There is wide spread talk of how to prevent getting the Coronavirus through washing your hands and wearing a mask but what about all the clinical studies done on the immune boosting and antiviral properties of mushrooms?
Before we talk about the antiviral properties of mushrooms, let’s talk about what the Coronavirus is and what the CDC recommends.
What is Coronavirus?
The novel Coronavirus Disease 19 (COVID-19) originated in China on 31 December, 2019 but as of 14 March, 2020 (3 months) has now affected over 149 countries which is well over half of the world. It is believed to have spread through an animal as is the case with prior cases of MERS and SARS coronaviruses.
The name Coronavirus in Latin has the meaning of “crown” and is derived from Ancient Greek. The reason this type of virus has the name of crown is because of the way it looks under a microscope.
MERS and SARS are also considered Coronaviruses because they have the same ‘crown’ appearance under the microscope. But don’t get confused, MERS and SARS and different viruses then COVID-19.
The spikes formation around the outside resembles a crown appearance. The virus then uses these spikes to infect normal healthy cells in your body. Once our good cells are ‘hijacked’ by COVID-19 they begin to replicate up to 1 millions copies of the virus before finally dying off.
It spreads through respiratory droplets and is spread when someone that has the virus coughs or sneezes and those droplets get onto a surface of some kind. Then when someone else touches those droplets and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth they can then get the virus (stay 6 feet away from someone with the symptoms of COVID-19 to avoid the droplets landing on you from them).
The virus will typically survive anywhere from 3 hours to 3 days on surfaces so it is important to sanitize surfaces regularly.
Coronavirus is very similar to the Flu with the biggest differences:
- No one has built up an immunity yet
- There is no vaccine
- There is no known treatment yet
- There is a longer incubation period (Flu is 1 to 4 days and COVID-19 is up to 12 days)
But it does affect the body in many of the same ways. Here is a good video that explains how the flu infects the body but is really similar to the Coronavirus and almost any type of virus:
The interesting thing about this virus is the symptoms can range from not having any symptoms at all, all the way to having severe cases of all the symptoms. This mean that someone could be walking around spreading the virus that no one knows (or will ever know) actually has it.
How is Coronavirus Different From the Influenza (Flu) Virus?
The biggest difference between the Coronavirus and the Flu is that it is a brand new virus.
With the Flu virus we have vaccines that will teach your body to have the antibodies so if you ever do come in contact with the virus your body can immediately start fighting it off.
Even if you body doesn’t have the antibodies to fight it off they have treatments available like oseltamivir (Tamiflu) that can attach to the tiny receptors of the virus and prevent it from attaching to any new cells which will basically stop the virus from spreading, killing off healthy cells and replicating any further.
This means that if you get the COVID-19 virus you will have to wait for it to play it’s full course and for your body to fight it off naturally without any medicine to help you.
The problem with this is whenever the virus infects a healthy cell it will kill that cell and replicate 1 million copies of itself. The million copies then attach to other healthy cells and repeat the process.
This mean the virus could do huge damage to the lungs by killing a large amount of healthy cells. To top it off, when you bodies immune system goes in to fight the virus it tends to do ‘overkill’ and kills off good cells as well as bad cells.
So it’s like a ‘double whammy’ type of effect and your body ends up with a ton of dead cells in your lungs. There have been cases where people who have defeated the COVID-19 virus later died of a bacteria infection that grew from all the dead cells in the lungs.
11 CDC Guidelines to Prevent Getting the Coronavirus
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website has put out the following guidance for preventive measures to protect against the Coronavirus:
- Wash your hand often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds (Soap & water break apart the virus cells and kill them).
- Use alcohol based hand sanitizer when unable to use soap and water (at least 60% alcohol)(keep hands wet for 30 seconds minimum).
- Cough into the inside of your elbow (or use tissue) instead of your hands.
- Avoid large groups.
- Avoid touching eyes, mouth and nose with hands that have not been recently sanitized.
- Avoid close contact with people that appear to be sick.
- Avoid contact with people that have recently traveled to an area where there are COVID-19 cases.
- Use social distancing between yourself and other people if it is known to be in our community (6 feet apart).
- Stay home if your sick.
- Wear a N95 respirator face mask if you are sick to prevent spreading the germs (Don’t wear a mask if you are not sick).
- Disinfect office and home areas daily (door knobs, counter tops, table tops, phones, computers, etc.) where people commonly touch. Use a disinfectant that states to kill the Flu or Nora virus. Here is a list put out by the CDC of disinfectants approved to kill the Coronavirus.
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The Coronavirus and the Influenza virus (Flu) have symptoms that are very similar:
- Shortness of breath
- Traveling from a country or area that has known cases
The interesting thing about the Coronavirus is that it can take anywhere from 2 to 14 days for full viral shedding to take place. This means that you could get tested for the virus 6 days after getting it and show a negative results because it hasn’t fully shed yet. This is why they make people go to quarantine for 14 days regardless of the test results.
