I am sure you have noticed covid is now here! Instead of being ‘scared’ why not be prepared!? We thought you might be interested in immune tools to help support you through this time now that covid is well amongst us and we have now observed what other countries have been doing. Helping support and prepare your immune system is important, just as we want to support and strengthen our immune system against any other viral or bacterial infection, we want to do this with covid too! Along with these support nutrients that have been identified by many expert around the world as critical support nutrients, we must never forget the most important things for our immune system is a healthy balanced diet, regular exercise, optimal sleep and managing your stress.
What else can be done, you might ask? Well whilst this needs more time, you also want to start chipping away at your overall health by trying to move your weight to a healthy range, reduce any inflammation you might have and improve any cardiovascular markers that are moving in the wrong direction. You can reduce these risk factors (never underestimate how small changes can make significant improvements) as we know they contribute to the severity of covid symptoms. If you are not sure how we are here to help you 🙂
You can read this blog for more about the immune system.
The nutrient list:
A strong immune strengthening and modulating vitamin importing in supporting the immune system. Not only might it prevent you from getting sick it may lower the severity of the symptoms. It is essential to get your levels checked so you know how much you have to take. I do not recommend random supplementation because you don’t know your starting level which makes it difficult to know how to dose!
- A new meta-analysis of observational studies found that people with serum 25D levels <30 ng/mL had a 60% higher risk of death and a 50% higher risk of developing severe pneumonia than people with 25D levels >30 ng/mL. Patients with COVID-19 with low vitamin D also had higher levels of inflammatory markers. (Source: Chris Kresser)
- A review on vitamin D science by Dr. Chris Masterjohn, a nutritional scientist, includes the importance of maintaining a serum 25D level of 50-60 ng/mL (125-150 nmol/L) for optimal protection and to reach that level before the infection. He also recommends taking additional vitamin D as soon as you experience symptoms of COVID-19 as if you wait too long, it is harder for the body to raise serum 25D levels with the inflammation caused by the infection. He adds, vitamin D should be combined with vitamins A and K and zinc for optimal effect. (Source: Chris Kresser). This is in line with Dr Karin Reid early treatment trial where they are increasing participants with vitamin D levels before COVID-19 infection.
- A meta-analysis found that those who are deficient in vitamin D have a 1.77-fold higher risk of infection, a 2.57-fold higher risk of more severe infection, and a 2.35-fold higher risk of death.
- This open letter by over 200 doctors and scientists outlines the importance of vitamin D in combating COVID-19 infection. It states:
Vitamin D modulates thousands of genes and many aspects of immune function, both innate and adaptive. The scientific evidence shows that:
- Higher vitamin D blood levels are associated with lower rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
- Higher D levels are associated with lower risk of a severe case (hospitalisation, ICU, or death).
- Intervention studies (including RCTs) indicate that vitamin D can be a very effective treatment.
- Many papers reveal several biological mechanisms by which vitamin D influences COVID-19.
- Causal inference modelling, Hill’s criteria, the intervention studies & the biological mechanisms indicate that vitamin D’s influence on COVID-19 is very likely causal, not just correlation.
- In this study, using individualised nutritional and oxidative therapies such as oral vitamin A, C, D, and Iodine, Intramuscular Ozone, Nebulised Hydrogen Peroxide, IV Hydrogen Peroxide, IV Vitamin C (Ascorbate) showed complete recovery from COVID-19 infection with no deaths.
Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that is a key player in having a healthy immune system. It lowers oxidative stress to the body and also helps recycle oxidised quercetin, enhancing its antiviral effects. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7750357/)
Zinc is essential for a healthy immune system. Adequate zinc levels can lower susceptibility to infection by helping the immune cells to function well. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7750357/)
It has great antiviral properties in addition to having antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and immunoprotective effects (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8573830/).
- This study shows quercetin effectively blocks the viral S-protein from binding to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) (which is a receptor of COVID-19, and the virus entry into the cells depends on this enzyme) and neutralising the virus.
Super Mushroom Complex:
Beneficial in modulating the immune system as well as reducing inflammation and response to allergies (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7551890/).
Antiviral Herb Mix:
This herb mix contains antiviral, immunomodulating, and anti-inflammatory herbs that can support your immune system after you are infected (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8519661/).
- Gymnanthemum amygdalinum
- Azadirachta indica
- Nigella sativa
- Eurycoma longifolia
- Mentha piperita
- Allium sativum and Allium cepa
- Malva sylvestris
- Isatis indigotica
- Psoralea corylifolia
- Glycyrrhiza glabra
- This review shows that using herbal medicine can help combat the symptoms of COVID-19 such a fever and cough through their anti-inflammatory properties and inhibit the virus to replicate and enter into the host cells.
It is a herbal medicine with antiviral and immunomodulatory activities, and has been recommended for the treatment of COVID-19. (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34407441/)
- This study showed the use of Nigella sativa (500 mg twice daily for 10 days) in patients with mild COVID-19 infection resulted in faster recovery. The symptoms of chills, loss of smell, runny nose, and loss of appetite were significantly reduced in patients who were given Nigella sativa in comparison with the control group after the treatment.
