Disclaimer: This COVID-19 Preparation Guide is meant to be informative and entertaining. It is NOT meant to replace the advice of your healthcare team or of local government recommendations. It IS meant to make you think and to use common-sense. This post also contains some affiliate links to websites that we think you may find helpful.
Are You Freaking Out About the COVID-19 Coronavirus?
The media has a lot to say with updates and speculations. And then there’s social media with fake-news, false-information, and conspiracy theories (I’ve come up with some of my own just for fun).
Frankly, I’m disgusted by the toilet paper-hoarding. It doesn’t even make sense. Plus, Holley & I actually need a pack right now (we’re down to our last couple rolls).
Update: we found the last pack of shitty toilet paper after visiting 3 stores so that we could take the photo above.
Professional sports leagues are suspending their seasons because of COVID-19?!
The Canadian Prime Minister is isolating himself while waiting for his test results, and President Trump… well, let’s just say I’m scared for Americans.
As a result of all this craziness, I thought I’d put together some tips.
Read on to see:
- why you don’t need to panic-buy toilet paper or N95 masks,
- how to protect yourself from being infected by COVID-19, and
- basic preparation ideas in case you do get locked up in your house during an outbreak.
Are you prepared for a COVID-19 outbreak?
As you may know, I fantasize about a zombie apocalypse situation. Not in an extreme survivalist way, exactly, but I do think about how well I’d do in an emergency situation.
In recent years, catastrophes such as forest fires, floods, and earthquakes have been very real threats in the area, which have caused me to think more about disaster prep.
Throughout my adulthood, I’ve wondered what major even will we see in this generation? Plague? War? Environmental events?
I keep “hoping” for zombies.
The COVID-19 coronavirus is nothing compared to any of these threats.
Even so, it's smart to think about COVID-19 preparations before a coronavirus outbreak occurs in your area.
According to the World Health Organization, the following are symptoms of COVID-19 to watch for:
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. Some people become infected but don’t develop any symptoms and don't feel unwell. Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. Around 1 out of every 6 people who gets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention. https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses
Who Needs to Worry About COVID-19?
As this is a new disease, everything that is known about it is from what we’ve seen in the last few weeks. But it appears that most otherwise-healthy people are able to combat this coronavirus with a good prognosis.
People at “higher risk of getting very sick” include older adults and people with serious medical conditions including but not limited to heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease.
Smokers are likely in this group as well.
2 Most Important Tips For Avoiding Infection
Wash your fucking hands!
Use soap and water and wash your hands regularly. Or use hand sanitizer. You were taught how to do this as a child. Easy.
And stop touching your face!
Don't touch your eyes, mouth, or nose. And if you need to, then wash your hands before and after.
Bonus: Don't hang out around people who are coughing, sneezing, and licking everything around them. That's gross.
Why You DON’T Need a Year’s Supply of Toilet Paper
Why would a years’ supply of toilet paper be your primary worry? It doesn’t make sense to hoard toilet paper as part of your COVID-19 preparation.
And after a month in India, I know that you can live without toilet paper and still be clean.
To help out, watch this short series of (hilarious but informative) videos about how to clean your butt without toilet paper for a “first-class experience”:
Why You DON’T Need N95 Masks
First, what is an N95-rated mask? The “N” refers to it not being oil resistant and the “95” indicates that with a good face-fit, 95% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter are removed.
A micron is a tenth of a millimeter. That’s tiny. Far smaller than a water droplet. A particle of smoke is 1 micron.
COVID-19 is not airborne.
COVID-19 is transmitted via respiratory droplets, like from coughing or sneezing. These droplets are large enough that N95 masks are not necessary.
An N95 mask is not needed for your COVID-19 preparation!
The biggest benefit of wearing a mask during a COVID-19 outbreak is to prevent you from touching your face!
You can tie a scarf around your face for that. Plus, you can be way more stylish that way! (Holley’s a big face-toucher, and if you’re like her, you may want to do this.)
