Thursday, March 12, 2020

Potential Natural Options for Prevention and Treatment of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

My Integrative and Functional Medicine training has helped me to consider ways to naturally boost our immune system and fight infections. My family and I use most of these strategies to prevent the flu each year, however, there are several specific concerns and recommendations that I will cover that are specific for this virus.

In the case of this novel coronavirus, there are several goals.

First, to boost our immune system in general. Second, to help prevent the virus entering cells and replicating if an infection occurs (this is the way many antiviral pharmaceutical medications work). Third, to try to prevent something called a “cytokine storm” which is an inflammatory response that may be so excessive that this it can be deadly.

Before I get into what we are doing as a family to protect ourselves, I think it is important to emphasize that there is no direct evidence that any of the the things we are doing might be helpful. This is a new virus and so we can only surmise what might be helpful based on previous experience with other respiratory viruses. Also, please understand that while most of the things we are trying are benign, some of them have the potential for side effects. Therefore, I recommend you consult your physician(s) to discuss whether these ideas are safe for you to also consider undertaking.

Here is the protocol that my family and I are now following in response to this virus.