Tuesday, November 10, 2009
November 10 2009 |
flu, influenza, swine flu, swine flu vaccine, flu vaccine, vitamin D.Many countries are pouring millions into orders for swine flu vaccine from pharmaceutical companies. But one country is taking a different approach.
The Irish Independent reports that the some Canadian provinces have suspended the 'normal' seasonal flu shots for anyone under 65 in response to a recent study there. However, the vaccine suspensions do not apply for people over 65.
The study suggests that people vaccinated against seasonal flu are actually twice as likely to catch swine flu.
But plans vary across the provinces of Canada. Last month, British Columbia announced it is suspending seasonal flu shots for anyone under 65 years old, joining Quebec, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Nova Scotia in halting the immunizations.
Quebec's Health Ministry announced it would postpone vaccinations until January, clearing the autumn months for health professionals to focus on vaccinating against H1N1, which is expected to the more severe influenza strain this season.
"By the time the H1N1 wave is over, there will be ample time to vaccinate for seasonal flu," said Dr. Ethan Rubinstein, head of adult infectious diseases at the University of Manitoba.
Other provinces, including Manitoba, are still pondering a response to the research. New Brunswick, one of the lone holdouts, made an announcement in September that it would forge ahead with seasonal flu shots for all residents in October, as originally planned.
Yet according to an even more recent posting by PreventDisease.com, some provinces are still recommending co-administration of both vaccines in as little as 60 days, according to a staggered schedule.
An international panel is currently scrutinising the controversial study's data. Dr Ethan Rubinstein, who has read the study, said it appeared sound.
"There are a large number of authors, all of them excellent and credible researchers," he said. "The sample size is very large, at 12 or 13 million people."
It was back in 1981 that R. Edgar Hope Simpson proposed that a principal cause of seasonal influenza is linked with the deficiency of solar radiation which triggers the production of vitamin D in the skin. Vitamin D deficiency is common in the winter, and vitamin D is crucial in allowing your immune system to defend itself against invading organisms.
In addition to vitamin D, studies have suggested that people who exercise moderately suffer fewer and less severe colds and flu infections.
In a new study, researchers found that when they had a group of mice regularly run on a treadmill over 3.5 months, the animals developed less-severe symptoms when infected with the flu virus.
Additionally, mice that exercised right before flu infection, but not regularly over the preceding months, also showed some protection against severe symptoms -- which in mice means dampened appetite and weight loss. Those benefits, however, were only apparent in the couple days after infection, whereas regular long-term exercise reduced flu symptoms over the whole course of infection.
Independent.ie October 26, 2009
Homeland1.com September 29, 2009
CBS News September 25, 2009
PreventDisease.com October 26, 2009
Reuters October 23, 2009
Sunday, November 1, 2009
It even quotes a team of experts who claim that injecting an expectant mother with a flu shot would reduce the hospitalization of her infants, explaining: "Flu vaccine given to women during pregnancy is 85 percent effective in preventing hospitalization in their infants under 6 months of age."
This conclusion was derived from a study of pregnant women in Bangladesh, by the way, and it didn't even use randomized, placebo-controlled study protocols, meaning the conclusions of the study are highly unreliable (more vaccine quackery).
Speaking of bizarre claims, another Reuters report appearing this week claims that statin drugs prevent flu deaths!
This story reports, "Patients taking statin drugs were almost 50 percent less likely to die from flu, researchers reported on Thursday in a study providing more evidence the cholesterol-lowering drugs help the body cope with infection."
How was this "science" conducted? There wasn't even a clinical trial at all. Researchers simply checked the medical records of people who died from seasonal flu infections and found that 3.2% of the patients who weren't taking statin drugs died from flu complications while only 2.1% of the patients who were taking statin drugs died. Since 2.1% is roughly 50% less than 3.2%, they leaped to the conclusion that "statin drugs prevent flu deaths by 50 percent!"
Flu shots prevent wrinkles!When it comes to pushing drugs and vaccines, Big Pharma never misses an opportunity to misrepresent science in order to fabricate statistical support for some silly claim. Using the same statistical quackery as the drug companies, I could easily design a meta-analysis study that would find flu shots prevent skin wrinkles. And then, with a little help from Big Pharma it would be a simple matter to get some medical journal to publish the article. The mainstream media, for its part, would then declare, "Flu shots prevent skin wrinkles!"
