There seems to be allot of misinformation especially from the various media outlets. Mainstream media keeps the focus on how many people die from Covid-19 and how many people have the infection, but surprisingly little on what the public can do to improve their own chance should they get the infection and what should be done if they suffer from symptoms.
For me working in health and rehabilitation for the past 17 years I tend to live in a world of prevention and empowerment of my clients and people around me. It is a shame that instead of creating a fear-based culture of segregation and covering our faces and hoping for a vaccine, that we become more proactive in tackling this head on instead of hiding away.
Forgive me if this seems harsh but the Politicians and science based community can not seem to understand that Covid-19 is not just about a virus and numbers and that there are people, with lives, community, jobs and beliefs at the end of it. That generally people want things that they can actively do to take some control of their health, lives, and destiny.
There is a real growing problem with this lack of basic understanding and that their respective fingers are most certainly not on the pulse. Suicide rates have increased drastically, people are feeling isolated,
Cancer is increasing. According to ecancer.org they use an example of breast cancer. Breast Cancer usually has a 2 week wait but during the Covid-19 peaks women who are below 25 years of age with any symptoms this is cancelled, women whom are below 35 years with breast pain is cancelled. Breast imaging and biopsy delayed and not reinstated until the peak covid passes. The problem is that the 99.6% success in diagnosis in that 2-week period is due to examination, imaging and biopsy, this along with quick treatment allows for a 80% survival rate. This will be greatly compromised. This is just one cancer related example.
The current research is straight forward and not totally conclusive it all points in the same direction. The reasons for complications and increase chance of death is due to systemic inflammation.
Study published in Diabetologia (Journal of the European Association for Study of Diabetes)
Study completed by Dr Yang Jin of Union Hospital and Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology
- High blood sugar you have more than double the risk of dying from Covid19
- Fasting blood glucose or higher of 7.0 mmol/l at admission is a predictor of mortality at 28 days
- Mechanisms for increased mortality include
- Hyperglycaemia-induced changes in coagulation (clotting)
- Worsening of endothelial function
- Over production of inflammatory cytokines
A study published in the Lancet, Holman et al, 2020.
Produced an article called Risk factors for Covid-19 related mortality in people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes in England: a population-based cohort study.
They demonstrated that mortality for Covid19 was substantially increased by diabetes, especially type 2 which accounts for most of the diabetes. Those with complications such as cardiovascular and renal issues are far more likely.
BMI is also a major factor and is U shaped, meaning underweight or overweight gave similar probability based on current studies.
Wang et al, 2020, Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, Glycosylated hemoglobin is associated with systemic inflammation, hypercoagulability, and prognosis of COVID-19 patients
Showed that high HbA1c levels increased inflammation. IL6 levels tend to increase, these act as pro-inflammatory markers that are produced by smooth muscle from blood vessels. Furthermore low ferritin (iron) levels are a common marker in mortality in Covid-19. This in turn increased fibrinogen (a glycoprotein converted to a clot via thrombin).
They also tested Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate, this measures the level of globulin and fibrinogen which is a non-specific test used to show chronic inflammatory and disease states and connective tissue disorders.
In another study produced in medRxiv.org by Petrilli et al 2020, Factors associated with hospitalisation and critical illness among 4103 patients with Covid-19 disease in New York City. They demonstrated very similar results, that systemic inflammation causes the majority of the problems as measured by C-reactive protein and a measure of an increase of Procalcitonin which rises in response to pro-inflammatory stimulus (especially a bacterial infection).
Further to this vitamin D is a hot topic. Vitamin D has been shown to play a key role in our immune system and not just the absorption and utilisation of calcium. Vitamin D induces cathelicidins and defensin which are antimicrobial peptides which help protect key areas of the body including the mucosa (lining) of the lungs. These also lower viral and replication rates and concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines which injury the lungs.
Grant et al, 2020, Nutrients Journal produced an article called Evidence that vitamin d supplementation could reduce risk of influenza and covid-19 infections and deaths. In this article they highlight the above.
In another article by Alexander et al 2020, showed that vitamin D along with zinc and Selenium may provide and effective resistance against covid-19 and further to this Cooper et al 2020 produced a review in the journal open Heart, entitled relationships between hyperinsulinemia, magnesium, vitamin D, thrombosis and Covid-19 rationale for clinical management. They also discuss factors that increase mortality and complication rates such as high BMI, low oxygen saturation, CVD, hypertension etc. They go on to state that along with vitamin D that you also need magnesium. The rationale is all based on science that we already know that hyperinsulinemia promotes magnesium depletion via increased renal excretion, and also increases clotting agents.
Diminished activation of vitamin D due to low magnesium increases, so does capacity for sulfotransferase enzyme activity. This decreases plasma membrane negative charge between red blood cells, platlets and endothelial cells, increasing thrombosis.
They go on to recommend magnesium, Vitamin D and zinc and decreasing carbohydrates.
Conclusion & Thoughts
Based on current research and what we already know is summarised by the following points:
- Systemic inflammation before contracting Covid-19 such as in Diabetes and/or high HbA1c/BGL doubles your chances of mortality and complications.
- Age above 64 increase your risk factor
- Underweight BMI or overweight BMI are considerable risk factors.
- Low Oxygen levels before contraction of Covid-19 as seen in respiratory illness increases risks
- Low ferritin levels (Iron) is a risk factor
- The recommended tests upon admission are recommended to be carried out by health professional: HbA1c, Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate, C-reactive protein, Ferritin. IL6.
- Decrease or control carbohydrates
- Increase Vitamin D
- Increase in Magnesium
- Increase in Zinc
- Increase in selenium
You can take supplements but allot of these vitamins and minerals share common foods. The foods that give you the biggest bang for your buck are:
- Seeds (pumpkin and flax)
- Nuts (almonds, brazil, cashew)
- Dark chocolate
- Eggs (free range organic)
- Oily fish (Salmon)
- Cod liver oil
- Leafy greens (Spinach, broccoli)
I hope it’s clear that you have the power to create an optimal environment in which to combat most common pathogens and that your internal terrain can determine with a high percentage on your ability to smash through covid-19. Let us finish on the top tips for you to do:
One Zen Academy Personal Trainers who train at our facility in Milton Keynes, are fully equipped and highly trained individuals that can assess you as a person and create a fully inclusive program that can get you the results you want whilst simultaneously improving health.
- Try to get a portion of the foods above if not speak to a professional about supplementation
- Get outside in nature and get daily activity in your life like your life depends on it…it does!
- Get tested by a simple blood fasting test or HbA1c to determine current blood sugar levels and possible inflammation.
- Worth adding turmeric (natures anti-inflammatory)
- Cold showers
- Breath work (Wim Hof)
The power is with you, what will you do now?
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