You can socially distance.  You can self-isolate.  You can wash your hands.  You can wear a mask.  You can wear PPE!  You can wait for a vaccine.  You can put your faith in testing.

But, you know, actually the best way to survive the Covid-19/Coronavirus pandemic is to ask the right questions.  And foremost among those are not:

  • Where’s the magic bullet to immunise me?
  • What pills can I take if I do get it?

But looking a little deeper:

  • What factors decide who gets the virus severely, or who gets it mildly?
  • What can I do right now, to put myself in the latter group?

As time has gone on, we have watched as the pandemic has had a catastrophe effect on many individuals, families, communities, businesses and some of the network of trust and responsibility that we rely upon to knit society together and make it work.

What does the future hold?

Some people are holding out for a vaccine, but that may be many months away and the virus is all around you now.

Many people put their faith in testing.

However, the problems with any testing are manifold: some tests will simply give the incorrect result.  If you test positive for the infection, you are not necessarily also infectious.  It is guesswork as to how long the incubation period could be (when those infected are silent carriers.)  It is also guesswork as to how long those infected remain infectious. This is a brand-new virus that we don’t know much about, please wait and see.

Again, infection does not mean disease as 80% of infected cases have no or very mild symptoms. Do you think you have had the infection in the first round

Immunity?  If you have previously been infected or infectious, you are not necessarily immune now.  Previous infection may only give immunity for a limited time.  The virus could mutate rendering previous infection and immunity meaningless.

We may already have achieved what is known as herd immunity (60%), as new cases and new deaths in the UK have plummeted significantly. Does this mean we are now safe?

But, one of the few good things to occur over the span of the pandemic is the fact that time has given us some evidence about the virus and how we might react to it.  So, let us go back to our first “right” question:

  • What factors decide who gets the virus severely, or who gets it mildly?

The people most at risk seem to be the elderly, those with chronic underlying health conditions, and those with Asian or Afro-Caribbean backgrounds.

One can understand perhaps why the first two groups would find it hard to withstand the virus, but what do they have in common with the third?

Digging a little more deeply into how the virus works, we know that Covid-19 deaths result from Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) – and eventually, lung failure.

ARDS is itself a result of the so-called Cytokine Storm, which is the immune system overreacting to the presence of the virus in the lungs and precipitating a series of inflammatory events therein.

The immune system overreacts because of a number of factors – obesity, blood sugar irregularities, a permeable gut lining, toxicity, deficiency in Vitamin D, and poor lifestyle including inadequate breathing and poor lung function.  It is a sobering statistic that one or more of these factors is present in 80% of UK residents 60 and over.

And those with chronic underlying health issues would unfortunately suffer from them too.

Therefore, one can see exactly why the virus is so devastating for the elderly and those chronically ill, but what of our third group?

The reason for the Asian and Afro-Caribbean background to be present in the high-risk groups is those ethnicities’ inclination to have low levels of vitamin D, which is the master and regulator of our immune system.

What about the Baby-Boomers who enjoyed the best medical (NHS) and social care but unfortunately failed the time test? Research showed 85% of the Baby-Boomers having a couple of chronic health conditions at 60.

So, back to our “right” question number two:

  • What can I do right now, to put myself in the latter group?

The answer does not lie in a magic pill, whatever the leader of the free world may think!

Instead of looking at some miraculous solution to the problem of the virus, you should focus on what you can do to equip your body to win the fight, no matter what.

Firstly, if you have a chronic health condition you need to get down to the root cause of your conditions and resolve them instead of taking symptom relieving pills for the rest of your life.

Additionally, promote good lung function by moving, exercising, if you can, practising deep breathing. Also, build good integrity in your gut lining by eating the right anti-inflammatory foods, drinking plenty of water, and destressing as much as possible, which also means getting good sleep, having good relationships and not gorging on bad-news media feeds.  And finally, support your immune system by getting enough vitamin D through your exposure to sunshine.

That, my friends, is the way to survive.

Now we would love to hear from you, about your experience during the hard times we have been through.

What are your priorities in order to keep yourself and your family safe in the future?