Health and Wellness Tips: Let’s Choose to be Confident!
March 10th 2020 – read time 7+ min.
Written by- Dr. Lindsey Harding, ND – Submitted by- Joyce C Wood, chhc
Hello fellow seekers towards a sustainable lifestyle..
Today, It’s my pleasure to introduce a Doctor who I have consulted with regarding my health in general.
Dr. Lindsey Harding, ND.
With the current widespread epidemic- Covid-19 aka coronavirus. It’s vital to stay abreast of current and rational information for self-care.
There is a lot of information being shared which can be confusing. Too much information and a lack of facts & trust can contribute to overreacting during a crisis. Simply remaining rational can be challenging.
Let’s choose to be confident and stay strong and healthy!
Words of Wisdom, found under Inspiration (here on choixdvie), provides lots of rational thoughts, and health wellness tips to being confident and strong during this time. One of my favorite quotes is:
“True health is to be found in having a positive attitude toward life and a strong self that refuses to be defeated by anything.”
“ Don’t confuse good health with not being sick. A truly healthy life is one spent creating value- tackling the challenges thrown at us over a lifetime, striving to achieve something worthy and meaningful; constantly expanding the frontiers of our lives”
“ The key to battling illness lies in summoning a vigorous lifeforce and a positive fighting spirit. This brings out the full effectiveness of a curative treatment”
And much more… Please visit the Inspiration page, Words of Wisdom, by Dr. Daisaku Ikeda.
Staying healthy during the COVID-19 Outbreak
Written by Dr. Lindsey Harding, ND
March 10th, 2020
This article is not intended to treat COVID-19, nor is it to be used in replace of seeing a doctor or the medical advice from your physician.
The novel coronavirus (COVD-19) has flooded our lives, mainly from media sources, and for good reason. There is much unknown, and many of us fear the unknown, especially when it comes to our medical health and wellbeing. What we know about this virus, testing, and death rates are changing by the hour, all of which is centered around the fact that we simply do not know enough yet.
However, we do know that the coronavirus family has been around for a very long time. It is not a new virus, it has simply mutated to infect humans. Think of how the flu changes from year to year, the influenza strains in the flu vaccine change every year in an attempt to keep up. Viruses are made up of DNA or RNA surrounded by a collection of proteins to protect it called a capsid. Just like human DNA, it has the ability to change. This capsid allows the virus to grab onto a host, in the case of COVID-19, human cells are the host.
COVID-19 is dangerous because it attacks the respiratory system, causing coughing and difficulty breathing which can result in death. What makes this virus scary is that, like many pathogens that attack the respiratory system, the symptoms are not specific, meaning the symptoms that an infected person experiences from COVID-19 may mimic the common cold, influenza, pneumonia, or even allergies and thus go untreated. But with that in mind, remember that not everyone who coughs or sneezes has been infected with COVID-19. It is actually very unlikely, and more likely that this person does just have a common cold or allergies. But precautions should be taken.
Until more testing is done, many of our questions will remain unanswered.
It is estimated that around 80% of those who contract COVID-19 will have minimal symptoms and will not need any medical care according to the World Health Organization.
With so much information, misinformation, and even information from reputable sources changing daily, how do you protect yourself?
COVID-19 can live on surfaces from 6 hours to 9 days depending on the surface. A few cleaning solutions have been proven effective at killing this virus, including hydrogen peroxide 0.5% or stronger, or diluted bleach on surfaces (Please be cautious to always wear gloves when handling these solutions, and avoid inhaling bleach).
- Practice basic hygiene, including hand washing. Wash your hands after touching surfaces and others. If you touch something that you are not sure was cleaned, wash your hands before touching your face.
- Wear a mask if you are coughing. Wearing masks has not proven effective in preventing COVID-19, but if you have another respiratory infection, your immune system is weakened. If you spread the pathogen causing your cough to someone infected with COVID-19, they are more likely to experience more severe illness because now their immune system is trying to fight off 2 pathogens.
