She made the point on Friday, August 6, during the COID-19 Talk with the Experts.
“One of the things that you see people doing during this period is the masses of supplementation of Vitamin D and Vitamin C, and all of the ginger and garlic. You can’t find ginger and garlic in the stores because people are just pumping their bodies with these things,” she said.
She continued: “One of the things that we have to realize is especially with the bush and the herbs, is that they are very potent, and if you are already taking certain medications, a lot of the times these things conflict with each other. So you might end up on the dirty end of the stick actually because when you are thinking you are giving yourself this fighting chance, you are overdosing yourself with all of these things, basically cancelling each other out.”
Maduro said it is often said that healthcare professionals don’t promote the use of herbal remedies enough, but there is a reason for that.
“What people have to realize is a lot of these things we don’t have clinical guidelines for them, so therefore we cannot prescribe anything. We cannot tell you how much to take of this things because we don’t know exactly how they interact with your body, how they interact with other medications that you are taking and so on.”
She added: “People need to understand, we are not trying to harm you, or what they are trying to say is that the pharmaceutical companies are just trying to make money. It’s just that ethically we cannot tell you because there is no clinical guidelines for these things.”
The Public Health Nutritionist further expressed that persons need to be eating healthier foods, getting adequate exercise, reduce alcohol intake, and that is how the body’s immunity is strengthened.
“In the BVI, from the beginning of COVID, we said from the beginning we don’t have a healthy population, and that’s just the reality of it. We have a population where I think 70 percent they have some sort of non-communicable disease, and we do have a problem with overweight and obesity in our population,” she remarked.
She continued: “We do have a culture of alcohol, whether we want to acknowledge it or not. We drink for everything. So all of these behaviours lead to where we are today in terms of our health profile and our status with non-communicable chronic diseases.”
She reminded persons that if they contract COVID-19 with a poor immune system, “the risk of death is higher like unfortunately in the cases that we have had, so now is the time even more than ever before we have to push healthy eating.”
She pointed to a study that showed that there is a reported increase in liver damage to the point where there had to be liver transplants because persons are taking massive amounts of supplements and herbal medications, and this was having a negative impact on the liver.
“We like to say these are natural things, and they don’t have chemicals; they are all chemicals nonetheless. No, we are not saying not to take them, or they are not doing anything because we all grew up on these things; what we are saying is these things we have to use them cautiously.”