry, Reader in Nutritional Sciences, Department of Nutritional Sciences, King’s College London

Dr Sarah Berry is a Reader in Nutritional Sciences at King’s College London. Her research interests relate to the influence of dietary components on markers of cardiovascular disease risk, with a particular focus on precision nutrition. Sarah is the lead nutritional scientist on the PREDICT programme, assessing the genetic, metabolic, metagenomic, and meal-dependent effects on metabolic responses to food in >3,000 individuals in the UK and US. She is also lead of the Diet and Lifestyle Survey in the COVID Symptom Study, with diet and lifestyle data on 1.1 million people pre- and during the pandemic.

Dr Sarah Berry, Reader in Nutritional Sciences, Department of Nutritional Sciences, King’s College London

Elaine Anderson, Registered Dietitian (Freelance and NHS)

Elaine has been a dietitian for over 12 years and has experience in a variety of areas including neuro rehabilitation, gastroenterology, oncology, mental health and palliative care. She is currently living with Long Covid and has first-hand experience of the challenges and symptoms faced by those who have the condition.

In addition to her NHS work, she runs Care 4 Nutrition, a workplace health and online nutrition consultancy. She helps businesses improve the health of their employees through nutrition interventions. She also assists individuals to find an enjoyable and sustainable way of eating that supports current health concerns and long-term wellbeing. She can be contacted via email or via social media: LinkedIn: care4nutrition

Elaine Anderson, Registered Dietitian (Freelance and NHS)


At the start of the pandemic the British Dietetic Association asked us to bring together a consensus on the best way to nutritionally care for people who had COVID-19 infection. 
Our work involved collating published research and guidelines, finding out what was happening on the frontline of healthcare, and talking to patients and healthcare professionals about their experiences. 
This series of free talks has been inspired by the people we spoke to on topics that have proved challenging for patients recovering from COVID-19.

More information

If you would like to receive further information about Nutrition and COVID-19 Recovery please contact us. 

The team

These talks are brought to you by a team of nutrition and diet experts from across the UK. We have been working together to make information available to healthcare professionals and the public about the best practice in nutritional care for people with COVID-19 infection or its effects.
  • Mary Hickson, Professor of Dietetics, University of Plymouth
  • Gary Frost, Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics, Imperial College London
  • Jane Murphy, Professor of Nutrition, Bournemouth University
  • Liz Weekes, Consultant Dietitian and Research Lead, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust and Senior Clinical Lecturer, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Anna Julian, Advanced Specialist Dietitian, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
  • Abigail Tronco Hernandez, Research Fellow, University of Plymouth

Further reading

Is there an anti-inflammatory diet?
  • Calder PC (2020) Nutrition, immunity and COVID-19. BMJ Nutr Prev Health 3:e000085.doi: 10.1136/bmjnph-2020-000085 - this paper is Open Access.
  • Gibson A, Edgar JD, Neville CE, Gilchrist SE, McKinley MC, Patterson CC, Young IS, Woodside JV (2012) Effect of fruit and vegetable consumption on immune function in older people: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr 96, 1429-1436.doi: 10.3945/ajcn.112.039057
  • Samuelson DR, Welsh DA, Shellito JE (2015) Regulation of lung immunity and host defense by the intestinal microbiota. Front Microbiol 6, 1085.doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2015.01085 - this paper is Open Access.
Is there a link between food and my symptoms?
BDA food fact sheets:

Contact us

This knowledge hub is constantly being reviewed and updated. We welcome your comments or feedback about it.

Please contact and we will get back to you promptly.