This is how the risk of getting Covid-19 is usually explained: in terms of EXPOSURE.
In fact, there’s a much better way to assess your likelihood of getting Covid – and whatever other bugs are going around: THE HEALTH OF YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM.
This is an important difference in perspective. In the first view, there’s nothing you can do to stay healthy except avoid exposure. In the second view, you can do lots to stay healthy by taking specific measures to strengthen your immune system. And, since 80% of your immune system resides in your gut microbiome, improving the health of your gut microbiome will also protect you against most of the diseases and conditions usually considered just part of aging.
Clearly a huge win-win for you with nothing to lose and everything to gain.
GOOD HEALTH = HEALTH OF THE ENTIRE BODY AS A SYSTEM
The second perspective is how Functional Medicine practitioners approach healing – not as a series of symptoms to be modified but as seeking the root causes of those symptoms and repairing those underlying imbalances.
YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM: THE GUT MICROBIOME
This video gives a brief explanation of the relationship between the health of your gut microbiome, where 80% of your immune system lives, and what’s going on with your overall health.
Covid and other viruses spread among people whose immune systems aren’t working properly, making them vulnerable to pathogenic bugs. We often hear people express surprise that someone in ‘good health’ got Covid, a Clostridium difficile infection or some other nasty illness.
At issue here is how we think of ‘good health’. If you define it as not having been diagnosed with a disease, then you’re missing the important role of the gut microbiome. Modern conventional medicine tends to focus on and treat the symptoms of chronic poor gut immunity, dividing the various organs up into medical specialties. Functional medical practitioners view the body as an integrated system and treat the whole system by helping people correct the underlying causes of their various symptoms.
An example from my life. My husband suffered from autoimmune conditions starting early in his childhood: frequent, severe migraines and rheumatoid arthritis. In his 40’s, some of his liver functions were off. I went with him to his doctor’s appoint and heard the doc commend him for his good health because he had such low blood pressure. We were told not to worry about the liver imbalance. My husband went on to develop other autoimmune conditions, including, eventually, life-threatening myesthenia gravis, which caused him great suffering.
This doc was a very nice guy. He surely had gone into medicine to help people stay healthy but his way of understanding health was sorely lacking.
How autoimmune problems develop:
Chronically poor condition of the gut microbiome (gut dysbiosis) ––> leaky gut ––> chronic low level inflammation in the body, which eventually ––> autoimmune diseases and conditions
ASSESS YOUR COVID-19 RISK & IMPROVE YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
To this end, a group of scientists have created a way for you to assess your real risk of getting COVID and provided clear information on what you can do to build up your immune system so you don’t get it – while also improving your overall health at the same time.
Go to their #STOP COVID COLD site to calculate your Covid risk. After you’ve submitted your answers to the quiz, you’ll see your score and can learn what you can do now to keep from getting the virus and also improve your general health picture.
The video by Dr Mercola at the top right of the page explains it well as do the two Stealth Strategies to Stop Covid Cold e-reports you’ll find near the bottom of the page to download. (#StopCovidCold, 2020)
You can also download one or both of the Stealth Strategies to Stop Covid Cold reports here. See the About page on the Stop COVID Cold site for bios for the coalition of experts and organizations who provided the information on the site.
NOTES ABOUT THREE OF THE QUESTIONS ON THE QUIZ
Vitamin D3 Vitamin D3 is highly protective in preventing and achieving overall health. A 25-hydroxyvitamin D test is the usual way to measure its level in the blood.
For more information on why an adequate amount of Vitamin D is necessary for a healthy immune system and achieving overall good health, see Vitamin D Benefits Bones, Immunity, Skin & More (Levy, 2020)
Lymphocyte Value Lymphocytes are white blood cells that are one of the body’s main types of immune cells. They are made in the bone marrow and found in the blood and lymph tissue.
A high lymphocyte blood level indicates your body is dealing with an infection or other inflammatory condition. Severe or chronically low counts can indicate a possible infection or other significant illness.
Neutrophil Value Neutrophils are the most plentiful of the white blood cells in the body’s immune system, making up 55-70% of the white blood cells.
INFORMATION ON IMPROVING OUTCOMES FOR COVID-19 PATIENTS (emphasis added):
Researchers with the Singapore General Hospital and Duke-NUS Medical School set out to determine if a combination of vitamin D, magnesium and vitamin B12 would improve outcomes among COVID-19 patients aged 50 and older
Seventeen of the patients received oral vitamin D3 (1,000 IU), magnesium (150 milligrams (mg)) and vitamin B12 (500 mcg) — together known as DMB — upon admission for a median of five days while 26 patients who did not receive DMB served as the control group
Significant benefits were seen among the DMB group, with only 17.6% requiring initiation of oxygen therapy during their hospitalization, compared to 61.5% of those in the control group
Vitamin D, magnesium and vitamin B12 may present a unique three-pronged approach for tackling COVID-19 by modulating the hyper-inflammation often seen in the disease
– Midlands Directory. (8/24/2020)
NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS I LIKE
In case your risk of getting Covid is high and you need to supplement with the vitamins and mineral mentioned in the previous section about improving outcomes for Covid patients – also important for preventing getting Covid, here’s a list of the supplements I like and use in case my diet isn’t providing adequate amounts. These amounts work for me. You should check with your own health care provider:
Vitamin D3 Vitamin D3 5,000 (Metagenics). I take 1 gel cap daily and 2 every 3rd day during the pandemic – and have 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood tests every three to six months to check my D blood serum level. It was 63 in early March 2020 (good) and I’d gotten it up to 90 by September 2020 (very good).
Magnesium Magnesium Glycinate Chelate (Nested Naturals). I take 2 capsules in the morning. Neuro-Mag (l-threonate) (Designs for Health). I take 1 capsule after lunch + 2 in the evening.
Vitamin B Complex Dr Mercola’s Vitamin B-Complex (I take 2 capsules each morning)
Keep your gut microbiome healthy so the rest of you can be healthy too.
Levy, J. (2020). Vitamin D Benefits Bones, Immunity, Skin & More. Dr Axe. See: https://draxe.com/nutrition/vitamin-d-benefits/
Midlands Directory. (8/24/2020). Dr. Mercola Introduces Stop COVID Cold. See: https://www.midlandscbd.com/articles/dr-mercola-introduces-stop-covid-cold
© Copyright 2020. Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.
DISCLAIMER: Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.