Chinese Medicine Helps COVID19 Patients
-The Role of Chinese Herbs as Supported by Scientific Research and Clinical Evidence –
In the midst of the global pandemic of COVID-19, Chinese Medicine (often referred as "TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine)" is not well known to the general public for its possible effectiveness to support COVID-19 patients.
As shown below, numerous research studies have been conducted on the efficacy of Chinese herbs for SARS-COVID in published medical journals. More are on the way geared specifically to COVID-19.
While Western Medicine serves as the primary and standard care and treatment for COVID-19 in accordance with CDC Guidelines, Chinese herbs do have a valuable role to play during SEVERAL STAGES of infections, as discussed below.
1. Different Approaches between Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine
First, it is important for you to be aware of how Chinese Medicine treats patients differently from Western Medicine.
- Treat as a whole person: Chinese herbs treat the whole person, in addition to treating a condition. This is extremely relevant as COVID-19 patients manifest different signs and symptoms. Chinese herbs are custom-formulated according to the patient’s signs and symptoms which include fever, chills, coughs, phlegm, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath, diarrhea, poor appetite, low energy, congestion, and others.
- Create a formula: Chinese herbs are commonly prescribed as a “formula” combining multiple herbs to strengthen and harmonize their effects to best meet the needs of a patient. A formula provides superior synergistic effects rather than applying just one herb at a time and serves to reduce side effects.
- Immune support: Chinese herbs are known to be superior in strengthening the immune system. Many herbs are proven to strengthen the functioning of immune cells. Such herbs are extremely useful for prevention of COVID-19.
- Anti-viral herbs: Western Medicine is currently actively searching for drugs that kill COVID-19. Chinese Medicine provides numerous identified antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal and anti-parasitic herbs.
2. Anti-Viral Chinese Herbs
A number of research studies are currently being conducted, and many published studies support evidence that proves that numerous Chinese herbs are effective against SARS-COVID. Let me list some of the scientific findings below:
- Jin Yin Hua, Lian Qiao and Sang Ye interfere with the spike protein binding to ACE2 receptor to block viral entry of SARS-COV.
- Huang Qin contains a chemical called “baicalin” which inhibits the replication of SARS-COV. Guang Huo Xiang acts on the ACE2 receptor to prevent the entry and inhibits 3CL from viral replication.
- Guang Huo Xiang acts on the ACE2 receptor to prevent the entry and inhibits 3CL from viral replication.
- Ban Lan Gen contains 3 active compounds, sinigrin, indigo and beta-sitosterol that directly help to inhibit 3CL of SARS COV, thus inhibiting viral replication.
- Da Yuan Yin regulates T cells and interferes with binding to ACE2 receptor to block viral entry.
- Mian Ma Guan contains kaempferol that inhibits 3CL and PL and shows potential to directly inhibit SARS-COV-2.
- Xian Chun Ye binds to SARS-COV and inhibits the replication of COV to treat severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS).
- Wu Bei Zi contains TGG which has the highest affinity among all compounds; scientists have discovered it binds avidly with the surface spike protein S2 of SARS and thus interferes with the entry of the virus to its host cells and can be used at a high concentration to inhibit SARS-COV without substantial cytotoxic effects.
- Huang Qi and Yu Ping Feng San induce the proliferation and phagocytosis rate of macrophages, enhances T – and B – lymphocytes proliferation, and elevated levels of cytokines.
- Yu Ping Feng San inhibits neuraminidase to stop the release of virion.
- Ling Zhi inhibits RdRp to inhibit viral replication.
- Yu Xing Cao inhibits 3CLpro to inhibit viral replication.
- Yu Xing Cao increases the proliferation of two lymphocytes and inhibits RdRp and 3CLpro to inhibit viral replication.