- COVID-19 is mainly spread through respiratory droplets expelled by someone who is coughing according to the World Health Organization. If you have to cough or sneeze, do so into the crook of your arm or into something disposable and then wash your hands. Droplets tend to spray everywhere, even when we think we’ve contained a cough or sneeze, so wiping surfaces is important.
- Wipe down surfaces before you touch them. Wipe down gym equipment before and after use, including all the areas you touch, such as adjustment bars and levers. Wipe down the handle on your shopping cart. Wipe down things you commonly touch, such as light switches and door handles periodically.
Overcleaning, or not exposing the body to pathogens has been associated with lower immunity because the body’s immune system has not been trained to fight off certain pathogens. Most of this takes place when we are children, but vaccines, and our day to day contact with others exposes us to pathogens and helps build our immune system. This typically makes us more resilient to pathogens. It continues to train our immune system to recognize something harmful so it is prepared to fight it. In the case of COVID-19, our bodies have not seen this before, and are thus, not trained in how to fight it. While we are still gathering information about this novel virus, it is important to air on the side of caution. Using more hand sanitizer and washing your hands more frequently during this outbreak will not harm you or your immune system.
Please do not drink bleach or household cleaning supplies. Ingesting or inhaling cleaning products is not safe and is harmful to your health, resulting in internal damage and even death.
What can you do to improve your immune system strength?
- Vitamin C helps reduce the inflammatory response and prevents viruses such as the common cold (which is sometimes caused by a different strain of coronavirus). Vitamin C deficiency is associated with increased risk of severe influenza infections. Vitamin C is also a potent antioxidant that helps reduce the risk of lung damage in severe lung infections.
Vitamin C has been proven to effectively shorten the duration of a cold, reduce the risk of severe influenza, and is used in the treatment of numerous chronic viral infections effectively and safely.
Vitamin C is currently being studied in Wuhan, China on those with the coronavirus.
I recommend 1000mg of vitamin C twice per day.
- Eating Healthy. Eating healthy is a crucial key to preventing disease, including infections and complications from infections. Avoid sugar because it weakens the immune system. Avoid sugary drinks and adding sugar to your drinks, excessive alcohol, candy, and baked goods.
- Eat at a minimum 3 cups of fruits and vegetables per day. Vegetables have more nutrients and less sugar, so more vegetables are preferred. These contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for fighting off disease and infections.
- Vitamin D3 promotes immunity. Do not take more than 2,000IUs per day unless directed to by your doctor (doses up to 6,000IU are generally considered safe, but I always prefer patients get tested by their doctor for an individualized approach and dose for safety). Vitamin D is generally considered safe to take, but too much vitamin D can cause you to become ill.
- Probiotics play a huge role in our immune system too! Our immune system’s central hub is in our gastrointestinal tract. Our GI tract is where the outside world meets our inside world – literally! The cells lining our intestines release antibodies. Our microbiome (bacteria in the intestines) is a major factor in how our immune system responds to invasion by pathogens. I recommend a probiotic with at least 1billion count, without prebiotics (including inulin, dairy products and sugars). Specific types of probiotics have different benefits, but in general a probiotic containing some Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium will do. Prebiotics often end up feeding our “bad bacteria” and result in cases of people experiencing diarrhea after trying probiotics.
- Move to help your body deliver fresh blood to your organs and limbs. Good blood flow delivers more nutrients and immune cells to areas it is needed. Walking for 20-30 minutes per day, getting a good arm swing in is perfect.
- Move the lymphatic system to detox out toxins we are exposed to daily for optimal health. End your shower or bath with some cool water, let it flow over your shoulders and upper back. This is also great to help close the pores in your skin after a warm bath or shower, reducing dryness and itchiness.
If you are immunocompromised, have a chronic respiratory condition, diabetes, or have a low white blood cells count, see your doctor to make sure your health is well-managed and learn what other therapies are available to help increase your immune function.
Coronavirus. World Health Organization. March 9th, 2020.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). CDC. March 8th, 2020.
Fields, Helen. The Gut: Where Bacteria and Immune System Meet. Johns Hopkins Medicine Research.