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Health

Colorado getting hit with dangerous respiratory virus

Colorado is being hit with a rise in cases of upper respiratory illness this year, and doctors are warning that without treatment, patients could suffer for weeks once they've contracted the virus.

Dr. John Torres, Medical contributor for KUSA in Denver, says that hospitals in Colorado are seeing a higher than normal number of cases of a virulent flu that starts out like a common cold but lingers for weeks once taking hold.

"After a few weeks, in some people, it can turn into more of a bacterial infection because their immune system has been suppressed a little bit, which is when we will move in with some antibiotics," Torres told Channel 9 News. "But for the most part, it's just the common cold virus that floats around this time of year, but it lingers for a long time."

Doctors say that if the flu continues for longer than a week, sufferers should get to a doctor because a round of antibiotics may be necessary.

To avoid the flu, doctors suggest that people keep their hands clean, avoid touching their faces after being around others, and keep workspaces sanitized.

Colorado isn't alone. The Centers for Disease Control already reported that this flu season has become "severe" and has exceeded the national baseline, hitting the epidemic threshold of 6.8 percent.

"Though we cannot predict what will happen the rest of this flu season, it's possible we may have a season that's more severe than most," director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Dr. Tom Frieden said during a press conference in December.
Health

Health officials in NYC warn of Legionnaire's disease outbreak


This 2009 colorized 8000X electron micrograph image provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a large grouping of Gram-negative Legionella pneumophila bacteria.
City health officials are warning New Yorkers about an increase in cases of Legionnaire's disease, a potentially deadly form of pneumonia, in the Bronx.

Eleven cases of the disease were reported in the Bronx in December, compared with two in December 2013 and three in December 2012. The 11 cases reported last month represent nearly 20 percent of the total of 61 cases the borough had in all of 2014. Most cases were in the northeast Bronx.

Legionnaire's disease is caused by exposure to the bacteria Legionella, an aquatic organism that grow in warm environments. People are exposed to it by inhaling contaminated aerosols from cooling towers, whirlpool spas, showers and faucets or drinking water contaminated with the bacteria.

The Health Department is looking into whether the cases are due to a common source.

Comment: It definitely would behoove NYC residents to avoid drinking city tap water and to be engaging in cold adaptation to help ward off bacteria.

Health

Can lifestyle changes help those with Crohn's disease?

Medical Book
© Shutterstock
Sometimes you may feel helpless when facing Crohn's disease. But changes in your diet and lifestyle may help control your symptoms and lengthen the time between flare-ups.

There's no firm evidence that what you eat actually causes inflammatory bowel disease. But certain foods and beverages can aggravate your signs and symptoms, especially during a flare-up.

writing
© Unknown
It can be helpful to keep a food diary to keep track of what you're eating, as well as how you feel. If you discover some foods are causing your symptoms to flare, you can try eliminating them. Here are some suggestions that may help:

Foods to avoid
  • Limit dairy products. Many people with inflammatory bowel disease find that problems such as diarrhea, abdominal pain and gas, improve by limiting or eliminating dairy products. You may be lactose intolerant - that is, your body can't digest the milk sugar (lactose) in dairy foods. Using an enzyme product such as Lactaid may help as well.
  • Try low-fat foods. If you have Crohn's disease of the small intestine, you may not be able to digest or absorb fat normally. Instead, fat passes through your intestine, making your diarrhea worse. Try avoiding butter, margarine, cream sauces and fried foods.

Comment: A simple and effective approach to relaxation and breathing exercises is Éiriú Eolas.

Each of us is a unique combination of environment, genetics, and personality. Food that causes problems for one patient, has little effect on another. Stress triggers and responses might differ considerably among individuals.

You may be unique, and yet, you are not alone. There are people in line in front of you, and those in line behind you. Those in front of you have been where you are and managed to work though it. They are your hope. Those behind you are where you have been, you are their hope. Connect with others, reach out and find a local support group or visit our forum .

