Quercetin vs Viruses (Powerful anti-viral properties of this unique nutrient)


By: Cat Ebeling, RN, MSN-PHN, co-author of the best-sellers:  The Fat Burning KitchenThe Top 101 Foods that Fight Aging & The Diabetes Fix

With the rapid spread of Covid-19 around the world, along with the dramatic and scary news stories, it seems everyone is scrambling to grab supplements to boost their immune systems. While nothing takes the place of a healthy diet that lowers inflammation in your body, a good night’s sleep, stress reduction, exercise, and vitamin D production in your skin from sun exposure—some supplements can definitely be helpful as well.

Once the SARS-CoV-2 or Coronavirus gets inside the human respiratory tract, it infects and multiplies in the cells lining the airways and lungs. This kicks the body’s immune system into action. In most people, the immune system does its work, then recedes and the patient recovers.

Normally, an immune response which causes inflammation is a normal and good thing in the fight against a pathogen or an injury. However, with this coronavirus, the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome that occurs in some people, happens as a result of a dysfunctional immune response to the presence of the virus. The uncontrolled immune response triggers an overproduction of immune cells and their signaling molecules which leads to a ‘cytokine storm’. This cytokine storm is generally what causes the severe and potentially fatal symptoms of severe pneumonia and breathing difficulties with a Covid19 infection.

So it’s more about having a healthy immune system overall and reducing inflammation in the body, because if the body is already overridden with inflammation, leaky gut, Diabetes, obesity, and other health problems, it’s possible this can contribute to the cytokine storm that’s being seen in some patients.

There are several supplements that actually help to strengthen the immune system and reduce inflammation, without overstimulating the immune system. One of the top nutrients for this is Quercetin.

What is Quercetin?  It is a potent anti-inflammatory and antiviral substance found in certain foods, including red onions and apples. Many people take Quercetin in the fall and spring to help their allergies to tree and weed pollen.  Quercetin has been shown in many studies to have fairly broad anti-viral properties against most viruses.

Quercetin is considered a bioflavonoid. Quercetin is found in the highest concentrations in red onions, berries, red wine, green tea, buckwheat, and apples.

Quercetin is now also undergoing trials in China for its effectiveness against Covid19 (but I am in no way saying Quercetin cures or blocks your ability to get it). In a recent analysis published by the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Labs, they used high-powered computer modeling to look at which compounds or supplements might best prevent the coronavirus from binding to our cells.

This is key, because this is how this virus gets into to our bodies and starts reproducing. It enters our bodies through nasal passages, mouth, eyes, or respiratory passages. Once it binds to a cell, it finds its way into the cell, starts reproducing like crazy, and takes over the respiratory system, especially the lungs.

The coronavirus uses the ACE2 or Angiotensin Converting Enzyme receptor in our bodies to enter the cells. This is important too, because ACE2 receptors have to do with regulating our blood pressure—I’ll talk more about that below.

The analysis from Tennessee looked at several different compounds and nutrients to see which ones worked best at interfering with the virus’s ability to attach to a cell and get inside to do its damage. One of the top 5 virus-fighting natural compounds is Quercetin.

Quercetin is a natural supplement that has other big benefits including lessening reactions to allergies, as well as fighting aging and free radicals. Well worth it to start taking since it has multiple benefits for our health. According to most research, the usual dose is 500mg to 1,000 mg a day. Quercetin is often compounded with a digestive enzyme like bromelain, plus Vitamin C, to improve absorption. All good things.

Quercetin is also inexpensive, especially compared to some of the pharmaceutical grade antiviral drugs that are being used now. This broad-spectrum antiviral supplement has already proven successful for treating the Ebola and Zika viruses, according to Dr. Michel Chrétien, a researcher at the Clinical Research Institute of Montreal.

