Coronavirus: Medicinals, Herbals and Supplements Megathread

Peak Prosperity – by dtrammel

This is a compilation of the comments about Medicinals, Herbals and Supplements which are discussed in the following Peak Prosperity Articles, Blogposts and Podcasts from 1/23/2020 to 1/31/2020:

01/23/2020: ALERT: Coronavirus Pandemic Event Now A Serious Risk

01/24/2020: VIDEO: The Risk Of A True Pandemic Is Higher Than We’re Being Told

01/25/2020: How Contagious Is The Coronavirus?

01/25/2020: PODCAST: Everything We Know So Far About The Coronavirus

01/26/2020: VIDEO: Challenging The Chinese Coronavirus Data

01/27/2020: The Coronavirus Is Now An Actual Pandemic

01/28/2020: How Will The Coronavirus Impact The Markets?

01/28/2020: What The 1918 Spanish Flu Can Tell Us About The Coronavirus

01/29/2020: Coronavirus Update: The Calm Before The Storm

01/30/2020: The W.H.O. Just Prioritized Money Over Human Life

01/31/2020: New Coronavirus Ro of 4.1 = Massive Contagion Risk

01/23/2020: ALERT: Coronavirus Pandemic Event Now A Serious Risk

DanielleW: Elderberry syrup
Chris, Where do you get your elderberry syrup? I would love to have some on hand- just in case. Any details would be greatly appreciated.

Jeff: Elderberry Syrup Link
Here is some good elderberry syrup, tastes good to.

Doug: Elderberries
Make your own. We grew elderberries in our own garden. In our biozone elderberries grow vigorously and are abundant with little or no care. The only problem is that they risk becoming weed shrubs.

Thetallestmanonearth: High Dose vitamin C
This is anecdotal at best, but completely harmless and a worthwhile precaution. My wife started reading a bunch of mommy blogs that recommend extremely high doses of vitamin C to prevent and reduce symptoms of colds and the flu. We have two toddlers and last year we were sick constantly. We’ve started giving our kids 50mg/day while they’re healthy and 200/mg a day at the first sign of a cold. I personally take 1,000mg/day and 2,000 when I’m going to be traveling or around sick people (a lot recently). I combine this with elderberry and raw garlic if I feel a twing of a cold coming on. So far this year I have had one minor cold. The girls came down with the flu and I bumped my vitamin C intake up to 3,000mg/day for a week. I was covered in snot and literally thrown up on multiple times. I could feel the first signs of the flu, but they never got hold of me. We’re now 2 weeks past it and I feel fine. It might be placebo or coincidence, but I’m going to keep it up. The maximum recommended dose of VitC is 2,000mg/day, but I am 6’10 and 230 lbs so I figured I could push it a bit. Above that there is some risk of developing kidney stones. I was skeptical at first because I had heard that your body can only absorb so much and beyond that point you’re just making expensive pee. VitC is not fat soluble and therefore passes quickly with water rather than storing in your cells. My wife convinced me to try anyway and I’m glad I did. My current hypothesis is that I’m creating an acidic environment which is unwelcoming to viruses. I’ve read that families with kids average 6-7 colds per year. So far we’re about half way through the cold season and I’ve only had one mild cold. The kids have had none. I’ve been on airplanes constantly this year too. Yes, my kids got the flu, but we were giving them considerably lower mg/kg doses of vitamin C and frankly, toddlers have terrible hygiene (like the worst…they’re so gross!) and less developed immune systems.

thc0655: Are elderberries considered “invasive?”
We’re planning to plant them this summer. Will they take over? Is there any way to keep them under control?

Doug: Mow them
I mowed them when I saw new shoots emerging. An herbicide would probably work too, but I avoid them. In a technical sense, I don’t believe they are “invasive” since I think they are a native species. They are easy to find around the edges of woods, but the berries are smaller and less abundant in the wild shrubs.

Chris Martenson: Re: elderberries
It’s a perennial bush. Or shrub. Pretty big at maturity…10′ tall and maybe 8-10 feet wide. So somewhere where they won’t block other things. Need/love ‘wet feet.’ Stream banks are good. Wet spots in the lower lawn are ideal. No, they don’t spread much. I’d be thrilled if they did. I’ve propagated all mine from cuttings. I plan to be “Johnny Elderberry” at my new home planting them up and down the stream nearby. Birds love the berries. Also a native species, so not invasive in the technical sense.

