Resilience, Reset & Recovery
Whether you have had COVID or not, we are all in recovery.
Our habitual patterns and rhythms in our lives have changed. Never in history have people across the country and world experienced the same down turns overnight. Everything was taken away from us and left us feeling disorientated, lost and confused. I won’t lie, this had a huge impact on me directly is last year.
Not physically, but mentally. We have all had the COVID EXPERIENCE – not one person hasn’t in the entire word.
So the reset is: How can we find an opening in the chaos to create new patterns that are useful to us? And that leads to this resilience. And so what resilience means when you look up the definition of resilience: Resilience is the ability to recover quickly from a tough situation.
It's not, a light switch, where all of a sudden you'll be resilient, and you’ll return to baseline - especially with everything that's been going on and going to continue to go on. Resilience is a process. The more we change our habits, the more conscious we become, the more we work with lifestyle, relaxation techniques, our foods, the more resilient we become, both emotionally and physiologically, to recover from the various different hits - and everybody's getting different stressors and we need to be mindful of this.
So those stressors are different for each person. The various stressors that we all face with what's going to be a new norm. And we don't even necessarily know what that new norm is going to look like. That new norm changes from week-to-week, month-to- month. But there are aspects of that, that we can empower ourselves with & take charge of.
I have 2 wonderful programs this year that is about Owning your power, dealing with loss and recovery. It also comes from my own personal experience over these two years and a Functional Medicine approach.
RESILIENCE: resetting ourselves, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, and creating resilience so that we can
bounce back from little hits to our nervous system.
COVID-19VIRUS EXPLAINED 101 BASICS - RNA
So let's talk about virology basics. So a couple of things that you need to know: That viruses are not alive. So they're not alive, they are bundles of DNA (and DNA or RNA - they can be either one) and COVID-19 is an RNA virus, but all viruses have an envelope. And that's really important. An envelope is just like a membrane that protects them. But that's really important to understand because everything is geared towards dissolving and interrupting this envelope.
And so for viruses to do anything to you, they've got to latch onto a living cell, and they burrow into the cell. They burrow into the host cell and they take over the nuclear machinery in the middle of the cell. And when they do that, the cell doesn't perform its normal function anymore. The virus takes over the show and uses its nuclear machinery to replicate itself. And then one virus becomes a hundred viruses and then it moves outside of the cells - and that's how viruses spread.
COVID-19 is an RNA virus - that's where it's housed. It contains spike proteins, which latch onto human cells and burrow its way in and attaches and starts replicating itself. Whatever cell it's gotten into can no longer perform its normal function - sometimes permanently and sometimes temporarily. If you have a week point, this is what it will attack first.
So let's talk about the immune system. There's two types of immune responses. There's an innate immunity - and what's important about innate immunity (we all have it), it's non-specific defence. And it happens within seconds to minutes to hours after you've been infected with something. The body responds the same way if it's infected by any type of bacteria or virus. It will get... you'll get a low-grade fever and, you'll get inflammation.
So whether it's Lyme or whether it's COVID or whether it's chickenpox or any of the viruses or the bacteria, the innate immune system will respond the exact same way the first couple of hours, with inflammation and the low-grade fever - that's how the body mobilizes its white blood cells into the area to protect you and you will experience these particular symptoms.
The adaptive immune system is the second responder. And the adaptive immune system is really specific. So your antibodies for Epstein-Barr Virus are going to be different than the antibodies your adaptive immune system produces for COVID-19, or different than your adaptive immune system may produce for Lyme. So different antibodies - antibodies are specific to the infection at hand, you'll develop antibodies - and these antibodies will begin to develop, and it takes like 14 to 21 days before you can actually detect the antibodies. But this is really important, we're going to talk about this later, because when you talk about antibody testing, if you do it too early, you're not going to catch it on blood work.
So innate, non-specific, every infection is going to have the same inflammation and low-grade fever. And adaptive is very specific to the infectious agent , when we produce antibodies for that thing. So COVID-19, let's talk about this for a moment. It's one of the Coronaviruses. And what we know is that the Coronaviruses primarily infected birds, but then in 2002, with SARS, which is Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, we realized that it could affect humans. And SARS came on the scene in 2002, that was a Coronavirus.
And then in 2012, we had the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome - that was MERS. And so these were both Coronaviruses. And then in the fall of 2019, what we discovered was 2019- nCoV. That is what we know to be COVID-19. So when people say Coronavirus, it's really not specific to the pandemic. Coronaviruses, we've got several of them - so there's multiple Coronaviruses - but the official name is 2019-nCoV. That is what COVID-19 is called.
