Coronavirus (COVID-19) support guide
Posted by Andrea Nakayama
There is so much you can do to positively influence immunity during the COVID-19 pandemic. On this page, we’ve collected some of our favorite resources to help you support yourself, your loved ones, and your clients through these unprecedented times.
And be sure to get your hands on the tips I share in this Circle of Influence series. In this packet, I show you how using diet and lifestyle modification, you can support your immune system and create a strong, resilient internal environment.
Resources to support you
click on a link below to go to the corresponding section on this page
What is COVID-19
Having context is the first step in being able to back it up, and understand how to take a Functional Nutrition approach.
- What is COVID-19?
- Is COVID-19 a Parasite?
- Mapping COVID-19 with Andrea Nakayama on the 15-Minute Matrix
- March, 2020
- Flatten the Curve
- CNN “Coronavirus: Fact vs Fiction”
- The New Yorker “How Does the Coronavirus Behave Inside a Patient” by Siddhartha Mukherjee
Influence Inflammation using diet and lifestyle modification and the 3 Roots, Many Branches framework.
- Influence Inflammation using diet and lifestyle modification
- Immune Superheroes Handout
- The Functional Medicine Approach to COVID-19: Lifestyle Practices for Strengthening Host Defense
Epic Self-Care Tips for you and yours
Many people are asking – “what can I do right now to take care of my community?” And the reality is there is so much you CAN do, to take good care. We refer to self-care as tending to the “core basics”, and they are a great place to sit in your circle of influence.
Sleep & Relaxation
Sleep and stress management are extremely important to immune health. Below are some of our favorite methods for a great night’s sleep, as well as some functional nutrition tools for mitigating sleep issues, and ideas for ways to relax in uncertain times.
- COVID-19 Community Q&A: How Can I Improve My Sleep right now?
- Setting Up Success for Sleep Support
- Functional Nutrition Tool: Sleep Assessment
- case study: insomnia through a Functional lens, part 1
- case study: insomnia through a Functional Lens, part 2
- 6 Ways to Make Sure Your Weekends Still Feel Like Weekends – From Food 52
Exercise & Movement
Exercise and moving your body are critical for immune health and stress management. Given these unique times, there are more options than ever for finding a method of movement that will work for you and that you can access from the comfort of your home. Here are some of our favorite online offerings, those with a * have special pricing at this time:
- Barre 3 online
- Down Dog App*
- Nike Training Club App*
- Peloton App*
- Gold’s Gym Anywhere*
- #152: Mapping Movement with Kelly McGonigal
And low-tech ways to get moving:
- Go for a walk – bonus points if in the trees!
- Pick up a running habit – Running From Coronavirus: A Back-to-Basics Exercise Boom
- Yoga is a terrific practice for these times. Catch my 15-Minute Matrix episode with our very own Caroline Stahlschmidt for all of yoga’s incredible benefits. Many local yoga studios are offering LIVE online classes right now, which means you can get a solid movement practice AND feel a sense of community.
Nutrition & Hydration
We have a whole section dedicated to anti-inflammatory superheroes below! These are some of the basics to keep in mind for food-based epic self-care.
- drink plenty of water!
- include hydrating foods and elixirs
- fiber is key to keep elimination strong! Remember that strong elimination pathways are a key way that we CLEAR inflammation.
- blood sugar balance – favor whole-food snacks with fat, fiber, protein
- plant-based, anti-inflammatory foods Keep it simple – eat the rainbow!
- use your kitchen spices:
- coconut oil
- raw honey and bee medicine
Stress & Resilience
Uncertain times are stressful. At this moment we need to pull out all the tools we have to stay centered and ready to respond. Here are some of our favorite resilience-building practices:
- #97: Mapping Meditation with Emily Fletcher
- Headspace has a free offering at this time and special support for healthcare workers
- Insight Timer free meditation app for sleep, relaxation, stress relief, and more.
- Aura Health meditation, stories, life coaching and more.
- Calm has created a meditation roundup that is free of charge.
- Endel soundscapes that help “bodies and brains adapt to the new world” they are currently offering one month free.
- deep breathing
- Create an Attitude of Gratitude (Post from our friends at the Health Coach Institute)
- create routine
- Slay Your Day With a Killer Morning Routine (Post from our friends at the Health Coach Institute)
- I Spent a Year in Space, and I Have Tips on Isolation to Share by astronaut Scott Kelly
- Join the Isolation Journals Community Project- A 30-day creativity project to help make sense of challenging times.
- stress reduction
- Yale professor Dr. Laurie Santos has a great series on her podcast The Happiness Lab
- for more mental health support
Relationships & Networks
We’ve been asked to socially distance, but that doesn’t mean we need to isolate! It’s important to stay connected – even when that means we need to get creative with how to do so!
- spend (virtual) time with friends, family and the coaching resources that provide the most support (and the least anxiety)
- We are a virtual company, and use tools like zoom (video conferencing), slack (text messaging and file sharing), loom (video creation) and the good old fashion phone to stay connected with each other. Many of these services are free or have special offers available in an effort to keep people connected.
- We’re having fun staying connected to friends and family – and playing games – using the Houseparty app.
- tune in to (only) the most reliable media sources
- Coronavirus Checker Check your risk for COVID-19 based on best clinical practices, CDC guidelines, illness severity and risk factors like age and pre-existing conditions.
- We’re doing our best to stay current with supportive information and practical tips and tool over on instagram @functionalnutritionalliance If you find value in what we are posting, share it with your communities! Help to fill their feeds with empowerment and support.
