Hello Patients and Community,
We are living in unprecedented times that are calling for measures that most of us have only imagined in sci-fi movies, but alas, this is our current reality. As you already know, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is very real and it is everyone’s responsibility to help keep our community safe from its rapid spread. I’ll provide practical tips here that have been shown to help slow the spread of this virus, but I’d also like to take a moment to give some helpful dietary and lifestyle recommendations to help support the immune system and reduce stress during this unique time as well. It is now more important than ever to take an abundance of caution to help protect you, your family, our community and our healthcare system.
While there are many unknowns about Coronavirus, what we do know is that adhering to preventative measures that are rooted in scientific evidence is the best way to limit the spread of COVID-19. Viruses have the ability to mutate and that’s what we need to do in a sense; we must adapt and be resilient. Let’s focus on what we can do right now to mitigate this, as opposed to what we can’t control. Let’s also have discerning minds as to where our information comes from and not feed into misinformation and fear – which can be a pandemic in and of itself.
Prevention is the best medicine. Here are some resources for my patients and community during this critical time.
What You Can Do To Take Care Of Yourself
The most important things you can do to support your immune system are (thankfully) really basic:
1. Don’t panic. Stress is bad for the immune system. It’s normal to have worried thoughts, but just don’t entertain them for too long. Write it down, work it out, create art, meditate, listen to music, call a friend, collage, garden, dance…
Take time to think about what you’re grateful for. Make some time to do something enjoyable each day and connect with loved ones. Reach out to those that may be lonely and offer assistance if you can.
2. Wash your hands frequently and don’t touch your face unless you just washed your hands.
3. Get enough sleep. Turn off the screens at least 30-60 minutes before bed. Limit how much time you spend online and watching TV. Stay productive during the day and maintain a regular bedtime. Despite disruptions to our normal routine, it’s important to still maintain regular sleep cycles as much as possible.
4. Stay hydrated to support healthy mucous membranes as a first line of defense. Add fresh lemon for an extra boost of flavor and vitamin C!
5. Eat nutritiously. Nutrient-dense whole foods, soups, and bone broth are excellent choices to promote vibrant health.
6. Eat less inflammatory foods like sugar, industrial seed oils, processed foods, alcohol, and foods you may be sensitive to (wheat, dairy, eggs, gluten, nightshades, etc.). Sugar and alcohol in particular reduce the immune system’s ability to do its job. They also contribute to weight gain and don’t support optimal brain function.
7. Support lung health by doing some even breathing, preferably outdoors in fresh air, to move circulation and clear out toxins. Breath in through your nose for a count of 5, hold for 1 count, then out through your mouth for a count of 5, hold for 1 count. Repeat. Make the counts even and not so long that you struggle.
If you smoke, now would be a great time to reconsider if it’s really worth it.
What You Can Do To Help Boost Your Immune System
• Immune-supporting and antiviral herbs! Herbs can support the immune system, as well as help treat viral infections. Consultations can be done online or over the phone. Herbal formulas can be delivered to your home.
There are case studies coming out of China from doctors that have successfully treated patients with COVID-19. Contact me if you need an herbal formula.
• Regular moderate exercise can be done indoors, or outdoors as long as social distancing measures are observed.
• Acupressure can boost your immune system, reduce anxiety and can help treat a myriad of other symptoms! Contact me for a virtual appointment today and I’ll show you how to perform acupressure on yourself or your loved ones in the comfort and safety of your home.
• Probiotics are an important part of your immune system. They are available in fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, raw sauerkraut, cottage cheese and miso. Supplements are also available at local health food stores.
• Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Zinc are good supplements to boost your immune system. Food sources of vitamins and minerals are usually ideal. If you’re not sure which foods are rich in nutrients, google it! 😉
For normal prevention of the wintertime drop in vitamin D levels, take between 4000 to 7000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. If you haven’t been taking vitamin D through the winter, you’re most likely deficient. With cases of Coronavirus increasing exponentially day by day, it may be beneficial to follow the advice of a group of vitamin D experts writing on the role vitamin D plays in viral epidemics.
To the Point: Immunity System Support PDF
As part of my ongoing support to you and our community, I’ve included a FREE PDF download to help give you the tools to strengthen your immune system at home. Click here to download this FREE PDF resource with recipes and acupressure suggestions. **It is recommended to only take Astragalus (Rx. Astragalus membranaceus) and/or Elberberry (Fr. Sambucus nigra) as A PREVENTATIVE MEASURE and not if you are already feeling unwell.**
If you are feeling ill, or experiencing any of the following symptoms, please stay home and limit your exposure to other people in your community. By taking action, you will significantly delay the spread of COVID-19:
• Fever (oral temperature 100.4° or higher) or symptoms of fever (such as chills or body aches) within the past 24 hours. Please do not consider yourself fever-free until your temperature has been normal for at least 24 hours without the use of Tylenol (acetaminophen). The World Health Organization (WHO) currently recommends avoiding Advil (ibuprofen) and other NSAIDs for COVID-19 symptoms until more information is available.
• Shortness of breath and/or cough that is not known to be caused by another condition (for example allergies).
• Travel within the past 14 days to areas that have people known to be infected with COVID-19.
• Close contact with a person known/suspected to be infected with COVID-19 within the past 14 days.
• Healthcare workers who have been in contact with patients known/suspected to be infected with COVID-19 within the past 14 days.
Up-to-date COVID-19 Data from the World Health Organization
For the current number of cases worldwide, the World Health Organization maintains a COVID-19 Situation Report worldwide. Click here.
As an acupuncturist and practitioner of Traditional Medicine, I am committed to the health and safety of our community. Overall, if COVID-19 can teach us anything, it stands as a sign to us all of the importance of keeping our mind, body, emotions, community and yes – environment – healthy and vibrant. This time highlights what’s truly important, not merely only in times of supposed crisis; and that’s resources combined with resiliency to navigate any path ahead with fluidity and compassion.
While these times may feel unusually challenging, please know I will continue to monitor the current situation and evaluate additional measures to help support my patients and community.
Thank you and stay safe <3
“And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still. And listened more deeply. Some meditated, some prayed, some danced. Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently. And the people healed. And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways, the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again, they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images, and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully, as they had been healed.”