Important to note – Covid-19 takes advantage of the innate immune system. The spike protein gets in there and turns on the inflammasome. This spike protein attaches to something called the ACE2 receptor. And so not that you need to know or remember ACE2 receptor, but just so you understand, the ACE2 receptors are most prevalent in the respiratory tract. So that's why these are respiratory-type syndromes, but, you know, ACE2 receptors are also in the heart, in the kidneys, in the blood vessels, in the intestine - that's why different people will feel it in different places. Those that are already (prior) to Covid vulnerable or compromised in these areas with inflammation will be attacked more than others.
Something important to note is that the ACE2 receptor is responsible for producing something called surfactant. And surfactant is an important kind of protective layer in the epithelial cell, or the coating of the lungs and different areas of the body, and it allows oxygenation to happen. So it's responsible for letting oxygen in, so it gets into our blood, it get into our system, and for letting carbon dioxide out. So it kind of takes hold of this and that's where we're getting all of this respiratory distress with it.
So the infection also takes over something called the inflammasome and it releases pro- inflammatory chemicals at a very, very high rate. So if you had inflammation before with the innate immune system, now you really have body-on-fire because it turns up the heat - if you want to put it that way - globally in the system, by just taking over the show with this inflammasome and creating lots of inflammatory cytokines in the lungs, in the tissues and in the whole body.
GOOD NEWS & FOOD
The good news is that we have been able to identify it, the specific inflammasome it takes over is NLRP3. Its really important to know because there's lots of foods and phytochemicals supplements that inhibit this NLRP3.
So the high-risk people, who are seriously over weight or people with diabetics, hypertension, smokers, asthmatic’s or high inflammatory problems - you need to be careful. Changes need to be made to your health plan now, not later.
NATURAL BOTANICALS & SUPPLEMENTS
Natural botanicals that inhibit that NLRP3 - that's the inflammasome that goes wild and gives you body-on-fire. Quercetin, and quercetin is in the skin of apples and that's where a lot of it is found but quercetin is a star. Melatonin. Curcumin, the spice in many Indian foods. Green tea, EGCG - four cups of green tea a day is an NLRP3 inhibitor.
Resveratrol, in everything purple - purple grapes, purple carrots, purple cauliflower - it's an NLRP3 inhibitor.
And so quercetin has antiviral effects. It's an antioxidant, it's anti-inflammatory - it inhibits both things. It inhibits this NLRP3 and the enzyme that allows the virus to kind of take over the cell. So it's a superstar.
Melatonin, they've done two recent, published papers for the use of melatonin as a therapeutic agent in the treatment of patients with COVID-19. And again, it also inhibits this NLRP3, which is just really, really cool.
Curcumin in spices. You know, people should be adding this to their foods or doing turmeric lattes, right? So curcumin again, does two things - it's a double-hitter: NLRP3 inhibits the inflammasome and it also inhibits the enzyme that's responsible for the replication.
Green tea, has both things: NLRP3 and M-protease. So it reduces viral replication, and it's been shown to prevent influenza in health care workers. And this is at three to four cups daily.
Resveratrol, the polyphenols in resveratrol, which is in all purple foods and purple grapefruit, again, it's amazing for inhibiting this NLRP3. And, you know, there's been lots of good data to show that it prevents against another Coronavirus, which is MERS that we talked about before, which is the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. So lots we can do with foods.
And of course, the stars not to be missed is: you know, vitamin C for its antiviral properties, boosting the immune system; vitamin D (3000-5000 daily) is an immune modulator; zinc, helps with the immune system and decrease viral replication; NAC is great for thinning out the mucus and it's a great anti-inflammatory, it's a precursor to glutathione - so it helps with detoxification and a major, major antioxidant and, vitamin A helps with all of the respiratory stuff - it's a great immune-booster, specifically for the lungs and the respiratory. So these are just some basics that people can include into their daily regimens to put their immune system in good shape.
We are all on this journey in life. Remember that some people have been effected by huge loss of loved ones, some loss of financial support or job loss, some have lost friends and family in the various struggles. Many have major physiological stress and are lonely, anxious & depressed. Its important to be kind, gentle and understanding as no one has gone unpunished.
It’s time to be calm, patient and remember we are all human. Think about how you want to re-tell this tale in years to come. Where you kind, helpful, supportive & sympathetic to others – a real life war hero …… what will your story be to tell.
There had never been a better time to boost your immune system and to take your health seriously. Being overweight is not going to hep and puts you at high risk. Your health is YOUR responsibility, not anyone elses. Take action and make those changes that will not only help with Covid, but many life style diseases.
If you confused about where to start, let me guide you on the journey to lasting health & wellness.