Quercetin as Zinc Ionophore and COVID-19 Outpatient Management 2021

Quercetin is a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory plant pigment that boosts your immune system and may work to control viral replication, according to some research. It allows zinc to exert its proven antiviral properties; in treating COVID-19, quercetin may also lower inflammation, help clear mucus, prevent ventilator-induced damage and support immunity.

According to the research, quercetin has been shown to help fight obesity, Type 2 diabetes, circulatory dysfunction, chronic inflammation and mood disorders. It has even been found to help lower blood pressure. Researchers have found that quercetin can trigger tumor regression and begin the process of apoptosis. This is programmed cell death, without which cells can grow uninterrupted and develop into cancerous growths.

cytokine storm and COVID-19
Image credit: ClevelandClinic
           
Quercetin was initially found to provide broad-spectrum protection against SARS coronavirus in the aftermath of the SARS epidemic that broke out across 26 countries in 2003. Now, some doctors are advocating its use against SARS-CoV-2, in combination with vitamin C, noting that the two have synergistic effects.

Quercetin

Incidentally, ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and the bioflavonoid quercetin (originally labeled vitamin P) were both discovered by the same scientist — Nobel prize winner Albert Szent-Györgyi. Quercetin’s antiviral capacity has been attributed to five main mechanisms of action:
  1. Inhibiting the virus’ ability to infect cells by transporting zinc across cellular membranes
  2. Inhibiting replication of already infected cells
  3. Reducing infected cells’ resistance to treatment with antiviral medication
  4. Inhibiting platelet aggregation — and many COVID-19 patients suffer abnormal blood clotting
  5. Promoting SIRT2, thereby inhibiting the NLRP3 inflammasome assembly involved with COVID-19 infection
Similarly, vitamin C at extremely high doses also acts as an antiviral drug, effectively inactivating viruses. 

A molecular docking and pharmacological study, published in Heliyon, March 2021; highlighted that flavonoids such as quercetin was demonstrated to efficiently block the human ACE-2 receptor whereas
hesperidin, naringin, and ECGC were found to be efficient towards the viral spike protein.

COVID-19 Outpatient Management - FLCCC (Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care) Protocol

FLCCC Putting Patients First

The initial MATH+ protocol was released in April 2020. In early July and August, it was updated to include quercetin and a number of optional nutrients and drugs, not only for critical care but also for prophylaxis and mild disease being treated at home.

There is evidence that vitamin C and quercetin co-administration exerts a synergistic antiviral action due to overlapping antiviral and immunomodulatory properties and the capacity of ascorbate to recycle quercetin, increasing its efficacy.

For prevention, the Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Working Group, FLCCC recommends (updated Feb 25, 2021):
  • Vitamin D3: 1000–3000 IU/day. Note RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) is 800–1000 IU/day. The safe upper-dose daily limit is likely < 4000 IU/day. Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with an increased risk of acquiring COVID-19 and from dying from the disease. Vitamin D supplementation may therefore prove to be an effective and cheap intervention to lessen the impact of this disease, particularly in vulnerable populations, i.e. the elderly, those of color and obese. (Amazon)
  • Vitamin C: 500 - 1,000 mg BID (twice daily) 
  • Quercetin: 250 mg daily. It is likely that vitamin C and quercetin have synergistic prophylactic benefit. Quercetin should be used with caution in patients with hypothyroidism and TSH levels should be monitored. (Amazon)
  • Melatonin: 6 mg before bedtime (causes drowsiness). (Amazon)
  • Zinc: 30 - 40 mg/day (elemental zinc). Zinc lozenges are preferred. (Amazon)
  • Ivermectin for prophylaxis in high-risk individuals (> 60 years with co-morbidities, morbid obesity, long term care facilities, etc). 0.2 mg/kg Day 1, Day 3 and then followed by biweekly dosing (one dose every two weeks). (also see ClinTrials.gov NCT04425850). NB. Ivermectin has a number of potentially serious drug-drug interactions. Please check for potential drug interaction at Ivermectin Drug Interactions - Drugs.com. The most important drug interactions occur with cyclosporin, tacrolimus, anti-retroviral drugs, and certain anti-fungal drugs. (Find a Doctor)
Note: Although ivermectin is a relatively safe drug, it's a still synthetic chemicals that can have side effects. Quercetin, Vitamin D, C, Zinc and Melatonin are nutrients that your body require for optimal health. Nutrients are safer alternatives especially if your risk is low e.g. age below 50 and no other chronic illness. Discuss with your doctor on the benefit vs risk for each treatment. If you are on multiple medications, be aware of supplement-drug interactions that might enhance the possibilities of adverse effects.