Quercus bicolor: Elderberry Granny
A coworker’s grandmother drives around the area near her rural Pennsylvania home on an ATV in early summer scouting for blooming elderberries with binoculars. She returns later in summer and harvests enough berries to allow her great-grandchildren to eat peanut butter and elderberry jam sandwiches almost every day of the year. It’s their favorite.

nancybeck: Elderberry leaves and bark
There is a Facebook post by Stephen Harrod Buhner today regarding specific herbal antivirals for the coronavirus. Elderberry leaves and bark are actually more specific than the berries. He has written a book entitled Herbal Antivirals: Natural Remedies for Emerging & Resistant Viral Infections. Also wrote Herbal Antibiotics: Natural Alternatives for Treating Drug-Resistant Bacteria along with 20+ other books. I love his work. He is a researcher and independent thinker. Check out his website and sign up for his FB posts.

That said, we make and take elderberry syrup in the winter when exposed to others with respiratory illnesses or when we feel that run-down feeling before something hits you. We don’t take it all the time, just when we feel we need it for a boost.

ezlxq1949: Plant elderberries yesterday
In my part of the world elderberries (Sambucus nigra) are “relatively easy” to grow in cooler parts of the country. There’s at least 7 varieties, all requiring moist, humus-rich soil. They come into full production about 3 years after planting. They’re not common here, though. I shall see what indigenous plants may be available, although they’re not common either.

The Vitamin C alternative works for my wife and me. We haven’t had colds or sniffles for many years. However, it’s not the perfect prophylactic. We picked up a nasty virus on a visit to Sydney 6 months ago, which did not respond to any amount of garlic and Vit C, and only time got rid of it.

Doug: Elderberry wine
Hey, does elderberry wine work the same as jam? I just bottled 30 bottles a couple months ago.

dryam2000: Not much help
Vitamin C seems to help but only people doing strenuously exercise like marathoners. There is some evidence that zinc may help in reducing duration and intensity of symptoms. However, be aware that the intranasal preparation can permanently alter sense of smell. Personally, I take zinc at the first hint of viral symptoms, but would never take the intranasal kind.

pinecarr: Re: elderberries
The birds love my elderberries so much I never get them; they strip the bushes clean before the berries are even ripe!

ao: why?
No special precautions here. Always stocked up on food, fuel, and water. Always try to get adequate sleep, stay hydrated, and eat well (especially avoiding refined carbs in all their forms). Sugar is definitely not good on my immune system. Always try to maintain good micro-nutrient intake (including vitamins C and D and zinc) and consume pro-biotics (in the form of yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kombucha, etc.). Always stocked up on anti-viral/anti-microbial supplements/substances including N-acetyl cysteine, olive leaf extract, and monolaurin for prevention; Sambucol/Sambucus (proprietary elderberry formula), oregon oil (for gargle), and AHCC for treatment; Robuvit for recovery. Have colloidal silver on hand for special situations such as ventilating lung fields with a mist if things get really serious. Always try to exercise but avoid doing it to the point of absolute exhaustion (keeping in mind ARE response to stress: adaptation, resistance, exhaustion) or when it just doesn’t feel right. Always wash hands.

Oliveoilguy: Thieves Oil
We use the essential oil called “thieves” when traveling on airplanes to clean our hands and then we cup our hands to our face and breath in through the mouth and nose. I feel like it might kill germs but this is obviously anecdotal. Supposedly….this might be total BS…..this oil vapor was used by people robbing the catacombs where they needed protection from disease. Hence the name thieves oil. It has a very strong essence. I just ordered some on Amazon with spray tops.

bethgreenwood: Coronavirus and the immune system
Chris, could you speak to the issue of sugar consumption and the immune system in relation to viral infections? In my clinical practice as an RN (currently going on 51 years) what I have consistently seen is that those who have a high sugar intake are more likely to become sick and to take longer to recover. While strategies such as handwashing and masks may help with disease spread, a strong immune system is at least as important.

suziegruber: Diet & The Immune System
Hi Beth, Here’s an excerpt from Stephen Harrod Buhner’s book Herbal Antivirals. Although he doesn’t speak to the issue of sugar, he does offer suggestions about how to strengthen the immune system through diet. On his Facebook page is also offering an extensive herbal protocol for the Corona virus..Cheers, Suzie

One of the great lessons from the AIDS epidemic is the realization, among the medical establishment, of the necessity for a healthy immune system. Among those with infections such as tick-borne encephalitis, influenza, Lyme, mycoplasma, and bartonella (as examples) researchers have constantly noted that the healthier the immune system, the less likely one is to be infected and, if infected, the less severe the course of the disease.

