As you have likely heard, on September 25th, President Trump announced that he had tested positive for the coronavirus, thereby joining millions of other Americans. As many as 80% of people who contract the disease have no symptoms or at the most mild ones as was the case for the President. However, to be extra cautious, he was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The following treatment regime was reported. It is very interesting and provides useful information for all of us.
- Remdesivir. This is an anti-viral drug that has been shown in trials to reduce the replication of covid-19 and shorten hospital stays. The drug is given only to hospitalized patients and works best for those needing oxygen. It is quite expensive.
- Regeneron. This cocktail of antibodies has shown promise but is still considered experimental. Antibodies are what the immune system creates to target specific pathogens. Natural steps you take to improve immune function (e.g. vitamin D, vitamin C, zinc, and aloe vera) may have the net effect of increasing production of antibodies.
- Dexamethasone. This is a corticosteroid used to reduce inflammation. An excess of inflammation generated by the immune system can be the cause of severe symptoms of viral disease. Many nutritional supplements such as Vitamin D, resveratrol, magnesium, garlic, zinc, and aloe vera reduce inflammation.
- Famotidine. This is a heartburn drug in the H2-blocker class. There has been some very weak evidence that it might improve covid-19 outcomes. However, I am very leery of this drug because another class of acid-blockers, Proton Pump Inhibitors, seems to make matters worse. Both types of drugs block stomach acid which is an important early defense against pathogens.
- Aspirin. Presumably, this was given to prevent the blood clots often seen with covid-19 and to reduce inflammation. Unfortunately, aspirin can also cause intestinal bleeding. Fish oil and resveratrol are among the natural ways to offset excess clotting.
- That controversial drug was not used this time, but the majority of studies show that it helps if given early. It works at least in part as an ionophore that ushers zinc into cells where it stops viruses from duplicating. Quercetin is a natural ionophore.
- Vitamin D. Authorities such as Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases acknowledge at least some of the science on vitamin D. (Tellingly, Dr. Fauci says he takes vitamin D.) Studies make it clear that those who are deficient in vitamin D are at much greater risk for covid-19. Early reports mentioned that President Trump was given 50,000 IU twice a week. We would naturally get some every day. That 50 times 2 averages out to be 14,000 IU per day. That dose is higher than I recommend for routine supplementation, but lower than I would take if I were infected. Read more about vitamin D.
- Zinc. If you listen to HBN, you have heard a lot about vitamin D and the mineral zinc. I was thrilled to discover a terrific editorial in the Wall Street Journal, Trump Takes Zinc. Maybe You Should Too. It contains some great information about zinc benefits and links to authoritative sources. (Note: I created a page on this website for the lifesaving article because, otherwise, only WSJ subscribers would be able to read it. If you subscribe or would like to, here is the direct link.) Zinc Stops the virus from duplicating and spreading and is anti-inflammatory. Researchers from Spain reported that patients in hospitals during March and April who had low blood levels of zinc were more than twice as likely to die in the hospital. Zinc and vitamin D both need magnesium.
My advice about supplemental zinc: for routine daily supplementation, there is 30 mg of a good form of zinc along with many other important nutrients in Molecular Multi. But, if you are somehow committed to another multi that contains maybe only 15 mg or less of what is probably a low-absorption form of zinc, add T-Cell Zinc™. (This innovative formula contains nutrients that make the zinc more usable.) If, unfortunately, you contract an infectious disease like covid-19 or influenza, take zinc lozenges temporarily until you get well. (The lozenges contain quercetin that gets zinc into the cell where it can stop virus replication. Probably better order them now and be ready just in case.)
- Melatonin. You may be familiar with this over-the-counter hormone as an aid for sleep and jet lag. If you have ever tried to get healing rest in a hospital, you might want this. Read about how even one night of poor sleep inhibits immune function. Melatonin is also an antioxidant and has been extensively studied for use with cancer.
- Probiotics. I hope they don’t forget probiotics because 70% immune function is in the gut. Also, viruses can hang out there waiting for the conditions to be right to return.
“Authorities” are critical of the Walter Reed plan. The media quoted some as being concerned that the combination protocol has not been proven in double blind gold standard studies. I wonder, aren’t they embarrassed to say that given that most seniors are routinely prescribed several pharmaceuticals that have never been tested together? The “experts” are also waiting for rigorous studies (which will not likely be done) on the covid-19 specific benefits of the individual nutrients…never mind science showing they work in similar circumstances. Please remember that “Not proven” is vastly different from “Disproven”.
Trump’s “underlying conditions”. We know that the President is in the higher risk 70+ age group. He isn’t going to get younger, so he needs to do the kind of things we discuss on HBN to help the body act younger. Detoxification is on that list because toxins damage cell membranes and make it easier for viruses to enter. Mr. Trump is also above his ideal body weight. There cannot be a quick fix for that, but hopefully he will be working on it.
What the President says. He said that he “feels better than he did 20 years ago”. I’m guessing that is because of the vitamin D and zinc, not the drugs. He also said that we should not worry so much that we let the pandemic take over our lives. A Stanford University project evaluated pandemic data in a more realistic way than was used early in the disease. They concluded that infection fatality rates from covid-19 “among people younger than 70 years old, ranged from 0.00% to 0.57% with median of 0.05% across the different locations.” That is less than ½ of 1%. President Trump is correct that panic is not helpful, but we do not want to be stupid either. E.g. please stay away from groups of people especially indoors who might be infected and not know it. Distance, 16 feet is better than 6 feet because small particles can travel far especially if there is not good ventilation. Wearing a mask should not be a political statement. A mask not only protects others from you, but will reduce the amount of virus you might breath in and therefore have a milder illness. Wash your hands. Hand washing will also reduce the risk of flu and those periodic “stomach bugs” that go around. Read about a worrisome toxin in some of the sanitizers.