Give to support The Wilson Times as we cover the coronavirus crisis in our communities.

Supplements can help prevent, treat COVID-19

Thank you for being one of our most loyal readers. Please consider supporting community journalism by subscribing.


Many individuals express their opinions on these pages.  I therefore offer my opinion, which you can feel free to ignore. 

The country and indeed the Northern Hemisphere is currently consumed with attention turned to our COVID-19 problem.  Over the course of time, I have developed for myself and family strategies to prevent infections and to treat infections if they occur.  These are outside of conventional medicine since conventional medicine has little to offer viral infections.  My strategy is aimed at strengthening the immune system, since the human immune system is designed to prevent and attack any kind of infecting agent. 

This plan is divided into two parts — one, how to prevent infections, and two, how to treat infections when they occur. 


The immune system is recharged, regulated and strengthened by sleep.  It is very important to go to bed at the same time each night, and ideally to awaken each morning without an alarm clock.  Each of our brains needs a specific time on the battery charger each night and is unique to each of us.  Each of us is a certain exact height, and each of us has our eyes an exact distance apart and these  also are unique to each of us. 

Determine how much sleep your brain needs and get that amount each night.  If you have difficulty getting to sleep or maintaining sleep, 2000 mg of  L-tryptophan — an amino acid found in our food (most is in turkey) and Valerian root at bedtime helps promote safe and healthy sleep.  Avoidance of caffeine is very helpful.

Drinking plenty of water is important.  Most of us do not drink enough water. Four to six glasses a day is fine. 

Vitamin C has been proven to be very important in strengthening the immune system. 1000 mg twice a day is helpful for prevention of infection.  More — up to 3,000 to 4,000 mg a day — is OK. This will help to prevent coronary artery disease. The first side effect of too much Vitamin C is diarrhea — if this occurs, take a smaller dose. 

Zinc is very toxic to viruses.  It must be able to be released in the body, therefore, it must be taken with the correct salt.  Zinc combined with some salts will not be released in the body.  Zinc combined with picolinate or acetate or citrate is excellent. This can be obtained in a 50 mg size, 120 capsules for $8.09. 

During the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic, nearly 100 million people died on the planet out of 1.5 billion people.  This was 5% of the world’s population.  Very few people died in India.  The world map of deaths from this epidemic shows nearly no deaths in India. 

This has been attributed to the widespread use of an herb called Andrographis, or Indian echinacea. This was the product of the year in Sweden in 2018 under the brand name Kold Kare.  Andrographis has been used in Aryuvedic medicine for more than 2,000 years.  Take 400 mg twice a day; 120 capsules are available for $13.29.  This strengthens the immune system and protects against active infection and has been intensively studied over the last 20 years.

Sugar is toxic to the human body.  Professor Emanuel Cheraskin and his collegues measured the ability of the white blood cells to kill bacteria and viruses in 100 normal volunteers.  Following this, each volunteer was given 1 teaspoon of sugar.  Another tube of blood was drawn an hour later.  Each white blood cell could only kill 52% as many germs.  This toxic effect lasted five to six hours. Reduce sugar intake. If you get sick, do not feed a cold and avoid sugar.  Protect your immune system.

A boy born in Iowa in 1888 grew up on a dairy farm.  He became a dairy farmer and experimented with different feeds.  His secret formula made his cows grow bigger and healthier, and they gave more milk and lived longer.  Surrounding farmers wanted his feed, so he opened a cattle feed factory outside Des Moines.

The workers in the Diamond V factory breathing in the cattle feed dust never got sick. They never filed  insurance claims to go see the doctor.  After many decades, this was investigated by a star research team from the University of Connecticut. These individuals were discovered to have very robust and strong immune systems.  Subsequently, this product was encapsulated and has been produced for human consumption since the mid-1990s.  It is called EpiCor.

There are no known human side effects. More information can be obtained by Googling “EpiCor supplement.” The 500mg caps cost $33.99 for 150 caps.  It should be taken twice a day.  I had planned to stop mine on April 1, but with the current situation, I will continue for the time being. 

Vitamin D is the first chemical in our bodies that protects us from infection (called innate immunity).  It is actually a hormone and is essential for life.  It is made naturally by sunlight hitting our skin.  In North Carolina, 34 degrees above the equator, the sun does not get high enough in the sky for anyone to make Vitamin D from late October to April 1. During November and December, Vitamin D levels drop and every year by the end of December to April, people get sick, which we call flu season (must remember to support the $35 billion flu vaccine industry every year). Most properly, we should call it low Vitamin  D season. 

Influenza is never seen in July and August in North Carolina — lots of sun means lots of Vitamin D! In the Southern Hemisphere, the seasons are the opposite — flu season in Argentina is in July and August (wintertime) and flu is never seen in January to March (summertime).  Note that the current pandemic started in China (Northern Hemisphere) in December and spread to North America, Europe, etc.  By mid-May, it will begin to abate here and be gone during the summer.  During that time it will become a Southern Hemisphere disease — have you heard of cases in Peru, Brazil, Argentina, southern Africa and India currently? 

