RESILIENCE -- 1) the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness; 2) the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.
Resilience is the new definition of health. Spring of 2020 will go down in history as not only a time of pandemic and fear, but as a time that we took a good hard look at our health and the health of our society. In the case of the Covid-19 virus, how do we ensure our resilience and health through this time? Strategies for health include avoiding the viral infection and fortifying our body’s ability to take care of a viral infection.
AVOID AND DEACTIVATE
WASH HANDS -- Frequent and thorough hand washing with soap and water for 20 seconds.
ALCOHOL BASED HAND SANITIZER -- If not available, straight alcohol 70% will work.
SOCIAL DISTANCING -- Minimize contact with others and keep 3-6 feet of distance interacting with new individuals.
NASAL WASH -- Viral concentration is greatest in the mouth and nasal area. A saline flush will lower this amount.
ZINC/LYSINE -- Decrease viral replication.
GET OUTSIDE -- GET SUNLIGHT. The UVA-UVB waves in sunlight deactivate virus. This was an effective treatment during the Spanish Flu of 1918.
FORTIFY YOUR BODY
HYDRATION -- Drink half of your body weight of water in ounces up to 100oz. Water helps your lungs create the mucus to flush the virus. Hot fluids, soups, green tea with lemon should be consumed frequently.
SLEEP -- Melatonin is the hormone produced at night during sleep. Evidence suggests it has a roll in boosting the immune systems fight against virus. 8-9 hours.
SUNLIGHT -- In addition to the impact of sunlight on the virus, sunlight increases our natural Vitamin D production. It is well known that Vitamin D supports the body’s ability to fight virus.
NO SUGAR OR PROCESSED FOODS!! -- Sugar blocks our ability to fight. Now is not the time to eat or drink sugar. Even though the stress hormones being produced during this time will increase cravings, do not allow sugar into you or your family's diet.
IMMUNE BOOSTING FOODS -- Now is the time to focus on fortifying our diet with foods rich in the chemicals our immune system needs to fight.
Vitamin C containing foods (lemons, limes, peppers, broccoli, tomato, strawberries)
Vitamin A containing foods(carrot, sweet potato, leafy greens, peppers, fish, grapefruit)
Vitamin D (sunlight, mushrooms, sardines, fortified dairy/cheese, beef liver)
Vitamin E (tocotrienols) (olive oil, oats, flax seed, annatto)
B-VITAMINS (B3-NIACINAMIDE) (blueberries, strawberries, green tea, lemon, limes, green leafy, oranges-no juice, spirulina)
Sulfur-rich foods -- Onions, garlic, cabbage (N-acetyl cysteine -- NAC promotes mucus production)
MOVEMENT -- EXERCISE We must move. This will increase body temperature and help kill virus as well as lower damaging stress hormones. Pull out the Wii, get moving and have some fun.
MANAGE STRESS -- Not knowing how the next days will go is very stressful for the brain. Help the brain out by giving it something to focus on. Make a strategic list of projects to accomplish over the next weeks. Stay in contact with family. Pull out crafting projects. Pick up that musical instrument. Do a puzzle. Clean out that closet. Get your garden ready to go. It is important to give your brain something positive to focus on.
STRATEGIES FOR RECOVERY
Many of us will contract this virus and most will recover with little problem. If you have underlying diseases (hypertension, diabetes, autoimmune) you should be extra vigilant in avoiding others and fortifying yourself.
If you have an elevated fever and a persistent cough, ISOLATE, email your physician, call the statewide COVID-19 emergency number 1-877-215-8336 for testing information. DO NOT GO TO EMERGENCY ROOM unless you are having difficulty breathing.
FEVER -- Tolerate fevers up to 103 degrees. The elevated heat is killing virus. Above this treat with ACETAMINOPHEN ONLY (MAXIMUM ADULT DOSE of 3000mg per day or up to 500mg every 4-6-hours!)!! DO NOT USE IBUPROFEN or ALEVE FOR THIS ILLNESS!! Curcumin (from turmeric) can be used for inflammation and discomfort. Inhaling steam from hot showers and warm chest compresses may help improve cough and breathing. Don’t forget to HYDRATE -- drink large amounts of hot liquids.
Promising strategies for recovery are developing from global treatments. The best thing we can all do right now is to stay home, support ourselves physically and emotionally, and use this time to plan for a healthy, resilient future.
Kathy Campbell, PharmD
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