The irony in creating this blogpost for you is…I have had a “back to school health hack” blogpost in my queue for 18 months. I wish I was kidding. However, there is no time like the present to just start a fresh post converting the two. I will say, it is very affirming to see a lot of the holistic health advice being discussed, shared, and promoted as of recent. Some of the tips and tricks I want to share with you are very common conversation in the wellness and functional medicine community right now! These tips and tricks can be used DAILY and CONTINUOUSLY preventatively or if you have already been diagnosed with a virus or illness.
Now…I have had a personal interest in this specific virus and I have been watching its impact internationally for several weeks now. Sadly, I am not surprised we are seeing it spread, but I do think we can learn from others. Our actions (and lack of actions) are our responsibility. We are not powerless in this fight against this virus. Let’s use that as an advantage. I challenge you to DO YOUR PART and the biggest role you can play is social distancing (at least in reference to this most recent virus). I am certain y’all know what I am referring to, COVID-19. COVID-19 stands for the novel (new) coronavirus of 2019. You do not need to have symptoms in order to have contracted this virus. That statement is not meant to scare you, rather to empower you to be responsible in how you isolate and change your daily routines.
This virus is a tricky one. The experts have much to learn about it, but we do know it is a highly contagious virus that impacts the respiratory system greatly. The most common symptoms are a new continuous cough, a high temperature, and shortness-of-breath. If you find yourself having these symptoms, call your doctor. Some people and populations are at higher risk than others. This is why we have a social responsibility to not only protect ourselves but also protect others by not promoting the spread!
My goal is to give you simple and practical tips to help BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM. Please reach out if I can be more of a resource, if you have specific questions, or if I can support you during this interesting time we are all self-quarantining through 🙂 ENJOY!
1. REMAIN CALM
Do not panic. This is a great place to use the saying, “Control the Control-ables.” PRACTICE SOCIAL DISTANCING AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE! Breath work comes in real handy here…thank you Wim Hof!
STAY HOME = this is thee only way to eliminate the risk of getting any virus = eliminating your exposure. WASH YOUR HANDS for at least 20-30 seconds, stop touching your face (eyes, mouth, mucous membranes) because this is how the virus is contracted and spreads. When/if needed utilize a N95 mask and gloves as a barrier if you must be in an area with many people. Currently, the CDC is telling the public to NOT be in groups of more than 10 people.
2. GOODBYE FEAR
FEAR = DECREASED IMMUNE SYSTEM!!! In a fancy way: anticipatory stress & fear signals to the amygdala to activate the sypathoadrenal and HPA axis, resulting in the release of catecholamines which turn on pro-inflammatory response genes.
There is something to be said about positive distraction. Meditate, practice deep breathing (SO many free apps/resources out there), read a book , go for a walk, take a bath, diffuse essential oils, FaceTime your family/friend, try a new recipe, do something for yourself…work on that project you’ve been putting off for six months…& remember there is power in prayer!! Thank God for your health and pray a blanket of protection over yourself from what you can not control, God’s got you and already knows the ending to this story, find peace in that! 🙂
3. EAT, SLEEP, HYDRATE
This advice is pretty basic – I hope you practice and make it a priority in your everyday routine! QUALITY sleep, proper hydration, and nutritious whole foods can truly be game changers! You can NOT out-supplement a bad diet…but yes, I DO recommend supplements…keep reading!
*7-9 hours of sleep/night allows for a strong immune response. Limiting blue light especially after sunset helps optimize sleep-wake cycles AND circadian rhythms.
*The easy rule of thumb = 1/2 your body weight in ounces/day of water at minimum!
* Limit or cut out processed sugar. Sugar is an immune suppressant. Simply, just eat whole foods, but specifically the following are known to be immune boosting: apples, asparagus, bell peppers, bone broth, brazil nuts, garlic, ginger, jicama, kefir, kimchi, leeks, lemon, liver, manuka honey, mistake & shiitake mushrooms, mustard greens, onions, oranges, oysters, pumpkin seeds, salmon, sauerkraut, strawberries, and turmeric. (just to name a few)
We are SO blessed to have proven research and studies at our disposal. These show us how to best utilize supplements & holistic remedies to our benefit! Fun Fact: High Dose IV Vitamin C Therapy has been officially recommended for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19. These holistic remedies are available to do DAILY & CONTINUOUSLY as prevention and treatment!
Evidence Based & Recommendations by Board Certified Medical Professionals
* Vitamin C: High Doses, 4-6,000mg 2-3x/day per Dr. Motley
* Vitamin D3: 4-6,000 IU 2x/day per Dr. Motley (use the dMinder app to measure natural sunshine/Vitamin D absorption)
*Optimal Zinc Intake: Can consume zinc through diet and a multivitamin . Zinc can impair viral replication, WOHOO!
*Colloidal Silver: spray or drops, can also utilize this multiple times a day. Silver is a natural antiviral and antibacterial that has been around for ages!
* Elderberry Syrup: another natural antiviral. Take it by itself or make a lil tonic out of it 😉 Great to do daily especially during flu season, personally I like the taste.
*Oil of Oregano: has shown to stop replication and kill coronaviruses in cell structure per Dr. Fitzgerald. Its compounds have systemic benefits especially in the respiratory & gastrointestinal tract. FYI: this is a ‘hot’ oil so if in a droplet form I would dilute with a little water and shoot it back! 😉
*Other Essential Oils: if they are CPTG (certified pure therapeutic grade) most can be ingested and used topically – or commonly diffused! Oils with antiviral properties include: bergamot, black pepper, cassia, cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, frankincense, helichrysum, melaleuca, Melissa, myrrh, patchouli, peppermint, rosemary, & thyme. If you use doTERRA oils I’d encourage you to utilize the Protective Blend — bonus = it smells great!!
As a nurse, someone who has studied holistic health, and spent nearly 1,000 clinical hours in multiple hospital settings over my nursing journey…these are my personal tips & tricks to share with y’all!
I am not a doctor and I ALWAYS recommend you consult your own primary physician if you have questions concerning your health ESPECIALLY if you have an auto-immune condition currently! If you would like the specific sources/resources I have used please message me and I will get them to you!