Source: Corona Virus (COVID-19) and TCM: Scientific Research and Clinical Evidence of Chinese Herbs by John, Chen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., OMD, L.Ac., April 2020
NOTE: To be benefited from these anti-viral herbs, a patient must take them as “a formula”, not as individual herbs, created by professional herbalists who have extensive knowledge and experience. Self-medicating with herbs is not recommended. Please contact me for any question.
3. Treatment Strategy of Chinese Medicine
Here is the comparison of treatment strategies between Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine
STAGE 1: Prevention
- Chinese herbs are extremely effective and superior to Western Medicine in strengthening your immune system for prevention.
STATE 2: Mild infections
- Defined as the first onset of symptoms in the first few days after infection, such as fever, chills, coughs, phlegm, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath, diarrhea, poor appetite, and low energy.
- Western Medicine does not offer any specific treatment plan for mild infections.
- Chinese herbs are extremely effective and superior to Western Medicine in treating at the early onset and preventing replication of the virus in the first 2-14 days.
STAGE 3: Moderate Infections
- Increased symptoms, such as cough, breathlessness, lung congestion.
- Western Medicine does not offer any specific treatment plan for moderate infections.
- Chinese herbs can help a patient with moderate infections when he/she experiences symptoms that are not severe enough to be admitted to a hospital.
- Chinese herbs can alleviate symptoms such as fever, sore throat, coughs, and lung congestions.
STAGE 4: Severe infections
- Western Medicine treatment is necessary.
STAGE 5: Recovery
- Western Medicine does not offer any specific treatment plan for recovery.
- Chinese herbs are extremely effective and superior to Western Medicine in the recovery stage to stop lingering symptoms and prevent recurring infections.
As discussed above, Western Medicine does not provide treatment for minor and moderate infections, other than social distancing and wearing a mask and gloves.
In order to minimize the infections, the critical strategies are:
(1) Focus on prevention by strengthening the immune system.
(2) Kill and stop replicating the virus as soon as the first signs of infection within the 2-7 days.
(3) Treat symptoms at the mild and moderate stages and prevent severe infection.
For these stages, Chinese Medicine has advantage and it can play a significant role.
Please let other know that Chinese Medicine can help COVID-19 patients.
I am a Master Herbalist with experience of over 30 years in Japan and the United States. I have helped heal numerous patients with Chinese herbs as part of integrative therapies with Japanese-Acupuncture, Energy-Soul Healing and Mind-Body workshops. For more details, please visit my website at loveandcompassion.com.
If you are interested in discussing your symptoms, please email to email@example.com or book a phone inquiry. If you are ready to order a Chinese herbal formula, please book a telemedicine session to get started.
Love & Compassion,
Mika Ichihara, M.S., L.Ac., B.Phar.
Love & Compassion Integrative Health and Healing
Webinar, “Coronavirus (COVID-19) and TCM: Scientific Research and Clinical Evidence of Chinese Herbs”, by John Chen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., OMD, L.Ac.
Webinar, “How Coronavirus (COVID-19) is treated with TCM in China,” by John Chen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., OMD, L.Ac., April 2020
Webinar, “TCM Treatment of Influenza and Viral Infections”, by John Chen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., OMD, L.Ac., April 2020
“Official Treatment Protocols Include Chinese Herbal Medicine Formulas for Novel Coronavirus” , March 2020
“Special Application of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) in the Prevention and Treatment of COVID-19 (2019-nCOV) & Integration of TCM into Educational Curriculum”, by Dr. Tang Ying, 2/10/2020
“How to Treat the First Wave of Coronavirus Illness (COVID-19): Address Systemic Toxic Heat and Lung Fire”, by Jake Fratkin, OMD, L.Ac., March 2020
“How COVID-19 (2019-nCOV) is Currently Treated in China with TCM”, compiled, translated and editedJohn Chen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., OMD, L.Ac., March 2020
“Critical Viral Respiratory Disease Formulas”, by Hubei Province Integrative Chinese/Western Medical Hospital, March 2020