Why it's More Important to Eat Healthy Now More than Ever

During this time of quarantine, it's really tempting to stock up on a bunch of non-perishable snack items and to frequent the drive-thru since it's one of the few types of business still operating.  But today I want to make the case for eating more fruits and veggies.  Not just because they'll help you ward off that quarantine weight, but because they contain a chemical compound that could actually help play a critical role in helping to fight the damaging effects of the virus.
If you're keeping up with the news, you might be aware that some practitioners are prescribing a malaria drug called Hydroxychloroquine as a potential treatment for the virus.  Because there have not been any double-blind studies conducted, we're not sure if this drug is the right treatment to combat the virus.  A few studies are underway so, hopefully, we'll have more information about the effectiveness of the drug soon.

Some experts claim that the drug itself isn't what stops the virus from replicating.....it's actually zinc.  Zinc may have the ability to halt the virus' replication within the cells.  The only problem is that zinc can not pass through the cell wall to reach the virus.  This is where Hydroxychloroquine comes in.  This malaria drug acts as a transporter that allows zinc to enter into the cell wall where it can stop the virus from taking over.  Again, because there hasn't been an official study conducted on the effectiveness of Hydroxychloroquine + zinc, we're just operating on theories along with multiple cases where this combination has shown to be effective on patients.

Here's the issue.  Because of limited testing (and resources), most people who contract the virus may never receive medical attention. Most are told to self-quarantine until the virus has run its course.  Unfortunately, many are experiencing harsh symptoms while waiting for their immune system to overcome the virus.  Not to mention that Hydroxychloroquine is in high demand at the moment and hard to access.

So what can you do if you have to "treat" your symptoms at home (or if you want to give your cells a boost of zinc)?

Find a Hydroxychloriquine alternative.   Hydroxychloriquine can bring zinc inside the cells because it's an ionophore.  Another ionophore that's readily available is a compound known as quercetin.

Quercetin isn't a prescription drug, it's an antioxidant found in many different fruits and veggies.  The only problem is that it's typically found in foods in small amounts.   Luckily for us, quercetin also available in supplement form.  In theory, when someone pairs quercetin with their zinc and vitamin C supplements, the virus-fighting power of zinc can be greatly enhanced.

So what exactly is quercetin?  Essentially, it's an antioxidant utilized by the body to fight free radicals.  It's been shown to help fight arthritis-related inflammation in past studies.   In some animal studies, quercetin was shown to suppress cancer cell growth in the prostate, liver, lung, breast, and various other organs.  You can read the list of all the potential benefits here.

This wonderful antioxidant may be a little known alternative to the increasingly popular malaria drug.  If you're putting together an immune-boosting regimen for you and your family, this supplement is worth taking a second look.  At the very least, be sure to fill your diet with foods loaded with this amazing compound:
Grapes, black (100 g)2.17 mg
Red Raspberry, raw (100 g)3.58 mg
Nectarine, whole (100 g)0.11 mg
Broccoli, raw (100 g)1.80 mg
Red onion, raw (100 g)1.80 mg
Black tea, infused (100 ml)1.13 mg
Red wine (100 ml)1.14 mg
That's just a shortlist, most fruits and veggies contain it in varying amounts.

Since I'm currently taking a vitamin C + zinc supplement, I figured it made sense to add a quercetin supplement so I can maximize the power of zinc.  Especially knowing that I was slightly deficient in zinc per on my micronutrient test results.  If any of you are supplementing to boost your immune system, maybe do some research on the link between zinc and viral infections then decide if supplementing with quercetin is right for you. 

At the very least, it can't hurt to include more quercetin rich foods in our diet. 

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