Friday, November 11, 2022

Find the Joy

 Find the Joy



Saturday, February 12, 2022

Health-care workers recovered from natural SARS-CoV-2 infection should be exempt from mandatory vaccination edicts

The Lancet has just published an editorial arguing that health care workers who have recovered from natural SARS-Cov-2 infection should be except from COVID-19 vaccination mandates. I agree.

The goal of public health is just that- to protect and improve the health of the public. Too often during the Covid-19 pandemic politicians have resorted to blatant power grabs in the name of public health. A prime example is vaccine mandates without recognizing natural immunity. Those with natural immunity do not require vaccination, and actually appear at this point in time to be less of a danger to public health than fully vaccinated individuals who do not have natural immunity. Fear is not a substitute for a rational analysis of the data. Mandating vaccinations for those who have natural immunity is either a blatant power grab by politicians, or a complete subjugation to fear over rational thinking. 

The editorial makes three major points:

1. Natural immunity to single stranded RNA viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 provides better protection than vaccination. ADVANTAGE: NATURAL IMMUNITY

2. Those with natural immunity appear to be less likely to transmit the virus to others. Vaccinated individuals without natural immunity appear to be more likely to transmit the virus to others. ADVANTAGE: NATURAL IMMUNITY

3. Those with both natural immunity and vaccination, appear to have a "super-immunity" to SARS-CoV-2. However, there appears to be minimal, if any benefit of super-immunity over natural immunity. Natural infection appears to be superior to vaccination because it may lead to innate cytokine response preventing a SARS-CoV-2 viral breach of the mucosal barrier in our respiratory tracts. While vaccines help the body respond to the virus once it is in the blood, natural immunity appears to also help prevent the virus from crossing the mucosal barrier, and thus prevent the virus from getting into the blood. ADVANTAGE: NATURAL IMMUNITY

This is an excellent read, short and right to the point. Take a look: 

Health-care workers recovered from natural SARS-CoV-2 infection should be exempt from mandatory vaccination edicts - The Lancet Rheumatology


Friday, January 21, 2022

The Beholder NFT Collection

 The Beholder was written in 1985.


Sunday, May 17, 2020

Vitamin C as a Possible Therapy for COVID-19.

In this letter to the Editor, the authors argue that Vitamin C has been shown to decrease the severity of at least one coronavirus infection, the common cold. Thus, it is possible, even likely that vitamin C would also have a positive effect against infections by other coronaviruses, including Sars-CoV-2 infections leading to COVID-19. In addition, since Vitamin C has been shown to improve outcomes in patients admitted to the ICU, there may be additional benefits.

Comment: at this point in time, it appears that SARS-CoV-2 is highly infectious, and that large segments of the population will get infected regardless of social distancing policies or mask policies. While social distancing and masking slows down transmission, right now it seems that these measures will not stop the spread of the virus. Since there are no known good treatments for COVID-19 right now a great strategy is to build up your immune system, now.

Building up the immune system is simultaneously complex and simple. The biochemical reactions underlying the immune system are complex, but for you and I, the way to build up our immune systems as simple as diet and exercise. Eat right. Exercise regularly. And possibly, take Vitamin C.

Too much emphasis has been placed on social distancing, which is a controversial policy that may or may not turn out to be the best policy in fighting the global pandemic of COVID-19. While most countries have followed strict social distancing policies, others have not. Most notably, Sweden has not been as stringent as other European countries, yet their disease rate is about average.

Vitamin C as a Possible Therapy for COVID-19.:

Infect Chemother. 2020 May 15;