For early outpatient treatment management protocol (COVID-19 positive), the Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Working Group, FLCCC recommends (updated Feb 25, 2021):
  • Vitamin D3 — 4000 IU/day. (Amazon)
  • Vitamin C: 500 - 1,000 mg BID (twice daily) (Amazon)
  • Quercetin: 250 mg twice a day. (Amazon)
  • Melatonin: 10 mg before bedtime (causes drowsiness). (Amazon)
  • Zinc: 100 mg/day. Zinc lozenges are preferred. (Amazon)
  • Ivermectin: 0.2 mg/kg per dose. One dose daily - minimum 2 days, maximum 5 days. (Find a Doctor)
  • Aspirin: 325 m/day unless contraindicated.
  • Pulse Oximeter: FLCCC also recommend monitoring your oxygen saturation with a pulse oximeter and to go to the hospital if you get below 94%.
The medical evidence to support each drug and nutrient can be found under “Medical Evidence” on the FLCCC’s website.
COVID19 FLCCC Ivermectin Quercetin Zinc Vitamin B C D Melatonin
Image credit: Covid19criticalcare.com

June 19, 2020, Marik published the paper “Quercetin and Vitamin C: An Experimental, Synergistic Therapy for the Prevention and Treatment of SARS-CoV-2 Related Disease (COVID-19)” in the journal Frontiers in Immunology.

The paper presents evidence for the use of vitamin C and quercetin — based on their biological actions and pharmacokinetics profiles — both as prophylaxis in high-risk populations, and as an adjunct to drugs such as Remdesivir or convalescent plasma in the treatment of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

A summary of evidence on Ivermectin versus COVID-19 is available and updated on Ivmmeta.com.

Note on Zinc supplements: How much zinc you should take per day depends on the type and forms of zinc, as each supplement contains a different amount of 'elemental zinc'. The percentage of elemental zinc varies by form. 

For example, approximately 23% of zinc sulfate consists of elemental zinc; thus, 220 mg of zinc sulfate contains 50 mg of elemental zinc (NIH). Zinc picolinate (20% of elemental zinc), zinc ascorbate (15%), zinc chloride (48%), zinc carbonate (52%), zinc citrate (31%), zinc bisglycinate (25%) (Ref) and zinc gluconate (14%) and zinc oxide (80%) (Ref).


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Supplements you can purchase from Amazon for COVID-19 prevention. Inspired by the FLCCC prevention protocol >
 

Be aware that most supplements have two categories of dosages: i.e. 

  1. treatment (therapeutic) dosages are normally higher than the RDA dosages and 
  2. 'maintenance' or 'preventive' dosages that are based on the recommended daily value.
You should ideally supplement your micro-nutrients from healthy and wholesome foods, fruits and vegetables.

Disclaimer: Always see your doctor before taking these supplements. Be aware that most of the 'treatment' dosages are above the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) and therefore such dosages should not be maintained on a long term basis. 

Our aim here isn't to replace your doctors' advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information. Do take note that supplements are not 100% protective or curative against COVID-19. 

Nutritional supplements are meant to tip the scales in favour of you in terms of your immune system and to improve your probability of a smooth recovery, if at all you do get COVID-19. 

You still need to follow the advice given by CDC, WHO and your local authority in terms of local guidelines such as mask wearing, social distancing and avoiding crowds. It's better to combine multiple strategies in order to defend yourself against this virus.

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