These are scary times, y'all. I get it. And as an autoimmune warrior and member of the immunocompromised population, I'm hyper-aware of the implications this virus could have on me.
Y'all have been messaging me asking what I'm doing to cope. My answer: many of the things I always do, some extra for good measure, and lots and lots of faith.
Below I'm sharing the 6 main ways I'm supporting my immune system, how I'm choosing peace over fear, and some sweet encouragement from the Bright Life Tribe! I pray it helps you feel empowered, encouraged, and rooted in truth in this scary season.
How I’m supporting my immune system:
Very important disclaimer: I am NOT saying these are cures to the Coronavirus. I am NOT claiming that taking these steps will keep you from getting it. These are ways that I, as an autoimmune warrior and member of the immunocompromised population, am choosing to support my immune system to have the best fighting chance against this virus being destructive should I come into contact with it.
1 // BIOHM Green Shots
These are a daily ritual for me, Coronavirus or not. I firmly believe if there’s one single supplement you use to support your immune system, it should be this one. It’s loaded with micronutrients from veggies and greens and it’s got all the right prebiotics and probiotics to support a healthy gut – the place where 70% of your immune system lives! You can read more about the power of these SuperGreens in this post, and you can use code “MOLLIE” at checkout for 25% off.
(And one of the many things I love about BIOHM is their commitment to education – check out this great video they just published with Dr. Ghannoum, the creator of the product, discussing the link between immunity and gut health.)
Think Airborne, but not full of fake stuff. I love that they’re packed with real-food immune-boosting ingredients like turmeric and elderberry and they also have all the nutrients and minerals you need to stay hydrated. I’ve been making sure we’re taking one every other day lately.
I shared in February’s Monthly Favorites email that this has been on tap for us lately. So much so that I actually just made it into a concentrate – I 8x the recipe minus the water, put it in a mason jar in the fridge, and every other day or so I’ve poured some out and added the hot water to it. Just a simplified way to get all the gut-healing and immune-supporting power of these ingredients.
4 // Elderberry Syrup
I’ve been using elderberry for years now but paying for the pre-bottled stuff and wow was I wrong. I bought this bag of dried elderberries on Amazon for $23, which is essentially the same price as a small bottle of sugar-ladden syrup I can get at Whole Foods. But the bag of elderberries is going to make me at least 8 bottles worth. So it’s 12% of the price. Or 88% off. Don’t waste your money on the packaged stuff (and especially on the gummies because let’s be real that’s not the same) and snag a bag of the real deal to make your own at home.
5 // Vitamin D
Another one that’s already a part of my routine, but it’s worth noting because Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to an increased susceptibility to infection. As I shared in this post, it’s estimated up to 90% of us could have a vitamin D deficiency!
You do have to be careful because it’s one of the 4 fat-soluble vitamins, which means instead of simply peeing out any extra your body doesn’t use, it does get stored in your body and can have negative effects. Without testing your levels, it’s hard to know what is a safe amount for you to take, but I myself sometimes take up to 10,000 IU in the months when I’m not getting enough sun (hence, quarantine).
6 // Not giving in to fear.
I know this is the hardest, but it really is the most important of them all. Chronic stress is one of the top suppressors of our immune systems. In fact, you can do all the above things and yet if you’re a stress ball of fear and anxiety, your immune system could be too weak to fight the invaders.
There is no doubt in my mind that the crippling fear of this virus so many of us are feeling could be the thing that makes us most susceptible to it.
So then, how am I choosing to not give in to the stress?
How I’m choosing peace over anxiety:
I know these are really scary times. There’s so much we don’t know. Everything feels out of control and I don’t know about y’all but I’m strugglinggg with this overwhelming feeling of helplessness.
But here’s what I do know: This does not surprise God. He knew this was going to happen and He has a plan to use it for our good.
In fact, I’ve already seen so.much.evidence of how He’s doing so. Communities rallying together. Families getting more quality time. The whole dang world being forced into rest and trust and Sabbath.
In my own heart, I’m every day being forced to see all the places I place my hope or trust in as they’re not there to bring me control or comfort.
I keep reminding myself: My hope is not in my health. It’s not in my perfectly planned out routines, or in the weekly date night I always look forward to, or the trip we have planned next month that we now have to cancel. It’s not in the offer we had on the house we’re trying to sell that backed out because of this chaos. It’s not in my productivity as an entrepreneur. It’s not even in the rhythms that keep me sane.
My hope is in the truth that I am living for more. That the troubles of this world are temporary and that I’m not home yet.
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
“Remind yourself continually that it takes the same amount of energy to worry as it does to pray. One leads to peace, the other to panic. Choose wisely.” – Todd Wagner
Encouragement from the community:
I asked y’all to share what’s getting you through and how you’re finding your own peace. Here’s some love from our Bright Life Tribe!
“Psalm 91 (NLT) is our anthem of hope!!” — Lauren Williamson / Austin, TX / @laurenewilliamson
“I happen to be on maternity leave while all this is happening, so quarantine from the flu is really something we’ve been doing for the last 8 weeks. But honestly, I’m trying to limit my consumption of social media. There is so much misinformation out there that drives fear and anxiety. I’m taking the opportunity to bunker down with my family, and shut out the outside noise. Obviously staying informed is important, so I have a few trusted sources I check a couple of times a day for updates and that’s it. It’s business as usual over here. Taking baths & quiet time keep me sane in and out of times of fear, so I’m just continuing that routine nightly. (Grateful for a husband that knows the importance of this for me, and helps with nightly baby duties so I can do that)! We are also turning to our community and using this time to support local. No better time for humanity to join together and see the good in one another!” — Alex / Colorado / @eating.at.altitude
“As a mom of young kids, a nurse, a doctor’s wife, a neighbor, a friend…I’m finding hope and peace in the way my kids are embracing our new homeschooling and social distancing with crafting, plans for redecorating their rooms, lists of things they want to make in the kitchen—on top of their schoolwork, of course:). I’m also finding peace in the plans the hospital system The Husband and I work for and the way the docs and nurses and medical assistants and administrative staff are banding together. Also, of course, with a little medical humor thrown in the mix. Chin up, lovely. As one of my kids’ teachers said, ‘this too shall pass…it may pass like a kidney stone, but it will pass.’” — Erica / Indianapolis, IN / @ericamcnary
“There’s a middle ground between extreme negativity and blind positivity. It’s truth and hope. Let’s live there.” — Jess Connolly / Charlotte, NC / @jessaconnolly
“I think there is so much anxiety, fear, and panic right now because we’re all realizing that we’ve been placing our faith in our jobs, our paychecks, our busyness + our packed schedules. We’ve been running from our feelings, our issues, our emotions, our trauma and our lack of faith. We’ve been numbing, escaping and hurrying. Thinking that it will work. We are now facing the fact that all of this… our jobs, our society, our schedules – they are all just a false sense of security. Where is your faith? What do you put your faith in? What do you believe in? What have you been prioritizing? What have you been placing value in? Be confident in the Lord. Know yourself. Heal from your past. Know your worth. Know your values as a family. Live them out daily. And you won’t be shaken.” — Jaime McLaughlin / Dallas, TX / @_themachouse_