Authors: Hemilä H, Chalker E

PMID: 32410417 


Wednesday, March 18, 2020

#covid19: Primary Prevention is Not Enough

In quarantine for another 24 hours due to a cough with fever, now thankfully getting better. So here are my quarantine thoughts on how *you* can get through this stronger than ever.
First, I'll discuss some basic preventive medicine principles, then I'll give the specific measures I am taking and recommend you take as well. Finally, there's a personal note.
Preventive medicine involves primary, secondary, and tertiary measures. Primary prevention is the prevention of catching the disease. Secondary prevention is the early detection of disease. And tertiary prevention is the prevention of side-effects of disease, or in the case of covid19, steps to maximize your chance of survival if you get infected.
Primary prevention of covid19 involves measures to prevent ever getting the virus. Wash your hands. Engage in physical distancing. Quarantine affected individuals. Clean surfaces and the air.
Secondary prevention involves the early detection of of covid19. Get tested early if you have symptoms. Help make tests easily and widely available; make the tests free of charge so there are no financial barriers to being tested; and finally we need to make the tests available without a doctor's order.
Tertiary prevention involves taking measures to decrease the impact of covid19 infection if you get the disease, mainly by decreasing adverse side-effects. For example, a person with a coronovirus infection may be treated with hydroxychloroquine, but they may take another medicine such as ondansetron to prevent the side-effect of nausea.
For covid19 our public health officials so far are taking correct, but incomplete measures. They are doing great at addressing primary prevention by stressing we all take common sense measures to prevent catching the disease.
They are behind the curve, but rapidly catching up in terms of secondary prevention. Test kits for covid19 have been in short supply but availability is ramping up quickly now.
However, our public health officials need to work much more aggressively on tertiary prevention. This involves getting people to take measures right now to increase their chances of surviving if they get infected by covid19. All of us should stay active, eat right, and not smoke or vape. These measures are hard to implement widely, but even small improvements will significantly decrease the chances of dying if you get infected. So let's look more closely at tertiary prevention, since it has been largely ignored to date.
First, stay active. The most serious complication of covid19 infection is acute respiratory distress syndrome. The virus attacks the lungs, and this is generally how it kills people. So right now, make your lungs as healthy as possible. This means staying active and not smoking or vaping. We know from surgical studies that people who stop smoking even for a week prior to surgery have significantly fewer side-effects. We don't know how long this coronovirus pandemic is going to last, so right now is a good time to optimize your exercise program. Get your lungs and entire cardiovascular system as healthy as possible. Walking is a great exercise for your lungs, so is laughing, so is singing, so is weight lifting. Find an exercise you enjoy, do it in moderation but with a plan to gradually improve your health and strengthen your lungs.
Second, eat right. If you get infected by covid19 you want your entire body ready to respond quickly and aggressively. Many people who get infected don't even know it, because their body fights off the infection so fast. Others, however, get sick, some to the point of requiring hospitalization, and some to the point of death. The healthier you are prior to getting infected, the more likely you won't even know you got it and the less likely you are to die from it. Have the attitude that if you get infected, you'll be okay because you are maximizing your fitness right now.
Finally, strengthen your thoughts and your spirit. The will to live is a powerful force. It is real. But when you get sick, often it can be greatly challenging from a spiritual standpoint. Feelings of depression and hopelessness can weaken your ability to fight off the infection. The best strategy is to prepare yourself mentally for the possibility of getting covid19 or for that matter any other illness. Have the attitude that you will stay strong spiritually no matter what. Your thoughts will remain hopeful. You will continue to love life, love your family, love your friends no matter what. You will help strengthen other people's spirits by your generosity, kindness, laughter, compassion, and love. Love will overcome the fear and hopelessness, but it can be very challenging when you're sick. It is best to take measures right now to keep your spirit strong and healthy.
So your plan should be to take all 3 steps of prevention:
a) do everything you can to never catch the disease. Clean your hands, your air, your environment. Support the rapid development of a vaccine.
b) if you get exposed or start getting symptoms such as fever with a cough, get tested early because there are treatments available right now and new treatments will be identified. These always will work better early in the course of the infection. Early detection of infection will help you, and help you take measures to not infect others. Push the system to make tests widely available.
c) get as healthy as possible right now. Stay active and exercise regularly. Eat right. Don't smoke or vape. And keep your spirit strong, enthusiastic, and optimistic. Keep the love flowing in your life.
I share these thoughts with you not as a professor, or a doctor, but as a friend. We are all physically isolated now, but socially we remain strong and together.
As someone who has suffered from acute respiratory distress syndrome, who was placed in a medical coma and put on a ventilator; someone whose lungs were almost destroyed by an overwhelming infection; and someone who faced death very intimately but survived, I implore you to not just wash your hands and get tested if needed. Take major action right now to improve your overall health, and to strengthen your spirit.
I went into my medical misadventure pretty well prepared, yet it nearly got me. It was razor close. But the disease lost. Due to the measures I took ahead of time to stay as healthy as possible, due to my incredible doctors and nurses at Deaconess, due to the love from my family & friends, due to my crazy optimism, and by the grace of God I survived. Maybe just so I could pass along this message to you.
Stay safe, eat well, laugh often, and tell people you love them.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Let it Rain

it Rain

your past is turned upside down
the last one in line,

last one around.