The immune system is an “organ” just as our lungs and livers are and there are things you can do to keep the immune system healthy. Regular touching is one of them, such as receiving Swedish massage on a weekly or monthly basis. Certain foods do help immune health as well. Some of the best foods that support immune health are:
• Yogurt. Regular intake does result in fewer sick days. The body’s white blood cell count increases substantially and the GI tract bacterial community remains very healthy, which also helps. Kefir can also be used.
• Oats and barley. Farm animals given a mix of the two have many fewer infections, including those from influenza. (And yes, in spite of rumors to the contrary, we actually are animals, too.)
• Garlic. Although not as strong an antibiotic as I had formerly thought, regular garlic intake does boost immune function — in one study, those taking garlic were much less likely to catch colds and flu.
• Selenium-rich foods have been found to help clear influenza infections from the body. Selenium is found highest (in descending order) in Brazil nuts, fish (tuna, cod, halibut, sardines, flounder, salmon), poultry (chicken and turkey), sunflower seeds, shellfish (oysters, mussels, shrimp, clams, scallops), meat (liver, beef, lamb, pork), eggs, mushrooms, whole grains, wheat germ, onions, garlic, asparagus, broccoli, tomatoes. One ounce of Brazil nuts (usually just called “nuts” in Brazil) will supply 544 mcg of selenium — you don’t need many; one Brazil nut can supply a whole day’s supply of selenium. To give a comparison, tuna fish contains 68 mcg per ounce, cod 32 mcg per ounce, turkey 27 mcg, sunflower seeds 23, oysters 22, and so on.
• Chicken soup. Yes, it does work.
• Black tea. It significantly increases the immune system’s interferon levels. Green tea will also be of benefit.
• Zinc-containing foods. Zinc is an essential mineral, especially in immune function. It enhances the actions of many of the immune system’s actors, including T cells. Zinc is highest in oysters, wheat germ, liver, seeds (highest in sesame, tahini, pumpkin, squash, and watermelon seeds), roast beef, dark chocolate and cocoa, lamb, peanuts, garlic, chickpeas. To give you an idea of levels: Oysters concentrate zinc (and copper as well). One medium oyster contains about 13 mg of zinc, 3 ounces of wheat germ contains 17 mg, calf liver has about 12 mg per 3 ounces, sesame seeds contain about 8 mg per 3 ounces, and so on.
• Mushrooms. But not the usual store-bought variety. Shiitake and maitake can both be used in cooking, and they are both very good for raising immune function, primarily due to their high levels of polysaccharides. Their polysaccharides raise immune function considerably when taken as a regular part of the diet.

Sand puppy: Don’t go to the ED unless home treatments fail
Home treatment of febrile Influenza Like Illnesses/Respiratory Infection [This is a very educated group and most are well versed in this.] During outbreaks of viral illness, the ED will be a mad house. Stay away if possible. Recommend strong attempts at self-treatment at home. Stay out of the hospital unless truly needed.

Ibuprofen 800 mg (or naproxen) for fever, body aches, headache, chest wall soreness. This is a miraculous drug for the misery of ILI. It also helps to sort out the miserable from the seriously sick (see below).
If not vomiting repeatedly, you can drink water. “Drink until you pee.” Lots.
Electrolytes in water if diarrhea is a part of fluid losses.
If incessant coughing, Nyquil or equivalent.
The hospital ED will be a miserable place during a flu epidemic. Long waits, no pillows or blankets. No snacks. No sympathy from the staff!! Sleeping on the floor of the hallways. Remember that the ED staff is probably sick also.

A few situations where hospital care IS needed.

Intractable vomiting (>6-8 times) or vomiting with diarrhea. IV fluids and anti-emetics will help when not able to hydrate by mouth.
Chest pain and shortness of breath with fever, IF associated with fast pulse and low oxygen saturation. Might be pneumonia. Chest x-ray. Supplemental oxygen if oxygen is actually low. Measure pulse rate an oxygen saturation (see below). In children, fast breathing at rest, even after good fever control, points towards pneumonia.

Severe headache even after big doses of Ibuprofen and hydration. Might be meningitis. Spinal tap needed. IV antibiotics might help. Don’t even think about spinal tap until ibuprofen dose has been in body for 2 hours—everyone with the flu has a terrible headache.

Urinary symptoms. UTI can give a ILI, especially in children and women.
Wheezing with cough. May have an asthma-like response to the infection. Albuterol (and maybe steroids) may help. Uncommon.
Equipment list for home treatment of ILI:

Costco sized bottle of Ibuprofen or Naproxen. (Use the big dose)
Watch with second hand to measure pulse rate and respiratory rate.
Pulse oximeter, $29 from Walmart or Amazon. This device will save you an ED trip. Recommended! Pic below.
Big tumbler for water. Drink and refill often.
Electrolyte powder (mag and K) in water if have diarrhea.
Disinfectant wipes.