But why stop there? Flu shots might also eliminate bad breath, too. Proving so would be an easy matter, too: Just take 100 people with various levels of bad breath, give flu shots to those with the freshest breath, then resample their breath levels following the flu shots. Voila! Those who got the flu shots have the freshest breath!
(Although this sounds incredibly stupid, it's exactly how some clinical trials are designed from the start: Certain groups are included in the study, or eliminated from the study, solely based on how well they will support the desired outcome...)
Send this "research" to Reuters, and you might even get a write-up: "Flu shots prevent bad breath, say scientists."
In fact, using the right study design, flu shots can be "proven" to prevent almost anything, including varicose veins, shyness and gray hair. It all comes down to how the study is designed from the start. With proper statistical revisions, virtually any substance can be proven to prevent -- or promote -- almost any health condition.
Clinical trials are a jokeThat's because in modern medicine today, clinical trials are a joke. When a researcher sets out to create a study or clinical trial with a pre-ordained conclusion rather than an open mind, he can accomplish that in a variety of ways: By excluding study participants that don't fit his conclusion, by eliminating data sets from meta-analysis studies, by controlling the timeline of the study to end it before side effects start to appear.
Before you opt in to receive your flu shots read the Science of Nature. We will keep you up to date with Natural News reports.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
When providing care to a household member who is sick with influenza, the most important ways to protect yourself and others who are not sick are to:
- keep the sick person away from other people as much as possible (see “placement of the sick person”) especially others who are at high risk for complications from influenza
- remind the sick person to cover their coughs, and clean their hands with soap and water often. If soap and water are not available, they should use an alcohol-based hand rub*, especially after coughing and/or sneezing
- have everyone in the household clean their hands often, using soap and water (or an alcohol-based hand rub*, if soap and water are not available). Children may need reminders or help keeping their hands clean
- ask your health care provider if household contacts of the sick person—particularly those contacts who may be pregnant or have chronic health conditions—should take antiviral medications such as oseltamivir (Tamiflu®) or zanamivir (Relenza®) to prevent the flu
- If you are in a high risk group for complications from influenza, you should attempt to avoid close contact (within 6 feet) with household members who are sick with influenza. If close contact with a sick individual is unavoidable, consider wearing a facemask or respirator, if available and tolerable. Infants should not be cared for by sick family members. For more information, see the Interim Recommendations for Facemask and Respirator Use
Placement of the sick person
- Keep the sick person in a room separate from the common areas of the house. (For example, a spare bedroom with its own bathroom, if that’s possible.) Keep the sickroom door closed.
- Unless necessary for medical care or other necessities, people who are sick with an influenza-like-illness should stay home and keep away from others as much as possible, including avoiding travel, for at least 24 hours after fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine). This is to keep from making others sick. Children, especially younger children, might potentially be contagious for longer periods.
- If persons with the flu need to leave the home (for example, for medical care), they should wear a facemask, if available and tolerable, and cover their nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing
- Have the sick person wear a facemask – if available and tolerable – if they need to be in a common area of the house near other persons.
- If possible, sick persons should use a separate bathroom. This bathroom should be cleaned daily with household disinfectant (see below).
Protect other persons in the home
- The sick person should not have visitors other than caregivers. A phone call is safer than a visit.
- If possible, have only one adult in the home take care of the sick person. People at increased risk of severe illness from flu should not be the designated caretaker, if possible.
- If you are in a high risk group for complications from influenza, you should attempt to avoid close contact (within 6 feet) with household members who are sick with influenza. If close contact with a sick individual is unavoidable, consider wearing a facemask or respirator, if available and tolerable. For more information, see the Interim Recommendations for Facemask and Respirator Use.
- Avoid having pregnant women care for the sick person. (Pregnant women are at increased risk of influenza-related complications and immunity can be suppressed during pregnancy).
- Avoid having sick family members care for infants and other groups at high risk for complications of influenza.
- All persons in the household should clean their hands with soap and water frequently, including after every contact with the sick person or the person’s room or bathroom.
- Use paper towels for drying hands after hand washing or dedicate cloth towels to each person in the household. For example, have different colored towels for each person.