the time, it doesn't change a thing
you are the one

always goes missing.

let it rain on the outside.
your pain-
you leave it behind.
maybe someday
your love will be found.

your thoughts
yourself to rights.
to undo your wrongs.
to retell your lies.

a change. Don't let it pass you by.
up tall, don't get beaten down.

let it rain on the outside.
your pain-
you leave it behind.
maybe someday-
will find your love abounds.

your eyes,

been there all along
waiting, around.
let it hold you tight,

feel the warmest glow
you, hear the light.

let it rain.

Love can hide
but it's never that hard
to find.
oh, don't let it go.

Love can hide
but it's never that hard
to find,
just hold tight and don't let go.

Just let it rain.

Love can hide
but it's never that hard
to find,
oh, don't let it go.

Love can hide
but it's never that hard
to find,
oh, hold it tight and
don't let go.

Just let it rain, let it
let it rain never worry

You'll find the love
it is there for you


Saturday, March 7, 2020

Seniors Who Walk For 30 Minutes Daily Cut Risk Of Death From Any Cause

Yet more data shows that walking is great for you!

Seniors Who Walk For 30 Minutes Daily Cut Risk Of Death From Any Cause:

Older adults, taking walk through a park.

PHOENIX — Two new studies are adding to the growing consensus in the medical community that staying active is perhaps the best way for older adults to live longer and stay happy and healthy well into their golden years. Best of all, no one is telling grandma or grandpa to hit the bench press; simple, leisurely…

The post Seniors Who Walk For 30 Minutes Daily Cut Risk Of Death From Any Cause appeared first on Study Finds.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Coronavirus Outbreak: Study Finds Ebola Drug May Help Fight Deadly Disease

This study has identified a medication used to treat Ebola may work on the coronavirus (COVID-19): remdesivir

Coronavirus Outbreak: Study Finds Ebola Drug May Help Fight Deadly Disease:

Coronavirus test tubes
EDMONTON, Alberta — The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) that first appeared in China has dominated headlines in 2020, and for good reason. The virus has taken thousands of lives already, and to the entire world’s dismay, appears to be showing no signs of slowing down. In a potential bit of good news for a change, researchers at…

The post Coronavirus Outbreak: Study Finds Ebola Drug May Help Fight Deadly Disease appeared first on Study Finds.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Aspirin and fracture risk: a systematic review and exploratory meta-analysis of observational studies.

This review found an association between aspirin and a decreased fracture risk. 

Aspirin and fracture risk: a systematic review and exploratory meta-analysis of observational studies.:

Related Articles
Aspirin and fracture risk: a systematic review and exploratory meta-analysis of observational studies.

BMJ Open. 2020 Feb 20;10(2):e026876

Authors: Barker AL, Soh SE, Sanders KM, Pasco J, Khosla S, Ebeling PR, Ward SA, Peeters G, Talevski J, Cumming RG, Seeman E, McNeil JJ


OBJECTIVES: This review provides insights into the potential for aspirin to preserve bone mineral density (BMD) and reduce fracture risk, building knowledge of the risk-benefit profile of aspirin.

METHODS: We conducted a systematic review and exploratory meta-analysis of observational studies. Electronic searches of MEDLINE and Embase, and a manual search of bibliographies was undertaken for studies published to 28 March 2018. Studies were included if: participants were men or women aged ≥18 years; the exposure of interest was aspirin; and relative risks, ORs and 95% CIs for the risk of fracture or difference (percentage or absolute) in BMD (measured by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) between aspirin users and non-users were presented. Risk of bias was assessed using the Joanna Briggs Institute Critical Appraisal Checklists for observational studies. Pooled ORs for any fracture and standardised mean differences (SMDs) for BMD outcomes were calculated using random-effects models.