8 Things You Need For COVID-19 Preparation (and a Surprise Bonus)
1. Boost Your Immune System:
Spore-Based Probiotics – Just Thrive Probiotics contain a patented strain Bacillus Indicus HU36 which improves your gut health as well as your immune health.
These are not like other probiotics on the market (which I always had a problem with selling back when I was working as a pharmacist).
Just Thrive has another product that may be helpful: IgG Complete. This is a source of immunoglobulin G antibodies that work to protect the body from infections by binding many kinds of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Read more here.
Save 15% using promo code “PRIMAL15”.
2. Eat Healthy Real Foods
– Including bone broth – Most of us are aware that eating processed foods that are full of sugar and gluten increase systemic inflammation.
Bone broth strengthens your gut wall, which is an important barrier to microbe getting into your body. Plus, stock made from chicken bones has been shown to aid the immune system!
Check out this turkey bone broth recipe (replace turkey with chicken if you like).
3. Basic Supplies for 1-2 Weeks
If you need to be quarantined for a few weeks, realistically you can get groceries delivered most places.
In general, having a couple of weeks’ worth of food is always a good idea. Instead of stocking up on a year’s supply of toilet paper, consider rice, beans, nuts, almond butter, and canned foods for longer periods.
If you’re smart you have a stash of homemade preserves. Holley’s home-canning includes applesauce, peaches, pickles, tomatoes, etc., PLUS canned salmon from my folks!
Prep some good stuff for the freezer (wouldn’t it be great to have amazing paleo butter chicken or curry fenugreek sauce ready and waiting in the freezer in the middle of a 2-week isolation?).
Don’t forget to have enough of your prescription medications for at least a few weeks. Again, you can probably get these delivered if needed.
4. Water Filter
Clean water is always important but especially when health is concerned. Hydration baby! It’s important for helping your body clear toxins and immune threats, as well as reducing inflammation.
Instead of buying a ton of plastic bottles, how about using a Clearly Filtered water pitcher which reduces plastic and waste, removes plastic and other toxins from your water, and makes your tap water taste great!
Clearly Filtered filters remove over 230+ contaminants, including bacteria, viruses, parasites, hormones, fluoride, lead, chromium-6, microplastics, glyphosate, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, radiological material, and more.
They currently have a coupon code for 20% off of any new filter system: SAFE20
Is there anything more important than a good night's sleep to boost your immunity?
Regularly going to bed by 10 PM so that your body’s natural circadian rhythm is supported improves your body’s hormonal balance, allows your body to repair itself at the molecular and cellular levels, and improves our immune function.
There are tons more benefits (memory, weight management, stress management, blood pressure, energy, etc, etc, etc), but these are some of the key components for staying healthy during an outbreak.
Dude, wash your hands.
This simple step is one of the easiest and most important steps to prevent a COVID 19 infection.
Why not use a cleaner soap?
What are you talking about Raj? Isn’t all soap clean? Self-cleaning, even? That’s not what I’m talking about. By “cleaner” I mean free of garbage ingredients like mystery chemicals hidden in “fragrance” ingredients. Check out some of Beautycounter’s cleaner soaps.
7. Hand-Sanitizer and Alternatives
No soap? Hand sani is one of the things that actually does make sense that is being sold out everywhere.
Thankfully, there are alternatives and versions that you can make at home. Many involve rubbing alcohol (which is also selling out).
You can also use >60% (eg. 151 proof) grain alcohol. Example:
All these alcohol-based sanitizers can be hard on your skin – making it thinner and dryer – which also makes it a less effective barrier against germs and infections. Back to Beautycounter for some moisturizer…
8. Surface Disinfectant Cleaners
Surfaces like door handles, your phone, light switches, countertops, etc. that may be infected should be cleaned using a simple disinfectant.
And wash your hands again. Please.
And your bonus…
Just in case you get stranded somewhere with other hot healthy singles!
And Now, A Word From JP Sears
(Try to remember that JP is a comic)