Hi, this is Dr. Emily Parke. I’m going to be giving you an update on COVID-19, as everyone already knows, obviously it is widespread, including here in Arizona. So I hope everyone’s following their social distancing protocols, and doing a really good job with hand-washing for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, and avoiding touching your face, especially in public. So I want to talk about what things you can do to support your immune system. And I know I did a couple of previous videos in the last two to three weeks on these items, but I think it’s really important to highlight them and update you as well. So as far as lifestyle factors go that support the immune system, you cannot do better than making sure that you’re getting enough good quality sleep, that is so important for your immune system. So make sure you’re getting enough good quality sleep.
And then on top of that, make sure that your stress is low. Obviously this is an uncertain time and stress is high for a lot of people, but please make sure you’re still doing your daily relaxation practice. So that’s things like meditation, deep breathing, yoga, Tai Chi, Qigong, whether it’s journaling, there’s a lot of ways to handle the daily relaxation practice. I think it’s important now more than ever and as a matter of fact, you may want to actually increase the frequency of that and make sure you’re doing something twice a day for yourself.
Then of course, making sure you’re getting good, healthy nutrition in is really important. Again, I know with increased stress there can be some stress eating, so sugars and carbs and overeating in general, but that is the opposite of what you want to be doing to support your immune system. You want to have an anti-inflammatory nutrient dense food plan right now to really help your immune system work well.
So what does that mean? That means real food, less processed and packaged foods. It means making sure your plate, half of it is veggies of some kind. And then you may have a small serving of either fruit or starchy veggies. Then you will have some healthy fats on your plate like avocados or nuts and seeds and using healthy oils to cook things like ,avocado oil, olive oil, coconut oil, and then of course some well sourced protein and it should be a small serving of that. As long as things are coming from, for example, if it’s beef, organic grass fed, if it’s fish, wild caught, chicken, organic free range and so on. So that’s kind of what a healthy plate should look like.
Then of course, make sure you’re still getting in some exercise and movement. Obviously all the gyms have been closed for a while now, but there are some really great resources out there for free at home workouts. There are some things you can still do at home to work out. And then of course getting outside and getting some fresh air is really important. Being in nature and getting sunlight is also crucial. And of course the other foundation to health is reducing toxins. So that’s making sure you’re drinking good clean filtered water, making sure the air inside your house is really well filtered. That’s more important now than ever because obviously we’re all spending more time in our houses. So, and then of course making sure your personal care products and household products are staying as clean as possible.
So supplements, what is the update on supplements? So I’m going to do this in two categories. One is prevention, and when I say prevention, I mean decreasing your risk potentially of getting really sick with it or decreasing your possibility of making it into the ICU or even into the hospital at all. Again, we do not know the effects of any supplement regimen on COVID-19 long-term yet, and I just really want to still impress that there is not one single regimen that’s going to prevent you from getting it. And just because you’re doing X, Y, Z regimen also don’t assume that you’re going to be lucky and only get a mild version like a cold. I think it’s really still important to take all of the steps I talked about earlier with social distancing and proper hand washing. Just assume you’re still at risk as much as everyone else.
So that being said, what things can you do to support your immune system, and so basic regimens right now include vitamin C, and that I would do about 500 milligrams twice a day. This is all I’m talking about preventative. I would also make sure that you’re not deficient in vitamin A, D and zinc and if you are, make sure you’re supplementing with those. I would also add in some other immune supporting things like something called N-acetyl Cysteine, which is a precursor to Glutathione, which is your body’s main antioxidant and detoxifier. NAC also has some specific extra actions on the lung, actually is a mucolytic, helps break up mucus and may provide some lung protection. I also would consider doing some curcumin. Curcumin is the active extract in turmeric that’s anti-inflammatory and immune system modulating. There’s some great data on curcumin, even specifically with COVID-19, so 500 milligrams twice a day there. And then I would also consider making sure you’ve got a good quality probiotic on board, at least somewhere in the neighborhood of 25 to 30 billion a day. We know that 80% of the immune system is located inside the gut.
And also making sure that you’ve got a good healthy environment there is so important along with healthy nutrition of course. And then I would also make sure you’ve got some good Omega-3’s onboard. And so if you’re not eating three to four servings a week of cold water fatty fish, I would actually add in one to two grams per day of Omega-3 fish oils, because we know their immune system modulating and important for brain health also. And so I would make sure you’re getting your Omega-3’s in. Icing on the cake for extra potential prevention, there’s a great product called Sun Balance and it has three things in it. It has PEA, luteolin and quercetin in it. And you would take that, one twice a day on that one.
And then when you’re going … what I’ve been doing personally when I’m going out in public, I will actually use the biocide and throat spray, a couple of sprays, because like I had mentioned in previous videos, it does show that it improves your mucosal immune system and increases your secretary IgA locally. So that’s potentially helpful. And then I also do a spray of the Argentyn 23 silver nasal spray in each nostril. And I’m doing that at least twice a day, I’m doing it once in the morning and I’m doing it definitely before bed. And if I happen to go to the grocery store, which is only about once a week these days or something like that, I’ll make sure I have good extra protection and do it again.
So. That’s kind of basic prevention. If you happen to get sick with something, and again it might not even be COVID-19, it could be influenza or just a rhinovirus, any other virus. I would go up on doses of everything I just said. So vitamin C, you could take a thousand milligrams every hour for the first five to six hours and then make sure you’re taking 3000 a day after that. I would increase your zinc intake, and you can do oral zinc, 20 to 30 milligrams a day. But I also, the second you feel like you’re getting sick, if you can get your hands on some zinc lozenges, I would do those, one every hour or two because zinc does inhibit the viral replication. So I think that is an important one. You can also double your probiotic intake at that time.
You can also increase your vitamin D and your vitamin A for short periods of time. You can add an extra 5,000 of vitamin D per day and an extra 10,000 of vitamin A per day, or even up to 25,000 of vitamin A, and that’s IU’s that I’m talking about. You could also add besides your Omega-3 fish oil, you could also add something specifically called SPM’s. They are the thing in fish oil that is actually anti-inflammatory. It helps mop up inflammation that’s already out and about. So I think that could be potentially helpful and especially in light of a cytokine storm. And then of course I would add in some other specific things, for antiviral infection support specifically making sure you’re getting something like astragalus or andrographis in there. There’s a great product by Xymogen called Viragraphis that actually has some andrographis and licorice root.
Licorice root is also another thing that’s been studied to help with COVID-19. And that’s … and I would also, besides your N-acetyl cysteine that you’re potentially already taking, I would actually even add in a glutathione itself, and I like the Research Nutritionals glutathione. It’s liposomal and the company has actually really good studies on it, showing that it does make it into your red blood cells. So it makes it into your cells. And I would do one teaspoon of that twice a day. So that’s about 450 milligrams twice a day if you did get sick.
And then once you start feeling better, you can kind of go back to your regular dosing on your supplements. And of course, if you have an integrative or functional medicine practitioner, please reach out the second you, you know, if you do feel like you’re not feeling well, so we can help guide you as to what to do for your own personal case. Just remember, I am a doctor, but I am not your doctor, so I cannot tell you exactly what to do for yourself except to help guide you to find a good integrative or functional medicine practitioner.
This is Dr. Emily Parke.