The Covid-19 virus is a respiratory virus that belongs to a family of viruses that can cause things like the common cold to severe acute respiratory syndromes. It is spread primarily in the air from person to person just like a cold, but this one is particularly easy to catch – if the host is susceptible.
It was released in China in December 2019 and by March 11, 2020 was declared a worldwide pandemic. The rest of the history you know. What you don’t know is how this virus actually infects you and what you can do right now, based on the research published over the past few months to protect yourself.
In a nutshell, there is a signaling protein that allows COVID-19 virus to locate where to get into your cells. The transport protein allows the virus into the cells and is called the ACE2 transporter protein. Once inside the virus tries to drop the intracellular pH to make things more acidic inside your cells. Then it can replicate to make more copies of the virus and infect more cells and ultimately kill you.
So strategy #1 would be to decrease the susceptibility of the host cells, that's you, to get infected in the first place. Strategy #2 would be to prevent the virus from replicating (making more viruses) and thus allowing your immune system to identify and kill the infected cells before they kill you. Strategy # 3 If the cell gets infected and if the virus gets a foothold, make it unlikely that the virus will cause a massive infection by reducing the ability of the virus to quickly and aggressively spread through the host.
I have attached the pertinent papers that explain how increasing Nrf2 addresses all three of these. We know, and have known for the past 11 years, that the most powerful, safest and cheapest way to increase Nrf2, and thus all the positive antioxidant enzymes that do all the work, is by taking 1 Protandim per day.
I spend a lot of time studying this. I was correct to think that this supplement would be important in our health for a number of reasons. As I have told you before, activating Nrf2 has so many positive effects in our cells. Specific to Covid-19, I will outline how it addresses each of the 3 strategies listed above.
It appears as though increasing Nrf2 activity in cells can actually reduce the ability of the virus to get into human cells.
Nrf2 reduces angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptors expression in respiratory epithelial cells….Consequently, Nrf2 activators may increase Nrf2 levels and enhance antiviral mediators’ expression, which could initiate an “antiviral state”, priming cells against viral infection.
Flavonoids Activation of the Transcription Factor Nrf2 as a Hypothesis Approach for the Prevention and Modulation of SARS-CoV-2 Infection Severity Patricia Mendonca and Karam F. A. Soliman Antioxidants 2020, 9(8), 659
In conclusion and from the supporting literature review, it is tempting to suggest that DMF may be able to inhibit the entry of nCOVID-19 into the alveolar cells of the lungs……As such, DMF should be recommended in clinical trials in patients with nCOVID-19.
The Nrf2 Activator (DMF) and Covid-19: Is there a Possible Role?
Saif M. Hassan,1 Mahmood J. Jawad,1 Salam W. Ahjel,1 Ram B. Singh,3 Jaipaul Singh,4 Samir Mohamed Awad,5 and Najah R. Hadi2 Med Arch. 2020 Apr; 74(2): 134–138.
The DMF drug cited above is Dimethyl Fumarate which is also call Tecfidera. This is an FDA drug used to treat MS. It is a strong activator of Nrf2, but not nearly as strong an activator as Protandim. This was established in another study that is available if you would like to see it.
The ability of your cells to stay healthy from any infection or disease for that matter is their capability to make antioxidants. These chemicals and enzymes keep your cells behaving younger and as a result staying healthier. Activating Nrf2 in human cells will result in more Glutathione. This is extremely important in keeping your cells pH normal for example. Too many free radicals mean a lower pH and an acidic cell. This lower pH is exactly what Covid-19 wants in order to make more copies. So, if we can keep Glutathione levels high, there should be less copies of the virus made.
In conclusion, NRF2 agonists…,induce a distinct IFN-independent antiviral program that is broadly effective in limiting virus replication and in suppressing the pro-inflammatory responses of human pathogenic viruses, including SARS-CoV2. SARS-CoV2-mediated suppression of NRF2-signaling reveals potent antiviral and anti-inflammatory activity of 4-octyl-itaconate and dimethyl fumarate David Olagnier, Ensieh Farahani, Christian K. Holm Nature Communications volume 11, Article number: 4938 (2020)
Endogenous glutathione deficiency appears to be a crucial factor enhancing SARS-CoV-2-induced oxidative damage of the lung and, as a result, leads to serious manifestations, such as acute respiratory distress syndrome, multiorgan failure, and death in COVID-19 patients.
