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Coronavirus Outbreak Fueling Sales of Health Foods

China’s ongoing battle with the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), has underscored the importance of fostering the body’s immune system. The virus seems to preferentially affect the elderly, particularly those with comorbidities. The increased case-fatality rate and increased incidence of the virus in the elderly can confidently be attributed to the decreased efficiency of the immune systems of elderly people compared to younger people. In China, there has been an understandable increase in interest in foods and bioactive substances purported to strengthen the body’s innate immunological defenses. Two areas of China's food sector that are performing particularly well during the epidemic are health foods (functional food) and nutrient supplements.

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