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Different Perspective in Dealing with the Coronavirus

(Had Either COVID-19 or the Flu and Mostly Recovered in 35 Hours)

Part One

By Gary F. Zeolla


      My possible experience with COVID-19 illustrates a couple of points I have been trying to make for the past month about the Coronavirus crisis. It also enables me to discuss other controversial points about this crisis. Since these points are so controversial, I have included a lengthy “References” list at the end of Part Two to support each of my main contentions.

      Note that this article was written over Saturday to Tuesday, April 18-21, 2020. I was waiting for an event mentioned on that last day to finish it, but as I did so, I kept adding to it. That is how it ended up so long and needed to be broken into two parts. But I hope the reader takes the time to wade through all of this information, as I think it is vital in understanding what has been happening.


Getting Sick


      I worked out in my home gym in the late afternoon on Thursday, April 15, 2020. I then took a shower and began to eat dinner. As I did, about 6:15 pm, I began coughing. It was a deep from the chest cough.

      After dinner, I laid down to rest and to watch some TV. As I did, the coughing continued and became more pronounced. My chest began to feel tight and congested. I developed a headache and a slight a sore throat. I then began to feel extremely hot and feverish. But I took my temperature, and it was normal.

      After a couple of hours, I got ready for bed. By the time I went to bed at 9:00 pm, the coughing had mostly subsided, but I still had the chest congestion, headache, and slight sore throat. But most of all, I was still feeling extremely hot and feverish. But I took my temperature again just before going to bed, and it was still normal.

      I had a hard time falling asleep due to feeling overheated, but I finally did. Then an hour later, I woke up sweating. I took off a blanket and fell back asleep. Another hour later, I again woke up sweating and took off another blanket. Then after another hour, I again woke up sweating.

      At this point, I got up, opened my bedroom window. It was 28 degrees outside, so I figured that would cool off my room enough that maybe I could sleep. That kind of worked. When I went back to bed, I wasn’t feeling hot anymore, but I tossed and turned the rest of the night.

      When I woke up in the morning, I felt quite awful. I was still coughing some, but not near as much as the night before. And my chest was still congested, but again, not near as much as before. And I was tired from getting little sleep.

      Then as I went about my day, I was feeling very fatigued, Fortunately, it was an off day for lifting, but I still had stuff to do around my home and workwise, but I was having a hard time getting anything done.


Checking Symptoms


      As I was going through all of this, I was wondering if I had been infected by the Coronavirus (CV). I did a web search for “Coronavirus symptoms.” The first website that came up was for the CDC. I followed its “Coronavirus Self-Checker.” After taking the little quiz, it told me:


Stay home and take care of yourself. Call your provider if you get worse

Sorry you’re feeling ill. You have one or more symptom(s) that may be related to COVID-19. Stay home and take care of yourself.


      I then came across a nice chart on Healthline that compared the symptoms of COVID-19, the Seasonal Flu, the Common Cold, and Allergies. From the lists of symptoms, it seemed likely I either had COVID-19 or the seasonal flu.

      I mention about going to Pittsburgh’ s East End Food Co-op in my article Nursing Home Deaths. In it, I discuss the steps the Co-op is taking in response to the CV. That trip was on Friday, March 28. I went to the Co-op again two weeks later, on Friday, April 10, 2020. This time, I wore a homemade mask. But I mention in my article Come May One, I’m Done about the “Fatal Flaw of Masks.” The flaw was that I had to keep pulling the mask down to wet my fingers to get the produce bags open. I then gave up on the mask altogether.

      Those two trips to the Co-op are the only times I have left my home in the past month, so it had to be at the Co-op that I caught whatever I was infected with. That last trip was six days before I began experiencing symptoms.

      Both of the preceding websites indicate that symptoms of COVID-19 can appear 2-14 days after exposure. But I have heard from various doctors on TV and radio that most commonly it is 5-7 days. Therefore, the timetable fit for having contracted COVID-19.

