Millions of people around the world are now vaccinated against COVID-19 and are one step closer to the comforts they can enjoy with their loved ones. According to data by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare more than 50.2 crore people have got at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine in India. Although the majority of people did not show any adverse reactions, some recipients reported minor illnesses. Many people have experienced some side effects after taking the shot, including headaches, fever, body aches and fatigue. Health experts emphasize that these side effects can be expected in some cases and people should not be discouraged from taking the shot. Rather you can minimize or completely avoid them with a healthy diet and routine. Here are some post-vaccination guidelines and health measures to boost your immune system and maximize the effectiveness of your vaccine.
Staying hydrated before and after vaccination is very important. The most common side effects of the vaccine are muscle aches, fatigue, headaches and fever. Proper fluid intake can not only prevent sickness but can also help reduce the duration and intensity of side effects. Not having enough water per day or the adverse effect of dehydration can be bad for your immune system.
Modified exercise routine
According to WHO guidelines, people should pay attention to immediate side effects and modify their exercise plans accordingly post-vaccination. Pain or swelling at the injection site, weakness, nausea, headache, and fever are some of the common side effects that people may experience after receiving the vaccine. Experts say that the ideal approach is to rest for a day or two after vaccination and then resume daily exercise. High-intensity training within 48-72 hours after vaccination can cause prolonged muscle pain and fatigue. Resting for a few days will not hinder your training progress. Your body needs to heal from side effects. Don't be too harsh on yourself; you won't gain weight in one day.
A balanced diet
Concerning diet, doctors insist that on the day of vaccination you should eat simple food to avoid any side effects like nausea and vomiting. Avoid foods that are not cooked with the real ingredients after your jab. Food such as pasta, processed cheese, noodles or any instant packaged items are a big no-no. The ideal diet contains proteins (dal, meat, paneer), iron, vitamins (cooked vegetables) and carbohydrates (roti and rice). Eating raw items can lead to an inactive infection and should be avoided at this time of immunity building.
Good sleep increases effectiveness
Sleep plays a vital role in our body's immune system. When we get enough sleep, our white blood cells can fight to invade bacteria or viruses more effectively. However, when we reduce sleep, the opposite will happen. Our white blood cells will shrink, which eventually leads to damage to the immune system. Sleep is closely related to the functioning of our immune system, especially when vaccinated. Several studies have shown that lack of sleep a few days before vaccination is related to a weaker antibody response. People who have recently been vaccinated are advised to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep, as sleep deprivation is likely to suppress immunity for the body to rebuild defence mechanisms.
Although WHO suggests that there is no approved scientific research to quantify the effects of alcohol or smoking on vaccination, it is recommended to avoid tobacco or alcohol use, as it can exacerbate and worsen the side effects of the vaccine, making the experience more stressful and unpleasant. Alcohol also has a negative impact on the body's immune system. If there is too much alcohol in the system, the immune response to the vaccine may not be as effective and the same goes for tobacco use.
The vaccine does not guarantee 100% protection against Coronavirus. Even if you are vaccinated, you may be infected with COVID-19, but the infection may be much milder. The vaccine can only protect you from hospitalization, death, and serious illness. You may still be an asymptomatic carrier. You must continue to follow appropriate COVID-19 behaviours, such as using a mask, hand sanitiser, or washing your hands, and keep your distance. Consult your doctor before scheduling a vaccination.
The COVID-19 pandemic has made us realize that the future is uncertain and medical emergencies may occur at any time. Therefore, to protect yourself from any medical emergency, it is important to have health insurance. You can choose a good health insurance plan that covers you against all critical illnesses and gives benefits like cashless hospitalisation, pre and post medical expenses or tax benefits.
Published on 9 Jun 2023
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