Does it work for sure? It’s too early for standard clinical trials to show positive proof, but the circumstantial evidence is strong in favor of its anti-inflammatory and antiviral capabilities. The best thing about quercetin is, even without clinical trials, we know that quercetin will not harm you, or cause your immune system to overreact. Including quercetin in your immune-boosting weapons seems like a wise idea, along with these other practices as well:

Get good sleep

Poor sleep increases the risk of infectious illness. One study found that getting less than 5 hours of sleep over the course of a week, can increase the chances of catching a cold by 350%. Also, important to note is that lack of sleep can increase inflammatory levels in the body, creating higher risk for a cytokine storm. If you are having trouble sleeping, a small dose of melatonin at night may help you sleep better and keep your immune system strong.

Manage your stress

It’s no secret that stress definitely disrupts our immune function and increases our levels of inflammation, making us far more susceptible to getting seriously ill. Stop reading the news, follow precautions and find something relaxing to do—meditation, breathing exercises and exercising outdoors all go a long way to manage stress, reduce anxiety and strengthen your immune system.

Take Zinc

Zinc has been proven to reduce the activity of coronavirus and may prevent its entry into our cells while reducing its power. Zinc has proven powerful in fighting off regular influenza and the common cold as well. The suggested dosage for zinc is about 15mg – 30mg daily.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C has shown great promise in inhibiting inflammatory reactions and is thought to be very effective against viruses as well.  Several clinical trials have found that vitamin C shortens the frequency, duration and severity of the virus that causes the common cold (a type of corona virus) and the incidence of pneumonia. Vitamin C can be taken in reasonably high doses as any excess is washed out of the body.  This is a brand of Liposomal Vitamin C that seems to be more well absorbed than most types.

Eat Other Immune-Boosting Nutrients:

Other foods to consider including in your diet are garlic, fresh ginger, berries, green tea, and even grass fed butter and organ meat–full of vitamin A and other immune-boosting natural compounds.

Stay well, be healthy, and remember, a healthy body is the best defense against any disease.

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References
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/thecurrent/the-current-for-feb-28-2020-1.5479561/as-coronavirus-spread-speeds-up-montreal-researchers-will-trial-an-anti-viral-treatment-for-covid-19-in-china-1.5480134
https://regenexx.com/blog/coronavirus-episode-9-can-Quercetin-help-covid-19/
https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-294/Quercetin
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4808895/
https://jvi.asm.org/content/78/20/11334
https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/pharmacology-toxicology-and-pharmaceutical-science/quercetin
https://doi.org/10.26434/chemrxiv.11871402.v3

About The Watchdog

Mike Geary has been a Certified Nutrition Specialist and Certified Personal Trainer for over 15 years now. He has been studying nutrition and exercise for almost 25 years, ever since being a young teenager. Mike is originally from Pennsylvania, but has fallen in love with mountain life and now resides in the picturesque mountains of Utah. Mike is an avid adventurist and when he’s not spending his time skiing, mountain biking, hiking, or paddleboarding on the lake, he has enjoyed skydiving, whitewater rafting, piloting an Italian fighter plane (seriously), scuba diving, heli-skiing, and traveling all around the world, enjoying learning about different cultures. At the age of 40, Mike now feels healthier, stronger, and more energetic than when he was 20... All because of a healthy lifestyle and great nutrition!

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28 comments

  1. A brilliant letter on immunity and Covid 19 – thank you

  2. You didn’t say where or how we could buy a quercetin.

    • hello Margaret. Thank you for commenting and reading! It’s available at most health food stores and websites. It’s not a new supplement and people have been using it for a long time, so it’s readily available

      • Have you looked into the benefits of Acemannan? I’ve been taking for the last 3 years with only one minor cold.

        • Thanks so much. Which best plant food sources is quercetin in?

          I am trying to make use of nutrients vis food more so than supplements.

          Thsnks.

    • Ruth Evelyn Smith

      Where can we buy Quercetin?

    • I also would lie to buy Quercetin but don’t know where to find it. I asked my druggist but she said they don’t carry it! I also have asthma and severe sinus problems. I am very frightened of getting the virus as I also have high blood pressure and am over 80!

    • MaryAnn E Boudreau

      The article mentions it is in apples, berries, red onions, red wine and another food.

