Tips for Staying Healthy During COVID19

Here is some content from a pediatrician friend. This person acknowledges how fast this information is coming at us and changing, “OK, seeing a few confused/inaccuracies from non-medical friends’ posts, here’s a super short (for me) version of COVID, what we know now, which will be obsolete by the time I hit send.” I will paraphrase their content in bullet points below adding a few thoughts of my own as well and quotes when directly quoting the pediatrician’s content. It’s a lot of info but valuable and nice to have all in one place.

Spreading Corona: “You can have no symptoms and spread it.” Symptoms can be mild at first and keep worsening for more than 2 weeks. Some people feel better for a few days and then symptoms come back even harder “so don’t get cocky.”

Wear a mask, even a homemade mask to protect others from you, and protect yourself from others. “Save the medical masks for medical workers until there are enough for all.” Practice sanitary mask wearing practices by only touching the strings to place over your ears and not wearing it on your neck which drags germs around the face and neck.

Essentially everyone needs to act like they have Corona actively with their sanitation practices in public and at home. Have a place when you enter your home to take off all clothes from the outside world to quarantine for 72 hours, hang in the sun, or wash. Leave masks, sunglasses, keys, anything from the car there to be sanitized or sit for 72 hours. Wash your hands, change your clothes, maybe take a hot shower, and drink some hot tea before really touching anything in your home.

Immunity and Vaccines:

“Do not assume you’re immune if you have had it as we do not yet know how long immunity will last for this virus. Some Corona viruses can be as short as 6 months. “Any Coronavirus specific vaccine made this quickly will be far from perfect, it’s likely to roll out in waves by risk/age rather than globally just in case of surprises.”

Duration:

“There will be a second wave, a third wave, a fourth wave. We are buying time to prepare for those waves, as we can’t be cooped up forever as someone has to grow and distribute food and products on a global scale. You will not be “safe and past it” for the foreseeable future, just a continuous process of risk vs. benefit in exposures”

What Can We Do To Stay Healthy:

We want to support our body’s normal functioning in all the ways we can. We can increase our immunity, be taking our vitamins especially Vitamin D and Vitamin C, using Zinc lozenges, eating lots of garlic and onion and ginger, medicinal mushrooms, making tea to drink daily, not smoking, cutting out sugar, eating whole foods, and using herbs if we have access to them.

Vitamin D is a very important supplement deserving of its’ own bullet point. Herbalist Paul Bergner says, “One of the best predictors of somebody ending up in the E.R. with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrom (ARDS) is severe Vitamin D deficiency. And one of the best predictors of poor outcome once you’re in the ICU for whatever reason is Vitamin D deficiency.” We can get Vitamin D naturally from the sun from mid March to mid October in North America, and the best spot to absorb it is on our chests. The fall and winter our bodies literally do not make Vitamin D because the sun is too low in the sky for us to absorb ultraviolet light, so we need to supplement. 4,000 to 7,000 IU is the recommended dose. Fill that hole before you get sick by taking Vitamin D supplements now. It produces immuno-competent cells in the respiratory tract and puts the breaks on cytokine storms according to Bergner.

We need to all be preparing our bodies to the best of our ability to be ready to fight off the virus if we do get it. The more folks that can be in their own homes or friends homes while healing from the virus the less folks are in the hospitals, straining the healthcare workers, the better for everyone.

  • Make sure to get lots of rest. We do our best healing when we sleep. 7-10 hours ideally. Take naps if you can and feel like you need to.
  • Drink lots of warm liquids throughout the day and use cough drops.
  • If you can spend time daily outside, walking in nature, smelling plants, or getting some sun on your front step, do it.
  • Hot showers, herbal steams, foot baths, and generally sweating is good for you at this time.
  • Warming and disinfecting herbs like garlic, onion, ginger, echinacea, yarrow, cinnamon and all of the chai spices, thyme, rosemary, oregano sage are common herbs that you can incorporate into your tea and cooking.

If you have access to herbal tinctures or teas from an herb shop or herbalist near you ask for immune boosting herbs like elderberry, yarrow, schizandra, echinacea, usnea, astragalus, codonopsis, reishi and chaga mushrooms. Also anti-inflammatory herbs like licorice(*do not use if you have high blood pressure/hypertension), japanese knotweed, willow bark and expectorant lung herbs like wild cherry bark, lobelia, osha, elecampane, thyme, or mullein.

Understanding Covid A Little Better:

“Here’s the big physiology lesson. COVID makes you make less surfactant, which is like lube for the inside of your lung sacs. Without it you start microscopically having less and less functional lung. The reason you feel short of breath is NOT because of oxygen. It’s because of acid. Where it’s CO2 acid or acid in your blood, you breathe faster to purge acid in the form of CO2. Normally with lung disease when you are low on O2, you ALSO are high CO2 and you show obvious symptoms. With COVID, the CO2 exchange is fine…so you are silently collapsing lung. Then you feel more tired…then a LOT more tired…then like you can’t take deep breaths. ONLY when your tissues are so starved of oxygen they start to die will you be making so much acid that you are panting, and by then you are at risk for organ failure.”

What Can We Do If We Feel Sick:

“So. If you get a cold during COVID make a point of rest, sleeping helps prevent the sacs in the lungs from collapsing.” “Take several deep breaths several times an hour or blow up a balloon once an hour while awake. Make a point of resting or sleeping (helps prevent the sacs from collapsing. “For all that is holy don’t smoke (ANYTHING) or vape (ANYTHING)” If you get a fever allow it up to an extent. “Let yourself have some fever because fever helps a little bit.” You can take a hot shower or bath, and wrap yourself up in a warm blanket under all the covers you can. Drink some hot tea like chamomile or peppermint or ginger. Let your body sweat it out for a while to bring the blood flow to your skin and push out toxins.

If you get exhausted from your cold check your oxygen and if <90 (95-100 is normal) talk to your doctor soon, they have on call lines. Pharmacies sell little pulse oximeters that aren’t perfect but do OK (iPhones apps without separate attachment won’t accurately read the low numbers.)” Obviously these tips are not a substitute for medical care from a professional so use discretion and seek help if fever is prolonged or symptoms worsen rapidly.

Herbal Preparations:

  • Eat lots of raw garlic (about a clove a day) and raw onion (about a half a cup a day)
  • Herbal Steam: place hot water and a tablespoon of dried herbs like sage, thyme, rosemary, lavender, calendula, cinnamon, clove, oregano, ginger powder, etc. into a bowl sitting on a table. Pull up a chair and place a large towel over your head and place your head over the bowel to breath in the steam and trap the steam within your tented towel. You can use a few drops of essential oil of eucalyptus, peppermint, wintergreen, rosemary, thyme, sage, any confier trees like cedar, juniper, or balsam fir. Breathe in deeply about 100 breathes, 50 in through your nose and 50 in through your mouth. Be sure to have a snot rag near by and blow out any mucus you can.
  • Drink lots of tea and take tinctures and syrups if you have them.
  • Herbal Actions you want: Immune supportive herbs like echinacea, myrrh, boneset, usnea, osha, yarrow.
  • Cough Herbs: thyme, osha, propolis, wild cherry bark, licorice (*do no take with high bloodpressure)
  • Soothing or Demulcent Herbs: Using a cough syrup with honey to take the tinctures down with will be good, garlic syrup, elderberry syrup, usnea syrup, birch bark syrup. Marshmallow root powder mixed in with warm water is very soothing.

Lots of love to you all, stay well.

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