Welcome to Sott.net
Tue, 09 Feb 2016
The World for People who Think

Health & Wellness


Flint hospital reports finding Legionnaires' bacteria in water

The Flint Water Plant tower
A hospital in Flint, Michigan, reported Friday that low levels of Legionnaires' disease bacteria were discovered in its water system.

The discovery came after the city switched its water supply and the medical staff noticed an increase in people coming in for treatment who were diagnosed with Legionnaires,' McLaren Hospital said.

Legionnaires' disease is a respiratory bacterial infection usually spread through mist that comes from a water source.

People 2

New study shows birth control pills switch off besotted response to 'love hormone' oxytocin

It was meant to revolutionise life in the bedroom - but taking the Pill switches off the look of love. A new study shows that women who choose the daily contraceptive see their men in a less flattering light.

Kissing and cuddling trigger the release of oxytocin - the so-called love hormone - which sparks reward activity in the brain and makes partners appear more attractive to each other. However, researchers from Bonn University in Germany have discovered that the Pill shuts down the besotted response.

The team recruited forty women in their twenties and loving long-term relationships, half of whom were taking hormonal contraceptives. Some were given an oxytocin boost using a nasal spray while the rest were administered a placebo. Then they were shown a series of photos featuring their partner, a close female friend and similar-looking strangers of both sexes. The women were asked to rate them all out of 100 for attractiveness while brain scans kept watch on their mental responses to the pictures.

Lovers topped the poll in every case, though the oxytocin boost came into play too. Husbands and boyfriends whose partners had taken the spray but not the Pill outscored male strangers by an extra ten per cent. The same sub-group of women experienced far more activity in the nucleus accumbens - the part of the brain which deals with pleasure and emotional arousal - when photos of their lovers flashed up. However, for those on the Pill, oxytocin caused the region to light up more when pictures of their friends were shown.

Comment: See also:


The Health and Wellness Show - EMF Exposure Part II

The Health and Wellness show on the SOTT Radio Network covers topics of health, diet, science, homeopathy, wellness culture, and more. Tune in weekly!

Today we'll be revisiting the topic of EMF exposure with our guest, Larry Bowers. Here's the link to part one.

Included, as always, is the Pet Health Segment. This week's episode features the effects inflammation on your pets and how to reduce it.

Here's the transcript of the show:

Comment: The Health and Wellness Show - 20 April 2015 - EMF Exposure Part I

Evil Rays

The Health and Wellness Show - MTHFR Gene with Dr. Andrew Rostenberg

MTHFR stands for methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase. That's certainly a mouthful but our guest, Dr. Rostenberg of the Red Mountain Clinic in Boise, Idaho will help us navigate this intriguing topic. Today's show will cover the MTHFR gene, its origins and prevalence among the population, related genetic vulnerabilities, downstream effects, methylation in relation to infection, methylation as it relates to the environment, general treatment protocols and much more.

Also included will be Zoya's Pet Health segment on strange behavior, trauma and PTSD in your pets.

Here's the transcript of the show:

Cell Phone

Radiating lies: Political corruption and the concealment of cell phone risks

In an article published in the New York Times last week entitled "At C.D.C., a Debate Behind Recommendations on Cellphone Risk", author Danny Hakim discusses the controversy surrounding the potential health risks of using cell phones. Hakim writes that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued guidelines recommending "caution in cellphone use", due to the potentially harmful effects of radiation emitted by the wireless devices on human health. Included in the guidelines was information about reducing exposure among children. Just a few weeks after the CDC's publication, and amid rising concerns about cell phone safety, the CDC rescinded the advisory completely.

Today, the CDC website takes an ambiguous stance on the issue, stating:

Can using a cell phone cause cancer?

There is no scientific evidence that provides a definite answer to that question. Some organizations recommend caution in cell phone use. More research is needed before we know if using cell phones causes health effects. (1)

Hakim notes several agencies and individuals that have drawn stronger conclusions on the potential risks of such radiation. Among them is the International Agency for Research of Cancer, a branch of the World Health Organization, which listed the radio frequencies emitted by cell phones as a "possible carcinogen" in 2011.(2) Hakim identifies several countries' health authorities, including, Finland, the United Kingdom and Israel issuing public warnings about the potential hazards of non-ionizing radiation from cell phones.

As one of the foremost organizations tasked with ensuring the health and safety of Americans, it is troubling that the CDC has failed to warn us of the potential dangers of these devices. We find that even a cursory review of the scientific literature reveals a significant body of research that points to the harmful effects of cell phone radiation.


Levels of B12 in the brain found to be significantly lower in the elderly and those with autism or schizophrenia

A new study published in the online journal, Public Library of Science One (PLOS One) found that Vitamin B12 levels in the brain are significantly decreased in the elderly and are much lower in individuals with autism or schizophrenia, as compared to their peers at similar ages. For example, children with autism under the age of 10 were found to have three times lower brain B12 levels, which is similar to levels for generally healthy adults in their 50s, indicating a premature decrease.