Health

New antibiotic found in Maine soil proves effective against drug-resistant bacteria

© William Fowle/Northeast University
A previously uncultured bacterium, Eleftheria terrae, makes teixobactin, a new antibiotic.
Researchers may have found a new antibiotic that bacteria will not become resistant to for decades, according to a new study. The discovery came not in a lab, but in soil from Maine, using a little-known device that's "generating excitement."

Dr. Kim Lewis, director of Northeastern University's Antimicrobial Discovery Center, sought to find a new source of antibiotics other than synthesizing them in a lab. So he and Slava Epstein, a biology professor at the same Boston, Massachusetts school, headed into "a grassy field in Maine," Lewis told reporters during a Tuesday conference call. They took a soil sample, which yielded teixobactin, the previously undiscovered antibiotic. The journal Nature published their research on Wednesday.

Lewis then tested the compound for resistance development and did not find mutant MSRA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) or Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistant to teixobactin, which was found to block several different targets in the cell wall synthesis pathway. The antibiotic was effective against the deadly ‒ and difficult to treat ‒ staph infection in mice as well.

Teixobactin is thought to attack microbes by binding to fatty lipids that make up the bacterial cell wall, and it is difficult for a bacterium to alter such fundamental building blocks of the cell, Nature reported. By comparison, most antibiotics target proteins and it can be relatively easy for a microbe to become resistant to those drugs by accumulating mutations that alter the target protein's shape.

"Our impression is that nature produced a compound that evolved to be free of resistance," Lewis said to news@Northeastern. "This challenges the dogma that we've operated under that bacteria will always develop resistance. Well, maybe not in this case."

The antibiotic could be a huge weapon in the fight against drug resistance, a "serious threat" to world health. In the United States alone, at least two million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics each year, and at least 23,000 people die annually as a direct result of these infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Megaphone

GMO's: Setting the record straight

Michael Specter's story in The New Yorker about Dr. Vandana Shiva's work to protect public health from the effects of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) skewed the facts and fell short of the magazine's usually high standards for fairness.

In the piece published in the August 20th issue (and in a subsequent podcast on The New Yorker's website), Specter makes it clear that he does not approach the topic simply as a journalist, but also as a strong believer in GMOs. He makes no secret of the fact that he considers opposition to GMOs to be unfounded.

But Specter makes his case by ignoring a great deal of evidence that directly contradicts his opinions. By ignoring important facts and questions - scientific, economic and legal - he allows his personal biases to undermine journalistic balance. The end product is a story that mirrors the false myths perpetuated by Monsanto Company on its website and does a true disservice to New Yorker readers.

Comment: Additional articles carried on SOTT.NET about Michael Specter's story in The New Yorker:

Syringe

Australian pro-vaccine lobbyists trying to ban Dr. Sherri Tenpenny from speaking seminars about vaccine safety

Fresh on the heels of Australia's government effectively silencing criticism of vaccines and the promotion of homeopathic benefits, it appears a heated social media campaign has been launched to stop Dr. Sherri Tenpenny from stepping foot in Australia. Why - because she has talked about the damaging effects of vaccines. It turns out, she is set to give six seminars in March, along with a homeopath, on parenting healthy babies. Coincidentally, last year, the Australian Vaccination-Skeptics Network was literally forced to insert the word "skeptics" into their name. They also lost their charity status "after concerns it could negatively affect children's health."

Comment: It would appear that America is not the only place where the Anti vaxxer debate is a hot topic! Dr. Tenpenny a 'public health menace"? Her scheduled seminars in March, along with a homeopath, are considered 'an endangerment to public health' Why?! Because she is talking about the damaging effects of vaccines? Because she is informing the public about serious concerns based on research? Or maybe she is challenging the current medical status quo in Australia, offering important information to parents that is currently left out of the vaccination discussion. Either way the 'rousing onslaught' against Tenpenny is important to take note of, like other hotly debated topics, in the area of health and wellness, it is no surprise that she is being labeled negatively months before she is scheduled to appear in the country for seminars. If Australia's public health is really a top priority then a discussion on vaccine safety and alleged benefits, should be open for debate from both sides!

