Shelter Health: Home & Body

Ways to help your home and body be more virus resistant.

We are in a weird sort of stress right now–like waiting for a tempest to hit. We’ve been told it’s coming, but for most, it hasn’t hit our shores full force yet. It would be easy to let anxiety take over, especially given the dire predictions in the news. For some, it may feel easier to pretend the storm is not coming until we feel its full force. It is not easy to find a balance that keeps us attentive to the risks and guidelines yet doesn’t make us crazy with the waiting. I have found two things especially helpful to reducing this stress.

1. Connecting with and thinking about other people. Reaching out and checking on others and caring for elderly family members takes my mind off the waiting. Writing the blogs that might help someone else is also good therapy.

2. Making sure I’m doing what I can to make not only my environment, but as importantly, my body be more resistant to viruses–including CoVid-19.

Here are some suggestions to help bolster viral resistance based on a lifetime of holistic and herbal research and self-care. I believe these tips are valuable, but you should absolutely verify these practices for yourself with experts or your doctor to be sure they are compatible with any conditions or medications you currently have. I have included a number of links at the end for further information, as well.

1. The Acidity/Alkalinity Factor:

It is widely recognized that harmful bacteria, viruses (incl. CoVid19), fungi, and even cancer, cannot survive in alkaline environments. While our blood alkalinity is maintained by the body within a fairly narrow range, a variety of studies have shown a distinct relationship between better health and higher alkalinity in our diets and bodies. There have been particular benefits recognized in relation to cancer and chemotherapy, as well as bone studies, and in the degree and duration of viral infections. Some sources claim that because the body regulates our blood p.h. levels so strictly, that alkalizing isn’t necessary or even beneficial. Unfortunately though, if our bodies are becoming over-acidic, the body’s organs and bones have to work harder to compensate for the p.h. imbalance. This can lead to stress factors and deterioration within the body, which can also make us more susceptible to illness. Alkaline Diet Article: ICAK

Acidic Lifestyle: The problem today is that much of what we do and much of how we live acidifies our environment and our bodies: Electronics and pollution acidify the air inside and outside our homes. Alcohol, tobacco smoke, sugar, meat, and many processed foods are just a few of the substances that acidify the body. So because of these types of influences, our bodies often lean toward being more acidic and thus create an easier path for disease. This is why we need to alkalize. Even though the body’s p.h. is kept to a finite range, there is a great deal of evidence that alkalizing factors, in diet and lifestyle, have healthy influences on the over-acidity common in our bodies.

2. Anti-Viral Factor

In addition to creating virus unfriendly environments in your home and in your body (which are generally also bacteria and fungus unfriendly) there are some natural means for attacking any viruses that may be lurking. Both in the home and in the body, there are natural substances that can diminish any budding viral presence.

Stay Home in a Healthy Home

As mentioned before, our homes can become unhealthy from the accumulation of harmful outputs and leachings of the many products and devices in our houses–not to mention the build up of carbon dioxide from our own breathing process. When a home is closed up, it can become less oxygenated, stale at best and toxic at worst. According to the EPA, indoor air in US homes can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. Now that many of us are in a stay-at-home mode, it is critical that we make certain we have a healthy place to shelter. Fortunately, there are some easy things we can do things to make our homes more alkalizing (i.e., oxygenating) to the body and to prevent the growth of viruses.

One of the best things we can do is simply to open doors and windows to bring in fresh air when possible. The air will generally be more alkalizing and oxygenating than the stale that builds up inside. Green plants are good oxygenators as well. Salt lamps are believed to counter acidic influences in environments and can bring a calming and peaceful quality to a room. Though, to have any significant physical effect, it would likely take several lamps for a larger space. Burning sage in high doses in the house periodically can be beneficial as sage is naturally anti-viral, -bacterial, and -fungal, if you don’t have any existing lung issues. In addition to sage are a number of anti-viral substances that would work well in essential oil diffusers or room sprays, including lavender., rosemary, and cinnamon.