RESULTS: Twelve studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in the meta-analysis. Aspirin use was associated with a 17% lower odds for any fracture (OR 0.83, 95% CI 0.70 to 0.99; I2=71%; six studies; n=511 390). Aspirin was associated with a higher total hip BMD for women (SMD 0.03, 95% CI -0.02 to 0.07; I2=0%; three studies; n=9686) and men (SMD 0.06, 95% CI -0.02 to 0.13, I2=0%; two studies; n=4137) although these associations were not significant. Similar results were observed for lumbar spine BMD in women (SMD 0.03, 95% CI -0.03 to 0.09; I2=34%; four studies; n=11 330) and men (SMD 0.08; 95% CI -0.01 to 0.18; one study; n=432).

CONCLUSIONS: While the benefits of reduced fracture risk and higher BMD from aspirin use may be modest for individuals, if confirmed in prospective controlled trials, they may confer a large population benefit given the common use of aspirin in older people.

PMID: 32086348 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Monday, February 17, 2020

Association Between Ultraprocessed Food Consumption and Risk of Mortality Among Middle-aged Adults in France.

No surprises here: ultraprocessed foods were not found to be as healthy as whole foods.

Association Between Ultraprocessed Food Consumption and Risk of Mortality Among Middle-aged Adults in France.:

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems Icon for PubMed Central Related Articles
Association Between Ultraprocessed Food Consumption and Risk of Mortality Among Middle-aged Adults in France.

JAMA Intern Med. 2019 04 01;179(4):490-498

Authors: Schnabel L, Kesse-Guyot E, Allès B, Touvier M, Srour B, Hercberg S, Buscail C, Julia C


Importance: Growing evidence indicates that higher intake of ultraprocessed foods is associated with higher incidence of noncommunicable diseases. However, to date, the association between ultraprocessed foods consumption and mortality risk has never been investigated.

Objective: To assess the association between ultraprocessed foods consumption and all-cause mortality risk.

Design, Setting, and Participants: This observational prospective cohort study selected adults, 45 years or older, from the French NutriNet-Santé Study, an ongoing cohort study that launched on May 11, 2009, and performed a follow-up through December 15, 2017 (a median of 7.1 years). Participants were selected if they completed at least 1 set of 3 web-based 24-hour dietary records during their first 2 years of follow-up. Self-reported data were collected at baseline, including sociodemographic, lifestyle, physical activity, weight and height, and anthropometrics.

Exposures: The ultraprocessed foods group (from the NOVA food classification system), characterized as ready-to-eat or -heat formulations made mostly from ingredients usually combined with additives. Proportion (in weight) of ultraprocessed foods in the diet was computed for each participant.

Main Outcomes and Measures: The association between proportion of ultraprocessed foods and overall mortality was the main outcome. Mean dietary intakes from all of the 24-hour dietary records available during the first 2 years of follow-up were calculated and considered as the baseline usual food-and-drink intakes. Mortality was assessed using CépiDC, the French national registry of specific mortality causes. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CIs were determined for all-cause mortality, using multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression models, with age as the underlying time metric.

Results: A total of 44 551 participants were included, of whom 32 549 (73.1%) were women, with a mean (SD) age at baseline of 56.7 (7.5) years. Ultraprocessed foods accounted for a mean (SD) proportion of 14.4% (7.6%) of the weight of total food consumed, corresponding to a mean (SD) proportion of 29.1% (10.9%) of total energy intake. Ultraprocessed foods consumption was associated with younger age (45-64 years, mean [SE] proportion of food in weight, 14.50% [0.04%]; P < .001), lower income (<€1200/mo, 15.58% [0.11%]; P < .001), lower educational level (no diploma or primary school, 15.50% [0.16%]; P < .001), living alone (15.02% [0.07%]; P < .001), higher body mass index (calculated as weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared; ≥30, 15.98% [0.11%]; P < .001), and lower physical activity level (15.56% [0.08%]; P < .001). A total of 602 deaths (1.4%) occurred during follow-up. After adjustment for a range of confounding factors, an increase in the proportion of ultraprocessed foods consumed was associated with a higher risk of all-cause mortality (HR per 10% increment, 1.14; 95% CI, 1.04-1.27; P = .008).

Conclusions and Relevance: An increase in ultraprocessed foods consumption appears to be associated with an overall higher mortality risk among this adult population; further prospective studies are needed to confirm these findings and to disentangle the various mechanisms by which ultraprocessed foods may affect health.

PMID: 30742202 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]