As of this post, the CDC has officially declared the novel Corona Virus aka Covid-19 (I will refer to it as “CV19” for convenience) a "pandemic".
So, should we mothers panic? No, definitely not. But we should be prepared. The purpose of this post is to be helpful. It is NOT intended to promote hysteria or spread fear. Sticking to a nutrition plan as a mother to young kids is challenging enough as it is. Now that there is the likelihood that many of our day-to-day routines will be disrupted, I wanted to share with you what I did to prepare myself and my family to keep us healthy in case of a local outbreak.
The first thing to arm ourselves with is FACTS. Here are just a few:
The number of cases is spreading exponentially and will continue to do so for an indeterminate amount of time. The majority of infections are mild, ESPECIALLY for children.
The critical cases seem to primarily involve the elderly and those that are immunocompromised.
There is no cure or vaccine, so we are relying on proactive social distancing, proper hand-washing, and sanitation/hygienic measures to protect our vulnerable.
The greatest threat next to the death of the vulnerable is the over-burdening of our hospitals and medical centers.
We can do our part to lessen or simply delay the spread of the virus to help our nurses, doctors, medical staff, elderly, and immunocompromised.
In efforts to control the spread of the virus, some cities have implemented “containment areas” requesting voluntary quarantine. Many schools, universities, large companies, churches, sports teams, and event organizers have canceled or postponed their scheduled gatherings as a cautionary measure to aid in the prevention of the spread of the virus.
So, what does this mean for us? Honestly, I don’t know.
Hubby and I have canceled our planned an overnight trip to San Francisco that was coming in a couple of weeks. Not because we are afraid of catching the virus, but because we are traveling without the kiddos and we are wary that someone on our flight or in our hotel may test positive for the virus, forcing us into a quarantine that would prevent us from being able to return home to our children for 2+ weeks.
I expect that things will get worse before they get better, so I have been proactive in stocking up (not stock-piling or hoarding) on shelf-stable foods and medicines like children’s fever reducers. My Costco was sold out of toilet paper last week, and this morning my friend shared a photo of a long line at the entrance. I’ve heard that Target is still fully stocked with items, but my neighborhood Ralph’s was cleared out of toilet paper, bleach and disinfectant cleaners, isopropyl alcohol, and bottled water. We are pretty confident that my husband will be ordered to work from home at some point, and the preschools sound like they’re very close to closing down for a while. I want to make sure that we have everything we need to get through a couple of weeks in case we are home-bound. Assuming that retailers are open, I want to limit the number of times I have to go to stores.
I personally have not stocked up on bottled water because CV19 is not transmitted through water and must enter our respiratory tract (via nose and mouth) for us to become infected. Plus, I drink a gallon a day, and the rate at which we go through water would mean having to buy cases upon cases that would barely last us a week or two. I don’t like to think of all that plastic waste I would create.
The best thing we can do for ourselves and our families is to practice good hygiene – both at home and socially.
Avoid close contact with people, especially sick people. 2 meters/6 feet is what has been determined as the distance the virus can travel via cough or sneeze.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Wash your hands well before applying anything to your face.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (sing “Happy Birthday” twice – it will make you smile!), and especially any time returning home from a public space.
Try to use a paper towel or napkin when pumping gas. If you have it available, be sure to use hand sanitizer once you are done.
Continue to breastfeed and pass on your amazing antibodies!! Be sure to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before touching your breast and/or pump parts. If pumping in a shared space, try to avoid unecessarily touching any surfaces and use a disinfectant wipe to wipe down the area. If you are storing your milk in a communal fridge, be sure to clearly mark the contents so as to avoid a nosey coworker fishing around in the bag looking for a snack.
I have included a list of items that I recommend having in your home that I have personally gathered together for my family. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.
Toilet paper – This is probably overkill, but people are hoarding that $hit, and we go through a roll every two days, so I need to make sure I don’t have to make trips to 5 stores just to find some. If the world can run out of hand sanitizer and rubbing alcohol, then I don’t doubt that it can happen with TP. I bought a case off of Amazon. Looks like it's going fast, too. https://amzn.to/3cJoeZU
Diapers – Ours are made in China, and I don’t want to risk not being able to get those in case the supply chain becomes disrupted. We are a LONG way away from potty-training the baby, so things can get messy. I got a case from Costco. https://amzn.to/2TGaLdS
Baby wipes - same reasons as above https://amzn.to/33gx3WP
Hand soap - same reasons as TP https://amzn.to/2IGnUNI
Children’s fever reducer for infant and toddlers – God forbid one of my kids catches Hand Foot Mouth or gets an ear infection and the stores are out of fever reducer or are closed altogether. I LOVE the suppository ones for my baby since it's impossible to get him to drink the liquid versions. He'll refuse it. https://amzn.to/3aPg2W6
I stocked my pantry with these items:
Pasta (several bags)
Pasta sauce (several jars)
Mac-n-Cheese (a case)
Canned beans (a half dozen)
Rice (a few 1 lb bags and microwavable packs)
Canned tuna (1 dozen 4oz cans)
Peanut Butter (a Costco 2-pack)
Jelly (a Costco 2-pack)
Crackers (a Costco box in case we are unable to get bread)
White potatoes (a 20lb bag from Costco because they last a while in a dark pantry)
Protein powder (3 – 5lb bags)
Protein bars (5 cases of different varieties and flavors)
Kids Cliff Bars
Kirkland granola bars
Low Sugar Gatorade (in case someone does get sick and is vomiting with a fever)
Aussie Bites (because they were out of Heavenly Hunks)
Individual cartons of milk (the kind that doesn’t need refrigeration)
And then our usual, but in mildly different forms to make them longer-lasting:
Individually wrapped string cheese
Lean ground turkey (several packs to go in the freezer)
Frozen salmon steaks
Frozen cod fillets
Sliced turkey breasts (half went into the freezer)
Chicken sausages (half went into the freezer)
Extra loaves of bread for the freezer
And then, of course, I bought my usual fresh foods and produce as I always would. Here is my typical shopping cart: https://www.fitforwardmom.com/post/2017/05/11/the-fittest-freshest-fastest-and-diet-friendliest-finds-at-costco
I have a paid subscription to Consumer Labs, and I wanted to share with you’re the science-backed natural supplements that they are specifically recommending for CV19 to boost your immune system.
**UPDATE: Zinc is starting to sell out everywhere, so get it where and when you can. I'll try to keep the links current, but I am not confident in all the brands that are available on Amazon.
Zinc: there are no longer any remaining brands on Amazon that I can confidently recommend, so look for Nature Made, Vitamin Code, Nature's Bounty, Kirkland, Jarrow Formula, NOW
Vitamin C https://amzn.to/2wLr68a
Vitamin D https://amzn.to/2IAH5IZ
If you are a client of ours, then you should be taking these ANYWAY!!!
I bought these for my kids: https://amzn.to/2IBXRHy
Elderberry, colloidal silver, coconut oil, and essential oils do not have any concrete scientific evidence supporting their effect in defense against viral infections.
I hope that this helps!
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