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The Virus Is Real

I generally don’t write my articles and try to tie them up with current events. But with the latest news around the coronavirus, many bloggers have been giving their two cents and tried to find some sort of conspiracy angle to the Coronavirus story.

Some have talked about the”fear mongering” spread by the media, or otherwise tie up the story with their own point of view, or their products to sell.

So I thought I’d give you my own take on what’s happening, and tell you that I’m not going to push a particular product. I’m only giving you information that I believe to be accurate.

Some people, inclined to believe conspiracy theories, might be surprised to hear me say: I don’t think there’s any hype or exaggeration around the threat that this virus represents.

As usual, many new viruses come from the nasty habit that humans have of consuming exotic animals. In this case, it’s probably an exotic animal sold in a market in China that transmitted this virus to a human for the first time. Some believe the virus was deliberately implanted to cause havoc by a foreign government. Of course, we’ll never know. But to me, because this isn’t the first time this happens, that viruses are transmitted from animals to humans, so the first option seems the most plausible.

The real threat from COVID-19 comes from the fact that:

1) It’s extremely contagious. Even more than the flu.
2) Mortality and hospitalization rates are much higher than the flu. And contrary to common belief, many young people have died from it (although it’s much rarer).
3) If we don’t take this threat seriously, 30-70% of the population could catch the virus.

Does this last number seem exaggerated to you?

I was in French Polynesia at the end of a Chikungunya epidemic, when I heard the most mind-boggling public health stats I’d ever heart: 70% of the population of this country was infected, in a short period of time by the virus, which is transmitted by a mosquito. Chickungunya is usually not lethal, but it’s not fun to have, as it leads to joint pain that can become chronic.

And when we think about the flu, there were certainly times when over 30% of the population caught it.

So it’s really not unrealistic to think that over 30% of the population of the USA and the entire world could catch the virus.

But Wait a Minute… A Virus Cannot Cause Illness?

I heard recently the old T.C. Fry claim that “viruses are dead and cannot cause illness.”

This was an interesting but laughable statement from someone who was very smart but knew very little about how viruses work.

And to think that I also believed that at some point!

Yes, viruses are not technically “living things” like plants or animals. They certainly do not have consciousness. But it doesn’t really make a difference. The point is that they contain genetic information to be duplicated, and that duplication overburdens our immune system. And more importantly: they’ve been selected overtime to be very effective at what they do, by the natural forces of evolution.

It’s a blind process. The virus has no intent. It’s simply the result of a long selection process, in which only the most successful viruses become widespread. And this virus is simply a winner in a long line of other viruses.

So the point is that the virus is real, and while it may not breathe and think like us, or even have a purpose, it just happens to be successful at what it does, and it turns out to be something that we don’t want.

Getting Rid of Antiquated Idea Can Save Your Life

In order to avoid getting sick, it’s critical that you get rid of antiquated Natural Hygiene or naturopathic ideas that all illnesses are the body’s efforts to “detoxify.” This belief can actually kill you.

This is something that people like Shelton thought in the past, but even my mentor Mosseri admitted that transmission was real, and did not accept all of Shelton’s ideas.

I remember when I was living in Costa Rica in 2006, working at retreat center. We had a little community of people living onsite, and one day people started getting sick with the stomach flu. It was amazing to see everyone get sick, one after the other, with the exact same symptoms.

I naively thought I would be immune from this, but I also ended up being bed-ridden for 2-3 days

There was no doubt that the disease was contagious and of viral nature. In fact, during that time, a significant percentage of the town where I lived got sick with the same stomach flu.

Treatment and Prevention

The best thing you can do to avoid getting sick is to limit your contact with sick people. That’s easier said than done, because most people are asymptomatic for a few days while being contagious.

There should be no false sense of security. The government may try to appear in control by banning flights from certain countries, but if the virus is already present in the population (and it is), it will spread. It’s thus inevitable that a significant percentage of the population catches it.

So what should you do?

The first and most important measure is called “social distancing.” It’s also the least fun measure of all: limiting social contact and traveling for a while, especially if your health is fragile, or if you want to protect people whose health is fragile.

Then, washing your hands and being extra careful about not touching your face will definitely help.

But in spite of all of these measures, the virus will spread and many of us will catch it.

The good news is that most healthy people recover fairly well from the infection. But to put all chances on your side, you should:

– Avoid alcohol completely for a while. It’s immunosuppressant.
– Get plenty of rest and sleep.
– Continue eating the best diet you can! It’s not enough to prevent catching the disease but can help you recover better.
– Exercise, but not too much. Running a marathon can put a temporary strain on the immune system. Just be careful to not overexert yourself in general.
– Don’t fall for for the hype around any naturopathic or natural remedies that pretend to help cure this infection.
– Should you get sick, the best thing to do is to follow Natural Hygiene precepts. Here, they got things right. Rest is what you need, fasting is probably a good idea (follow your hunger on this), and the worst thing you can do is to push your body (and infect other people) by going to work or continuing your daily life.
– Don’t panic. Don’t fall for fear and depression. Don’t check the news all the time.

I’m personally not planning to take any supplements or change my diet in any way. I’m continuing the low-fat, plant-based diet.

Make No Mistake About It

Make no mistake about it, a virus is contagious and if you don’t catch it, you won’t get sick from it.

I have many friends who live in Italy, and they’ve seen with their own eyes what this disease can do.

Your efforts of taking care of your health by eating a healthy plant-based diet and avoiding excesses will pay off, in case you do get sick. 🤒

More importantly, don’t fall for the hype, especially from natural health pushers who will try to convince you that such and such “natural” remedy will help. The best remedy is doing nothing… intelligently (Shelton).

Frederic Patenaude
Frederic Patenaude
Frederic Patenaude has been an important influence in the raw food and natural health movement since he started writing and publishing in 1998, first by being the editor of Just Eat an Apple magazine. He is the author of over 20 books, including The Raw Secrets, the Sunfood Cuisine and Raw Food Controversies. Since 2013 he’s been the Editor-in-Chief of Renegade Health.

Frederic loves to relentlessly debunk nutritional myths. He advocates a low-fat, plant-based diet and has had over 10 years of experience with raw vegan diets. He lives in Montreal, Canada.