General Immune system support as outlined by many above (vita c, vita D3, plant antioxidants, Zn, Se, N-Acetyl cysteine, etc).
Q: What is the etiology of my ILI/URI?
A: It doesn’t matter. Treatment approach is the same.

VeganDB12: thank you greendoc
what a great summation of possible home remedies and references. since dehydration seems to be an issue for some people with this bug I am going to keep sugar on hand for oral rehydation solution.

this UVA has several different recipes for different tastes/ages

Does anyone know if this things causes and over reaction of the immune system, aka cytokine storm? I have read that it was part of the problem with bird flu, the immune system overreacted to the infection. Obviously this is not the flu but would like to know and will keep searching.

mntnhousepermi: vitacost elderberry
vitacost is the one we use when we dont have enough homemade, it is a concentrate, so stronger, and is a good price. they have their own website, and also great prices on vitamens, canned organic soups, etc…

This one and that bottle is basically for one person for one illness, usually, sometimes less is used if the person gets better fast. Taking a teaspoon 4 times a day is typical, so 48 servings means 12 days if used at that rate, for example. If sicker, maybe more often. 2 bottles of this concentrate plus some vit C with get you over $25 in vitacost brand to net free shipping….

Also, I buy dry elderberries, and yes I will sometimes use Amazon, but only one of the herbal sources that I trust, so if on Amazon frontier co-op or starwest botanicals, for example, are good sources for dried elderberries, it is not too hard to make a syrup, do it ahead of time. I made some for family as part of a natural and homemade first aid supply christmas gift, and I water bath canned it so it is shelf stable. I made mine with some sugar, instead of honey, so it was infant safe. It doesnt take much.

thatchmo: Yin Chiao
I’ve been a Yin Chiao fan for years. At the first sign of “something”, I’m popping pills! Has worked well for me. Just bought a S/L of elderberry products to try that as well. Eh, probably won’t need either….I’ve heard crossing your fingers is helpful….Aloha, Steve

JAG: Alternative to Elderberry…..Blackberry and Chokeberry
When the supplies of elderberry syrup dry up, a good alternative is blackberry and chokeberry (AKA Aronia). It’s the anthocyanin pigments in elderberries that are suspected to be responsible for their flu-fighting properties, specifically the cyanidin pigments. See The inhibitory performance of flavonoid cyanidin-3-sambubiocide against H274Y mutation in H1N1 influenza virus. and Anti-influenza activity of elderberry (Sambucus nigra). You can see on a chart from this study of anthocyanins (Anthocyanin content and antioxidant activity of various red fruit juices) that both elderberries and chokeberries contain the highest content of total anthocyanins.

(See this Comment for accompanying tables and links)

However, if the active flu-fighting anthocyanin component is the cyanidin 3-glucoside (cyn 3-glu), elderberries contain a much larger fraction of these sub-anthocynins than most other berries.

Blackberries have the next most cy-3-glu content, coming in a close second to elderberry.

Although there has been quite a bit of research into anthocyanin pigments in the last decade, how they work in the human body is still not well understood. For example, most anthocyanin pigments are never actually absorbed (in their intact form) into the blood stream. It is thought that they mainly act on the microbiome in the gut.

While chokeberries have only a small fraction of the specific cy-3-glu that elderberries contain, they do have an impressive amount of total cyanidin and anthocyanin concentrations. As anthocyanins are believed to act synergistically with one another, consuming a wide-spectrum of them is considered to be a good strategy.

You can buy dried chokeberries here. They are very bitter (hence the “choke”) but edible. Consuming the berry in it’s whole-food form, versus a syrup, is probably a better idea because you don’t really know how an extract is made. You can buy freeze-dried elderberries here. I have several gallons of chokeberry juice in my chest-fridge (under the beer). I can’t find it any more to buy, but I’ve been saving it for just such an occasion. It really tastes horrible….cheers. And put frozen blackberries on your shopping list at the grocery store too. Hope this info helps and thank you Dr. M for your great work on this.

Quercus bicolor: Way to consume elderberry
I’m thinking of adding a tablespoon of dried elderberries to my nettle-calendula-ginger tea I brew up each day and carry around in a 2 quart ball jar. One tablespoon is about equivalent to Chris’ 1 ounce shot (a pound of dried berries fills a 1 quart jar just to the top and 1 pound (1 quart) of dried berries makes 2 quarts of syrup). I’ll boil everything for 5-10 minutes and then make sure to get all of the active ingredient by eating the cooked berries.

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