The international research team led by Richard Deth, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology at Nova Southeastern University's (NSU) College of Pharmacy, analyzed tissue from otherwise healthy deceased donors along with tissue from donors who had autism or schizophrenia to make the comparisons.

"These are particularly significant findings because the differences we found in brain B12 with aging, autism and schizophrenia are not seen in the blood, which is where B12 levels are usually measured." said Dr. Deth. "The large deficits of brain B12 from individuals with autism and schizophrenia could help explain why patients suffering from these disorders experience neurological and neuropsychiatric symptoms."

Comment: B12 deficiency is far more common than most health care practitioners and the general public realize. One study suggests that 40 percent of people between the ages of 26 and 83 have plasma B12 levels in the low normal range - a range at which many experience neurological symptoms. It is possible that at least some of the symptoms we attribute to "normal" aging - such as memory loss, cognitive decline, decreased mobility are in part caused by B12 deficiency. As well as cognitive decline, many diseases may be caused by Vitamin B12 deficiency, including neurological disorders such as MS, cardiovascular disease, mental illness, learning and developmental disorders in children, autoimmune diseases and cancer.

The best dietary sources of B12 include meat, poultry fish and eggs, which is one reason why B12 deficiency is particularly common in vegetarians and vegans. The most recent studies using more sensitive techniques for detecting B12 deficiency have found that 68% of vegetarians and 83% of vegans are B12 deficient, compared to just 5% of omnivores.


As the Zika virus rages, El Salvador asks women not to get pregnant until 2018

South America’s biggest country has seen a rise in cases of a disease triggered by the little-known Zika virus being linked to a surge in congenital brain malformations.
The rapid spread of the Zika virus has prompted Latin American governments to urge women not to get pregnant for up to two years, an extraordinary precaution aimed at avoiding birth defects believed to be linked to the mosquito-borne illness.

What until recently was a seemingly routine public health problem for countries that are home to a certain type of mosquito has morphed into a potentially culture-shaping phenomenon in which the populations of several nations have been asked to delay procreation. The World Health Organization says at least 20 countries or territories in the region, including Barbados and Bolivia, Guadeloupe and Guatemala, Puerto Rico and Panama, have registered transmission of the virus.

Comment: For more see:


Is your shrimp mislabeled, contaminated and laced with antibiotics? Survey says, 'yes'

A survey by the Oceana group found that up to 30 percent of America's favorite seafood is being misrepresented and the practice may extend to the rest of the world.

In the only known study of its kind in the U.S. DNA testing confirmed that 30 percent of the 143 shrimp products tested from 111 grocery stores and restaurants were misrepresented. Oceana, the largest international advocacy organization focused solely on ocean conservation, found that consumers are often provided with little information about the shrimp they purchase, including where and how it was caught or farmed, making it difficult, if not impossible, for them to make informed choices.

"The results are not suprising," said marine biologist Nancy Bailey. "We've been tracking farmed shrimp for years and it's some of the most unregulated and mislabeled seafood in the world."


Leukaemia halted in the lab by targeting Hhex

Melbourne researchers have shown they can stop leukaemia in its tracks by targeting a protein that puts the handbrake on cancer cell growth.

The researchers discovered that targeting a protein called Hhex could cure acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) in preclinical disease models, and could be a key target for new therapies for human leukaemia.

Dr Ben Shields and Dr Matt McCormack from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute's Cancer and Haematology division discovered that loss of the Hhex protein put the handbrake on leukaemia cell growth and division. The protein is a critical factor enabling AML cells to grow uncontrollably, a hallmark of cancer.


Zika virus: Information about the latest global health scare

© Ma Qiang / Southern Metropolis Daily / Reuters
It is not known if the infected are currently in the UK
You may not have heard of it until very recently, but new cases of the Zika virus continue to pop up around the world. Spreading mostly in Latin America and the Caribbean, the virus has now been confirmed in three travelers from the UK.

A statement from Public Health England said those infected had recently traveled through South America, but it is not clear if the people involved have since returned to the UK.

The Britons travelled to Colombia, Suriname and Guyana, where they are suspected of contracting the mosquito-borne disease. Public Health England has not confirmed if any of the three are pregnant.

Why is Zika dangerous?

There is no vaccine for the virus, which can cause fever, rashes, joint pains, and conjunctivitis within days of being contracted. For most of those infected, the virus causes a short illness lasting between two and seven days. However, in some rare cases, it can result in serious illness and death.

Infants are most at risk from Zika, as mothers can pass the infection on to their fetus, leading to microcephaly - a rare birth defect where babies are born with abnormally small heads and developmental delays.

Treatment for the Zika virus focuses on pain relief and fever reduction, with some patients also given antihistamines for itchy skin rashes.

Preventative measures focus on general mosquito bite prevention, such as using insecticides, and special nets and screens.

Comment: See these related articles for further information on the Zika virus: