The Coronavirus and How to Fortify Your Body Against It

February 14th, 2020

The coronavirus has caused quite the scare recently.  News reports are constantly updating us on the spread of the virus and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) is closely monitoring the situation as coronavirus has begun to spread between people in America. The first confirmed person to person spread with this virus was on January 30, 2020. Previously all confirmed U.S. cases had been associated with travel to China.

Corona Virus

Is the Panic Justified?

As of today, 66,000 people have been infected in China with thousands more suspected of having the virus according to China’s health officials.  While it is concerning that there have been at least 1,500 deaths, the vast majority of cases have not been classified as severe.

The elderly are particularly vulnerable, as they often have weak immune systems.

Keep in mind that so far during the flu season in America, 8,200 people have died and 140,000 have been hospitalized. So the regular old flu can be deadly and “severe” as well.  While there is no need to panic, it does not hurt to take precautions and maintain a strong immune system.

Coronavirus – Nothing New, But Some Types Can Be Severe

Coronavirus has existed for a while and both animals and humans have been infected. It is a kind of common virus that causes an infection in your nose, sinuses or upper throat. Most coronaviruses are not dangerous, but sometimes, more serious strains develop – in the past few decades, the SARS and MERS outbreaks were examples of serious cases.   In early 2020, following a December 2019 outbreak in China, the World Health Organization identified a new type, 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). Scientists are still assessing how it spreads from person to person, but similar viruses tend to spread via cough and sneeze droplets.

But most coronavirus infections, in the past at least, have been mild and cause symptoms similar to the common cold. Although the concern for this new form of coronavirus, is that the symptoms and dangers can be severe for some people.

Symptoms of Coronavirus

  • Coughing
  • Fever
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea, vomiting

How Coronavirus Spreads:

It’s thought to have originally spread from an animal-foods market to humans. Now it’s known to spread from humans to humans. Scientists don’t know everything about how coronavirus is spread but it’s thought that it’s “likely that coughs or sneezes from an infected person may spread the virus.”

Fortifying Yourself Against Flu, Coronavirus and Others

Maintaining a powerful immune system is the surest foundation of minimizing your chance of developing long and severe viral infections.

Naturally bolstering your immune system is the most you can do at this moment to fight the coronavirus, unless an effective vaccine is developed soon.

And even in that case, many natural supplements have been shown to boost the effectiveness of vaccines!

Powerful Ways to Boost Your Immune System

It’s surprising to many people that sometimes the most effective and long-lasting ways of fighting infections have to do with natural methods.

Getting optimal amounts of immune-boosting nutrients and using herbs and other supplements to fight pathogens deeply boosts your body’s defenses and helps kill pathogens.

If you pour through research of the past few decades, you’ll find tons of cases of nutritional interventions effectively fighting the symptoms of stubborn “antibiotic-resistant” infections!

Boost Your Immune System, Fight Coronavirus

Coronavirus is another infection, similar to any other infection, that can be fought using immune-boosting practices. If fact, coronavirus is mentioned, along with other viruses,  in many studies that test immune-boosting methods.

Here are the methods that work and boost your immune system’s killing capacity in many ways.

1.  Astragalus

For at least 2000 years, Astragalus has been one of the most revered herbs in traditional Chinese medicine. Modern research has backed up its potential life-extending and strength-enhancing properties [1]

But most importantly to our conversation, astragalus is one of the most effective and straight-forward boosters of our immune systems. Research in humans has clearly indicated that astragalus boosts the number of many different types of immune cells (monocytes, neutrophils, and lymphocytes), and activates them to energetically kill pathogens [2][3]!

 2. Your Diet Should Be Mostly Whole (Unprocessed) Plant Foods

High blood sugar weakens your immune system response, causes immune dysfunction [4][5].

Eating plenty of fiber and antioxidants helps balance out your blood sugar levels and keep them within a normal healthy range. That’s why your diet should mostly consist of vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and fruit.  Avoiding excessive amounts of sugar in your diet is very important to maintaining a stong immune system.

All of these foods also help feed the good bacteria in your gut, which is critical for a healthy immune system [6].

3. Reishi

Reishi mushroom is another powerful immune-boosting tool. It’s a mushroom that has been shown to increase the number of immune cells in our blood and the amount of immune-stimulating cytokines (signals that activate immune cells)  [7][8][9].

Reishi may also help destroy biofilms – protective layers of mucus that pathogens hide inside of to protect themselves from being killed [10].

4.  Vitamin D

This sunshine “vitamin” is actually a hormone that boosts the amount of your antimicrobial peptides  (substances that help kill viruses and bacteria) [11]. Your immune cells produce these killing peptides.

Also, some studies have shown that vitamin D reduces the incidence of flu viruses and other infections [12][13].

5.  Zinc

Zinc deficiency leads to a weak immune system function because this mineral is involved in so many metabolic reactions in the body and helps create cytokines that the immune system uses to fight infection [14][15].

If you’re deficient in zinc, you won’t make as many immune cells as you should and your thymus gland, responsible for developing immune cells can actually shrink [16]!

Also, many studies have shown that zinc supplementation can shorten the duration of viruses and interfere with virus replication [17].

Researchers say to take 75 mg a day of zinc if you have virus symptoms [18].

6.  Vitamin C

Good, old-fashioned vitamin C is critical for immune health. Your immune cells use vitamin C as fuel for killing pathogens [19]. Extra vitamin C helps immune cells literally eat viruses and bacteria and also empowers the “oxidative burst” – (think of it as toxic bombs) that immune cells kill pathogens with [19].

Many studies have shown that vitamin C supplementation can reduce virus duration [20].

7.  Elderberry

This special berry can interfere with virus replication and has been seen to handicap influenza virus [21]. Elderberry has even been shown to bind to the outside of viruses and prevent them from entering host cells – those could be your cells [21]!

In one incredible study in humans, flu symptoms “were relieved on average 4 days earlier” in elderberry users compared to non-users [22].

Common Sense Precautions – Hand-Washing = First Line of Defense

Like all viruses, the coronavirus can be spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Hand-washing is a first line of defense. When an infected person coughs or sneezes, they release droplets of saliva or mucus. These droplets can fall on people in the vicinity and can be either directly inhaled or picked up on the hands then transferred when someone touches their face, causing infection. Because it is also flu season, it is always a good idea to take sensible precautions everyday including:

  • Stay at least 6 feet away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
  • Keep your hands away from your face and far from your mouth and nose.  Viruses don’t infect the skin.  They have to make it to mucosal membrane in your mouth or nose to cause an infection.
  • Wash your hands after touching any communal surfaces. Wash with soap and water then use a clean towel or air dry.  You may also use hand sanitizer (60% alcohol).

Use Your Tools

Now that you know how many great tools you have at your disposal, build an incredibly strong immune system and fend off the nasty viruses all around us!