      On the other hand, another Healthline article indicates it only takes 1-4 days to develop symptoms of the flu. That is too short for when I developed my symptoms. Moreover, it is getting rather late in the season for the seasonal flue. But then, the last time I went to the Co-op, it was very cold (mid-30s). In fact, most people were wearing winter scarves over their faces rather than masks.

      But the biggest kicker was I still did not have a fever, even though I felt feverish. That is listed on both sites as being consistent with the flu but not with COVID-19. But then, not everyone who tests positive for the CV has a fever. Many are asymptomatic, while others only have mild symptoms like just cough. On a side note, this is why temperature checks are useless in screening for those with CV.


Calling My Doctor


      By late Friday morning, I figured I should call my doctor’s office and see what they recommended. When I called, I was told the office was closed, but they were engaging in “telemedicine” via phone or Skype. I first talked to the receptionist and told her all of the preceding. She then transferred me to a nurse, and I repeated all of the preceding. She then suggested I make an telemedicine appointment with my doctor. I did that for 11:15 am, but it was 11:45 by the time he called me. I again repeated all of the preceding to him.

      He could not say if I had the flu or COVID-19. But given that my symptoms were not too serious, he did not think it was necessary for me to be tested for the CV. And in a way, it didn’t matter, as either way, his prescription would be the same, for the antibiotic Azithromycin.

      I had taken this medicine before without side effects. That is saying something, as given my chemical sensitivities, I often have adverse reactions to medications. That is why he thought it best to stick with what we knew wasn’t problematic.

      Azithromycin is a bit unique in that you only need to take it for five days, whereas most antibiotics need to be taken for ten days. I wasn’t able to get the prescription until mid-afternoon. By then, my symptoms had mostly alleviated, except for the fatigue and a general sense of not feeling well. But I still took the first dose (two tablets, 250 mg each) about 3:30 pm.

      I mention in my article “Come May One, I’m Done” that if I get “too sick” I would demand a prescription for hydroxychloroquine or whatever antiviral is showing the best promise. But since I wasn’t “too sick,” I didn’t even bother to ask about it. But the Azithromycin I was prescribed is the antibiotic that is generally prescribed with hydroxychloroquine.

      I slept about as well as I ever do Friday night. When I got up at 5:00 am on Saturday morning, I was back to feeling normal. All of the symptoms were gone. If the prescription had anything to do with that, I have no way of knowing. But again, the symptoms had mostly alleviated before I even took it, so probably not. But still, I will finish the prescription as prescribed, taking one tablet each afternoon for the total of five days, as should always be done with antibiotics.

      Altogether, I was sick for less than 35 hours, from about 6:15 pm on Thursday to 5:00 am Saturday. I felt fine throughout that day. But then Sunday morning, I had a slight headache that came and went throughout the day. Since I was feeling fine otherwise, I worked out as usual. My morning workout went as planned without problems. But for my afternoon workout, I felt more fatigued than usual. Note that I suffer from fibromyalgia, so I always have some degree of fatigue. That is why I break my workouts into two parts, so neither is overly long and tiring.

      In any case, that workout went as planned, but I was very tired afterwards for the rest of the evening. When I went to bed, I tossed and turned the first half of the night, but I finally slept soundly the second half. When I got up Monday morning, I once again felt fine. And my workouts on that day went as planned without any symptoms.

      I got a report from my doctor’s office that I opened after my afternoon workout. It listed the symptoms I had reported to my doctor. It then said they were caused by “an unspecified organism.” It also indicated the prescription I had been given.

      I had a follow-up telemedicine visit with my doctor scheduled for Tuesday at 10:15 am. I still felt as good as ever. My doctor had said if my symptoms didn’t clear by then, he would have me tested. But since I was now symptom-free, I knew that wouldn’t be necessary. But I wanted to wait until after this appointment to post this article, so I could include any updates from it. I will do that now.

