Immune Boosting Self-Defense Of Long Covid

What is a long covid?

(Long COVID) or post-COVID syndrome is an expression utilized to describe the attendance of various symptoms, even after weeks or months of acquiring SARS-CoV-2 viral infection (1). 

The duration of having long COVID can continue or can be remitted in nature (2). Although most people with long COVID are PCR negative, which indicates microbiological recovery, there is still no clinical recovery. 

Majority of those with long COVID experience biochemical and radiological recovery. Depending upon the duration of symptoms, post-COVID or Long COVID has two phases -post-acute COVID where symptoms can be beyond 3weeks, and chronic COVID where symptoms last up to 12 weeks (3). 

How does long COVID affect our health?

People who have long COVID experience various symptoms like tiredness, shortness of breath, cough, chest pain, palpitations, headache, joint pain, myalgia, weakness, insomnia, the feelings of needles, diarrhea, rash, or hair loss, impaired balance, memory, and concentration impairment. 

Surely the people of long COVID do not necessarily have all these symptoms. (4) 

What is immune boosting?

Immune boosting is enhancing and strengthening the immune systems through immune boosters like vitamin c and vitamin d that can nourish your army against infection risk and fasting the clinical recovery of long COVID. 

Where immune boosting is important?

The immune system boosting which represents in enhancing the bone marrow and thymus by strengthening the immune cells_the lymphocytes_ is crucial to avoid the harmful complications that can happen after being infected with the covid virus as cardiovascular complications as acute heart failure, angina, cardiac tamponade, acute kidney injury, and acute liver injury. (5,6,7,8). 

Vitamin c infusion for immune-boosting and decreased infection risk

Vitamin C is crucial for achieving immune-boosting, It has been established that vitamin C has the ability to both prevent and treat respiratory and systemic infections through strengthening various immune cell functions. Prophylactic prevention of infection demands dietary vitamin C intakes that provide optimization of the cell and tissue levels (100–200 mg/day). 

vitamin C has beneficial effects on the cellular functions of both the innate and adaptive immune systems through antioxidant properties that protect the body against endogenous and exogenous oxidative challenges. (9). 

 Vitamin D for immune-boosting 

Vitamin D has various effects on cells within the immune system for decreased infection risk. It prevents B cell proliferation and blocks B cell differentiation and immunoglobulin secretion, suppressing T cell proliferation. Vitamin D affects T cell maturation byways that lead to decreased production of inflammatory cytokines (IL-17, IL-21) with increased production of anti-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-10. 

There is evidence showing that having good levels of vitamin D can boost your immune system and may protect against respiratory illnesses as well.

There is a recent study that had been done in 2020 indicated that patients hospitalized with COVID-19 who had sufficient levels of vitamin D had a decreased risk for harmful complications. (10,11).   

The relation between autoimmune disease and long covid

There is research, that had been done by John Arthur, a professor of nephrology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Science, His team tested the blood plasma of 67 patients who had experienced Covid-19 infection and 13 with no history of infection.   

About 93% of hospitalized patients and 81% of convalescent patients had in their sample a specific antibody that develops after the initial infection, that antibody is different from the other antibodies that have already been at work to fight the disease. 

This antibody prevents a protein, the ACE2 enzyme, which organizes the immune system’s reaction to the infection which led to losing the body’s immune system on itself, eliciting an inflammatory reaction like that happens commonly in autoimmune disease. (12).   

Pre-probiotics for gut health which are crucial for immune-boosting 

Probiotics are live bacteria that are present within certain foods that have numerous health benefits. Prebiotics present in types of carbs (mostly fiber) that humans do not digest. The beneficial bacteria in the gut eat this fiber. They help the gut microbiota. These are friendly to gut health, enhance it, and provide a healthy balance within the gut against the risk of infection.   

Pre-probiotics help the gut microbiota to regulate the genes that control our immune response to pathogens and viruses, including Covid-19. They -in other words- are responsible for the immune-boosting after being infected with covid 19 and within the long covid. (13). 

References:
1) Geddes L. Why strange and debilitating coronavirus symptoms can last for months. New Sci. 2020.   
2) NabaviNikki Long covid: how to define it and how to manage it. BMJ. 2020;370 
3) Greenhalgh Trisha, Knight Matthew, A’Court Christine, Buxton Maria, Husain Laiba. Management of post-acute covid-19 in primary care. BMJ. 2020;370.   
4) Sudre C.H., Murray B., Varsavsky T. medRxiv; 2020. Attributes and predictors of Long-COVID: analysis of COVID cases and their symptoms collected by the Covid Symptoms Study App. 
5) National Institutes of Health. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) treatment guidelines. 2021.   
6) Lin L, Wang X, Ren J, et al. Risk factors and prognosis for COVID-19-induced acute kidney injury: a meta-analysis. BMJ Open. 2020 Nov 10;10(11):e042573.   
7) Madjid M, Safavi-Naeini P, Solomon SD, et al. Potential effects of coronaviruses on the cardiovascular system: a review. JAMA Cardiol. 2020 Jul 1;5(7):831-40.   
8) Li G, Yang Y, Gao D, et al. Is liver involvement overestimated in COVID-19 patients? A meta-analysis.Int J Med Sci. 2021;18(5):1285-96. 
 9) Carr AC, Maggini S. Vitamin C and Immune Function. Nutrients. 2017;9(11):1211.   
10) Aranow C. Vitamin D and the immune system. J Investig Med. 2011;59(6):881-886.   
11)journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0239799. 
12) Casciola-Rosen L, Thiemann DR, Andrade F, Trejo Zambrano MI, Hooper JE, Leonard E, Spangler J, Cox AL, Machamer C, Sauer L, Laeyendecker O, Garibaldi BT, Ray SC, Mecoli C, Christopher-Stine L, Gutierrez-Alamillo L, Yang Q, Hines D, Clarke W, Rothman RE, Pekosz A, Fenstermacher K, Wang Z, Zeger SL, Rosen A. IgM autoantibodies recognizing ACE2 are associated with severe COVID-19. medRxiv. 2020 Oct 15:2020.10.13.20211664. 
13) Quigley EM. Gut bacteria in health and disease. Gastroenterol Hepatol (N Y). 2013;9(9):560-569.   
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