CORONAVIRUS – Dietary Guidelines

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  Whole Foods Diet May Help Treat Coronavirus   

To prevent or control Coronavirus

Whole Grains

Whole Grains: Soft brown rice or genuine brown rice cream, if weak digestion or no appetite served with kombu-sesame condiment 50/50 plus umeboshi plum several times a week. Instead of kombu-sesame condiment, gomashio (sesame seed salt condiment), shiso condiment, or sea vegetable condiment may be substituted or alternated.

In the event the person can eat whole food or in addition to the above soft brown rice dishes, rice balls may be given several times per week with umeboshi and nori.

Millet may be substituted or alternated with rice. Other grains such as barley, sorghum, or teff may also be used if rice and millet are unavailable..

Miso Soup

Miso soup daily should be eaten daily with moderate to strong salty taste using 2-year aged barley miso. It should contain wakame or kombu seaweed, and seasonal vegetables; other vegetable or beans soups may be taken occasionally and seasoned with shoyu or sea salt. Other misos, including instant miso, may be used if barley miso is unavailable.


A small amount of vegetables, including leafy green, round, and root vegetables, may be taken daily if appetite and digestion allow. They should be steamed, boiled, stewed, or cooked with other lighter cooking methods. Avoid the use of oil temporarily 


A small volume of beans may be taken daily if appetite and digestion allow, especially lentils, chickpeas, azuki beans, and black soybeans. Use only organic or non-GMO soy and soy products; other African beans may be substituted for these. 

Sea vegetables

Small amounts of nori, wakame, and kombu daily; hiziki or arame small twice a week. In Africa, native seaweeds may be substituted. Traditionally river moss and weed were consumed and can be used instead.


Gomashio or roasted and ground sesame seed salt in a proportion of 16:1 may be taken. Other condiments may be used on rice, grain, or other dishes and will be very beneficial for strengthening the person and preventing or relieving infection. These include umeboshi plums, tekka, sea vegetable powders, shiso leaf powder, and others. Altogether, only about 1 teaspoon of condiment should be taken at the meal. A touch of lemon may be used to help decongest the liver, especially if animal food has been previously eaten. But avoid too much as it is acidic and will be counterproductive.


Eat 1 tablespoon daily of home-made pickles made with shoyu, miso, sea salt, rice bran, or other traditional medium (not sugary, spicy, or chemically), Sauerkraut may be taken instead.


Kukicha and occasionally roasted barley tea or other traditional nonstimulant, nonaromatic tea may be taken daily as principal liquid. Drink when thirsty, but when dehydrated drink continuously or as necessary. Spring, well, or filtered water may be used in cooking or for drinking. Avoid mineral water and distilled water.


Use white sea salt in cooking (but not at the table) and avoid sea salts that are grey, pink, yellow, or clumpy, as they generally have excessively high mineral content. Also avoid all commercial table salt. Use shoyu (natural soy sauce) in cooking (but not at table); use miso and umeboshi as a seasoning in moderation; avoid strong herbs and hot spices.


Avoid temporarily, though a small amount of sesame oil may be brushed on skillet if the person is too malnourished and wasting away; olive or other plant oil may be substituted for sesame (either light or dark). Avoid coconut and palm oil as they are saturated and contribute to heart disease.

Animal Food

Avoid all animal food temporarily as it can concentrate the virus. In extreme cases when the person is malnourished or wasting away, a small volume of white meat fish soup may be given for energy. Serve with a little lemon or grated raw daikon, turnip, or radish to aid in digestion.

Fruit and fruit juice

Avoid or reduce temporarily, but a little stewed fruit, especially that with a sour as opposed to a sweet taste, may be taken in cases of tightness or during the recovery period after the virus has been eliminated.

Nuts and Seeds

Avoid nuts temporarily except chestnuts; no nut butters. A small volume of pumpkin or sesame (1/2 to 1 cup per week) may be taken, ideally blanched or dry roasted, and eaten on grains or vegetables. Avoid tahini and other seed butters temporarily.

Snacks, Sweets, and Desserts

As a rule avoid or reduce during the illness, including natural sweeteners. However, if cravings or too contracted a condition arises, up to 1 tablespoon of brown rice syrup or barley malt may be taken. A small volume of cooked fruits may also be taken, if necessary, ideally thickened with kuzu.

Medicinal Drinks and Dishes

Amount and frequency is standard average and will depend on case.

* Ume-sho-kuzu: 1-2 small cups daily until recovered to help strengthen blood and lymph, resist Infection, and reduce vomiting. Ume-sho-bancha may be taken if kuzu is not available. Ume refers to umeboshi plum; sho to shoyu or natural soy sauce, and kuzu to kuzu (kudzu) root thickener. If kuzu is not available, use kukicha (bancha twig tea). If this is not available, just use water.

• Shio kombu:1/2 to 1-inch square daily for up to 10 days to strengthen the blood and restore flexibility to the heart and blood vessels and prevent hemorrhaging. This is salty kombu.

One or more of the following may also be given depending on symptoms 

·      Azuki Bean Tea to strengthen kidney discharge: 1 small cup daily

·      Barley or Pearl Barley Tea to soften skin and facilitate discharge: 1 small cup 2-3 times per week.

      Sweet Veggie Drink: 1 small cup daily to reduce sweet cravings. (Made with 4 sweet vegetables: squash, onions, carrbot, and cabbage cooked in water and no seasoning).

·     Kombu Tea: 1 small cup daily or every other day to strengthen blood.

• Dried Daikon and Shiitake Tea: 1-2 times per week or more for acute cases to facilitate discharge of excess animal protein, relieve blockages, and relax.

• Kanten or Yu-dofu with Chinese cabbage to cool down the body and prevent overheating from within.

• Lotus Root: Use fresh or dried lotus root in cooking (e.g., miso soup or side dish) to help relieve internal bleeding      

External Applications                    

·      • Tofu-chlorophyl plaster on head, as much as needed, if necessary to break high fever 

·      • Roasted salt pack on the kidneys, abdomen, or other region to relieve muscle ache or pain

Recommended Reading

Aveline Kushi’s Complete Guide to Macrobiotic Cooking by Aveline Kushi with Alex Jack, Warner Books, 1985. The principal macrobiotic cookbook.

One Peaceful World Cookbook by Alex Jack and Sachi Kato, BenBella Books, 2017. Over 150 whole-foods, plant-based recipes for those in usual good health.

The Book of Macrobiotics by Michio Kushi with Alex Jack, Square One Publications, 2013. Newly revised edition of the classic book on macrobiotic principles, including dietary guidelines for 10 regions of the world, summary of scientific-medical research on macrobiotics, and nutrient tables.

The Macrobiotic Path to Total Health by Michio Kushi with Alex Jack, Ballantine Books, 2003. A comprehensive guide to preventing and relieving more than 200 chronic and infectious conditions, including menus, recipes, and home cares.

Basic Home Remedies by Alex Jack, Bettina Zumdick, and Edward Esko. Macrobiotic home cares, including special dishes, foods, and compresses that may be helpful for infectious conditions such as coronavirus.

For further information, including dietary guidelines and home remedies, please visit: For further information on macrobiotics visit: 

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