Revivelife Clinic I Naturopath in Ottawa

Corona Virus Natural Immune Support


There is a lot of information out there on the corona virus, some of it misleading. But what do you really need to know? Here are the Coles Notes for the Corona Virus 2019 (COVID-19)

What is the corona virus?

Reports about the new coronavirus first surfaced in early December 2010 among people in Wuhan, China. The virus is called SARS-CoV-2, and the disease it causes is called COVID-19. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the main symptoms of infection from the COVID-19 are fever, and cough followed by flu-like symptoms with potential progression to pneumonia, lesions in both lungs and some patients reporting difficulty breathing.

How worried should we be?

While the COVID-19 a strain of the coronavirus is new to us, the virus itself is nothing new. Coronaviruses are a large group of related viruses that in humans that typically cause mild respiratory infections.1 Coronaviruses are responsible for an estimated 10-20% of upper respiratory tract infections and are the most frequent causes of the common cold.2

The fatality rate outside of Hubei Province, China is 1-3% which means that 97-99% will recover.

VirusesPandemicNumber of People AffectedFatality Rate
Influenza VirusesOngoing9-45 million30.2% in those over 75 years old; but because of high incidence 291,000-646,0004 fatalities per year
Coronavirus-2019 (COVID-19)2019-125,0485*1-3% of reported cases ( may be as low as 0.1% if mild-undetected cases are added)6
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)2002-20039 months800010%
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)2012+240035%7

Who is at risk?

The virus is generally only a threat to those who have a weakened overall state of health. Those at greatest risk according to the World Health Organization (WHO) are those with the following comorbidities (other medical conditions that increase the severity of a negative outcome): those in direct contact with other infected individuals, the elderly, those hospitalized, immunocompromised, or have a chronic disease (cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, smoking, severe or uncontrolled asthma, or cancer).7 The median age for those infected is around 50 years old, with a slightly higher incidence in men. Children appear to be less vulnerable to infection, have milder symptoms than adults and there have been no reported deaths in children aged 0-9 years old.

In Italy, where the fatality rate has been the highest, 99% of those who died of the COVID-19 had 3 or more comorbidities including the aged. Italy has the 2nd oldest population in the world and most the deaths occurred in those in their 80-90’s.

*As of March 22, 2020

How is it transmitted?

The coronavirus is transmitted is via aerosolized droplets which means that if someone in your immediate proximity coughs or sneezes and the droplets get on you it is possible that you may be at an increased risk of contracting the virus, especially if you have any of the comorbidities. Another mode of transmission is by fomites which are viral particles that can survive for extended periods of time on hard surfaces and /or on inanimate objects. The survival of the coronavirus on surfaces is impacted by ambient temperature and humidity.

What are the environments that it likes to survive?

The spread of outbreaks around the world of the COVID-19 seem to suggest that it prefers cool and dry climates. Coronavirus only thrives optimally in a relatively narrow temperature range of 0-15°C (approximately 30-60°F). Its survival and rate of contagion drop dramatically above 20°C (68°F), especially when combined with 50% humidity. Ideally your room should be 40-60% humidity. Heat, sunlight, humidifiers, and infrared saunas may help to reduce the risk of spread.

Will the warmer climate help to reduce the risk of spread?

Coronoaviruses are a family of “enveloped viruses” that have an oily coat or lipid bilayer, studded with proteins that stick out like spikes on a crown, or corona which is Latin for crown. Research on other enveloped viruses suggests that this oily coat makes them more susceptible to heat, as in colder conditions the oily coat hardens and thus most show strong seasonality. A study from the University of Maryland has shown that the virus has spread most in cities and regions of the world where average temperature is around 5-11°C and the relative humidity has been low. Now, there are currently few studies that look at the impact the weather has on COVID-19.

What are the symptoms?

Most infected people have mild infections, with mild cold-like symptoms and fever. Some may be asymptomatic carriers. The common symptoms according to the WHO of those with COVID-19 include:

  • Fever: 88%; Chills 11%
  • Dry cough: 68%
  • Fatigue: 38%
  • Uncomplicated upper respiratory symptoms (cough 33%, shortness of breath 19%, sore throat 14%, nasal congestion 5%, headache 14%)
  • Bone or joint pain: 15%

Some individuals will experience more severe symptoms which may include:

  • Mild pneumonia
  • Severe pneumonia
  • Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS)
  • Nausea or Vomiting: 5%
  • Diarrhea: 4%
  • Sepsis and Septic Shock
  • Death

Infographic :

If you are exposed how long does it take to get sick?

The average time it takes people to get sick after being exposed to the virus is about 5 days. Some people get sick faster, just a day after being exposed, while others don’t fall ill for about 2 weeks, which is why Canada has quarantined people for 14 days.8


Due to the fact that the COVID-19 is a new strain of virus, there is limited research on therapeutic strategies. At this time, there is no known treatment or anti-microbial specifically for the COVID-19, although there are strategies for other coronaviruses such as the SARS, MERS, and pneumonia. We recommend following strategies to reduce the risk of contracting the microbe (Germ Theory) and supporting your overall health and immunity (Host Theory).

