Self-care suggestions during the COVID-19 (SARS CoV-2) pandemic
Living in a COVID-19 World: Self-care suggestions during the COVID-19 (SARS CoV-2) pandemic.
Remember that maintaining strong immunity and increasing good hygiene practices significantly curbs the spread of illness. Here are some helpful lists.
How to maintain strong immunity
- Use zinc lozenges or sprays to create an anti-infectious barrier.
- Gargle and rinse your nostrils with warm salt water with a pinch of powdered goldenseal. I use propolis throat spray after as well.
- Supplement vitamin D. According to a Cochrane review, vitamin D helps the body fight acute respiratory infection. (https://www.bmj.com/content/356/bmj.i6583)
- Supplement NAC (N-acetyl-L-cysteine). It has been shown to be anti-viral and inhibit virus-triggered inflammation in the air sacs of the lungs. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21635874 and https://jcbmr.com/index.php/jcbmr/article/view/13/28)
- Consider supporting immunity and reducing inflammation with herbs. Reishi (Ganoderma) is a medicinal mushroom that boosts immunity and shows specificity for the lungs. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK92757/). Licorice root (Glycerrhiza) has been used in TCM as an anti-inflammatory.
- Consume quality whole foods including cooked green & orange vegetables, proteins (legumes with grains and/or organic or grass-fed meats), whole grains, fruit, and healthy uncooked oils (coconut oil, avocado oil, extra-virgin olive oil).
- Hydrate regularly with water, herbal teas, and broths. Drink sips of water regularly (some sources say every 20 minutes).
- Be active regularly to keep your lymph circulating well. Spend time in the sun and fresh air.
- Stay well rested.
- Laugh often. Moving your diaphragm, as when you exercise and laugh, pumps your lymph through its filters and assists with immunity.
- Avoid refined sugar and highly processed foods.
How to increase good hygiene practices during the COVID-19 Spread
- Perform regular 20-second hand washing involving rigorous rubbing between and around all the fingers and thumb with soap & warm water. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. (CDC)
- Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose, and mouth, with unwashed hands.
- Turn your shower into a eucalyptus steam bath by pouring a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil on the shower floor and walls before you get in.
- Wipe surfaces, doorknobs, handles, and switches with disinfecting wipes or disinfectants that contain either 70% alcohol, a bleach dilution, or their sanitizing equivalent.
- Keep commonly used devices clean. Wipe your phone and computer with disinfectant wipes. Soak keys (except electronic keys) in a diluted bleach solution.
- Avoid close contact while taking the opportunity to explore new forms of social connecting such as: greeting with a bow; chatting via Skype, FaceTime, Zoom, telephone, etc.; meeting neighbors for walks while remaining 6 or more feet apart; play cyber card games; and so on.
- Take care with items that you bring into your home (like packages, mail, groceries, etc.) COVID-19 can last for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to 72 hours on plastic items. If you are in a high risk category, it is wise to wait 72 hours before opening packages that aren’t time-sensitive. Have others that aren't at high risk open packages that are time sensitive when you aren’t present. (https://hub.jhu.edu/2020/03/20/sars-cov-2-survive-on-surfaces/)
- Dramatically limit trips to places that require interaction or item exchange with other people.
- Take a shower and put clothes into the dirty laundry when you return home from being out and interacting with items or people. Spray keys, purses, etc. with disinfectant.
- If you cough, do it into a tissue and throw it away (or your sleeve if tissues aren’t available) to trap respiratory droplets before they spread.
- If you suspect that you may have been exposed, isolate yourself and items you’ve touched, from others to prevent spreading the illness. Call your primary care physician and follow their suggestions.
- CAUTION: There is evidence that NSAIDS and ACE-Inhibitors may increase risk and may be dangerous at this time. If you are taking either, contact your prescribing physician, your primary care physician, or a pharmacist and ask them about the most recent stance on this and follow their advise.
Good luck everyone!