New Omicron subvariants
Corona Virus started its impact in 2020 and the impact is still alive today. Even though we went through a series of lockdowns and heartbreaking deaths of loved ones, the deadly virus has kept its roots alive still today.
The original virus has been mutating and going on producing several variants. The last dangerous variant to be known was the Omicron and it quite created an air of tension in several places.
Recently, researchers have found a string of new Omicron subvariants. The new variant has entered India and have been the cause of rising Coronavirus infections in various parts of the world including US and Singapore.
Children, elderly, those suffering from chronic diseases and ones with low immunity should especially be careful in wake of the spread of these highly-infectious strains.
Swaminathan informed that WHO is also tracking derivatives of BA.5 and BA.1, which are more transmissible and immune-evasive. As the virus evolves, it is going to become more transmissible, she added.
“There are over 300 subvariants of Omicron. I think the one that is concerning right now is XBB, which is a recombinant virus. We had seen some recombinant viruses earlier. It is very immune-evasive, which means it can overcome the antibodies. So slightly that we may see another wave of infections in some countries because of XBB,” she said.
The symptoms of the latest strains are mild and most of the people infected or re-infected with them are recovering at home, with only few needing hospitalisation. However, with winters approaching, experts say the possibility of a fresh wave of Covid infections is highly likely. Everyone has witnessed the powerful impact of Covid during winters.
People now have remained upto double vaccinations but it’s necessary to vaccinate yourself with the booster shots.Apart from taking booster shots or completing your Covid vaccinations, one should also improve their diet to boost immunity and stay healthy overall, so as to avoid getting infected by Omicron or its subvariants.
“So we have not said that the pandemic is over, which means that all precautions and tools continued to be used. Good thing is that we now have many tools and the most important thing is vaccines,” Dr Swaminathan said while emphasising the importance of vaccines to fight the pandemic.
“In the present situation, everyone needs to focus more to boost the immune system in a holistic way continuously to fight against Covid-19 pandemic, especially amid the emergence of new Omicron variants. One of the best ways is to maintain a healthy nutritional status and do mindful eating. Focus on immune boosting nutrients like protein, omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, Vitamin C, A, E and D,” says Haripriya. N, Executive Nutritionist, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Chennai, OMR branch.