      This time, the doctor’s office called right on time at 10:15 am. The entire appointment lasted about five minutes. I just had to verify my information with the receptionist. She then transferred me to my doctor. I told him the preceding about what happened over the last few days and that I was feeling fine now. He just told me to finish the prescription.

      I asked him about the “unspecified organism” comment on the report. He said that was because I haven’t had a culture test done, so there was no way to know for sure what I was infected with. And that was it. He couldn’t say if I had COVID-19 or not, though he didn’t seem to think so. But again, the only way to know for sure would have been to have been tested. And that leads to the next section.


Testing Problems


      It would be nice to have been tested for the CV, just to know one way or another if have had it. It made no difference to me, as far as my treatment or recovery. But it would be nice to know if I am now immune to COVID-19 or not.

      For that reason, in the first telemedicine appointment , I pushed my doctor a bit to give me a prescription for the CV RNA test, until he told me that the closest testing place was in a city over half an hour away from my home. With how I was feeling on Friday, I was not up to an over hour-long round trip and then who knows how long I would have had to wait for the test at the testing site. If I had done all of that, I might not have felt back to normal Saturday morning.

      The sad part is, there is a Walmart and a CVS about two miles from my home. I say that, as I mention in a Commentary written back on March 13 (see Coronavirus General Commentaries) that there were plans to set up mobile testing sites in their parking lots.

      If that had happened, I could have easily made the five-minute drive to one of those sites. But that plan never really materialized, with only a few sites now in operation. There is also a hospital just a couple of miles from my home, but apparently, they are not doing testing for out-patients. This is part of the growing complaints about lack of testing.

      In any case, now that I am symptom free, I would not be able to get the CV RNA test. I will have to wait until the CV antibody test becomes widely available to be tested and to find out if had COVID-19 or not.


Reasons For My Quick Recovery


      Whether I had COVID-19 or the seasonal flu, 35 hours is a quick recovery to be mostly symptom free and a couple of more days to be totally over whatever I had, especially when you consider I am 59 years old. Why did I recover so fast? Easy. My immune system is strong due to my healthy habits.

      Namely, the main reason I go to the Co-op is to buy lots of fresh organic produce. In fact, I mention in my book Creationist Diet: Second Edition, that by the time I get through the produce aisle, my large shopping cart is already half full. That was the case in my two most recent Co-op trips.

      Then there is my home gym. As I said in a Commentary written on April 17 (see Coronavirus General Commentaries), my railing about gyms being closed is not about me, just concern for my fellow-Americans. I also said in my article Imaginary Contest and Future Plans that my home gym just might save my life. I don’t know if my quick recovery is that dramatic, but there is no doubt that being in shape enabled me to recover as quickly as I did. However, if I were dependent on a commercial gym, I would not have been able to work out for the past month. At my age, I would have lost quite a bit of my gains in just that short period of time.

      But worse, and what is happening with lots of American right now, is without the incentive of my lifting, I might have gotten away from my strict diet. I say that, as I generally do just that when I take a week off after a powerlifting contest. And with not knowing when I might work out and compete again, I might have really thrown caution to the wind and gained the “Quarantine 15” as many are calling it.

      In that case, my immune system would have taken a hit, and I might have had a much harder time getting over whatever I was infected with. That is why it breaks my heart that gyms and parks are closed, as I am sure just that is happening to lots of American right now.


Garden Shops


      Just as bad as the closing of gyms and parks is some states have been closing lawn and garden shops, even when they are within a larger store, like a Walmart, that is open otherwise.

      That is especially disturbing to me, as my dad has kept a vegetable garden and fruit trees as long as I can remember, which is to say, for over 50 years. Like powerlifting for me, his gardening is what has kept him in shape all of these decades.

      But his gardening has even greater health-promotion aspects than my powerlifting. Along with exercise, gardening gets him outside in the fresh air and sunshine, which also boost the immune system. But most of all, his vegetable garden and fruit trees give him healthy produce to eat. That is not just at harvest season, as he freezes as much as he can, so he is still eating vegetables from his garden as late as the next spring. I of course have been the beneficiary of that healthy produce all of these decades as well.