Endogenous Deficiency of Glutathione as the Most Likely Cause of Serious Manifestations and Death in COVID-19 Patients Alexey Polonikov. ACS Infectious Diseases 2020 6 (7), 1558-1562
There are many medical interventions aimed at helping to reduce the severity of infection particularly in patients that end up hospitalized. The use of steroids for example, has had a huge impact on decreasing the mortality rate alone. With each passing day we learn more. With each recovery or unfortunate death we also learn more and hopefully faster lifesaving therapies. Here are some of the compelling papers that discuss this.
We propose here a potential anti-inflammatory therapy based on pharmacological targeting of transcription factor NRF2. We envisage that the benefits of pharmacological activation of NRF2 in the context of SARSCov-2 infection will be threefold: (i) increasing fitness and providing protection to the host cell; (ii) promoting the anti-inflammatory phenotype during macrophage activation, thus preventing uncontrolled production of proinflammatory cytokines and pyroptosis; and (iii) inhibiting viral propagation.
Can Activation of NRF2 Be a Strategy against COVID-19? Antonio Cuadrado,1,2,* Marta Pajares,1 Cristina Benito,1 José Jiménez-Villegas,1 Maribel Escoll,1 Raquel Fernández-Ginés,1 Angel J. Garcia Yagüe,1 Diego Lastra,1/ Gina Manda,2 Ana I. Rojo,1 and Albena T. Dinkova-Kostova. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, September 2020, Vol. 41, No. 9.
It is tempting to propose that Nrf2-interacting foods and nutrients can re-balance insulin resistance and have a significant effect on COVID-19 severity. It is therefore possible that the intake of these foods may restore an optimal natural balance for the Nrf2 pathway and may be of interest in the mitigation of COVID-19 severity.
Nrf2-interacting nutrients and COVID-19: time for research to develop adaptation strategies Clinical and Translational Allergy volume 10, Article number: 58 (2020)
Since the Nrf2 pathway plays a pivotal role in inflammation as does the NF-κB pathway and deficiencies in glutathione, these should be explored as part of a multifaceted approach to find effective treatments for COVID-19. Three novel prevention, diagnostic, and treatment options for COVID-19 urgently necessitating controlled randomized trials Richard I. Horowitza, Phyllis R. Freeman Medical Hypotheses Volume 143, October 2020, 109851
We propose that a multifaceted anti-inflammatory strategy based on pharmacological activation of nuclear factor erythroid 2 p45-related factor 2 (NRF2) can be deployed against the virus. The strategy provides robust cytoprotection by restoring redox and protein homeostasis, promoting resolution of inflammation, and facilitating repair.
Can Activation of NRF2 Be a Strategy against COVID-19? Antonio Cuadrado,1,2,* Marta Pajares,1 Cristina Benito,1 José Jiménez-Villegas,1 Maribel Escoll,1 Raquel Fernández-Ginés,1 Angel J. Garcia Yagüe,1 Diego Lastra,1 Gina Manda,2 Ana I. Rojo,1 and Albena T. Dinkova-Kostova Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, September 2020, Vol. 41, No. 9
Ultimately you will not find a physician or scientist that will say increasing the antioxidant health of patients is a bad idea. Right now, there is one non-prescription product that has been shown in multiple peer reviewed papers, to be the strongest Nrf2 activator ever tested – Protandim
I know that there will be more and very powerful prescriptions that will be used to treat Covid-19 in the near future. One prescription drug now of great interest is called Ivermectin. You will no doubt be hearing a lot more about this in the coming weeks. The three vaccines now available (with three more on the way) will hopefully have a big impact on reducing the spread of this virus too.
We can however do something today to help ourselves and be proactive against infections. I believe that Protandim is a powerful, safe and cost-effective way to increase the antioxidant health of everyone who takes it. There are exceptions of course and these would be for patients taking chemotherapy or anti rejections drugs. These individuals should not take Protandim.
For everyone else however, we can avoid risks, wear a mask, keep your hands clean and take a safe supplement that will continue to help improve your health in many positive ways.