Our Top 5 Natural Remedy Picks – Ask Us For The Revivelife Immune 5 Pack or 613-829-7100

  1. Vitamin D to support immunity & respiratory health.
  2. Zinc antiviral activity OR Quercetin for additional respiratory support.
  3. Deep Immune adaptogens that support immunity, energy, and reduce the effects of stress.
  4. Mushroom Complex  support energy, stamina, stress resistance, and immunity.
  5. NAC (N-acetyl cysteine) an antioxidant that helps to reduce inflammation, supports detoxification and respiratory function.

Other options can be tailored to you.

Our General List Of Lifestyle Natural Immune Support

  1. Prevent Exposure: Reduce the risk of exposure by following the latest recommendations of the CDC and World Health Organization.
  2. Use Humidifiers: Humidifying the air to 50% Relative Humidity (RH) reduces the viable viruses to less than 1% in 2 days vs 7 days in 20% RH 80% of coronaviruses stay viable. Optimal room humidity is 40-60%. 9
  3. Wash Your Hands: Regular frequent hand washing is an important strategy for protecting against all types of infectious diseases. Don’t forget all areas! Coronaviruses can remain on inanimate surfaces like metal, glass, or plastic for up to nine days. The coronavirus can be inactivated within one minute through disinfection with 62-72% ethanol, 0.5% hydrogen peroxide, or 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (bleach).10 Research also shows that strategic use of alcohol-based surface disinfectants and hand sanitizers can reduce viral spread by 85-94%.11,12
  4. Lifestyle: Optimal nutrition, regular exercise, adequate sleep, and stress management can contribute to healthy immune function.13
  5. Vitamin D may help reduce the risk in general of respiratory infections and viruses such as influenza A in children and adults who are deficient.14   Vitamin D also fights infections, including colds and the flu, as it regulates the expression of genes that influence your immune system to attack and destroy bacteria and viruses. Addition research has found that vitamin D is important for optimal respiratory health. 15   
  6. Zinc although there is no direct evidence at this time to suggest that using zinc lozenges can prevent or treat COVID-19 in people, zinc does have anti-viral properties and was shown in a laboratory study to inhibit the replication of the coronavirus in cells.16 The corona virus is a respiratory disease and it is in the upper airway that zinc lozenges can have some activity. Those who may be at risk for being low in zinc include the elderly, vegetarians, and anyone takes medications that reduce stomach acid and ACE inhibitors on a long-term basis. Caution- recommended to use for up to a week, as excessive zinc can cause copper deficiency, can impair the absorption of antibiotics, and can reduce the sense of smell.
  7. Deep Immune is a herbal combination that is immune enhancing (astragalus, reishi, schisandra); and adrenal and stress reducing (codonopsis, eleuthero, and licorice) that are adaptogens that push back against fatigue.
  8. Mushroom Complex containing chaga, cordyceps, coriolus, lion’s mane, maitake, reishi, and shiitake standardized extracts support energy, stamina, stress resistance, and immunity.
  9. NAC (N-acetyl cysteine) converts to glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant. Preliminary research shows that it helps to reduce the symptoms of flu symptoms and helps to heal respiratory infections by reducing inflammation, dissolving mucus, and protecting mitochondrial function from damage by the virus.17 Acetylcysteine also interferes with the production of inflammasomes- proteins triggered by the COVID-19 virus that cause inflammation.
  10. Vitamin C supports overall immunity, reduces the microbial load in high concentrations, iron absorption (iron deficiency increases your risk for infections in general) and is vital to the function of leukocytes (white blood cells that help to fight infections). Vitamin C may slightly reduce the severity and duration of a cold, but at this time there is no evidence that taking a vitamin C supplement can help protect people from infection from coronaviruses.
  11. Elderberry is known to shorten influenza duration by two to four days and reduce the severity of the flu.18 Elderberry is a rich source of anthocyanins that produce ferulic acid that may help reduce viral infections.
  12. Probiotics, 70% of immune health is linked to your digestive system. A growing body of evidence shows probiotic supplements with Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus species can enhance antiviral immune activity and may reduce the occurrence, severity, and duration of viral respiratory tract infections such as influenza.19,20
  13. Lactoferrin 300-500 mg 2-3 times a day has been tested against SARS-CoV virus. It was found to increase NK cell activity and neutrophil aggregation and adhesion thereby reducing the risk of invasion with the virus.21 In addition, lactoferrin may help to reduce inflammation after exposure to an infectious agent.2122
  14.  Selenium has also been researched for immune support in response to RNA viruses including the coronavirus. Selenium deficiency can lead to the development and mutation of other RNA viruses like coxsackievirus and influenza into more pathogenic strainsSelenium is important for immune function and optimal response to viral infections.
  15. Flavonoids (Apigenin, Luteolin, Quercetin, Daidzein, Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG from green tea), Kaempferol) have been shown to inhibit the proteolytic activity of SARS-CoV 3C-like protease in cell studies. Viii Ongoing research with Canadian researcher, Michel Chretien (brother of Jean Chretien former prime minister who has participated in over 600 published studies) and the Chinese government in partnership is underway on the COVID-19.23
  16. Rhizome Rhei (Da Huang), Radix & Caulis Polygoni multiflora (He Shou Wu which contains resveratrol) may help reduce the risk of contracting coronavirus infections.
  17. Resveratrol 250mg 3x/day has been found in a cell study to significantly inhibit MERS-CoV infection and prolong cell survival after MERS infection.24
  18. Red Marine Algae which contains griffithsin, a lectin binds to oligosaccharides on the surfaces of various viral glycoproteins, including that found on the SARS-CoV. Binding to this glycoprotein may reduce the virulence of the virus.25
  19. Chinese Skullcap (Biacalensis) may have antimicrobial activity against the human SARS strains in human lung cells.26
  20. Nettle (Urtica diotica) contains lectins that appear to target early stages of the virus replication cycle and possibly also help neutralize the virus’s infectivity by binding to the spike protein.27
  21. Licorice was found in a 2003 study published in Lancet, that may inhibit the replication of the SARS coronavirus. Glycyrrhizin was the most potent of the 5 antiviral compounds tested in licorice.28
  22. Additional Herbs including Cimicifuga rhizome, Meliae cortex, Coptiside rhizome, Sophora subprostrata and Phellodendron cortex were identified as potential candidates for drug development for SARS due to their ability to inhibit replication of a coronavirus (hepatitis virus A5) in an animal model.29
  23. IV Therapy of vitamins and minerals supports overall health and immunity. Therapies tailored to you. IV therapy has been found to improve allergies, asthma, bronchitis, chronic hives, sinusitis, viral or bacterial infections. Key nutrients include high dose vitamin C, magnesium and B vitamins.30-44 Studies are currently underway on high dose Vitamin C and patients with COVID-19. Doses range from 12,000 to 24,000 mg/day by IV.