In mid-October, it will revive in the Northern Hemisphere.  This is the exact same pattern that the 1918 flu epidemic followed.  Vitamin D3 should be taken every day of your life.  Take 2000 IU per day if your weight is normal,  3000 IU per day if you are overweight (BMI between 25-30) and 4000 IU per day if obese (BMI above 30).  The Vitamin D level in your blood should be 38 or higher to be protective. Normal ranges are given as 30 to 100, but the lower level is only because 88% of Americans have low levels.

I take Panex ginseng each day.  This herb has many health benefits, but it strengthens the immune system.  Take 500 mg once or twice a day. One hundred caps sell for $8.39.  It important to get Korean ginseng, as there are many varieties of this plant. 

Olive trees grow in the Mediterranean.  There are a  large number of insects and germs that would love to feed on these trees.  The olive tree has developed a large number of chemicals in its very thick leaves that are toxic to viruses and bacteria.  An extract has been made from the olive leaf that’s very powerful at protecting humans. Olive leaf extract capsules are readily available and cost $22.95 for 120 capsules.


But, what do I do if I get sick? First, I practice good sickness behavior.  Stay home.  Your body is telling you it wants to curl up and take a nap.  You get tired quickly when you get up and stir around.  It takes a lot if energy for your immune system to fight infections.  Do not compete with your body — let it get a lot of rest.  Eat less (or no) sugar and food.  Drink plenty of water. 

Dr. Terry Beardsley spent his career studying the thymus gland. This small gland under the breast bone is about the size of an adult thumb in a 5-year-old child.  By the age of 20 it begins to shrivel and by the age of 40 it is about the size of a thumbnail.  If 100 people die from the flu, 95 of them are over the age of 65.  The immune system is so weak in older people that their immune systems are not strong enough to respond to vaccines well and make antibodies. That is why we must give flu shots to 1,000 people over the age of 65 to protect one from the flu. 

The thymus gland makes five hormones.  One of these, Thymic protein A, is the hormone that regulates the gland.  This hormone is identical in humans and cows.  Dr. Beardsley developed a technique to freeze-dry, purify and lypholyze this hormone in calves, and made it available.  It must be given intravenously, the same as nitroglycerin tablets.  The small packets of powder are torn open at the first sign of illness and the powder is placed under the tongue. Do not swallow it, let it dissolve.  Use one packet two to three times the first day, then twice a day.  You will not use more than five to six packets during the course of an illness.  It will strengthen the gland if you are a child, and will make your thymus 18 years old temporarily if you are older. 

You end up not getting sick.  The brand name is ProBoost and it has been on the market since 1988.  It is safe for children and individuals with kidney failure, liver failure, pregnancy, etc.  It is a natural human hormone. The cost is a box of 30 packs for $40.90 (this should last for five to six episodes of getting sick). No side effects from this product have been documented. 

Oscillococcium comes in very small tubes.  It is taken orally three times a day when sick.  I would not think that this product would be of any value because I know how it is made.  However, the National Health Service in Italy did a study on the product and determined that it decreased the length of time that people were sick or out of work by 50%.  Since that NHS owns all the hospitals, doctors offices, pharmacies, etc, it’s interested in spending the least amount of money it can.  It is highly recommended there. A box of 30 doses costs about $30.  Use one tube three times a day when you are sick. 

When sick, double the amount of Vitamin C that you take each day.  Doses of 4,000-6,000 mg a day can give you diarrhea.  If you take larger doses and get diarrhea, reduce the dose till the diarrhea goes away. The side effect level is different for different people. 

Zinc acetate lozenges will reduce the effects of cold symptoms such as fever, cough and nasal discharge by half.  The best brand is called Zinx and you should take a dose every two to three hours while awake.  This has been well studied with excellent research studies by Dr. Ananda Prasad at Wayne State University School of Medicine and others. 

When sick, I increase my olive leaf extract to three times a day for three to seven days.

When sick, gargle with warm salt water, Cepacol or chloroseptic.

There are no germs that infect humans that can survive above normal body temperature.  Your body is smart.  If it is strong enough, it will run a fever to kill the germs.  Do not interrupt this process unless the fever gets over 103 degrees.  Cherish your fever, even though it makes you miserable. You will get well quicker. 

All of this backed by excellent research.  It does not make anyone a lot of money.  This is what I do, and I have not been sick for many years with an infection. I offer my opinion to my fellow citizens in Wilson.  I hope that we stay healthy through this turmoil. Warmest regards to all of you.  

Lindsey E. de Guehery, M.D., is a pulmonary and internal medicine doctor and a fellow of the American College of Physicians.