SCOTS have been urged to give up smoking and cut down their alcohol consumption in a bid to reduce “complications linked to conroavirus”.
The country’s interim chief medical officer, Dr Gregor Smith, has called on people to cut their intake of alcohol and tobacco during the lockdown to reduce the likelihood of becoming more unwell if they contract Covid-19.
Dr Smith had called on the public to enjoy a balanced diet during the lockdown.
He said: “Now more than ever, it’s important that we all take the steps possible to look after ourselves. Eating well, staying active are really important for both our physical health and our mental wellbeing.
“Eating a balanced, healthy diet which includes a variety of different foods will help ensure that you get all the essential nutrients and energy you need throughout the day. Food’s an important part of our daily lives and something that many of us enjoy.”
Dr Smith has he understood many found it tempting to turn to cigarettes or alcohol during times of stress, such as the lockdown.
He said: “This is a stressful time for people. Sometimes, when we feel this way, we use substances like tobacco or alcohol more than we usually do.
“We know that both these habits can be harmful - particularly in relation to coronavirus.
“Evidence suggests that smoking may contribute to the severity of Covid-19 disease. We know that people who smoke are much more likely to experience other respiratory infections such as flu.
“Please, if you can, try to cut down or even stop your smoking. If you continue, please remember to wash your hands before and after so that there’s less opportunity for the virus to spread.”
He added: “Alcohol can also reduce the immune system’s ability to fight off infectious disease and also have an impact on your heart and your lungs.
“Choosing to cut back on how much you drink may reduce some of the complications linked to coronavirus.”