  3. Thank you for this vital and timely information. What studies are presently being done on the benefits of supplemental Vit D as it regards Acute Viral Respiratory Infections?

  4. Good article I have a aito immune disease it’s called Bronchitis it is weak bronco in my lungs if I get this I’m dead what can I do more I’m taking vit c .d bromilime apple sauce is t quercetin in mucinex. I est healthy all organic even my animals do what else I can do

    • Great info. Carolyn get some olive leaf extract , it should clear your lungs .Also oil of oregano . These two with the quercetin will build your immune system olive leaf by itself is over 100,000 on the orac scale . I’ve used the olive leaf and oil of oregano for bacterial infections and viruses. Do your research and good luck.

    • Tumeric is also a very good immune system booster and antiinflammatory. Fisetin can also be effective at getting rid of old less effective immune cells and replacing them with younger more effective immune cells.eating lots of cruciferous vegetables(broccoli cauliflower brussels sprouts can have a positive boost to immune function. Staying away from sugar and high carbs such as bread and pasta is recommended because eating sugar and carbs will suppress the immune system for 6-8 hours. Exercise can also help boost immunity.A15-30 minute walk 3-5 times pet week can be effective.

  5. CHRIS LIGHTFOOT

    GOOD ARTICLE -THANK YOU.
    WHY DO YOU NOT RECOMMEND TEA, WHERE THERE IS AMPLE EVIDENCE OF HEALTH BENEFITS THAT ARE STRONGER THAN ANY OTHER? SEE THE BOOKS AND SCIENCE PRODUCED BY Dr HARA FROM JAPAN.

    • Chris the article was specifically about Quercitin, and Green Tea was actually mentioned in the article as a good source of this nutrient.

  6. The best broad spectrum antibacterial / antiviral I know of is ionic / colloidal silver. The powers that be know it too but they go far out of their way to suppress that information. If they told the sheeple that using silver with a nebulizer would destroy the virus quickly they wouldn’t have this crises to utilize to assault Capitalism the world over.

    • i agree with the colloidal silver. i use structured silver, another type, made in canada, and either bottled liquid or gel. it is excellent, either silver works well.

  7. What’s your opinion and/or do you have any information on oregano oil and oive leaf extract regarding immune system support? I have been taking the Kyolic, Immune Formula 103 for a couple of years and really haven’t gotten sick with anything in that time, flu’s or colds, and I only take half the daily recommended dose. It has Vit. C, aged Garlic, a mushroom complex with Shiitake, Maitake, Poria Cocos, Reishi and Agaricus, as well as Astragulus extract, Oregano extract and Olive Leaf extract.

    • where can i get kyolic, immune formula 103 in Southern Africa? I really appreciate theinformation and have been taking Reishicollagen and seem to be working wonders.

  8. Thank you for the valuable article, could you please provide me with a research paper recommend
    the in vivo use of Quercetin as antiviral?

  9. This is an awesome read, very informitive., can I give this to my cat??? I want to get some ASAP .. I’ve always taken vit c, zinc, vit D.. Tumeric, probiotic eleven, magnesium, B12, nutri-calm, & the circulatory system packets ( coenzyme Q10,fish oil, ginkgo& hawthorn, ),, could I add this on top of all of that ?? I do not believe in pharmaceuticals , although, for surgeries, & only in extreme emergencies .. I would, take them.. Do not like to…, too many side effects .. I’ve taken pharmaceuticals only 2 times the past 6 years.. I do not get a flu shot .. & will not.. My husband doesn’t take anything pharm either.. Thank u..

  10. I am a diabetic how will this affect me I am 72 years old but in Fairly good health

  11. Michelle Lewis Davis

    Would you recommend this for an over-weight teenager with severe sleep apnea?
    I’m afraid that she may vape and have noticed increased loud breathing during day with excessive loud coughing.
    She is very social and having a difficult time right now.

  12. Jewell Elizabeth Pope

    Thanks you very much this was and very helpful

  13. What is best supplements for oxidative stress? What is your suggestion about the advertisement of NRF2?

  14. Awesome article in these trying times……..brabo to the author

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