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Boosting your Immunity Series Part 2 - How Fear Lowers your Immune System

covid-19 fear health immunity Mar 25, 2020
 

[The Foolish Couple are founders of the Foco Academy, nutrition specialists and success coaches. We focus on teaching Jack Canfield’s Success Principles and applying the principles to the 3 areas of life that money can’t buy, that is, Health, Time, and Love Relationship.]

 

 How Fear lowers your Immune System

 

Hi. We’re the Foolish Couple.  Andrew and Minna, founders of the Foco Academy, Functional Nutrition Specialists and Life Coaches. We help people achieve whole life success by applying the Success Principles to the 3 areas of life that money can’t buy, that is, Health, Time, and Love Relationships.

 

In the next few weeks we will be doing our Boost your immunity series. In the last episode we talked about your metabolic efficiency and why it’s important for tracking your general health and performance of your body especially when it is under stress or attack from external viruses like the COVID-19. Did you download our Metabolic Efficiency list yet from our first session? If you haven’t you can download it on the link provided.

 

Lately, news of the coronavirus, or the COVID-19, is pretty much all we hear on the news. And the news has caused many of us to feel scared, or fearful, in times like this. I mean, how else would you explain this weird behavior of stockpiling toilet paper?

 

The news media thrives on us being scared. The more scared we are, the more we are glued to the news channels. But is this fear really rational? Or is it just another phenomena that has been overhyped by the media?

 

Fear comes in many different forms.

 

With the COVID-19, you may be experiencing different variations of fear, such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Concern
  • Despair
  • Doubt
  • Horror
  • Scare
  • Worry
  • Agitation

Depending on your situation, you may be anxious about your kid’s school situation. You may be worried about your family’s health. If someone in your family has a pre-existing condition, than that makes you even more worried. Some of you may be just agitated because your favorite restaurant is closed, and for those of you who have lost your income during this time, probably despair, and concern about your financial situation.

Maybe you have FOMO, the fear of missing out. Now that you are ordered to stay at home, who knows what you’re missing out on?

As you have mentioned earlier, FEAR, FIGHT or FLIGHT, or FOMO, that’s a lot of ‘F’ words. And that’s exactly how most of the people are feeling right now.

 

What exactly is FEAR?

As the author of the Chicken Soup for Your Soul series, Jack Canfield always say, that FEAR stands for

 

Fantasized Experiences Appearing Real

 

 

Meaning, it’s all in your head.

It is our human nature to imagine the worst that could happen to us. And when you hear from the news that someone from your location died from the coronavirus, immediately, you’re going to wonder. Are you going to die? And you may not be considering all the factors. Viruses are funny things. They react differently on different people. So just because someone had a bad experience from the virus, it doesn’t mean that you will.

But that piece of news probably put you into FIGHT or FLIGHT mode. Which is why you immediately grab your car keys and head out to buy toilet paper.

 

We Joked about a zombie apocalypse during our last blog, because we tend to like those type of movies. And the coronavirus isn't a zombie apocalypse. There are people that die from a variety of viruses every year. The flu virus kills 34-60,000 Americans a year. We just don’t get the statistics of which strain of flu virus for each of those deaths. The truth is, some form of the coronavirus has been around for years and account for about 5-14% of the deaths that are rolled into deaths caused by the flu. Remember SARS in 2002? That is a strain of the coronavirus. The latest one which we called the COVID-19 is just the latest strain of the coronavirus.

Watch Expert Pulmonologist  Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg who has studied Flu viruses over the last few decades have to say about the threat of the Covid-19 and make your own conclusions yourself.

 

So, if you’re like us who choose not to take the flu shots and have not caught the flu in the last 7 years, there is no reason to think why we are at any higher risk now than before.

It’s not about finding the cure or a vaccine, there are 100’s of thousands of people who die a year from the flu even with vaccines.

It’s not about a magic vaccine that is going to fix everything, it’s all about your immune system and its innate ability to fight off all viruses when it is working properly, be it some form of flu or some form of coronavirus including the Covid-19.

 

 

If you step back and just take a deep breath and look at your current Shelter in Place situation with a different perspective. You’d probably find something good out of it. What do you think?

 

I agree. I know you recently shared a video on our Facebook page called ‘Thank You Coronavirus’.

And it’s true. How many times in your life would you ever get a chance to actually stay home, be completely grounded, with no parties, no social gatherings, but just to be able to spend quality time with your loved ones.

Many people dream about how one day they would win the lottery and be able to quit their job, stay home, and do nothing. This is it. This is you winning the lottery.

You just have to figure out what ‘doing nothing’ means to you.

Having all of us staying at home is actually good for our air quality, which is good for our environment. With almost no traffic on the highways, there are less accidents, less wear and tear on the roads. And that allows our emergency workers and the logistics companies to deliver their goods on time.

And kids can be very creative on how they can spend their time. It’s great that they can still get out. So, they can enjoy the sun, the parks, and they can also donate their time to help out the seniors and others who needed help during times like this.

And if your kids are still in school. You can now let go of your ‘Tiger Parent’ mask and just be a loving, caring parent. You may even have spent a lot of money sending your kids to tutoring, music lessons, sports teams, martial arts and whatever else you spend money on keeping your kids out of the house. Fact is, they may just want to spend time with you.

