In this time of health crisis there is no disputing the critical practice of sanitization: Everyone should be using such things as alcohol cleanser and more importantly soap and water with each jaunt out of the house, sanitizing one’s hands after each stop (if any stores are open), so to prevent contamination, for example, of the steering wheel.
But let’s be realistic: it may be impossible to keep away all exposure to coronavirus. And here’s the point: With all the countless ways this pathogen could find its way into your environment — repairmen, landscapers, deliverymen — one has to look at what is your very best bet: bolstering your immune system.
A strong biological “firewall” is a formidable defense against most viruses (including flu and colds) and may well prevent or mitigate illness despite exposure.
And so let’s get down to a few specifics.
Ironically, seeing how this has all occurred during Lent, many are those who believe that fasting improves immunity, giving the body time to regroup and cleansing the bloodstream and organs of impurities. Pray. Fast. Don’t let fear grip you.
When it comes to bolstering our physiological defenses, garlic probably reigns supreme, along with ginger, citrus fruits, dark leafy vegetables, turmeric, almonds, poultry, chili peppers, sweet yellow peppers, thyme, parsley, pumpkin seeds, strawberries, and red bell peppers. Make a big batch of garlic soup (perhaps with turmeric, tomato sauce, and parsley).
A while back, a paper filed with the National Institutes of Health reported that a garlic extract had effects on avian infectious bronchitis virus, a single-stranded RNA virus that belongs to the family of coronaviruses. (A bit of technicality here: ” All viruses in the family of coronavirus replicate in the cytoplasm of infected cells. By comparing the results of two strains of IBV, it can be concluded that garlic extract has a significant effect on Intervet 4/91 as a sub-acute strain both in the mixture with several dilutions of virus and as a treatment, 8 hr after exposure to the virus.”)
There are of course many foods that assist our immunity: mushrooms, green tea, pomegranates, and sweet potatoes among them. If you are allergic to one of the above, or can’t tolerate something like zinc, seek a replacement. If you have a serious medical condition, always consult your physician.
Drink plenty of water, preferably unchlorinated.
As for supplements: vitamin C seems to be the consensus champion (1,000 to 5,000 mg a day, in a situation like this), as well as vitamin D to help against respiratory infection (the way the coronavirus seems to cause the most damage) and zinc (which is available in products at your pharmacy or supermarket such as Airborne).
Why vitamin D to lower risk for respiratory illness?
Our bodies need adequate vitamin D to produce the antimicrobial proteins that kill viruses and bacteria.
“If you don’t have adequate vitamin D circulating, you are less effective at producing these proteins and more susceptible to infection,” says Dr. Adit Ginde, professor of emergency medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the study’s lead author. “These proteins are particularly active in the respiratory tract.”
Oily fish such as mackerel, tuna, salmon, sardines, herring, and trout also seem to be helpful, as are flaxseeds, as far as general immunity.
Get your rest. Try to relieve yourself of stress. Don’t eat within three hours of going to sleep (so as not to disrupt it). Take melatonin (a natural supplement) if you have trouble getting back to sleep.
Most importantly, pray to the Holy Spirit, asking what your body specifically needs, since every body is different.
[see also: disinfecting your car]
[A further note on stress: “In a series of remarkable studies over 20 years at Carnegie Mellon University, volunteers were exposed to the cold virus (using nose drops) and then quarantined for observation,” reports The New York Times. “The researchers found that people who reported less stress in their lives were less likely to develop cold symptoms. Another series of studies at Ohio State University found that marital conflict is especially taxing to the immune system. In a series of studies, the researchers inflicted small wounds on the arms of volunteers, and then asked couples to discuss topics both pleasant and stressful. When couples argued, their wounds took, on average, a full day longer to heal than after the sessions in which the couples discussed something pleasant. Among couples who exhibited especially high levels of hostility, the wounds took two days longer to heal.”]
[From the Mail (for prudent discernment only): “I found out about chaga mushroom and high doses of vitamin C and taking vitamin D stops and kills covid-19 a few months ago. I believe this will keep you safe and save our lives. A herbalist in China had 17 elderly patients being treated for cancer, 15 took chaga, two didn’t….the virus came through his patients, 15 that took chaga did not get overly sick, the 2 that didn’t take it died. Vitamin B’s and niacin may stop body from cytokine storm. Vitamin C dose at 23-50 mg/kg (person weight) & chaga will stop virus from taking hold.” Frank Kunkel]