PROACTIVE HEALTH MEASURES FOR COVID-19
COVID-19 continues to impact our local and global economy, health, and our way of life. While it is easy to respond from fear, there is an opportunity to be proactive towards better health. There are measures we can take for increased resilience against coronavirus, not only in the interim but for long-term wellbeing. According to the WHO, "health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." Translation? A lack of sickness alone doesn't indicate good health — it goes beyond that. Cultivating true health requires an integrative approach to fortify our vital reserve — and immune system — so we have the wherewithal to handle threats like COVID-19.
What Can I Do to Support My Immune System?
There are preventative measures you can take to strengthen your immune system and decrease response to COVID-19. Some of the most basic lifestyle practices include:
- Drinking half of your weight (lbs.) in ounces of water
- Eating ample anti-inflammatory foods such as fresh non-starchy vegetables and berries, clean grass-fed or free-range protein sources, adequate healthy fats, phytonutrients, and fiber
- Avoiding overconsumption of sugar, processed food, alcohol, high glycemic foods, and artificial ingredients
- Getting adequate sleep/rest
- Managing stress
- Moving your body daily
- Getting as much sunlight and fresh air as possible
- Reducing exposure to TV/news reports, social media and computers
- Staying informed, but do not keep the NOISE going all day long in the background
- Doing things that feed your soul and make you happy
- Staying connected to friends and family virtually
- Going for a walk with whomever you live with and laugh!
The Impact Of Stress On Our Immune System
Reducing stress is a key factor in boosting immune health and resilience. Research shows that ongoing stress is responsible for as much as 90% of health worries.1 The hormones released during stress have downstream effects increasing inflammation and suppressing immune system function, leaving us more vulnerable. Our perception of stress is also a powerful influence on how our body handles an immunological threat. There are many ways to not only reduce stress, but to support the physiological requirements needed to handle a stress response such as magnesium, B vitamins, and adrenal supplements. Aside from supplementation, going back to basics using an integrative approach to rebalancing the body can reinforce the immune system and act as preventative medicine against infections like coronavirus.
How Can I Reduce Stress?
Improving sleep quality, balancing moods, and implementing relaxation techniques can mitigate the body's stress response and boost your immune system. Many free meditations are available online (try www.calm.com) or with apps such as Headspace or BrainTap. Numerous establishments are now offering online yoga, qigong, and similar programs designed to reduce stress. Taking time daily for relaxing activities such as reading, journaling, music, baths, walking in nature, etc. switches the body from fight-or-flight mode to healing mode. This enhances our innate healing capacity and boosts our immune system.
What Can I Take To Support My Immune System?
There is general vitamin/herbal supplementation to support immunity and the impact of viral invasion. Much of the concern about COVID-19 comes from the very small percentage of the infected population (mostly the elderly with pre-existing conditions and the immunocompromised) that will have severe symptoms, largely due to what is known as a cytokine storm that causes lung damage (ARDS). There are numerous supplements that can help to suppress pro-inflammatory cytokines such as Cordyceps, ECGC, Isatis Spp, NAC, Japanese Knotweed, Red Sage, Skullcap, Boneset, Andrographis Paniculate, Houttuynia, and Ginger. There is also evidence that elderberry may be effective in the prevention or early stage of coronavirus; however, it should be discontinued with symptoms of infection or a positive COVID test.2
New reports are coming out that melatonin, our sleep hormone, may play a role in balancing the immune system and has been connected to COVID-19 resilience. Whenever considering supplements, it is important to look for high-quality, third-party verified supplements with optimal potency and purity for proper absorption and utilization. Supplements can provide support and optimize immune function. This includes vitamin C, vitamin D3, zinc, probiotics, and a multivitamin-mineral.
How Can I Maintain Medical Appointments During This Time?
As social distancing becoming the new normal many doctors and other healthcare practitioners are offering telemedicine (many covered by insurance). This option allows a patient to consult virtually with a practitioner through video conferencing on a smartphone or computer from the comfort of one's own home.
What Does A COVID-19 Antibody Test Determine?
If you are not suffering from an acute infection and are curious about whether you may have contracted the virus, the COVID-19 Assay test detects IgM and IgG antibodies to COVID-19 and determines if you have had it in the past or currently have it. Profiling an individual's antibody response is the only way to determine infections with few or no symptoms. Therefore, this test is critical due to the prevalence of asymptomatic and mild cases that were not tested AND for those cases that were contracted prior to the availability of testing. The production of antibodies to COVID-19 suggests natural immunity to the virus for peace of mind and being informed. *This test is distinct from the nasal swap (PCR culture testing) which will only detect an active infection, not a past infection.
Self-Care = Health Care
As people are being forced to reorganize their chaotic, fast-paced lives in response to COVID-19, we are becoming aware of a deeper need to shift our ways for good. Natural medicine and preventative measures using food and lifestyle tactics are recognized as effective ways to support the body's immune system and diminish the impact of viral threats. There has never been a more opportune time to empower oneself towards optimal health, vitality, and longevity.
For more information on supplements, in-person or telemedicine appointments, and COVID-19 Antibody Testing, please visit www.TaoVitality.com or call 860.228.1287. We expressly deny that the information being provided is intended to assist in the curing, diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of coronavirus-related diseases, including but limited to COVID-19, MERS, or SARS. You should always talk with your personal medical professional to discuss what treatments are safe and effective for your own medical needs.
The ideas and recommendations in this article are for informational purposes only. The contents are not intended to replace the advice of the reader’s own healthcare professional or physician. The treatments described in this article may have known and unknown side effects and health hazards. Each reader is solely responsible for his or her own healthcare choices and decisions. The author advises the reader to discuss these ideas with a healthcare professional or physician before trying them. The author does not accept any responsibility for any positive or adverse effects a person claims to experience, directly or indirectly, from the ideas and contents of this article.
1. Salleh, Mohd Razali. “Life event, stress and illness.” The Malaysian journal of medical sciences : MJMS vol. 15,4 (2008): 9-18.
2. Weng, Jing-Ru et al. “Antiviral activity of Sambucus FormosanaNakai ethanol extract and related phenolic acid constituents against human coronavirus NL63.” Virus research vol. 273 (2019): 197767. doi:10.1016/j.virusres.2019.197767