We are all looking for reliable information about the coronavirus, or COVID-19. Here at Suggestic we have excellent resources to share with you. So take a moment to browse and know that there are many solutions for how to manage at home and in ways that are best for you and your loved ones during this difficult time.
Remember, the key to slowing the spread of the virus, in addition to vigilant hand-washing and avoiding touching your face, is social distancing--or self isolation. You may be working from home, your kids may be home because school is closed and after-schoool programs like sports have been canceled. Your routines are changed for the moment. No doubt, these are uncharted waters.
Is this stressful? You bet. But just consider how important your actions are. This is an act of social solidarity; you are making these changes in order to give our healthcare workers a chance to get on top of this pandemic. You are being a good citizen by not spreading the virus to those who cannot stay at home and heal.
Meanwhile, here's what you can do to help yourself and support your loved ones.
Boost your immune system
You may have heard that COVID-19 is just another form of the flu. In fact, it is much more lethal for the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. The key is having a strong immune response to the virus. Here are some important ways you can boost your immune system and help stave off the virus.
You may be wondering if there are foods to boost your immunity or whether or not vitamins work. The short answer, for the most part, is yes! Now more than ever, food is medicine. Eat these foods and give your body the tools to stay healthy!
- Bell peppers
- Bone broth
- Brazil nuts
- Chicken (and chicken soup)
- Citrus fruits
- Fish and seafood
- Green tea
- Mushrooms (Shitakii)
- Olive oil
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Sweet potatoes
- Yogurt and kefir
Take Vitamins and Supplements
In addition to the foods you eat, vitamins and supplements are an important way to support your immune system. Here are a few more to consider adding to your daily intake.
-Vitamin C may help to prevent infections and has been shown to shorten the duration of colds. Higher doses of Vitamin C during an illness can also act as a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory.
- Vitamin A deficiency, supplementation can be extremely helpful in supporting our body’s ability to fight infections, particularly with regard to respiratory infections. It is also t oxic in high quantities so consult a healthcare professional before taking
- Vitamin D3 (+K2 for better absorption) - is one of the most important and powerful nutrients for supporting our immune system. Numerous studies have shown that we need it to produce proteins that kill viruses and bacteria. People with reduced sun exposure are generally deficient. Important to note that vitamin D can be toxic in high quantities and should not be taken by anybody with kidney disease.
- Zinc – plays a significant role in boosting immunity. Often available as lozenges, zinc can help to reduce the frequency of infections as well as the duration and severity of viral infections.
- Echinacea – is an herbal remedy that is used to treat infectious disease because it stimulates the body’s immune response and acts as a natural antibiotic and antiviral. Echinacea can be taken as a tea, tincture or capsule per dosage instructions and is an herbal remedy safe for children and pregnancy. It is typically taken at the first sign of a virus.
- Elderberry extract/syrup – can be helpful in reducing cold duration and severity. It has been shown to both help prevent infection with influenza viruses as well as demonstrating potent antiviral properties that can aid in reducing flu duration and symptoms. Caution in using elderberry may be needed in some people with autoimmune diseases due to the way it stimulates the immune system.
- Garlic – contains a variety of compounds that can influence immunity. Some studies have shown that both fresh garlic as well as aged garlic extract and some other garlic supplements may reduce viral upper respiratory infection severity as well as function in prevention of infection with viruses that can cause colds.
- Glutathione – The body’s “master” antioxidant, glutathione helps to protect cells from free radical damage, plays a crucial role in detoxification and enhances immune fuction by regulating T-cells. Work with your doctor for best practices and dosages.
- Honey – preferably raw, is good at relieving minor pain and inflammation, has antioxidant properties, and has some antimicrobial effects. It is helpful for coughs, sore throats and can be added to hot tea. In particular Manuka honey has additional anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Probiotics – Probiotics support the microbiome, which is foundational to immune health. In particular, a dual synergy probiotic like one from Biohm combines beneficial bacteria with beneficial fungi and digestive enzymes to provide total digestive and microbiome support.
Get enough sleep
Try to get at least 7 hours a night and go to bed and get up at the same time every day, when possible. Some also advise to avoid screens and alcohol before bedtime. If you're not getting quality sleep, your immune system is not at its peak. Less than 6 hours a night, one study showed, left subjects more than 4 times more likely to get a cold virus when they were exposed to it.
Lower your stress
Easier said than done. But it's been proven that those with less reported stress catch colds less often. There are plenty of techniques for managing stress, like a 10-minute dauly meditation, yoga and breathwork, even talk therapy.
Still haven't had enough? Here are a few reliable sources.
- Centers for Disease Control coronavirus page
- World Health Organization
- Johns Hopkins information hub
Keep checking back for updates and more resource information!
-- The Suggestic COVID-19 team