Nobody hopes to get it, yet over 400,000 people in Austria have already had it. We’re talking, of course, about coronavirus, which has kept the world on the edge of its seat for a year now. Dr. Maximilian Schubert, our expert and medical director at the VIVAMAYR Health Resort in Altaussee, lets you know the best way to support your recovery after falling ill with COVID-19.
Face masks, social distancing, thorough hand-washing and disinfecting – despite the many measures implemented to curb coronavirus, over 101.5 million1 people have fallen ill with the virus so far. In Austria, the beginning of February marked 412,096 confirmed cases to date.2 And many people are still getting infected every single day. We asked our specialist Dr. Maximilian Schubert to weigh in. He is not only the medical director of our VIVAMAYR resort in Altaussee, but also an expert on the topic of the immune system. He reveals his five top tips for the best possible recovery after falling ill with coronavirus.
Tip 1: Act quickly and combine measures
If you have caught the virus, Dr. Schubert advises taking therapeutic action as soon as possible, so that the inflammation provoked in the body by the virus can be relieved by the immune system as efficiently as possible. He also notes that it is important to keep an eye on blood clotting, and to bring this back to the optimum state if necessary. In severe cases, it has been shown that the body is not well equipped to handle the cytokine storm triggered by the virus, which can also result in the formation of thromboses. Cytokines are proteins produced by the human body. The cells involved in an immune response – these can include lymphocytes or macrophages, among others – generally exchange information via cytokines so as to initiate the next steps in the immune defense.
However, due to the immune system’s extreme sensitivity to certain proteins, these cytokines can also be released in excess, which elicits massive inflammatory reactions. This is the cause of severe progressions of an illness for both infectious and non-infectious diseases. “On the one hand, conventional drugs, such as cortisone for reducing inflammation and heparin derivatives for optimizing blood coagulation, are very effective forms of treatment here. On the other, generous quantities of vitamin c and zinc as well as the amino acid L-lysine can also be helpful,” notes Dr. Maximilian Schubert.
Incidentally, the foundation of a properly functioning immune system should be a good level of vitamin D. It has actually been shown that a vitamin D deficiency favors a severe progression of COVID-19. The crux of the matter here is that particularly people with pre-existing conditions or elderly people, i.e. those who are already weakened, exhibit a vitamin D deficiency.3 This is why he recommends having your vitamin D levels examined in a laboratory every six months, and taking a vitamin D supplement if necessary. “When choosing supplements, always look at the quality and the brand,” Dr. Schubert advises, explaining: “The ingredients in the respective compound are crucial. Ideally, the nutrient should be present in the form of a pure substance and should not contain any other additives. The purer the nutrient, the better.”
Tip 2: Herbs, chicken soup and no carbs
In terms of alternative medicine, Dr. Schubert sets store – as does the VIVAMAYR concept – by supporting the recovery with herbs whenever possible. For one thing, formulas found in Traditional Chinese Medicine can be very helpful. However, since these are intended to be administered on a highly individual basis and can be highly effective, they must always be prescribed by a TCM-certified doctor. For another, various illnesses can be positively influenced by diet, meaning that measures implemented in this area can be worthwhile.
In addition, Dr. Schubert also recommends consuming nutritious food. A hearty chicken soup simmered for several hours can promote healing just as much as a reduced-carb diet. Because although carbohydrates provide energy, this usually only lasts for a short time. But to recover from falling ill with COVID-19 in particular, the body requires a good level of energy over the long term, which is why it is also important to provide it with sufficient energy (from food) over a prolonged period of time. “If you are going to consume carbohydrates, it is essential that you make sure these are complexcarbohydrates. Cut out sugar as far as possible, and be sure to eat plenty of vegetables,” are the specialist’s recommendations.
Tip 3: Take time to recuperate
“If you have fallen ill with Covid-19, it’s just like any other viral infection: your body needs rest! Give your body the time it needs to fully recover,” Dr. Schubert reminds us. Naturally, many people are tempted to go about trying to keep up with their everyday workload – but simply in quarantine – especially if the illness is mild. But appearances are deceptive! Dr. Maximilian Schubert explains: “Even if you are lucky enough to only experience mild illness, it is still crucial that you allow yourself time to rest.
After all, there is still a pathogen that has made its way into your body and needs to be completely eliminated. Only once this is case will you be fully fit and back to normal. You simply need to give your body the time it needs to get better.” Here, the African proverb applies perfectly: “Grass doesn’t grow faster if you pull on it.” Also very important: “Protect other people if you yourself are ill,” the expert reminds us.
Tip 4: Use the power of your mind
No matter what you have come down with, an optimistic attitude can have a positive impact on the course of the illness. “Our state of mind has a decisive influence on whether we stay healthy – or become sick. The more stable the personality, the more resistant the body, and the more pessimistic the person’s outlook, the more susceptible to disease he or she is. We see it confirmed time and again in our day-to-day work with all different kinds of people that the mind always plays a very important role. It has been shown, for example, that patients with a negative attitude have a harder time losing weight,” Dr. Schubert tells of his experience. This is why the recommendation to practice mental hygiene and various awareness and mental training methods are a fixed component of every VIVAMAYR treatment.
Tip 5: Strengthen your immune system using the body’s own recycling system
“If you are currently recovering from coronavirus, it is especially important that you treat yourself with great care and consideration,” Dr. Maximilian Schubert emphasizes. “If you’re on the road to recovery, it’s best to start with slow walks in the fresh air and do away with the thought that you need to catch up on anything right now,” the doctor advises. In addition, you should also make sure to consume a lot of liquids – at least two and a half to three liters of water per day. That is another way of supporting the recovery.
He also states it is important to go back to basics in terms of diet, ideally providing your organism with food in accordance with the food combining concept and eating only a small dinner. “Support your body by allowing it deliberate breaks from eating and providing it with easily digestible food and quantities. Abstinence from food, as facilitated by interval fasting, for example, enables you to strengthen your immune system via your digestion. In doing so, you give your body the option of rendering diseased cells harmless and literally recycling them. In this way, cell components that are still intact can be made available for other bodily processes,” the immune specialist explains.
In fact, there are plenty of things you can take into consideration in order to optimally support your recuperation after falling ill with – not just – COVID-19. However, it can be a particular challenge to consistently observe all the measures that would ideally be necessary for a complete recovery, especially when you are still in a weakened state. This is where a VIVAMAYR treatment can help, as it means that not only do you put yourself in the competent hands of experts, but you are also able to benefit from additional measures that provide optimum support for a full recovery. One of these is intermittent hypoxic-hyperoxic training. During this therapy, oxygen is withheld from and supplied to the body at specific intervals, thus stimulating and supporting cell regeneration. The methods are always individually tailored to suit each person, depending on the symptoms presented.
We are all the architects of our own health
In conclusion, there is both bad and good news: the bad news is that truly none of us are exempt from falling ill, be it with coronavirus or some other virus. Nobody is immune. “However, it does depend on the strength of the pathogenic factor and the individual situation regarding the immune defense, in terms of how badly you are affected by an illness – or not, as the case may be,” Dr. Schubert sums up. The good news is that you are able to actively influence your individual immune situation. With every single decision about what, when and how much you eat, whether you move and how you face life with all its challenges. “Ultimately, our state of health is a reflection of the sum of our daily decisions. Following a viral infection, a Vivamayr treatment can play a significant role in getting you back on your feet faster, or in the best-case scenario, ensuring that you are not that badly affected in the first place,” is Dr. Schubert’s last tip.