March 31, 2020
ReCODE in the COVID-19 Era
Please continue the protocol.
We hope that everyone is safe during the pandemic. It is important to know that anyone on the ReCODE protocol need not discontinue the protocol — in fact, specific elements of the protocol strengthen your immune defenses. By addressing the hyperglycemia, nutrient deficiency, hormonal deficiency, toxic burden, sleep deprivation, stress, and other factors that compromise immunity, you are creating resiliency.
Of course, it is critical to continue prevention, using social distancing, avoiding non-essential travel and routines, repeated hand washing and optimizing your immune protection. Note when washing that chlorhexidine and benzalkonium do not work well against coronaviruses, whereas careful soap and water scrubs, povidone iodine, hydrogen peroxide, and alcohol (at least 70%) all work well. Please remember that infectious virus can persist for up to several days on surfaces.
What is this virus?
The COVID-19 virus is called SARS-CoV-2. The common cold is caused by rhinoviruses and coronaviruses, so COVID-19 is a virulent cousin of the common cold. It exhibits a very unfortunate combination of being highly contagious, shedding in the pre-symptomatic phase (thus those of us who do not appear ill may spread the virus), yet causing severe disease in some, especially (but not only) those with advanced age or chronic illnesses. Therefore, it is more important than ever that we address our chronic illnesses, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
There are 7 coronaviruses that infect humans: 4 of them produce only colds, but the other 3 can be lethal, causing SARS, MERS, and COVID-19. Since SARS and MERS viruses are not transmitted in the pre-symptomatic phase, they are much easier to contain — anyone who has no fever and no symptoms is very unlikely to be shedding virus. Not so with the virus causing COVID-19.
The “COVID cushion”
In times of stress, comfort foods and junk foods become attractive, and so some of us have started to develop a “COVID cushion” — that 10 or 15 extra pounds appearing with high-simple-carbohydrate foods and poor dietary practices (such as “salad distancing” and “sheltering in popcorn!”). KetoFLEX 12/3 should prevent this. However, please be careful — if you do add a “COVID cushion,” you may lose your ketosis, your insulin sensitivity, and develop brain fog or cognitive decline. Therefore, please take a look at some of the excellent recipes from Carolina — these should help to satisfy the cravings while keeping your brain functioning optimally. There are currently 9 recipes posted in the Guides area and another 16 coming within the next week.
COVID-19: danger or opportunity?
The Chinese symbol for crisis is composed of two distinct characters: danger and opportunity, beautifully representing the crossroads this global pandemic has presented to us all. When presented with a crisis, many people unconsciously embrace “danger” and give into stress behavior, which might include turning to unhealthy comfort foods, alcohol, not exercising, staying up too late, etc. Others, however, are using this period as an “opportunity” to mindfully re-focus on the protocol in an effort to optimize their health and promote resiliency. We encourage you to recognize that you are being presented with a choice. Please consider reframing this gift of sheltering-in-place as a unique opportunity to care for yourself.
Keeping our natural anti-viral protection at its best is an excellent strategy, and this involves a number of factors:
- Getting plenty of sleep.
- Keeping stress to a minimum (stress suppresses the immune system).
- Getting out and about (with social distancing), with plenty of sun.
- Minimizing alcohol (alcohol lowers resistance to infections) and other toxins.
- Making sure you are getting vitamin C, vitamin D (with vitamin K2), zinc, R-lipoic acid, N-acetylcysteine, beta-glucan, and selenium. Fortunately, all of these are available as part of the protocol. Some like to add Active Hexose Correlated Compound (AHCC) at 3 grams per day or Echinacea (from Gaia, 1 dropper twice per day, for up to 8 weeks).
If you develop symptoms:
If you develop symptoms such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, please check with your doctor and get tested immediately (if tests are available), particularly if your symptoms include a loss of smell or taste, since these often accompany COVID-19. Since about 80% of those infected will only experience mild symptoms and not need hospitalization, you may wish to consult this triage tool developed by physicians at USC.
Let’s all work together to minimize our risk for COVID-19 and continue to optimize cognition. Please stay safe and healthy.