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  • Luke French, Health Coach

COVID-19: We are all SHEEP

So as you might know, i’m very much against the rules and regulations that the government has set, and procedures that are needed to be put into place once shops, gyms and other facilities open, and I have strong reason to continue to believe so. I have put this article together to prove my thoughts and feelings behind COVID-19 and how people are going about it totally the wrong way (I may lose the naive people right now who believe everything the government say - but for those that read on, well done, and i’ll leave it up to you to make a final decision). Disclaimer, i’m no doctor, but you don’t need to be to do the research and portray an evidence based opinion.


Firstly lets understand what COVID-19 is and how it attacks the body:

[1] Coronaviruses are a large enveloped virus with a positive sense RNA genome. The fatty membrane of the virus contains multiple proteins with different tasks to carry out in order to attack the body. The main target for attack for the virus is ACE2 Receptors. These receptors process proteins and then go on to regulate cellular function. The virus has a spike like protein in the cell surface that can bind to the ACE2 receptors and dispel its effects. The RNA genome is transferred from the envelope to the cytoplasm of the human host cells and the translation process begins (replication of new proteins). The immune system then takes action. The innate immune response is initially triggered by lung epithelial cells, alveolar macrophages and neutrophils. In the next stage, adaptive immune responses are triggered involving T and B lymphocytes to complete the full immune response. The virus being so pathogenic stimulates a strong immune response, which then creates what is known as a cytokine storm (an excessive influx of pro-inflammatory cytokines). Activated B cells (the good guys) secrete virus-specific antibodies, while antigen-specific T cytotoxic cells kill virus-infected cells. All of these mechanisms are initiated in an effort to create a big enough inflammatory environment big enough to eradicate the virus. So these are the basics. Yeah, the basics, there’s just no point delving deeper into it as i’ll bore you, but the aforementioned points are what we need to know.


How the virus tries to escape immune eradication:

[1] Similar to other coronaviruses, the N protein of SARS-CoV-2 inhibits IFN1 by regulating IFN-β synthesis and signalling. by inhibiting IFN-1 the virus is simply trying to stop a main modulator of the immune response, and by increasing IFN-β, an inhibitor of multiple immune mechanisms. On the other hand, the effectiveness of the innate immune response against viral infection depends mainly on IFN1 production and its downstream signalling that results in controlling viral replication and induction of an adequate adaptive immune response. Chronic stimulation of T cells, resulting in a cytokine storm and T cell exhaustion, weakens the overall body defences and puts the patient in a dangerous situation. High-grade chronic viral infections result in CD8+ T cell exhaustion, leading to a decreased effector function and lower proliferative capacity. If we have a lower proliferative capacity, we are unable to produce enough cells to effectively disarm and eradicate the virus.


Underlying Conditions:

You may have heard that people who are highest risk of COVID-19 are people with underlying conditions, and this is correct. [2] The high number of critically ill patients and increased mortality in patients with underlying diseases (such as hypertension and diabetes) has been proven. Type 2 diabetes causes chronic low-grade inflammation which essentially initiates a non-stop stimulation of the immune system, wearing it down, thus lower capabilities to deal with COVID-19. [3] Also, due to the over expression of ACE2 in islet cells of the pancreas, SARS-CoV-2 may be a diabetogenic virus that causes severe instability in the blood glucose levels of diabetes patients, which worsens the inflammatory imbalance. This is just one example of how an underlying condition causes more risk for C-19 derived mortality.


All other underlying health conditions will work on a similar mechanism. [4] If you are in a biologically impaired position due to a condition like T2B, Hypertension, Obesity, Cancer, Respiratory conditions like CF, Asthma or COPD, or people taking immunosuppressive drugs to control a present condition. The thing in common with all of these conditions is a chronically expressed immune system and low-grade inflammation, which promotes a long term and degrading response from the immune system. Or if you are just darn right stupid by eating foods, being unhealthy, training to hard, causing inflammation all by yourself and chronically impairing the immune system that way. As I have previously alluded to, the fact COVID-19 has multiple defence mechanism to fight against out immune system trying to eradicate the virus, the need for a fully functioning immune system is pretty vital. Pretty much any health condition will be an issue, as well as age, and the age related effects of immunosuppression.


What can we do?

BOOST OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM. Speaking quite broadly here (please don’t attack me) but people with the ’underlying conditions’ have the conditions for a reason. They haven’t looked after themselves, they’ve caused chronic immunosuppression from the lifetime choices and decisions they’ve made to not lead the healthiest life. All autoimmune diseases are accumulative in nature and result from our decisions. Other people are in the process of becoming disease ridden but they just don’t know it yet, and these people will also be pretty high risk. Some pretty simple ways we can boost our immunity is by; eating healthy, exercising regularly, socialising, getting good sleep, going to the gym, getting lots of sun. How many times have you heard the government tell you to exercise during lockdown, or get some sun exposure during lockdown.


