What can you do to help prevent illness during a pandemic?
The power of the human body to heal itself is truly amazing. In this time of ‘social distancing’ brought on by the novel coronavirus, each of us have an opportunity to transition away from the refined sugars which suppress our immune systems and provide the nutrients that our bodies need to ramp up our well-being. Fortunately, the Well World app makes healthy eating easy with complete with daily meal plans and even weekly shopping lists—so you can be sure that your body stays vital and strong.
Exercise is a key component to our immune-health optimization strategy. Now that many of us are working from home and are unable to venture off to the gym quite as easily during the COVID-19 outbreak, we need to make concerted efforts to stay active. Exercise has numerous roles in supporting immune health such as balancing elevated cortisol levels which, if left unchecked, can suppress immune function. So too, physical activity has been shown to help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways. Yet don’t push too hard right now; high intensity physical exercise can exhaust your reserves and potentially make you more susceptible to infection. Slow and steady wins the race!
Amidst the dizzying array of immune-supportive supplements, it pays to have a strategic plan of investment. First, we recommend supplements to support the gut health - the source of immune health. Next we recommend supplements to support the immune system and help fight off infections, viral and bacterial. And specifically due to COVID-19, we may also recommend supplements that support heart and lung health or address underlying lifestyle risk factors.
Even before the outbreak of COVID-19, chronic stress that accompanies our modern American lifestyles wreaks havoc on our lives, and what is going on right now is only adding to our stress levels. If we don’t make an effort to transition out of our sympathetic nervous system (our ‘fight or flight’ mode) and activate our parasympathetic nervous system (the ‘rest and digest’ mode), we become burnt out while simultaneously deactivating our immune systems. Fortunately, simple steps go a long way here. For instance, try slow, rhythmic breathing from your diaphragm, or belly breathing, to get immediate stress reduction benefits. So too, humming activates the vagus nerve and stimulates the parasympathetic system. Another easy stress reduction technique is to wash your hands and face with cold water. And of course, spending time in meditation can go a long way help reduce stress levels.
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Dr. Katherine Holstein, D.C.
Dr. Katie graduated with her Doctorate in Chiropractic from Life University of Chiropractic in Marietta, Georgia in June 2009. She is passionate about what she does everyday and adjusts with faith that the body’s ability to heal itself is stronger than any pill.
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