From eNewsletter 5/6/2020
DID YOU KNOW that a little extra sugar can make us crave just about anything? But its sweetness doesn't fully explain our desire. Instead, new research in Nature shows that sugar has its own back channel to the brain.
In the intestines, signals heralding sugar's arrival travel to the brain, where they nurture an appetite for more. The authors state we need to separate the concepts of sweet and sugar. Sweet is liking, but sugar is wanting, making sugar much more addictive.
Steve & Bonnie: Here's the latest information we thought you'd be interested in.
Vitamin D Deficiency Preliminary results from a study carried out by scientists from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Foundation Trust and the University of East Anglia have linked low levels of the hormone vitamin D with COVID-19 mortality rates across Europe. A simple statistical test showed there was a significant correlation between the figures, where populations with lower than average concentrations of the vitamin also featured more deaths from SARS-CoV-2. Nutrients Are Where It's At A systematic review from Diabetes & Metabolic Syndrome: Clinical Research & Reviews will report nutritional interventions to enhance immunity in viral infections taking into consideration the current epidemic of COVID-19. This comprehensive review, to be published in the July-August issue, reports evidence on several vitamins, particularly A, C, D and E, as well the mineral magnesium, and trace elements zinc, selenium, and copper. Furthermore, a large number of nutraceuticals and several probiotics have also shown immune enhancing effects for either preventing or treating viral infections, especially influenza-like illnesses. Do Not Mask Small Children Centers for Disease and Prevention Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommend against masks for small children, especially babies, because of the high risk for suffocation.
Remdesivir "Will Be the Standard of Care," According to Fauci Hospitalized patients with advanced COVID-19 and lung involvement who received remdesivir (Gilead Sciences) recovered 4 days faster than similar patients who received placebo, according to a preliminary data analysis from a randomized, controlled trial involving 1063 patients, which began on February 21. The trial, sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, is the first clinical trial launched in the United States to evaluate an experimental treatment for COVID-19. On the basis of this data, remdesivir "will be the standard of care" for patients with COVID-19, said Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Soon after this comment, the FDA authorized emergency use of remdesivir. Did we mention Gilead spent $2.45 million on lobbying in the first quarter of this year? Antibody Test Update More than 50 scientists led by an immunologist at UC San Francisco did what the FDA had not done: verified that 14 coronavirus antibody tests now on the market actually deliver accurate results. These tests are crucial to reopening the economy, but public health experts have raised urgent concerns about their quality. The new research, posted last week, confirmed some of those fears: of the 14 tests, only three delivered consistently reliable results. Even the best had some flaws. Low and behold, on Monday, the FDA said it is now requiring any lab selling antibody tests to prove their efficacy first. This mess is why we have held off procuring antibody testing for you. Is It Stomach Flu or COVID-19? About a third of patients who present with COVID-19 have gastrointestinal symptoms, according to a new study in Gastroenterology. In the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak, there was a sense that cough, shortness of breath, and fever were the only relevant symptoms; in fact, many centers were only testing patients who had those symptoms. Now, experts realize that gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting, are a big part of this disease. However, patients who have gastrointestinal symptoms at the time of testing have a less severe disease course. Run on Pepcid for COVID-19 Famotidine is the active ingredient in Pepcid, an over-the-counter (OTC) medication commonly used to alleviate heartburn. Since March 13, researchers at Northwell Health, a network of hospitals in New York, have been enrolling patients hospitalized with COVID-19 into their study of famotidine, which is being delivered through an IV in megadoses nine times greater than the typical over-the-counter dose. The drug is being given in combination with the antimalarial hydroxychloroquine. Researchers said some data on safety will be available "in a few weeks," but did not say when data will be available showing whether the drug combination is effective. Yet, this has caused OTC Pepcid to go out of stock all over the US. Not only is this inane because it is incredibly unsafe to take 9 times the typical amount of an OTC drug, but for those who need it for heartburn have less alternatives because of the Zantac recall. Clean Your Devices While this should come as no surprise, a new study warns mobile phones could be acting as "Trojan horses" for coronavirus and urges billions of users worldwide to decontaminate their devices daily. While all the studies predate the current pandemic, the authors say the SARS-CoV-2 virus is probably present on mobile phones and other touch-screen devices of coronavirus sufferers. Phones should be decontaminated daily and regularly with either 70 per cent isopropyl or by sanitizing with (ultraviolet) devices like PhoneSoap. False Negatives Patients who recover from COVID-19 can still test positive for SARS-CoV-2 after two negative tests, researchers report. Most institutions are using two consecutive negative results of RT-PCR testing for SARS-CoV-2 as a criterion for discharging patients who have recovered from COVID-19. The report in Clinical Infectious Diseases adds further confusion to testing protocols. First At-Home COVID-19 Kit The FDA has issued the first authorization for an at-home COVID-19 test kit. LabCorp, the diagnostics company producing the tests, says people who are eligible can swab their nose to collect a fluid sample, but they will still need to send it to a lab for testing. The test costs $119. This is not an antibody test, it only shows if you are positive for the coronavirus. Flu Shot for Next Season? A study in the January issue of Vaccine found that in military subjects receiving the flu shot, "the laboratory data showed increased odds of coronavirus and human metapneumovirus in individuals receiving influenza vaccination". This is just one study, but infectious disease experts may want to explore this issue rigorously well before next flu season comes around. Progesterone Scientists in Nature found that the hormone progesterone interfered with the SARS-CoV-2 virus's replication, perhaps partially explaining why women are less prone to die from COVID-19 than men. Two Cheap Ways to Lower COVID-19 Transmission In a new study from journal mSystems, a team of researchers reveal two things every home and office can do to lower the transmission of COVID-19. First, scientists recommend opening up windows to improve air flow. Second, letting more natural light into a room will help create a healthier environment. Daylight exists as a free, widely available resource to building occupants with little downside to its use and many documented positive human health benefits. One of the biggest impacts people can make in their home or workplace is increasing the air flow. Scientists say the more air coming into a building from the outside can dilute the amount of virus particles floating around your office. The review warns that even the best air filters can allow virus particles into a closed-off building. The scientists add that viruses like drier air and can't travel as far in humid conditions. Humidity can also affect the envelope protecting many virus particles, including coronavirus. Enough humidity can disrupt or even make a virus inactive.
BEANS VERSUS PLANT BASED MEAT