My Mom use to say, “Close the door or bugs will come in!” Not giving bugs, pathogens, viruses or exogenous influences the opportunity to enter our body or, metaphorically, our home, is a cornerstone of Chinese medicine and really all medical philosophies.
This prevention is more important than ever in reference to COVID! Yes, we can prevent exposure by wearing masks and maintaining social distancing but inevitably we may all eventually get direct exposure to the virus.
When that does occur, the COVID virus usually incubates and multiplies in the nose, mouth and throat area for up to 5 days. This article is about increasing our own self-awareness and recognizing the early signs and symptoms so we can close the door to the virus before it multiplies and enters our lungs and body.
Chinese medicine has taught us to keenly observe the patient, not just in the exam room but in the hallway and waiting room, while they walk, write, read and look at their phone. This observation begins to paint a picture of someone who may be either cold or overheated, calm or anxious, energetic or lethargic, happy or sad, feeling good or bad.
Bringing an honest and open awareness to how you feel and how you look is the earliest sign that you may be exposed to a pathogen and perhaps are beginning to feel out of whack. Do you feel strong vs. weak? Tired or vibrant? Limber or achy? Listen to your instincts, trust what your inner voice is saying. If you don’t feel right, trust your voice of reasoning. A wise Doctor once said: “Listen to your patient; he/she is telling you the diagnosis.”
Chinese Medicine refers to Wei Syndrome to describe the early onset of symptoms which may include fatigue, shortness of breath, headache, a new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, nasal congestion, runny nose, fever or chills, a persistent cough, muscle pain, nausea or vomiting and diarrhea. Any of these symptoms can be a clue that you have had exposure to COVID. Trusting your inner instincts to close the door and prevent the colonization of COVID in the upper respiratory tract before it evolves and migrates to the lungs is essential!
So, by really paying attention to the subtle changes in our body we can prevent a imminent illness from occurring.
When diagnosed with COVID most people are simply told to go home and make the best of it.
That is sad to me, because as a Physician, I know that there are things you can do to help boost your immune system. The suggestions below may not constitute a “cure,” but they can certainly assist in speeding up the healing process and help you to be more comfortable.
Suggestions: Nutritional Supplementation For COVID
1) Vitamin C, 2-3 thousand mg. per day
2) Vitamin D 3-5000 iu daily
3) Zinc 25mg. per day. Sucking on a zinc lozenge (Cold Eaze, for example) when going into an enclosed space, e.g. during air travel, could be helpful.
4) Add Selenium to your diet.. I advise my patients to eat 8 Brazil nuts twice a week, which does the trick.
Initially, after exposure, COVID incubates for 5 days in the nose and throat before migrating to the lungs. You may not have a fever during this time, so if you have a sore throat or runny nose, this is the time to boost your immune system:
1) Boost Vitamin C to bowel tolerance, meaning when you get loose stools, back off slightly.
2) Continue Vitamin D and Zinc.
3) Take Andrographis 600 mg 2-3Xday.
4) MonoLaurin 750mg 3X day. If you feel no improvement, go to 3000mg 3X day.
If the virus moves into your lungs, that’s when a fever may show up. Try to avoid a cytokine reaction by decreasing inflammation in the lungs. The following can be helpful:
1) NAC 600mg 2X per day
2) Curcumin 1000 mg 2X day
3) Quercetin 1000mg 2X day
Other nutritional ideas that have merit, that you may want to consider include melatonin (to assist with deep sleep) and EGCG (Epigallocatechin gallate).
Listen to your body, as everyone reacts differently to nutritional supplements, just like we do with pharmaceuticals.
Rest and Relaxation
Above all, one of the greatest keys to healing is staying in balance. Acupuncture is an incredible modality that has the ability to, not only provide pain-relief, but also help all systems of the body attain a state of deep rest and renewal. Come see me at The Acupuncture Center of Bradenton. My new office is at: 7458 Tamiami Trail. Please call to schedule your free consultation: 941-749-1807. Text: 941-545-7337.
Let’s make sure to keep you out of the hospital!