- If soap and water are not available, persons should use an alcohol-based hand rub.*
- If possible, consideration should be given to maintaining good ventilation in shared household areas (e.g., keeping windows open in restrooms, kitchen, bathroom, etc.).
- Antiviral medications can be used to prevent the flu, so check with your health care provider to see if some persons in the home should use antiviral medications.
If you are the caregiver
- Avoid being face-to-face with the sick person.
- When holding small children who are sick, place their chin on your shoulder so that they will not cough in your face.
- Clean your hands with soap and water after you touch the sick person or handle used tissues, or laundry. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub*
- Talk to your health care provider about taking antiviral medication to prevent the caregiver from getting the flu.
- If you are at high risk of influenza associated complications, you should not be the designated caretaker, if possible.
- If you are in a high risk group for complications from influenza, you should attempt to avoid close contact (within 6 feet) with household members who are sick with influenza. Designate a person who is not at high risk of flu associated complications as the primary caretaker of household members who are sick with influenza, if at all possible. If close contact with a sick individual is unavoidable, consider wearing a facemask or respirator, if available and tolerable. For more information, see the Interim Recommendations for Facemask and Respirator Use
- Monitor yourself and household members for flu symptoms and contact a telephone hotline or health care provider if symptoms occur.
Using Facemasks or Respirators
- Avoid close contact (less than about 6 feet away) with the sick person as much as possible.
- If you must have close contact with the sick person (for example, hold a sick infant), spend the least amount of time possible in close contact and try to wear a facemask (for example, surgical mask) or N95 disposable respirator.
- An N95 respirator that fits snugly on your face can filter out small particles that can be inhaled around the edges of a facemask, but compared with a facemask it is harder to breathe through an N95 mask for long periods of time. More information on facemasks and respirators can be found at H1N1 Flu (Swine Flu) website.
- Facemasks and respirators may be purchased at a pharmacy, building supply or hardware store.
- Wear an N95 respirator if you help a sick person with respiratory treatments using a nebulizer or inhaler, as directed by their doctor. Respiratory treatments should be performed in a separate room away from common areas of the house when at all possible.
- Used facemasks and N95 respirators should be taken off and placed immediately in the regular trash so they don’t touch anything else.
- Avoid re-using disposable facemasks and N95 respirators, if possible. If a reusable fabric facemask is used, it should be laundered with normal laundry detergent and tumble-dried in a hot dryer.
- After you take off a facemask or N95 respirator, clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- For more information, see the Interim Recommendations for Facemask and Respirator Use
Household Cleaning, Laundry, and Waste Disposal
- Throw away tissues and other disposable items used by the sick person in the trash. Wash your hands after touching used tissues and similar waste.
- Keep surfaces (especially bedside tables, surfaces in the bathroom, and toys for children) clean by wiping them down with a household disinfectant according to directions on the product label.
- Linens, eating utensils, and dishes belonging to those who are sick do not need to be cleaned separately, but importantly these items should not be shared without washing thoroughly first.
- • Wash linens (such as bed sheets and towels) by using household laundry soap and tumble dry on a hot setting. Avoid “hugging” laundry prior to washing it to prevent contaminating yourself. Clean your hands with soap and water right after handling dirty laundry. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.*
- Eating utensils should be washed either in a dishwasher or by hand with water and soap.
For More InformationThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Hotline (1-800-CDC-INFO) is available in English and Spanish, 24 hours a day, 7 days a w
Monday, October 19, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Look to your right....Beyounce has a constant battle with her weight. Up and down, up and down.........
The National Institute of Health estimates 65 percent of Americans are overweight or obese. Out of the millions Americans who are overweight and go on a diet each year, many regain all or a part of the weight they lose within five years.
Still, the search for the miracle weight-loss cure goes on. The reality is that losing weight requires a change in eating habits and a boost in daily physical activity. You must burn more calories than you consume.
For some people, however, prescription weight-loss drugs may help them achieve their weight-loss goal. According to the National Institutes of Health Weight-control Information Network (WIN), weight-loss medications should be used only by very obese people or those who are overweight or obese and have other risk factors for obesity-related illness. The WIN says that these drugs should be used along with a diet and exercise program.
