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Here’s the Root Cause of COVID-19—and It’s Not What You Think!

Read about the part of the body where the SARS-CoV-2 virus does it’s dirty work

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It’s been over a year since COVID-19 changed our lives, and still it’s an illness that remains a total mystery for many. From the beginning of this pandemic, we have been trying to discover what makes this new SARS-CoV-2 virus do what it does. Why are some people severely affected and have to be hospitalized, while others experience no symptoms at all? And why do some coronavirus patients turn into long Covid-19 haulers who suffer with symptoms for months and months? What is the root cause of COVID-19?

We finally seem to have that answer—and it lies in the same place that cardiovascular disease lives. When put together, it is the largest hormone producing system in the body. I’m talking about the endothelium and the growing evidence that covid is an endothelial disease.

 

What Is The Endothelium?

 The endothelium is the one-cell layer thick covering off all the vessels in our body—it lines the inner wall of all our arteries and is an important part of the cardiovascular system. The endothelium function provides a critical interface between the blood compartment and tissues, and helps maintain homeostasis.

This same lining in the lungs and GI tract are called the epithelium, and perform many of the same types of functions—but are individualized for those organs (arteries vs lungs vs gut). 

If you’ve been following the data and our posts, then you’ll realize that this artery/lung/gut triad is where inflammation (from cytokines), clotting (in arteries) and the vast majority of all immediate and prolonged damage from COVID-19 are occurring.

And now there’s a new hypothesis out of the European Society of Cardiology that COVID-19, particularly in the later complicated stages, is an endothelial disease.

Woman clutching her chest

How Knowing The Root Cause of COVID-19 Helps Us Fight It

This article from the European Heart Journal last summer nicely summarizes all the data from the last year and also features helpful  graphics that show where COVID-19 does its dirty work in the body. 

What makes this exciting is that it also helps to explain why some of the functional medicine remedies to treat Long Haul COVID-19 symptoms we’ve been using over the last year have worked, and makes it much easier to formulate new strategies and COVID-19 treatments  as we move more toward the Post Pandemic Epidemic from Long COVID.

 “The concept of COVID-19 as an endothelial disease provides a unifying pathophysiological picture of this raging infection, and also provides a framework for a rational treatment strategy at a time when we possess an indeed modest evidence base to guide our therapeutic attempts to confront this novel pandemic,” says the article. 

For example, we now know aspirin can decrease both severe COVID and help with long COVID. Aspirin primarily works to block the inflammation and clotting at the level of this endothelium. 

We learned early on that N-Acetyl-cysteine (NAC) could block the crosslinking that occurs with vWF (a blood glycoprotein involved with homeostasis) and help prevent clotting. NAC also works in the lung lining to prevent inflammation and bacterial/viral penetration—a double benefit with COVID-19. 

Quercetin is another natural plant extract we have been using for over a year that works to block the inflammation caused by the release of small inflammatory particles (endosomes in the inflammasome). I’ve been using this natural pharmaceutical/nutraceutical for years to address allergies and gut issues in patients but now am using it to address the symptoms of long COVID-19, as well.

If any of this sounds new to you, check out our previous posts on COVID-19. If you want to keep up with updates as we learn and put them out, follow us on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, and sign up for our updates on our website.

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