Part II: The Gastrointestinal Tract and COVID19
(1) The COVID19 virus is incredibly infectious. Most of those with the virus are asymptomatic (and highly infectious) long before they know they have it.
a. COVID19 has a significant presence in the gastrointestinal tract. Many patients have GI symptoms (anorexia, nausea, diarrhea) with an acute COVID19 infection, but most are asymptomatic. The virus persists in the stool for up to 30 days after respiratory symptoms have resolved.
b. In the Covid-MERS outbreak of 2013 (a similar coronavirus) it was suggested that the gastrointestinal infection occurred first and the respiratory symptoms and pneumonia followed.
(2) As we move out of shelter-in-place and back into the workplace there will potentially be a significant reservoir to re-infect and further extend the pandemic (the feared “Second Wave”)
(3) The good news: once 50-80% of the population has achieved herd (population) immunity, the pandemic ends. Recent study shows that 94% of those infected will mount an antibody response within just 14 days.
(4) So….Until a vaccine that is effective and safe becomes widely available, our best bet now is to assure the greatest chance that, if infected, the illness will be mild and self-limited, and will not progress to the feared “cytokine- storm”
(5) Our ”Quick Treat” regimen of frequent small repeated doses of Vitamin C, Vitamin D and the probiotic beverage Kefir milk, started as early as possible with the onset of any acute viral illness, can help restore a healthier microbiome, boosting innate immunity and promoting natural healing. Like most colds and flu, you just get over it!
(6) In Jiangsu Province of China (where some of the world’s healthiest balances between good and bad colon bacteria were reported in 2017- even in their hundred year old residents) out of the 80 reported cases of COVID19 noted there, only 3/80 became severely ill and there were no deaths and no ventilators required. A healthy GI tract protects against adverse outcome with coronavirus infections.
(7) A recent European study showed a 40% decrease in all causes of death simply if the levels of Vitamin D in the body were in the high normal range (80-90nmol/L as measured in the blood). We are routinely seeing levels as low as 7 or 11nmol/L in otherwise young, healthy Americans and likely explains why young people can also die of this disease. Vitamin D supports intestinal integrity, helps build a healthier microbiome,and strengthens the immune system. Vitamin C has been shown to shorten viral infections and lessen cytokine production.
(8) Many of the unexplained observations on the COVID19 infections can now be understood in light of these two critical (and correctable) risk factors (1) the degree of imbalance in the colon bacteria (dysbiosis) and (2) low levels of Vitamin D.
(9) Hence the value of our “Quick Treat” protocol. Inexpensive ($10 to treat), safe and readily available over-the-counter products that can prove effective with complete resolution of symptoms within as little as 6 hours. Very little to lose in giving it a try with the first sign of illness..