Coronavirus: What can we do to help stop the spread of Coronavirus?
Elisa Song, MD, a pediatrician with Whole Family Wellness, has done a nice overview below. We’ve thrown in a few details regarding the recommendations for supplements after speaking to Nasha Winters, ND and Nicola Dehlinger, ND. I’ve moved Dr. Song’s information around a bit and added a few things in purple below.
Keep your immune system as strong as possible.
Consider keeping your immune system even more supported with the following nutritional supplements to give your body even more antiviral defense:
- Vitamin C – Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant which assists our ability to ward off and deal with infection. Remember the vitamin C and sepsis study above? I have been using Metagenics Ultra-Potent C because it has added ingredients such as lysine and glutathione which assist in fighting viruses.
- 0-1 year olds: as much breast feeding as possible
- 1-3 year olds: 250mg 2-4 x/day (the Effer-C packets are 1000mg and the Acai and Elderberry flavors don’t have sugar but do have Stevia)
- 3-12 year olds: 2 grams/day (see above and divided in smaller doses for the younger children and older if needed to tolerate)
- >12 year olds: 3 grams/day (again breaking up the dose if needed)
The main limiting factor is diarrhea… and because I know that you will share with family and friends a few other contraindications are:
Contraindications. Vitamin C supplementation is contraindicated in blood disorders like thalassemia, G6PD deficiency, sickle cell disease, and hemochromatosis. Avoid taking supplements immediately before or following angioplasty. High dose Vitamin C also has the potential to increase the forming of oxalate kidney stones for those who have had such kidney stones/are predisposed to such kidney stones.
- Vitamin D3 – There is speculation that rates of illness increase over the winter because of the widespread deficiency of Vitamin D. Studies have shown that people supplemented with adequate levels of Vitamin D3 during the cold and flu season had significantly lower rates of infection. Vitamin D3 increases our body’s production of cathelicidin, an antimicrobial compound, to help fight viral and bacterial infections. The Vitamin D Council recommends a maintenance dosage of 1000 IU of Vitamin D3 per 25 pounds of body weight (the dosage may be higher in people with Vitamin D deficiency, which is epidemic and can be measured through an easy blood test). **Vitamin D3 is one of the supplements that I am “religious” about giving to my kids.**
- 0-6 months: 400 IU (regular dosing, can double if feel any exposures happening)
- 7-12 months: 800 IU (double regular dosing can be done daily in sick season)
- >1yr: 1000 IU of Vit D3 per 25lbs of body weight (50,000 IU per week max)
- Zinc – Zinc is required for the normal functioning of white blood cells. Supplementing with just 15mg of zinc per day in adults has been found to improve our immune cells’ ability to ward off infection.
Many folks don’t tolerate zinc, and it is best covering the mucus membranes so for those over 5 yrs old, zinc lozenges are a great idea especially when you need to be at the grocery store or pharmacy.
- Fish oil– Omega-3 essential fatty acids have a host of immune benefits too long to list!
- Probiotics – One study showed a dramatic reduction in fever and upper respiratory symptoms in children who took a probiotic with a specific combination of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium daily throughout the cold and flu season. This particular combination of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium can be found in Metagenics Ultra Flora Children’s Chewable probiotic, Ultra Flora Synergy powder, and Ultra Flora Balance capsules. The recommended dosage for children and adults is ¼ tsp 2x/day, 1 capsule 2x/day, or 1 chew 2x/day. Probiotics are why fermented foods pack such a punch, so if your child’s palate hasn’t expanded yet to include a lot of fermented foods, be sure to give her a probiotic supplement to keep her gut and immune system healthy!
We love Garden of Life, Florajen4kids… those of you on Custom Probiotics please DO NOT increase dosing on this.
Highlighting a few more pieces some of which are covered below:
- Limit sugar
- If you and/or your child have food allergies please stay away from these foods during these times… the less inflammation in one’s body, the healthier the immune system to fight off infection in general.
- Keep your distance… and get outside! Fresh air and sunshine are great for the immune system.
- Stay well hydrated.
- Treat seasonal allergies daily right now if spring is your allergy season… whether it be Zyrtec, Claritin, Allegra and/or Allergena zone 6.