Important CoVID-19 update for the next 2 weeks

I’d like to follow up with my vlog from a few weeks ago regarding COVID-19 because NOW is a seminal point. The overarching fear being injected into the news media, public policy, and social media concern me because they play into our fear of the unknown.

This reminds me of the opening words of President Franklin Roosevelt inaugural address; “So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is...fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance..” Ironically these words were at the height of the Great Depression. As the US version of COVID-19 heads into its peak we need to be mindful of these very words so we can convert retreat into advance. 

While there is a lot of good happening, which I will get to in a minute, I’m not going to sugarcoat this; it’s going to get ugly over the next 10-14 days and the news is going to be focused on this to keep you locked down in fear. People are dying and are going to die. This is especially true if you reside in an area highly affected like the greater NY city area and the northeastern corridor….or if you or someone you know is hospitalized with COVID-19. This brings things home and the numbers simply don’t matter. I say this because I do not want to trivialize the suffering and death of those individuals, their families and loved ones who do wind up with a case of COVID-19 which lands them in the hospital facing permanent damage and even death. 

Yet amidst the fear driven cacophony of bad news, each new day also brings advances to gain the upper hand on COVID-19. It is critical YOU recognize these advances because in the heat of battle it is sometimes difficult to see we are winning. As we go into the next 2 weeks it is absolutely crucial we examine all the information not just what we are relegated to see.

What makes COVID-19 Lethal?

What makes COVID-19 lethal is NOT that it is particularly lethal in the way ebola or anthrax are lethal (i.e. if you come down with ebola or anthrax you are most likely going to die) but that it’s transmissibility and infection rate is exponentially higher than other SARS, influenza or cold viruses. In other words, what makes COVID-19 lethal is that it is a numbers game…..COVID-19 can infect exponentially more people:  so say in a normal influenza season for example 20 million people get the flu and 15,000 die, instead, COVID-19, left unchecked which is not the case, infects 200 million and 150,000 die……

Shall I dare say COVID-19 is the most ‘scalable’ Corona virus. I mean, heck, if this were a monetizable business proposal Venture Capitalists would be lining up to woo it with funding instead of cloistering themselves away in their vacation homes scared to death of ‘Corona Virus.’* Seriously, it’s this very real capacity to scale to ‘touch’ billions of lives that we are in self-containment whether on a global, local or individual level.

Now with each passing day we are better understanding the nature of this virus. Let’s look. . .

  • It doesn’t like the heat. 

  • Like most microorganisms UV light exposure kills it quickly. 

  • Sunlight and warm to hot dry air kill COVID-19 effectively stopping transmissibility. This explains the low infection and transmission rates in Southern California, the Great Basin and Desert Southwest.

  • By contrast, overcast, cold, wet climates and dense population centers tend to be much more at risk.

  • COVID-19 appears to be particularly aggressive and difficult to treat when the infected individual has cardio/pulmonary challenges and/or who are immunocompromised.

  • Smokers are one particularly vulnerable group principally due to the overexpression of the ACE2 enzyme caused by smoking. This also may be the primary reason for the data showing that men are more prone to serious outcomes than women…..why? The initial data is out of places like Asia, Italy and Spain where smoking is prevalent in the male population. Similarly, vaping would make young individuals particularly vulnerable to a serious outcome if infected with COVID-19.

  • Several of the epidemiologists who made dire ‘worst-case’ projections weeks ago when little data was available have revised their numbers and viewpoint in recent days as the hard data grows.

The take home from emerging reality of COVID-19 is this. If you are an active and healthy individual with no underlying conditions COVID-19 is far from lethal because 

the emerging data suggests: 

  • 20-30% of those exposed will either not get the virus or be asymptomatic yet contagious for a week or two which is the most insidious aspect of COVID-19 when coupled with it’s transmissibility.  

  • 56% will become symptomatic at some point with symptoms ranging from a mild cold to a severe flu not requiring hospitalization. 

  • The remaining 14% require hospitalization and various medical interventions. Overwhelmingly, these individuals are ‘not so fit’ and have underlying conditions. 

  • There remains a large segment of the population who fall outside of those exposed to and infected with COVID-19. This number is yet unknown, however, as projections are being revised down this suggests this outside demographic represents the majority of people rather than the minority. It also suggests our collective actions to limit contact are working.

  • The immune system of a relatively healthy person infected with COVID-19 will beat this virus just like it does with other corona viruses thus conferring immunity.  This means the infected person can no longer infect others nor can others re-infect that person. This can occur in as little as 2-3 days or as long as 2-3 weeks. 

  • It appears the global daily death toll has peaked and is heading down while the recovery rate of known COVID-19 individuals has surpassed 200,000 and is currently hovering around 20% of known documented cases. 

  • Japan, Taiwan, Singapore all moved swiftly and succeeded in beating COVID-19. Even South Korea was able to reign COVID-19 in quickly and China, the source of the outbreak, appears to be over COVID-19 for the most part. We do not hear enough about these advancements ….we need to because they worked and worked in the time spans of weeks NOT the months predicted by western prognosticators. 

Though the US was late getting started, the measures taken 2-3 weeks ago to limit contact are starting to show signs they are working.Even with the large increase in testing the rate of growth of new cases has sharply decreased of late and this downward trend will continue over the next 2 weeks in all but the most affected areas. Even the Seattle area has witnessed their numbers drop. 

Be sure to keep this in mind over the next 2 weeks as the focus of news will be on the deteriorating situation in the NE urban areas where things will get ‘interesting’ before they get better.

So while we are adding total confirmed cases the rate far below the projected doubling every 3-4 days originally projected. This has actually caused several leading experts to revise and sharply lower their original projections which sparked the Panic-demic of toilet paper pandemonium! . . . 

Bear in mind testing is still limited to those who are symptomatic or persons with known contact with an individual who was confirmed to have COVID-19.  

So let’s go back to Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s speech because it is as relevant now as it was then. . . how do we ‘convert retreat into advance’?

  • Social distancing and isolation still rules the day for another week or two, particularly with people you do not know and who have travelled to places where there is a high infection rate. 

  • This being said, if you live in an area NOT hard hit by COVID-19, which is most of the US, you should be able to start returning to normalcy save for having close contact with people outside your immediate family for a few more weeks. 

  • Maintain ‘best practices’ hygiene without going OCD when out. 

  • Heat kills COVID-19. If you have access to a sauna use it as much as possible, drink hot beverages, use a blow dryer to inhale hot air into your nostrils. 

  • Continue to train and increase your cardiovascular fitness on a fat based physiology as nature intended.

  • Finally think of this as an opportunity to become a much stronger, more resilient version of yourself. 

If anything, COVID-19 demonstrates the need for constant adaptation. This is the cycle of life and we’ve forgotten this.  We are so preoccupied with ‘getting ahead’ financially, materially and ‘conveniently’ our bodies have ‘retreated’ becoming vulnerable to what should be a non-lethal virus, COVID-19. We need to ‘advance’ in our health, first and foremost. 

I hope this helps you ‘advance’ . Thank you. 

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