N-acetylcysteine (NAC), a precursor to reduced glutathione, appears to play an important role in COVID-19. According to an April 2020 literature analysis,1 glutathione deficiency may be associated with COVID-19 severity, leading the author to conclude that NAC may be useful both for its prevention and treatment.
NAC has a long history of use as a poison control remedy for acetaminophen poisoning in the emergency room. It neutralizes the toxic effects of the drug by recharging glutathione, thereby preventing liver damage. But the idea that NAC can also be helpful against viral infections is not new. Previous studies2,3 have found it reduces viral replication of certain viruses, including the influenza virus.
In one such study,4 the number needed to treat (NNT) was 0.5, which means for every two people treated with NAC, one will be protected against symptomatic influenza. That’s significantly better than influenza vaccines, which have an NNV (number needed to vaccinate) of 71,5 meaning 71 people must be vaccinated to prevent a single case of confirmed influenza. It’s even better than vitamin D, which has an NNT of 33.6
Early At-Home Treatment Is Crucial
In the video above, MedCram producer and cofounder Kyle Allred interviews Dr. Roger Seheult, a pulmonologist who has been treating COVID-19 patients since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, about strategies that can significantly reduce your need for hospitalization should you contract this infection.
Among those strategies is the use of NAC, which used to be readily available over the counter and online. Disturbingly, as more information is coming out about the usefulness of NAC, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is now clamping down on sales.
Since the beginning of this pandemic, global and national health authorities have done everything in their power, it seems, to discourage and prevent people from accessing any treatment that competes with the COVID jab. This appears to be yet another shameful attempt to prevent patients from helping themselves and boost the risk of infections progressing into more serious cases.
Should you come down with symptoms of COVID-19, early treatment is crucial. Not only can it significantly reduce the length of time that you’re sick, early treatment will also minimize your risk of long-hauler syndrome. A summary of the treatment strategies Seheult reviews in more detail in the video is as follows:
- Monitor your oxygen saturation status using a pulse oximeter. If your oxygen saturation drops below 94% at rest, you should seek medical treatment. Below 90%, you are hypoxic and need supplemental oxygen
- Use vitamins and other immune-boosting supplements, including vitamins C and D, quercetin, zinc and NAC, and/or medications such as monoclonal antibodies
- Use immune-boosting strategies such as sleep (melatonin can be used if you’re experiencing poor sleep) and raising your core temperature in a hot bath or sauna
- Prevent spread at home using ventilation, air filtration and isolation
Amazon Removes All NAC Products
May 6, 2021, Natural Products Insider reported7 that Amazon is removing all NAC products from the site, following warning letters being sent out by the FDA stating NAC cannot be lawfully marketed as a dietary supplement because it was first studied as a drug in 1963.8
Consequently, products containing the ingredient are excluded from the definition of a dietary supplement under section 201(ff)(3)(B)(i) of the Federal Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act (FDCA). The thing is, NAC has been sold as a supplement for 57 years, and the FDA never did a thing about it — until now, when more than a dozen studies are investigating its usefulness against COVID-19.
As reported by Natural Products Insider,9 there are at least 1,170 NAC-containing products in the National Institutes of Health’s Dietary Supplement Label Database. The FDA suddenly put NAC in its crosshairs in July 2020, when it sent out warning letters to seven companies that marketed NAC as a remedy for hangovers.10