My letter about the Coronavirus was printed on the opinion page of a newspaper in my region. I was concerned, as was the author of the article I cited, that people were making unsubstantiated promises about how natural remedies could cure Coronavirus.
Of course, if those I care for are affected by this new Coronavirus, I am going to extrapolate from my natural medicine experience with other viral illness. But I will be upfront about this approach, and I will also strongly encourage everyone to seek treatment with their primary care doctor so that all tools can be employed.
Here are some of the natural interventions I will consider for prevention:
- Research has shown that some herbs can help prevent flu including licorice root, American ginseng, elderberry, echinacea, and garlic.
- Likewise, nutritional supplements can help insure optimal immune system function. These include: zinc, selenium, vitamin C, and probiotics.
- Test your vitamin D levels. Vitamin D might boost immune health for disease prevention and improve disease outcomes.
And don’t forget these very important basics to help prevent this or any other seasonal illnesses:
- Have a healthy lifestyle: get enough sleep, minimize stress, eat plenty of veggies and fruits, and avoid sugar and junk foods.
- Avoid large crowds and places with poor ventilation.
- If you cannot avoid such places, consider using a properly fitted mask.
- Prioritize handwashing, more often, with soap and water for twenty seconds, especially before eating.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Use hand sanitizers, when handwashing is not possible.
- Avoid people who are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and discard or sneeze into your bent elbow.
- Please stay home if you are sick!
Here is the letter I sent to the newspaper. Even though I might consider silver as part of my protocol, we cannot believe in any supposed miracle cure for Coronavirus or any illness:
I read your article about the silver solution product promoted by Jim Baker, and I want to address my concerns about their product claims as a professional naturopathic doctor with a degree from Bastyr University in Seattle, Wash., and a person who works daily helping craft natural medicines and supplements.
True, silver compounds have been used for many years to reduce or eliminate many pathogens, but most of the studies are done in test tubes. Outcomes in the human body are often very different from those in test tubes. There is zero professional research that shows silver solution products cure coronavirus infections. In fact, it is dangerous to offer people false hope during this critical time with an international epidemic.
In short, it is dangerous and potentially life threatening to suggest that silver solution products can cure the coronavirus infection. It would be dangerous and even deadly for people who may have contracted the illness to rely on untested, undocumented remedies. Such patients could not only endanger their own lives by delaying critical treatment by taking the silver solution instead of seeking professional medical care, but those patients could infect others while believing the silver solution had cured the coronavirus infection.
Naturopathic medicine is my career and I’ve helped many people with serious health problems, and have even taken a form of silver for other illnesses myself. However, no serious naturopathic practitioner who cares about patients or public health would suggest without documented, peer-reviewed research that silver solution products would cure a deadly pathogen like coronavirus.
Such unfounded claims not only endanger the public during an international epidemic, but also create unnecessary doubts about the good work of clinically-trained naturopathic doctors, like myself.
As a naturopathic doctor, I urge everyone who may be exposed to coronavirus to seek help from appropriate health professionals, and not just rely on unproven silver solutions sold by those hoping to capitalize on public fears.
Laurell Matthews, ND