Other interesting studies showing we can do more to protect our selves from COVID-19. (Source: Chris Kresser)
- A study with nearly 50,000 people found that exercising regularly can protect you against COVID-19. The study found that those who had exercised the most leading up to the infection were least likely to be hospitalised or die from the infection. Those in the least active group were 2.5-fold more likely to die than those in the most active group and 30% more likely to die than those in the moderately active group.
- A study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that 63% of hospitalisations for Covid-19 in the U.S. could have been prevented if they had a metabolically healthy population, and obesity alone was responsible for 30% of excess hospitalisations.
This is a special immune tea I love when you do get sick: – infused- grated fresh garlic, ginger, lemon, turmeric and a dash raw honey.
These are also good to consume for your immunity;
- Bone broths
- Good amounts of protein foods
- Fruits and Vegetables
- Healthy oils and fats
Wanting to be more prepared then also have on hand:
If you are having Telehealth appointment with a doctor once infected, they will find it useful to know your temperature and saturation levels which helps guide them. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK525974/)
For many coming out of COVID can leave you still feeling tried and fatigued, it’s important to really ensure you do not over do things which may length your recovery! DOn’t push your body too hard, don’t hammer yourself back into exercise listen to your body and if you still notice niggles of fatigue, cough or anything else you may need extra nutrient support, move to reduced work/exercise capacity until your body has fully recovered. Long COVID is a thing and another whole conversation!
Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance outlines management protocol for Long Haul COVID-19 syndrome here.
We hope this is a helpful collection on the various information out there on supporting your immune system 🙂
Ben-Eltriki, M., Hopefl, R., Wright, J. M., & Deb, S. (2021). Association between Vitamin D Status and Risk of Developing Severe COVID-19 Infection: A Meta-Analysis of Observational Studies. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1080/07315724.2021.1951891
Borsche, L., Glauner, B., & von Mendel, J. (2021). COVID-19 Mortality Risk Correlates Inversely with Vitamin D3 Status, and a Mortality Rate Close to Zero Could Theoretically Be Achieved at 50 ng/mL 25(OH)D3: Results of a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Nutrients, 13(10), 3596. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13103596
Brownstein, D., Ng, R., Rowen, R., Drummond, J., Eason, T., Brownstein, H., & Brownstein, J. (2020). A Novel Approach to Treating COVID-19 Using Nutritional and Oxidative Therapies. https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/A-Novel-Approach-to-Treating-COVID-19-Using-and-Brownstein-Ng/c1805feeee6e9e68a68a0a0071e98e67e7062399
Charoenngam, N., Shirvani, A., & Holick, M. F. (2021). Vitamin D and Its Potential Benefit for the COVID-19 Pandemic. Endocrine Practice, 27(5), 484–493. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eprac.2021.03.006
Colunga Biancatelli, R. M. L., Berrill, M., Catravas, J. D., & Marik, P. E. (2020). Quercetin and Vitamin C: An Experimental, Synergistic Therapy for the Prevention and Treatment of SARS-CoV-2 Related Disease
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Grant, W. B., Lahore, H., McDonnell, S. L., Baggerly, C. A., French, C. B., Aliano, J. L., & Bhattoa, H. P. (2020). Evidence that Vitamin D Supplementation Could Reduce Risk of Influenza and COVID-19 Infections and Deaths. Nutrients, 12(4), E988. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12040988
Hafen, B. B., & Sharma, S. (2022). Oxygen Saturation. In StatPearls. StatPearls Publishing. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK525974/
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Kazemi, A., Mohammadi, V., Aghababaee, S. K., Golzarand, M., Clark, C. C. T., & Babajafari, S. (2021). Association of Vitamin D Status with SARS-CoV-2 Infection or COVID-19 Severity: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Advances in Nutrition (Bethesda, Md.), 12(5), 1636–1658. https://doi.org/10.1093/advances/nmab012
Koshak, A. E., Koshak, E. A., Mobeireek, A. F., Badawi, M. A., Wali, S. O., Malibary, H. M., Atwah, A. F., Alhamdan, M. M., Almalki, R. A., & Madani, T. A. (2021). Nigella sativa for the treatment of COVID-19: An open-label randomized controlled clinical trial. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 61, 102769. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2021.102769
Masterjohn, C. (2021) Vitamin D and COVID-19: The Current State of the Evidence. https://chrismasterjohnphd.com/blog/2021/08/28/vitamin-d-and-covid-19/
Merzon, E., Tworowski, D., Gorohovski, A., Vinker, S., Golan Cohen, A., Green, I., & Frenkel-Morgenstern, M. (2020). Low plasma 25(OH) vitamin D level is associated with increased risk of COVID-19 infection: An Israeli population-based study. The FEBS Journal, 287(17), 3693–3702. https://doi.org/10.1111/febs.15495
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Önal, H., Arslan, B., Ücuncu Eegun, N., Topuz, Ş., Yilmas Semerci, S., Kurnaz, M. E., Molu, Y. M., Bozkurt, M. A., Suner, N., & KocatasK, A. (2021). Treatment of COVID-19 patients with quercetin: A prospective, single center, randomized, controlled trial. Turkish Journal of Biology, 45(4), 518–529. https://doi.org/10.3906/biy-2104-16
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