Health

9 people contract measles after visiting Disneyland

At least nine people have contracted measles after visiting Disneyland parks in Orange County over the holidays, the state Department of Public Health said Wednesday.

The local infected patients, who were from Alameda, Orange, Pasadena, Riverside and San Diego, range in age from 8 months to 21 years old. Just one of the infected individuals had been fully vaccinated.

The California Health Department has sent out an alert, warning doctors to be on the lookout for signs of measles.

Disneyland released a statement on Wednesday, addressing the issue.

"We are working with the health department to provide any information and assistance we can," Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chief Medical Officer Pamela Hymel said.

"Two Utah resident cases have also been confirmed and three additional California residents are also suspected to have measles and are under investigation," Ron Chapman of the CDPH said.

The confirmed and suspected patients reported visiting either Disneyland and/or California Adventure theme parks between Dec. 15 and Dec. 20 of last year, according to Chapman.

"It is likely that a person infectious with measles was at one of the theme parks on these dates," he said.
Bacon n Eggs

Study shows a little bit of fat goes a long way to fighting staph infections

© Reuters / Rick Wilking
It seems those extra holiday pounds could actually be good for your health. A study has found that fat cells under the skin may protect against the most prevalent type of staph infection by producing molecules that can directly kill invasive pathogens.

Richard Gallo, MD, PhD, professor, and chief of dermatology at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, and his colleagues have uncovered a previously unknown role for dermal fat cells, known as adipocytes: they produce antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) that help fend off invading bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus and other pathogens.
Syringe

HPV vaccines: 34 deaths reported in one month?


Say NO to HPV vaccines!
Death reports after HPV vaccines have been filed at a rate of less than five per month since Gardasil and Cervarix were approved for use in the United States in 2006/07. The SaneVax team was shocked when the latest available update from the VAERS (vaccine adverse event reporting system) database revealed 34 death reports after HPV vaccines in a single month.

You can pretty much bet that any anomaly of this magnitude bears investigation. The SaneVax team decided to run a search for only the deaths reported after administration of HPV vaccines within the last month. 35 death reports show up (We assume one was prior to the close of the previous month's stats). The other 34 are identical reports from "a nurse via a company sales representative."

To run the same search, go to www.medalerts.org and choose the HPV vaccines (HPV2, HPV4 and HPVX), death and a lower appeared on VAERS date of Oct 2014 - to run the same search our team did. You might want to take a look and see what you think.

Comment: We would not be surprised if the numbers were correct and even underestimated: Gardasil: Medical torture and child abuse by Big Pharma:
There is something deeply wrong with a giant pharmaceutical company spending hundreds of millions of dollars to manipulate women and influence legislation in order to generate a revenue stream of billions of dollars a year for itself at the expense of a gullible public. Gardasil is possibly the most dangerous vaccine on the market, with the potential to injure, maim, or even kill the children who receive it. [...]

Merck let 60,000 Americans die from Vioxx-related heart attacks before finally pulling the drug from the market when it could no longer deny the truth, and cold-bloodedly set aside $1.6 billion with the intention of fighting every claim for damages.
Talk about psychopathic calculation!

Arrow Up

Adopt wheat-free life for optimal health, doctors say

Lou Alcalay of Palm Desert was never in poor health, but the weight did slowly creep up on him over the years.

Alcalay's doctor, Dr. Joseph Scherger, advised losing some weight and suggested the book "Wheat Belly," a book advocating for the removal of wheat from everyday diet.

The science within the book resonated with Alcalay, and without hesitation, he gave up all grains, and stopped drinking beer. He still eats plenty of meats, beans and dairy. Within just a few short weeks, he started noticing dramatic changes around his waistline.

"The weight came off so fast," Alcalay, 84, who has maintained a 70-pound weight loss for more than a year. "I went from a size 44 waist to a size 34 waist. ... It's the most expensive diet I've ever done in my entire life. I had to get rid of all of my pants."

Comment: Check out some impressive "before and after" photos at Dr. William Davis page. For more information, read Toast was toast, or how Wheat Belly and its author changed my diet.

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