The only sure way to know if you have the Coronavirus or the Flu is to be tested. If it is negative try to get tested again in a another couple of weeks.
As of right now it only seems to have a major impact on people that are older with other medical conditions because their immune system is not as strong and is hard for it to keep up with the speed of the virus replicating. If you are under 50 your immune system seems to be able to handle this virus without to much problem.
If you do end up showing symptoms you should seek medical attention at your local health department to be safe and you should plan to end up in home quarantine. If that happens you will need to stay in your house for 14 days and avoid all person to person contact even if you have family members living with you.
Coronavirus Infection Path
The Coronavirus will typically first enter the body by you touching the droplets with you hand and then you touch your face. Once it enters the body it will begin to infect other cells it comes into contact with and basically reprogramming them to create more copies of itself.
Once that happens the following path is common:
- You may get a running nose if it enter the nose and will work it’s way through the sinus tract.
- The cells in the back of the throat become infected once it reaches there.
- It slowly starts to spread it’s way down until it infects the bronchial tubes and then to the lungs.
- Once in the lungs, the mucous membranes become inflamed.
This viruses receptors want to attached to the cells in the lungs so it’s end destination will be the lungs.
It is very likely to get pneumonia if the mucous continues to build up and get out of control. If this happens it will become very difficult for you to breath and for your body to get the oxygen that it needs.
There are still things that are unknown about this virus. For example, it could potentially spread through the blood to the kidneys and infect the kidneys as well as the liver which could lead to multiple organ failure.
Vitamin C Helps to Boost the Immune System
Everything listed above is great advice to help prevent you from coming into contact and contracting the coronavirus. A lot of people have also been taking large does of Vitamin C to start boosting their immune system in preparation for the virus (currently there are no studies proven that vitamin C can help with preventing Coronavirus).
This is a good decision because Vitamin C boosts the immune system by supporting various cellular functions and provides a protective barrier against pathogens and oxidative stress.
Check out this non synthetic Vitamin C supplement and is sourced from natural fruits and vegetables on Amazon:
On top of boosting your immune system with Vitamin C there is another method to boost your immune system that many people arn’t talking about. That is through mushrooms.
Antiviral Mushrooms to Prevent Getting the Coronavirus
Since we know that there is currently no treatment or vaccine to assist your body if fighting off this virus what can you do? Let’s take a look at some clinical studies that have been done with mushroom in relation dealing with other forms of viruses…
Did you know that if you inject a mushroom with E. coli that it will actually sweat out the antibodies?
Did you know that Penicillin was the first true antibiotic that was discovered back in 1928 and it is a fungus (just like a mushroom is a fungus)?
Mushrooms thrive in the wild by living off the Forrest soil and thriving off of decaying woods and other matter. Their survival depends on their ability to be able to filter out bacteria and pathogens daily.
This is good for us because we can gain similar benefits by consuming mushrooms that have been proven to boost our immune system and contain compounds and complex substances that fight off bacteria, kill viruses any many other benefits. They do this through their beta-D-glucans and beta-glycosides.
While consuming almost all mushrooms contain beta-D-glucans, there are four mushrooms that have had several clinical studies done on them specifically for fighting other types of viruses (not coronavirus).
Top 4 Mushrooms for Fighting Viruses
Please be advised that none of the mushrooms listed below have any studies done on their effectiveness in preventing Coronavirus or any virus and is provided for educational purposes only.
1) Reishi Mushroom
In one study to determine the antiviral properties of the Reishi (ganoderma lucidum) they were examined for their activities against 4 pathogenic viruses:
1) Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 (HSV-1)
2) Herpes Simplex virus Type 2 (HSV-2)
3) Influenza A Virus (Flu A)
4) Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV)
These antiviral properties were shown to inhibit cytopathic effects of HSV and VSV while also inhibiting plaque formation of HSV-2. Additionally, “it exhibited potent antiviral activity on the VSV New Jersey strain”. “These results indicate the possibility of development of antiviral agents” from these fungi.
Another study resulted in the “discovery of ganoderic acid T-Q and TR as two potential broad-spectrum inhibitors against influenza NAs, particularly H5N1 and H1N1 NAs, from the most widely known medicinal mushroom in Asia.”
This study found that certain elements found in the Reishi mushroom assist with the inhibition of H5N1 and H1N1 Neuraminidase (NA) inhibitors. NAs are commonly used in antiviral drugs to prevent the reproduction of viruses. The study concluded that these elements “have potentially valuable implications for the design and development of NA inhibitors.”
Check out a Reishi mushroom supplement extract on Amazon.
Check out dried Reishi mushroom on Amazon to put in your soups or teas.