For those who have lost their income, I feel for you. But try to turn your situation into an advantage. Historically, heroes were made, not born. When you are faced with a dilemma, figure out how you can come out as the hero. Maybe considering starting that business that you’ve always wanted. Boost your knowledge by taking online courses. Make the best use of your time.

I also want to stress the importance of stress, or rather, how stress compromises our immune system. Can you elaborate on that?

 

Stress is a natural reaction to how our bodies react. It usually tells you when you are in physical danger, like when you are being chased by a zombie. Your body goes into fight or flight mode, your heart quickens, your muscles contract and your adrenaline spikes to outrun that zombie or fight it off.

 Our nervous system has two parts, the sympathetic and the parasympathetic. They complement each other under normal conditions, the sympathetic gives you adrenaline in flight or fight situations while the parasympathetic helps you recover usually when you are sleeping or digesting your food. The problem is that your brain cannot distinguish the difference between physical stress or mental stress. Both will ramp up our sympathetic nervous system, so you are always in Fight or flight mode even though there is nothing to fight. This prevents your body from getting into the parasympathetic mode to be able to sleep, rest or digest your foods.

Remember sleep is very important for your well-being and food digestion comes down to your digestive health. Your digestive system accounts for about 60% of your immune system, so you want to make sure you are digesting all the food extracting all the nutrients to boost your health in this time of stress.

Learn more about how our digestive health is important to your immune system in our Free “gut matters” book if you haven’t downloaded it yet.

And constant stress also causes inflammation in your cells, and when your body is fighting inflammation inside, it doesn’t have the resources to fight off external attacks. You do not want chronic inflammation in your cells as that will cause you to be immunocompromised. Remember to check out our Free Video on how  inflammation in your cells can cause chronic conditions in the future if you haven’t already done so in  the link provided here.

 

 

It is human nature to blame and complain for what is happening to us. Is it the government’s fault that the Covid-19 is spreading everywhere, potentially killing you. It is their fault that we don’t have a way to deal with this virus.

 The fact is, most of us learned as a kid to depend on someone else to take care of us. As kids, we depend on our parents and our teachers. And they in turn depend on their boss and their government. But when we depend on someone else to take care of lives, we are essentially letting them control our lives.

 

This is a time where the ‘Survival of the Fittest’ is true.

 

True the Covid-19 is highly contagious compared to other viruses but statistically your chance of dying is just as high with the regular flu.  The strength of your immune system will keep you alive and there is no one to blame but yourself, if your immune system is compromised. It’s your body and only you can take care of yourself.

Stop blaming others for your inability to protect yourself.

We have prepared an exercise for you based on Byron Katie’s work. You can download the exercise in the link provided here….

When you open up the worksheet, it’ll ask you to:

  1. Identify the situation
  2. How do you want your situation to change
  3. In this situation, what advice would you offer?
  4. In order for you to be happy in this situation, what do you need to think, feel, or do?
  5. What do you think of it in this situation? Make a list, and it is OK to be petty and judgmental
  6. What is it about this situation that you don’t ever want to experience again?

Answer these 6 questions. And then go back and question your statements using the 4 questions below.

For example. If the situation is that this coronavirus is causing you to have to spend time and take care of your kids. Then that would be your answer to question 1. Then continue to answer the rest of the questions.

Once you’re done, go back and look at each of your statements. And ask yourself:

  1. Is it true? Just a simple yes or no answer.
  2. Can you absolutely know that it’s true? It is another yes or no answer. But it would require you to really think about your situation. Is it really the virus? Or was it your responsibility all along?
  3. How do you react when you believe that thought?
  4. Who would you be without that thought? Would you be a better parent? Would you have happier kids?

This exercise will help you see your situation from a different perspective, and help you understand that you may have imagined the worst-case scenario and scaring yourself to death.

 

The imagery we hold in our mind can affect us in very powerful ways.

 

This exercise will prove how most of the fear we experience is self-created by imagining catastrophic events in the future. These events have not actually happened but affect us nevertheless because we hold them in our minds as images. We actually experience the fear now in our bodies, because our bodies cannot distinguish between real events and vividly imagined ones.

 

If you have not downloaded our Metabolic efficiency List, make sure you download it also.

There is no way to improve your health or your immunity without knowing what your starting point is.

Remember, it’s like tracking how many three pointers you can toss the basketball in the hoop in a roll, to monitor if you are moving forward or backwards with your health and immunity.

In the next episode, we are going to go through why Whole Foods are so much more important now for your health and immunity than ever before. We will talk about which foods to buy for best storage life, some cooking tips and which ones to avoid.

We would like to conclude this episode with Gratitude.

What are you most grateful for today, as we are all working from home, spending time with your loved one with your children?

Make a list of at least three things you are grateful for today. This will really boost your mood and your immune system, Try it!

Gratitude has been shown to boosts your immune system and Fear lowers it!

 

Until next time, love what you live, and live what you love.

 

 

 

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We are not medical doctors. This blog is not intended to diagnose medical condition, or replace your health care provider. The contents of this blog are for informational purposes only. Statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Always consult your personal physician before starting any fitness or exercise program or changing dietary habits. The content of this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It is not a substitute for a medical exam, nor does it replace the need for services or counsel provided by medical professionals. However, we do hope to inspire you to become healthier, more self sufficient, and more aware of options.

 

 

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