Prescription weight-loss drugs are recommended for people who are obese (those with a body mass index of 30 or greater), or for those who are overweight (those with a BMI of 27 to 29.9) and who suffer from or are at risk for high blood pressure, heart disease or diabetes. These drugs are usually recommended for people who are obese and have been unable to lose weight after making multiple attempts while under the supervision of a health care provider. A safe and reasonable goal for weight loss is 10 percent in six months.
How they work
Prescription weight-loss drugs work in one of two ways. They can suppress the appetite and increase metabolism by altering the activity of chemical brain messengers called neurotransmitters. Drugs that do this are sibutramine, amphetamines and phentermine. A second type of weight-loss drug reduces the body's ability to absorb fat. The drug orlistat works in this way. Your health care provider will determine which kind is best for you by considering your medical history and the potential side effects and interactions of each drug.
Side effects of appetite suppressants include headaches, constipation, back pain, insomnia, dry mouth, nervousness and upset stomach. Sibutramine, amphetamines and phentermine should not be used if you have hypertension, coronary heart disease or glaucoma. Amphetamines should not be used if you have hyperthyroidism. Phentermine, on rare occasions, has been associated with the development of pulmonary hypertension, a fatal lung condition.
Side effects of drugs that affect how the body absorbs fat include oily spotting, gas (flatus) sometimes with discharge, urgency to have a bowel movement, fatty or oily stools and sometimes fecal incontinence. Women may develop menstrual irregularities. People taking orlistat must take a supplemental multivitamin to prevent deficiencies of fat-soluble vitamins.
No magic pill
Prescription weight-loss drugs are not magic potions. The WIN recommends they be used in conjunction with behavior modification and nutritional counseling so you can make long-term changes in your diet and activity patterns. You'll also need to see your health care provider regularly. Studies indicate if you don't lose four pounds in four weeks, it is unlikely the drug will contribute to significant weight loss.
Weight-loss drugs will not keep the weight off forever. Their safety has only been studied over a short period of time. And most studies have found that even with weight-loss drugs, most people will not be able to maintain weight loss over the long term. Drug therapy is only effective when used along with a structured diet and exercise program. Maintaining the weight loss requires a healthy change in lifestyle for the long term. If you don't make lifestyle changes, the weight will return.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Older Men With Low Testosterone Face Greater Depression Risk
Three times more likely to have mood disorder than those with higher hormone levels
(HealthDay News) -- Low testosterone levels in older men are associated with an increased risk of depression, an Australian study says.
Between 2001 and 2004, researchers at the University of Western Australia in Perth studied 3,987 males aged 71 to 89. The men provided demographic and health information and were tested for depression and cognitive difficulties. The researchers also checked the men's testosterone levels.
The 203 men who met the criteria for depression had significantly lower total and free (not bound to proteins) testosterone levels than those who weren't depressed. After controlling for other factors, such as cognitive scores, education level and body-mass index, the researchers concluded that men in the lowest quintile (20 percent) of free testosterone were three times more likely to have depression compared to those in the highest quintile.
The findings were published in the March issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
While more research is needed to determine how low hormone levels may be linked to depression risk, the study authors believe it may be caused by changes in the levels of neurotransmitters or hormones in the brain.
"A randomized controlled trial is required to determine whether reducing prolonged exposure to low free testosterone is associated with a reduction in prevalence of depression in elderly men," the researchers wrote. "If so, older men with depression may benefit from systematic screening of free testosterone concentration, and testosterone supplementation may contribute to the successful treatment of hypogonadal (with low hormone levels) older men with depression."
Between 2 percent and 5 percent of people are affected by depression at any given time, according to background information in the study. Women are more likely than men to be depressed, but that difference disappears at about age 65. A number of previous studies have suggested that sex hormones may be a factor.
The U.S. National Institute of Mental Health has more about men and depression.
-- Robert Preidt
SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, March 3, 2008
Friday, March 27, 2009
Worse-than-Grinch groups are trying to grab that treat with a dastardly trick just in time for Halloween this year.
The National Cancer Institute has made its official pronouncement in conjunction with others that selenium supplements do not benefit the prostate.
“We do not recommend supplements", said Dr. Peter Greenwald after the phenomenal success of the selenium study of the 1990s. Greenwald was then as now director of the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) Division of Cancer Prevention and Control.
“We do not recommend supplements” is the Satan clause.