2) Cordyceps Mushroom
The cordyceps mushroom has claims from folk healers/traditinal healers to be used in treatment for the cold as well as many other treatments:
Additionally, it has been shown to decrease inflammation in chronic asthma and other lung diseases which could come in very helpful in improving the strength of your lungs.
Check out a Corydceps mushroom supplement extract on Amazon.
Check out dried Cordyceps mushroom on Amazon to put in your soups or teas.
3) Maitake (Hen-of-the-Woods)
The cool thing about this mushroom is it has the potential to stop the replication of the influenza virus which would be very helpful in allowing your body to fight it off without getting to overwhelmed and prevent a lot of excessive damage. Additionally, it also shows to boost your bodies supply of antiviral cytokines.
Here is a quote from the studies abstract:
“Notably, the inhibitory effect of the CM prepared by using MF2 (molecular weight of 30 Kd to 100 Kd) was the strongest (28% reduction compared to the control). RT-PCR and ELISA assays showed that the CMs could induce the expression of TNF-α mRNA in D1 cells leading to production of TNF-α, known as an antiviral cytokine. These findings suggest that ME and MFs (especially MF-2) might induce the production of certain factors, including TNF-α, which are responsible for the inhibition of viral growth in vitro.”
Check out a Maitake mushroom supplement extract on Amazon.
Check out dried Maitake mushroom on Amazon to put in your soups or teas.
The Shiitake is really exciting because is shows potential in stopping the growth of the influenza virus by preventing the entry and it has a cool process of un-coating the influenza virus. Here is a quote from the studies abstract:
“We propose that LEM has anti-influenza virus activities through the direct action on viral growth and stimulatory activity of innate immunity.”
“Lentinula edodes mycelia (LEM) is a whole extract prepared from the mycelial culture of Japanese edible mushroom, Lentinus edodes, grown in a solid medium of sugar-cane bagasse and defatted rice bran. LEM and its purified fractions have been shown to have antiviral activities against hepatitis C virus, herpes simplex virus, and human immunodeficiency virus (Suzuki et al., 1990; Kawano et al., 2010; Okuno and Uno, 2011; Kim et al., 2014; Matsuhisa et al., 2015). ”
Additionally, when the Shiitake extract was given to mice that were infected with the influenza virus, it actually increased their survival rate. When taken in combination with Maitake it has been shown to increase the effectiveness in it’s virus fighting ability.
Check out a Shiitake mushroom supplement extract on Amazon.
Check out dried Shiitake mushroom on Amazon.
Mushroom Supplement Blend
As you can see there are many studies done on mushrooms to prove their potential to assist as an antiviral treatment (no proof towards preventing coronavirus) with the mushrooms listed above however all mushrooms tend to have many these characteristics as well.
Therefore, you may want to consider getting a mushroom extract blend that uses the top 10 medicinal mushrooms in it’s extract that have all been proven to have numerous medicinal benefits. From my research the one I recommend is the 14:1 SUPERFOOD 10 Organic Mushroom Powder Extract Supplement:
You can also check out my article where I review that top 15 mushroom supplement blends that are all extracts and are sourced from the actual fruiting body of the mushroom to provide maximum health benefit.
Bonus Immune System Boosting Tip
We have talked about how to strengthen your immune system in case you come into contact with something that requires it to start fighting, but I wanted to give you one more powerful tip.
You see once any type of virus enters your body, your body will have to deploy its immune system to start to fight it off. Once this happens the result will be high amounts of inflammation which acts kinds like a ‘double edged sword’.
Inflammation is good because it is the result of your body fighting the infection however it’s bad because it kills a lot of the good cells in the process. One substance that is a proven anti-inflammatory is Curcumin which is an active ingredient found in Turmeric root.
When looking for this supplement you should look for one that contains at least 500 mg of Curcumin extract which is different from Turmeric powder. Also, look for it to contain black pepper extract to increase the absorption rate. Here is the Curcumin extract that I use:
You can decrease your chance of getting the new Coronavirus by following the CDC recommendations of preventing your chance of contracting it. You can also try boosting your immune system to help your body be as strong as it can be in case it does need start fighting off a virus.
You can take advantage the many health benefits listed above by taking Vitamin C, Curcumin extract as well as to start consuming mushroom supplements or fresh mushroom. You can get your mushrooms fresh or you can order them in supplemental form. Just be sure to ensure you are getting a supplement that is an extract and uses that actual fruiting body of the mushroom instead of the mycelium.
Now you have all the information you need on how to prevent getting the Coronavirus as well as how to give your body the maximum chance of fighting it off if you do end up coming into contact with it.
Curative Mushrooms has to post the standard FDA Disclaimer…The statements made regarding medicinal mushrooms have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. Curative Mushrooms is not making claims intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from healthcare practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before consuming the medicinal mushrooms. The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.
This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Curative Mushrooms nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.