- tune in to beautiful ways that people are staying connected around the globe:
- New Yorker Finding Connection and Resilience During the Coronavirus Pandemic
- The Social Distancing Festival Live Stream Directory
A few ideas and support resources for all of you parents out there.
stress support for parents
- Parents Need Stress Relief, Too – New York Times
- self-care daily tip: the importance of relaxing rituals -with Andrea and Megan
activities for kids at home
- Bringing Hogwarts to You for Harry Potter fans! Activities, articles, craft videos – and more, with contributions from Bloomsbury and Scholastic.
- Radiolab for Kids Kid-friendly stories curated by Radiolab. All in one bingeable spot!
health and wellness
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): What a Pediatrician Wants You to Know – From Elisa Song, MD
- COVID-19, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: What We Know is Reassuring – From Aviva Romm, MD
- self-care daily tip: pregnancy and immunity – from Andrea Nakayama
special back-to-school resources
- #153: Mapping Kids Back to School During COVID-19 with Dr. Larry Rosen
- Tips for navigating ‘back to school’ whether your kids are venturing out or not
Some really beautiful stories and innovations are emerging as people come together to support one another amidst the heartbreak of the pandemic. We want to take a moment to celebrate the good that these challenging times have inspired.
- students coming together in song
- Covid-19 Health Literacy Project – In an effort to help patients from vulnerable communities know when and how to seek care, a group of medical students set out to create and translate accessible COVID-19 information into different languages.
Stories of Hope
- Stories of Hope – Curated by the Obama Foundation, stories of people from every corner of the globe carrying out selfless acts in this time of need.
- OnBeing A Listening Care Package for Uncertain Times
- Story Corps Stories to Lift Your Spirit
- Soup is Soup – A granddaughter learns cooking secrets from her grandma – Over Face Time From The Daily from The New York Times
COVID-19 & Autoimmunity
Do you have a question about COVID 19 and Autoimmunity? Please call our COVID-19 hotline at (888) 267-0336 and leave a message with your question. We’ll be addressing those in daily videos and in our community support sessions.
- #127: Special Release: Mapping COVID-19 with Andrea Nakayama
- Corona Virus and Autoimmune Disease with Andrea Nakayama on the Phoenix Helix podcast
- Community Question: Is it safe to be “Immune Boosting” with an autoimmune disease?
Anti-inflammatory Recipe Ideas
Always focus on food first. It’s the safest way to get the nutrients we need without accidentally over-supplementing.
- Functional Nutrition Alliance Pinterest – Visit our Pinterest page loaded with anti-inflammatory recipe ideas – hand-picked by Andrea and the team.
- Immune Superheroes – lot’s of ideas in this post – please share with your communities!
- Supporting gut health supports immune health bodywide, as most of the immune system lives in the gut. Some of our favorite foods for gut health are:
- Recommended vitamins and minerals that support immune health, and top food sources for each one:
- Vitamin D (oysters, sardines, mushrooms, shrimp)
- Vitamin A (liver, sweet potato, orange foods)
- Vitamin C (kale, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, papaya, red bell pepper, strawberries, oranges; plus superfoods like camu camu, goji berries and Incan berries)
- Quercetin (onions)
- Zinc (pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds)
- Monolaurin (coconut oil)
Some of our favorite recipes right now:
- Fire Cider Herbal Tonic
- Aloe Vera Juice
- Matcha Green Tea Elixir
- Chia Pudding
- Comforting Stew
- Miso Soup
- Aromatic Brothy Beans
- Sweet Sesame Bites
Q & A with Andrea
Andrea has been answering questions from the community DAILY to offer as much support as possible. If you have a health or self-care question about the current situation that you’d like Andrea and the nutrition team to answer, please call our COVID-19 hotline at (888) 267-0336 and leave a message.
In the meantime, here are some clips from past community sessions:
- How can I improve my sleep? I’m having a hard time right now.
- How to manage stress eating?
- Supplement Dos and Don’ts
- What can I do to support my community right now?
- Immune support for autoimmune conditions
- self-care daily tip: pregnancy and immunity
- Should you be taking elderberry to support your immune system?
- Is now a good time to take a zinc supplement?
Curated 15-Minute Matrix Episodes
Some of our favorite 15-Minute Matrix episodes that are supportive at this time.
COVID-19 Special Releases
- #127: Special Release: Mapping COVID-19 with Andrea Nakayama
- #129: Mapping COVID-19 Brain Related Stress with Donna Jackson Nakazawa
- #130: Mapping the Self-isolation Ripple Effect with Dr. Mansoor Mohammed
- #131: Mapping Meal Prep In Less Than Ideal Conditions with Mickey Trescott
- #132: Mapping Self-Support with Allison Post (COVID-19 Special Edition)
- #133: Mapping NK Cells with Dr. Anahid Jewett
- #128: Mapping Radical Resilience with Sayer Ji
- #120: Mapping the Sympathetic Nervous System with Alex Howard
- #97: Mapping Meditation with Emily Fletcher
- #86: Mapping Stress with Brendan Vermeire
- #7: Mapping Forest Bathing with Dr. Maya Shetreat-Klein
Nutrients & Botanicals to Support Immune Function
- #81: Mapping Colostrum with Dr. Marvin Singh
- #54: Mapping Frankincense with Dr. Mariza Snyder
- #53 Mapping the color Red with Deanna Minich
- #52: Mapping Short Chain Fatty Acids with Dr. Michael Ash
- #51: Mapping Nutrient Density with Mickey Trescott
- #45: Mapping Bee Medicine with Josh Gitalis
We hope these resources support you and your community to feel as empowered as possible during this difficult time. We will be updating this with new content often – so do check back! We are also very active on Instagram right now – follow us at @functionalnutritionalliance
Take good care,
EXPERIENCE A FREE TRAINING SERIES WITH ANDREA NAKAYAMA TO HELP YOU
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