Where there’s a will there’s a way
The first action of NCI was inaction. They tried to ignore selenium hoping the subject would go away (ignorance has been a primary part of the NCI for decades).
Selenium continued to get attention for its cancer prevention possibilities so NCI took an old page from its anti-nutrient playbook.
Decades ago a strong link was established for high levels of the nutrient beta carotene in food against lung cancer in a long term study.
A second study was set up – and set up is the operative phrase here -- but a man-made, synthesized form of beta carotene was used rather than a 100 per cent whole food form of beta carotene.
There is a difference – and you’re body knows the difference – between 100 per cent whole food nutrients and man-made, synthetic varieties of nutrients (so-called).
Man-made forms of nutrients look different under the microscope than the forms that are grown in food – formed only as The Almighty can form them through (and with) life.
Man-made forms of nutrients also act differently than the 100 per cent whole food nutrients.
Nutrients formed through life processes are always superior to those made by man. Usually there is a significant difference. Sometimes the difference is small. On occasion the man-made variety may even cause harm.
The beta carotene study that utilized the man-made variety was stopped early because preliminary results revealed a notable increase in lung cancer among those taking it rather than a decrease in lung cancer as had been noted in the study with dietary beta carotene.
The experts (so called) determined that beta carotene could be dangerous as it increased lung cancer. If that were the case then healthful eating habits would be comparable to cigarette smoking for cancer risk.
The facts of the matter were that synthetic beta carotene was the problem and not the actual nutrient beta carotene.
Tragically, man-made varieties of nutrients make up the vast majority of all supplements in the marketplace.
The NCI concocted a selenium study using a man-made variety of selenium rather than using a 100 per cent whole food selenium such as that which demonstrated the tremendous success of the previous study.
The form of selenium used by NCI has been found to have a very insignificant antioxidant activity – especially when compared to 100 per cent whole food selenium such as was used in the successful study.
High dose use of vitamin E was also added to this study.
One of the first things I learned in my selenium studies dating back to the 1970s was that if it was combined with high dose vitamin E usage then the antioxidant activity of the selenium was greatly reduced.
So this new NCI study utilized a variety of selenium with low antioxidant activity that was then mixed with high dose vitamin E which further diminishes antioxidant activity of selenium.
Oh, and the vitamin E used was a man-made, synthetic variety.
The new study was reported this week as stopped years short of completion because no positive benefit had been seen. However, benefits are not likely to show up in a short period of time.
There are many other deficiencies in this latest study. I’ve seen less holes in Swiss cheese than in this NCI prostate cancer study with selenium and vitamin E.
Call me ‘Prophet’
Ever since the new NCI selenium (and vitamin E) study was started only a few years ago I have said you don’t have to wait for results of this one. I could already tell you that they were not going to have the success of the previous study due to poor quality supplements and poor study design. The only way this study was well designed was for failure.
Also, I had noted that I wouldn’t be surprised if they somehow ascribed some harm from selenium.
Sure enough the NCI noted a very small increase in diabetes among those using selenium though they admitted it was so small a difference as to be inconsequential and “may be due to chance”. Yet they hung the suspicion out very prominently.
Yup, call me ‘Prophet’.
The very successful selenium cancer study of more than a decade ago was dismissed by Dr. Peter Greenwald who noted multiple studies of selenium and cancer would be necessary before coming to any conclusions. Yet he is now satisfied to conclude selenium is of no value after only ONE other study – and an exceedingly flawed study at that.
A drug, finasteride (Proscar/Propecia) was noted to still be able to reduce prostate cancer incidence though it was noted that side effects limit its use.
What was not noted is that the side effects include loss of prostate functions, greater amounts of more aggressive prostate cancers and even death.
With friends like Dr. Peter Greenwald and his NCI cohorts who needs enemies?
Yes, Virginia, Dr. Peter Greenwald’s “We do not recommend supplements” is the Satan clause.
Check for reference:
Christopher C. Barr writes Naturally Speaking from Arkansas: The Natural State … naturally! You may write him at P. O. Box 1147, Pocahontas, Arkansas 72455 or by e-mail at servantofYHVH@hotmail.com.
If you want the antioxidant protective benefits of Whole Food Grown Seleneium, then you need to get on the Innate Response Selenium shown below.