      It also must be said that my powerlifting and my dad’s gardening keeps us mentally healthy as well as physically healthy. Both are great stress relievers and give us a sense of accomplishment. And that mental boast cannot be ignored. That reduction in stress boosts the immune system. Moreover, some studies show that exercise works just as well at fighting depression as anti-depressant drugs. That is what Americans need right now, the exercises that is, not the drugs.

      In any case, it is because of his gardening that my dad is still relatively healthy at the ripe old age of 84. Though I have been trying to take steps to keep him from getting infected, such as doing his grocery shopping for him, he has not totally self-isolated. He has gone out to a garden shop and the hardware store as need be for stuff for his garden and otherwise. But I have not been too worried about him doing so since those places are not very crowded. But most of all, due to his relatively good health due to his garden, even if he got infected, I doubt he would have serious adverse consequences.

      I thank God that here in PA, our governor did not take the stupid route of closing the lawn and garden shops. I shudder to think what effect that would have had on my dad. It would have advisedly affected both his physical and mental health, and mine as well, as I would be fretting over him much more than I have been. But shame on those governors who did close them, such as Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. With such draconian and unnecessary restrictions, no wonder Michiganders are rebelling.

      If the governors were smart, rather than closures, they would be encouraging their residents to go to gyms and parks and to plant “Victory Gardens.” If more people did such, the health of our nation would be much greater, and Americans would be less liable to serious consequences from not just the CV but also the seasonal flu and many other health maladies.


Other Stress Producers


      In addition to a lack of exercise, there are other ways people are stressed out over this outbreak. The first is due to virus itself. But, as I will discuss shortly, the risk of adverse consequences if one gets infected has been way overblown.

      Meanwhile, the business closures are causing incredible stress for business owners and their employees. The owners are worried if their businesses will ever reopen, while employees are worried if they will lose their jobs permanently. Sadly, both concerns could prove to be valid. Some businesses will never reopen, and some jobs will be permanently lost. But none of these closures were necessary, as again, I will discuss shortly.

      With all of these closures, Americans are stressed out over their finances and even finding basic necessities of life, like toilet paper of all things.

      Churches and other places of worship are a great source of comfort and stress relievers for millions of Americans, yet they have been closed. Not only that, but people have been fined and even imprisoned for trying to hold or attended church services. Not only are such closures and punishments unconstitutional, but they further add to the stress people are experiencing.

      Then there is the stress of simple boredom and a lack of feeling productive, as people are stuck in their homes with nothing meaningful to do.

      Bottom line, everything the various levels of government have done have further increased the stress level of our population, making Americans more susceptible to adverse consequences from the CV.


Liquor Stores


      But instead of encouraging health promoting activities, what the governors have done is ensure stores that sell liquor are open in some fashion. Here in PA, the physical stores are closed to customers, but they are fulfilling online and telephone orders. And liquor sales have gone way up.

      However, it has been shown that alcohol depresses the immune system, making people more likely to have adverse consequences from a CV infection. As for myself, I stopped drinking alcohol decades ago. That is another reason my immune system is so strong.

      But still, it is all so backwards, close the gyms, close the parks, close the garden shops, close the churches, but keep the liquor stores open. At least the President’s CV task force got it right by including gyms and churches as places that can reopen in “Phase One” of its three-phase plan to reopen the country.


      This article is concluded at Different Perspective in Dealing with the Coronavirus (Had Either COVID-19 or the Flu and Mostly Recovered in 35 Hours) Part Two.

Creationist Diet
Second Edition
A Comprehensive Guide to Bible and Science Based Nutrition



See end of Part Two.

Different Perspective in Dealing with the Coronavirus (Had Either COVID-19 or the Flu and Mostly Recovered in 35 Hours): Part One. Copyright 2020 by Gary F. Zeolla (

The above article was posted on this website April 21, 2020.

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