Your Healing Yard:
Stress can also be acidifying, so creating space and doing things that relax you will help your body sustain a healthy ph balance and resilience. Most of us are aware that meditation and meditative music and activities can be therapeutic and calming. However, we cannot forget how beneficial it is to be in nature–especially during a time of social distancing. If you have a yard, garden, or a nearby park where you can sit, walk barefoot, or lie down on the ground, you can get alkalizing, relaxing, and even healing effects from Mother Earth. It’s called Earthing when we connect with the earth and gain access to her seemingly endless supply of healthy ions. “Earthing has been shown to reduce acute and chronic inflammation, blood glucose in patients with diabetes, red blood cell (RBC) aggregation, and blood coagulation. It also has been shown to produce symptomatic improvement in chronic, muscle and joint pain, a reduction in overall stress levels and tensions, a boost in positive moods, an improvement in heart rate variability, and an improvement in the immune response” (See more in Haider Mousa’s article on Health Effects of Alkalinity below).

Then we connect with the earth, in addition to the healthy air and ions, our bodies can also sync with its frequency. When our bodies attune to the frequency of the earth (7.83 Hz – called the Schumann resonance) we can achieve a relaxing alpha trance state that not only calms and alkalizes us, but also supports our natural healing abilities. Sit or lie down on the ground and feel the healing vibes! If getting outside is not an option, sometimes you can achieve similar results by lying down and using a guided meditation to help you make this energetic connection.

Herbs and other healing substances:
There are a number of herbs, spices, and other substances that have naturally alkalizing or anti-viral properties. Many of these offer both qualities. Whether you make room sprays with the aromatics, ingest edible versions as supplements or teas, or add them to your recipes, these products can help your body be less hospitable to viruses. This is important because it seems that the degrees to which people become ill may be two-fold — the degree to which the body is vulnerable and the volume/density of the viral buildup. If we can make ourselves less likely to catch and breed the virus, perhaps we can help any symptoms be less severe, if we do end up becoming an unwilling host.

  • Lavender — diverse uses–bowls and bags of buds, room & hand sprays, essential oils for diffusers, and even teas if you have edible versions. I recently bought a huge bag of buds and have been filling small cotton bags with them to give away. Just holding and smelling them is both calming and reassuring with its disinfecting qualities.
  • Ginger — tea, spice, or supplement
  • Green Tea
  • Turmeric — as tea, seasoning, or supplement
  • Echinacea — tea or supplement
  • Goldenseal – supplement (tea very bitter)
  • Spices: Garlic, Sage, Basil, Oregano, Fennel, Rosemary, and more.
  • Colloidial Silver — nasal spray or throat spray both great! Though there is some debate on the actual healing effects, we have found this to be a great help as a preventative and at the front end of new infections. You’ll have to decide for yourselves.

The Alkaline Water Situation: You may have noted the abundance of high-alkalinity waters on the market now, and yes, these can be beneficial. However, we actually need acid in our stomachs, so if you drink high p.h. water with food in your stomach, you can cause digestive issues–it can dilute the acids needed for digestion. These waters are great, though, between meals. In contrast, some acidic waters can be taken with meals, and may help your digestion while also alkalizing the body. Lemon or lemon-cucumber water, as well as water with a bit of apple cider vinegar are both acidic coming in, but they actually alkalize the body. In general, eating more fresh fruits and veggies will go a long way to alkalize the body and infuse anti-oxidants.  (Pasteurized juices and processed foods generally do not have the same alkalizing effects.)

Closeness in Distancing:
It is clear that many people are bridging the distance of separation through social media and a variety of creative connecting activities — such as birthday parades, the balcony street choirs, and communal ovations. Perhaps now is also a great time to take a pioneering spirit and enjoy our at-home status. While we may be needing to distance ourselves from others, this is a special opportunity to set aside the phones and tablets and have a close connect with our family-members who are inside our homes–and with our own inner selves. Time to dust off the cards, the chess set, the board games. Time to write a chapter of that book, paint a picture of the tree in the back yard, write a new song, or finish that start-up business plan. It’s a great time to reconnect with inner space and to remember how to slow down and listen or speak from the heart. We are a “doing” culture. Perhaps we can remember how to just be, just live, and just love for just a little while. I wish you all a beautiful stay-at-home retreat and pray for individual, community, and global health and wellness.

Links for more information on some of the topics above:
“Health Effects of Alkaline Diet and Water, Reduction of Digestive-tract Bacterial Load, and Earthing” by Haider Mousa
The Alkaline Diet by Int’l Col. of Applied Kineseology
Antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral effects of three essential oil blends from NIH
Power of Lavender
How to make 60% alcohol hand sanitizer

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