Your gut microbiome may determine your Covid severity and outcome

I'm not an anti-vaxxer. But I'm not for it either. When it comes to overall health, preventing, treating and combating diseases (even with respiratory illnesses like Covid-19) I'm a firm believer of a holistic approach: Take care of your body and mind, and they'll take care of you.

The gut microbiome plays a significant role in your body's immune response to disease. Recent research (here, here and here) suggests that gut dysbiosis can contribute to the severity of Covid-19, but also that a Covid-19 infection can contribute to further gut dysregulation.

There have been several reports about breakthrough infections (Covid infections and deaths after full vaccination), as well as the vaccine causing autoimmune diseases (or flare ups to those who already have them), myocarditis, thrombotic thrombocytopenia leading to heart attacks and failures etc, and therefore, even deaths.

Covid infections and deaths post-vaccination happen for a number of reasons:

  • medications that negatively affect the immune function (such as medication for arthritis)
  • pre-existing medical conditions
  • mutations of the virus that the vaccine cannot protect from
  • poor response to the vaccine by the body (doesn't produce enough antibodies post-vaccination), usually due to very weak immune system
Now those who love statistics will try to tell you that the deaths (reported and made public) of vaccinated people are still less than those who contracted the virus without a vaccine, and that the vaccine's benefits outweigh the risks. 

How do you make that distinction? Where do you draw the line? Since when can we measure the loss of life by the hundreds or thousands as acceptable? Since when are vaccine-induced/developed conditions like myocarditis and autoimmune hepatitis acceptable?

One thing people seem to be forgetting about vaccines, is that they're not natural. That's not how your body is supposed to work. I'm not saying they don't save lives or that you shouldn't get vaccinated. But it is a grave mistake to rely on the vaccine alone to save you, from anything, not just Covid. And I find it highly ironic that the vaccine doesn't work for those who need it the most: the immunocompromised.

Here in Portugal, 88% are fully vaccinated. The government doesn't want to take chances though. This Christmas we are back to lockdown restrictions, although a little looser than last Christmas. Based on the numbers, it's like vaccination hasn't changed much, but I try to be optimistic. 

I kinda like China's approach (the zero-Covid strategy) and I admire the discipline of its citizens. A quote from the above article:

Dr Huang Yanzhong, from the New-York based Council on Foreign Relations, says a key problem is that vaccines cannot achieve what the Chinese government would like them to, making Beijing wary.

"They're not confident about the effectiveness of the vaccines - the ability to prevent infections," he told the BBC, "because actually even the best vaccines can't prevent infections - but the zero-tolerance strategy says we can't accept even one single infection."

The problem with the post-vaccine Covid era is that people (and governments) around the world now think it's ok to return back to life as usual, and of course with that assumption, Covid still spreads rapidly, and mutates, and spreads even more and then people are wondering when will this end. 

What puzzles me the most is that governments try to make vaccination mandatory, but not the prohibition of the production and consumption of highly inflammatory foods, alcohol, cigarettes etc which can contribute to severe cases of Covid and the development of chronic diseases and premature deaths.

There are currently 800 million obese on this planet, and 1.7 billion overweight. This year alone there were 5 million deaths caused by smoking, almost as much as total Covid deaths. Cancer? 7.8+ million deaths this year. And cancer is not some random disease. The food we eat, our environment, our sedentary lifestyle, the medication we take... All of them play a significant role to the risks for chronic diseases, infections and premature deaths.

The obesity epidemic and gut dysregulation through ultra-processed foods, substances, modern medication, air pollution by modern technology etc should be our number one priority. Fix that and you'll cut the diseases, infections and premature deaths by at least 70-80%. 

Vaccines are like using your hands to get the water out from a sinking boat with a hole. It doesn't close the hole and the water just keeps on coming. You need a strong structure, a boat that does not break in the first place no matter what hits it. How do you do that? By taking a step (or several) back. 

Stop industrialising and processing foods (and most importantly, stop eating that garbage). Stop overeating. Stop using a car for everything. Move a little (or a lot). Stop hurting your body with inflammatory foods that increase the pathogens in your gut. Stay without food for a couple of hours (or days). Unlike Covid and the vaccine, fasting won't kill you. In fact, a study showed that just 3 days of fasting completely regenerates your immune system. Cancer patients are encouraged to use extended fasts after (or even during) chemotherapy to reset their immune system.

Being obese or overweight or even being shredded with 6-pack abs but with an imbalanced gut microbiome due to the consumption of ultra processed foods and supplements weakens your immune system, and brings a plethora of chronic diseases with it. 

Get vaccinated or don't, but whether it's the common cold, Covid or whatever else the future has in store for us, you owe it to yourselves to give your body a fighting chance. That means keeping your gut (and with that your immune system) a well-oiled machine, being at a healthy weight, exercise (and stay active for the most part of your day) and avoiding inflammatory foods. 

I will be doing a series of posts of the health benefits (or risks) of various foods, but for now, here's a list of what you should eat, and what you shouldn't eat. Here's also how to perform a gut cleanse to clear out pathogens and make room for beneficial bacteria population.

I am NOT a doctor, personal trainer, registered dietician, nutritionist, athlete, influencer, nor at the end of my fitness journey. The content of this blog is based on what worked for me and is for informational purposes only, not a replacement for medical advice from a professional. Furthermore, we and our bodies are unique, so everybody is different. My results may not reflect your own. Any action you take upon the information provided by ZenGainz is strictly at your own risk.