Additional supplement options are available tailored to you. Complimentary 15 minute telephone consults are available with our Naturopathic Doctors to answer any questions that you may have about the COVID-19. To Book An Appointment on-line or Call 613-829-7100


  1. Contact Your Doctor and Naturopathic Doctor
  2. Get Tested – Queensway Carleton Hospital – the results take 48 hours.
  3. Wear a Face Mask – to reduce the risk of spreading infection to others.32
  4. Virafect is a herbal with deeper immune supporting action (Andrographis, Wild Indigo, Echinacea purpurea, Holy Basil, Lomatium, Thuja, Phytolacca). Andographis paniculate helps to shorten the duration of cough, sore throat, and time when compared to controls in meta-analysis studies.45 OR
  5. Cold & Flu which contains Andographis, Astragalus, Echinancea, Elderberry, Goldenseal, Rosemary, Myrrh to support immunity.
  6. Respirafect if cough or respiratory symptoms develop
  7. Quercetin 1000mg daily. A Cochrane review found that flavonoids like quercetin decreased upper respiratory infection (URTI) by 33% compared to the control group.46
  8. Curcumin has been found to reduce inflammation in the respiratory tract after influenza infection. In one study curcumin was found to reduce the production of inflammatory cytokines.
  9. Honokiol in animal studies was shown to help support immunity for lung health.47
  10. Vitamin D Hammer for influenza is a one-time 50,000 IU dose of vitamin D3 or 10,000IU 3 times a day for 2-3 days.48 Please use only under the advice of your doctor.

Note- Due to the newly developed COVID-19, the above interventions though not necessarily scientifically validated as effective specifically for COVID-19, are nevertheless advisable upon onset of symptoms of respiratory tract infections.


Although there are a variety of supplements that can support immunity and may reduce the symptoms of a cold or flu, none have been scientifically shown to prevent infection with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at this time.34 Nevertheless, like any other flu season it is always important to keep your body in optimal health and immune system strong. Along with a healthy lifestyle of adequate sleep, general nutrition, and washing your hands, supplements or food sources of nutrients are additional ways to add extra insurance to your immune supporting plan.


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  22. Drago-Serrano, Maria E, et al. Lactoferrin Balancing Ups and Downs of Inflammation Due to Microbial Infections, US Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, 19 Mar. 2017
  23. Taylor-Vaisey, Nick. A Made-in-Canada Solution to the Coronavirus Outbreak? Maclean’s 24 Feb 2020.
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  25. Li, Guangdi, and Erik De Clercq. Therapeutic Options for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-NcoV). Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, 10 Feb 2020
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  28. Cinatl, J, et al. Glycrrhizin, an Active Component of LIquorice Roots and Replication of SARS-Associated Coronavirus. PubMed 14 June 2003
  29. Kim, HY, et al. In Vitro Inhibition of Coronavirus Replications by the Traditionally Used Medicinal Herbal Extracts, Cimicifuga Rhizoma, Meliae Cortrex, Coptidis Rhizoma ,and Phellodendron Cortex. PubMed, 26 Nov 2007.
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  49. FDA 2020

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