T he Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated that our health care system is not as robust as we would want to believe. We don’t have a vaccine or useful anti-viral drugs to treat Covid-19, only hospitalization to manage the symptoms. Furthermore, in my opinion, it is highly unlikely that any significant medical advance will emerge any time soon to stop this virus in its tracks.
Does this mean we have to give up and live in perpetual lockdowns? I don’t think so. We have within our body the most sophisticated defense system to contain the coronavirus that causes Covid-19. It’s our immune system, but it is only going to work if you know how to keep it at peak efficiency. Fortunately, your diet is ultimately the factor that controls that peak efficiency. This concept is called immuno-nutrition.
The concept of immuno-nutrition is far more complicated than taking some Vitamin C or probiotics. Viral infections cause your immune system to initially generate inflammation to attack and destroy the virus before it can replicate and keep on infecting more cells. One of the primary biological tools that our immune system uses to attack viruses is inflammatory proteins known as cytokines. Cytokines are our first line of defense against microbial infections and physical injuries because they turn on inflammation.
We need some cytokines to induce the necessary levels of inflammation to combat viral infections or physical injuries. However, if we don’t turn off that same inflammation, it can become our worst nightmare. This turning off process is called resolution which leads to healing. I term this complex orchestration of that process that turns off inflammation and generates healing as the Resolution Response. Most importantly, the Resolution Response is under significant dietary control.
The insidious nature of Covid-19 is that it seems to amplify the production of cytokines while it simultaneously turns off your internal Resolution Response. The result is a cytokine storm that causes the mortality of Covid-19. The Covid-19 Resolution Response is incredibly complex, as I explain in my most recent book, The Resolution Zone. It is composed of both hormonal and genetic responses that reduce inflammation, then it resolves any residual inflammation, and finally, it repairs the inflammatory damage to the tissue to produce healing. These are the 3 Rs needed for complete recovery. Unless they are all working together at peak efficiency, your body will never completely heal from viral infections or physical injuries.
Although my book was published six months before the advent of the pandemic of Covid-19, it provides a precise dietary pathway to minimize the cytokine storm induced by Covid-19. The dietary program is composed of a strict anti-inflammatory Zone diet to reduce inflammation, followed by adequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids to increase the hormones that resolve any remaining inflammation, and finally supported by sufficient intakes of polyphenols to activate the genes required to repair the inflammatory damage caused by cytokines. I call this dietary orchestration Pro-Resolution Nutrition. Only if all components of Pro-Resolution Nutrition are working together as a relay team can the body completely heal from any viral attack.
Unfortunately, it takes about 3-6 months to optimize your immune system following the dietary guidelines described in The Resolution Zone. The sooner you can start, especially before things are compounded by flu season, the more time you have to optimize your Resolution Response.