All the government are doing is telling people to stay indoors, wear masks and wait till they have a vaccine to hopefully eradicate the issue. When people return to gyms and shops they need to cover up their faces and wash hands every 10 minutes like its the plague. [5] Studies show that microbial exposure strengthens our immune system. The government are stopping us from seeing friends, seeing loved ones and socialising. [6] When we are around people we love, doing things we enjoy, health-promoting hormones are released which – among many other benefits – boost the immune system. Namely oxytocin, ‘the love hormone’ helps integrate both neurochemical and immunologic signals in the central nervous system and in turn affects immunologic defence, homeostasis, and surveillance [7]. Im not even going to get into the health effects of the sun, and the relentless benefits it has to promote our immunity, but the government have restricted us to 1 hour a day where we are allowed out and about to exercise. The outcome is that people end up sitting in front of a TV, infront of a screen, have excessively lower activity levels and impaired sleep as a result, and this cycle self-perpetuates to cause even more suppressive effcects tot he immune system. AND then also get the immunosuppressive effects of low activity, declining cardiovascular and respiratory system, sleep deprivation and obviously e less through immune response, making it more likely that if we contracted C-19 we would suffer more severe health effects.


The government are trying to wrap us up in bubble wrap, and degrade our own immune systems, in an attempt to protect us from the virus?

The masks, the hand washing, the protection are basically what I call plastering the issue. Putting a plaster on a cut, that continually bleeds from the inside will never heal it, it will just cover it up. That continual bleeding from the inside is the population not dealing with the immune system. If the immune system is not strong enough we will continue to bleed. Doing everything that the government say to protect us, isn’t really protecting us. It may help us miss the contraction of COVID-19 but what’s to say there won’t be a more harmful virus next year, that will easily attack those that have suppressed immune systems from getting no sun, no seeing friends and family, deprived of social interaction, locked inside, unable to exercise and move freely, restricted to buying just 2 lots of fresh healthy food and removed from microbial exposure and thus enhanced immune system, by wearing a friggin mask.


People believe that avoiding C-19 is all they need to be concerned about. Absolutely not the case, as is masks and social distancing absolutely not the answer. So great, we stayed in and wore masks and social distanced to avoid catching C-19, so does this mean every time there is a virus, and there will be more lethal ones in future, that we just lock up every single time? Avoiding this ONE virus, for 3 months of an entire lifetime, IS NOT THE ANSWER. The answer is dealing with the root cause of why people are dying from it, a weak immune system form the modern day lifestyle, health lacking decision making and people who don’t seek health improvements. Society need to stop being naive, stop following the governments advice like sheep, and make your own mature decisions based on what you KNOW, is correct. Too much time is spent on dealing with short term symptomatic induced responses, not taking care of the root cause. People thinking they need to follow procedure and wear masks just haven’t done their research (again) behind the mechanisms, causes and underlying health related effects of C-19. The masks/procedures are an extremely short term preventative for the virus at hand, but will effect us in the future. COVID-19 is the least of our future health worries, and these procedures are essentially helping us to weaken our immune system.


If you are wondering what my actions will be, I will be following set procedures, not because I want to, or because they are what we SHOULD DO as a collective, but because I’ll probably get fined if I don’t. I’ll just unwillingly join the stupidity.


Moral of the story: Stop being controlled like little sheep, start taking action upon improving your health, immune system and DO YOUR RESEARCH. The next virus, will be the government telling us that we have to wear an astronaut space mask to go out for dinner.


References:

[1] Yazdanpanah F, Hamblin MR, Rezaei N. The immune system and COVID-19: Friend or foe? [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jun 2]. Life Sci. 2020;256:117900. doi:10.1016/j.lfs.2020.117900


[2] Wang X, Fang X, Cai Z, et al. Comorbid Chronic Diseases and Acute Organ Injuries Are Strongly Correlated with Disease Severity and Mortality among COVID-19 Patients: A Systemic Review and Meta-Analysis. Research (Wash D C). 2020;2020:2402961. Published 2020 Apr 19. doi:10.34133/2020/2402961


[3] Yang JK, Lin SS, Ji XJ, Guo LM. Binding of SARS coronavirus to its receptor damages islets and causes acute diabetes. Acta Diabetol. 2010;47(3):193-199. doi:10.1007/s00592-009-0109-4


[4] https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/people-at-higher-risk/whos-at-higher-risk-from-coronavirus/


[5] Huggins MA, Sjaastad FV, Pierson M, et al. Microbial Exposure Enhances Immunity to Pathogens Recognized by TLR2 but Increases Susceptibility to Cytokine Storm through TLR4 Sensitization. Cell Rep. 2019;28(7):1729-1743.e5. doi:10.1016/j.celrep.2019.07.028


[6] https://www.caremalta.com/7-ways-socialising-benefits-seniors/


[7] Wang P, Yang HP, Tian S, et al. Oxytocin-secreting system: A major part of the neuroendocrine center regulating immunologic activity. J Neuroimmunol. 2015;289:152-161. doi:10.1016/j.jneuroim.2015.11.001


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