This is the Home Page for our quick-read nutritional health column for regional newspapers. If you have a local publication that might want to carry it, let us know or pass the link onto them.
While health “scientists” are focusing on shutdowns, masks, social distancing, and waiting for a COVID-19 vaccine, let’s look at the best approach which they’re not emphasizing. Many nutrition, biology, and medical scientists tell us we can bolster our immunity and improve our resistance to bacteria, viruses, and autoimmune diseases. So let’s do it.
In this day and age it’s “normal” for immunity to weaken as people get older. That’s why youngsters under the age of 20 generally have the best immune systems. It’s also why scientists say kids are nearly bulletproof when it comes to a COVID-19 infection. Folks over 70 have the weakest immune systems which is why so many have multiple chronic diseases. So, it makes sense that if old folks improve the health of their immune systems a COVID-19 infection is less likely to be a death sentence.
What do they have in common? Collateral damage from government decrees can eventually frustrate citizens—to the point where warnings are ignored. Many of us lived through the 1973 oil embargo. During the worst days of the embargo I’d drive to a gas station at night, when it was closed, and leave my car next to a pump. I’d show up in the morning before the station opened to be first in line for a fill up. It took two cars of course to pull that off.
Back in the day when the 1973 Arab oil embargo resulted in gasoline shortages, politicians got the bright idea to lower the speed limit to reduce gas consumption per mile. So, in 1974 Congress passed the National Maximum Speed Law. The bill mandated states to lower maximum highway speeds to 55 miles per hour (mph) in order to receive federal highway funds. Up to that time most states had speed limits ranging from 60 mph to 80 mph. Some roads in Nevada had no limits.1
Linda and I have known Reverend Paul Stetler since our earliest days in Stuart, Florida. We’ve always admired him and his family. So, when we were invited to hear him give the message at First Congregational United Church of Christ in Port Saint Lucie, we headed that way.
His message was partially based on Psalm 85:10 which, in one passage, has the line: “Righteousness and Peace Have Kissed.” It’s a complex message that seems to apply to many of our modern-day situations. As with many Bible verses the interpretations can be very complex. Basically, my take on the message is that if we are too righteous, and there is no room or respect for anyone who expresses a different opinion, there will be no peace. Therefore, forgiveness and mutual respect (a kiss) have its virtues.1 2
The people with the highest risk of a severe infection or death from COVID-19 are elderly males with underlying medical conditions. Yet some elderly males don’t even experience serious symptoms. That’s because several factors influence severity, including pre-existing levels of inflammation, natural immunity levels, variations in genetic makeups, and the amount and strain of virus that starts the infection.
As Dr. Fauci has explained, the reason many patients suffer the worst COVID-19 symptoms is because they have an immune system overreaction called a “cytokine storm.” In other words too much immunity can be worse than too little immunity. A “cytokine storm” is a sudden acute increase in circulating levels of different pro-inflammatory cytokines including IL-6, IL-1, TNF- a, and interferon. This increase in cytokines results in too many of them converging on the site of infection with destructive effects on human tissue. The damage to cellular interactions, vascular barriers, and capillaries can lead to multiorgan failure and ultimately death.
On September 10, 2020, the CDC updated its COVID-19 fatality rates for various age groups. Did you hear about it? The CDC is now estimating that COVID-19 fatality rates, for everyone less than 70, are the same or less than they are for the annual influenza virus. I see that as astonishingly good news because it means America can open up all the wayway—right now.
What the CDC reported was a significant reduction of its former estimates regarding the risks of dying from COVID-19. For many people the change is unbelievable which is why this column will examine the CDC’s numbers in detail. For instance, when it comes to school age children, COVID-19's fatality rate is lower than the fatality rate for the annual influenza bug that sweeps the country every year! Yes, that’s exactly what the CDC has reported. If true, that’s why children belong in school and college students should attend in-person college and stay on campus. Their lives should return to normal.
When the COVID-19 shutdown occurred about 6% of our population went into shock. They were the ones who always ate out and never cooked at home. One fellow groaned and said he hadn’t cooked in ten years.
The dining-out-only folks are much relieved these days because, in most localities, they can go back to their favorite haunts (those that survived being out of business). Unfortunately, we all know that restaurant food, even though it may follow the government’s “nutritional” guidelines, is not the best when it comes to nutrition. Oh, it usually tastes good for sure, but nutrition is not a restaurant’s primary goal because most patrons are seeking a certain flavor coupled with convenience and atmosphere rather than “cutting edge nutrition.”
Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse or psychological manipulation whereby a person or entity manipulates an individual, or the citizens of an entire country, with the goal of making the victims question their own sanity, memory, perception, judgment, or sense of reality. It’s done by distorting the truth repeatedly with denial, misdirection, contradiction, and misinformation which sow seeds of confusion, doubt, and eventually even changes perceptions of right and wrong.1
From all over the world thousands of scientists are studying how and why Omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFAs) influence human health. There is considerable agreement that Omega-3 EFAs are not only essential for life, but they also play a very important role in immunity.
I’ve provided many peer-reviewed reports that explain the benefits of Omega-3. Some are more than 20 years old and they underscore just how many years this critical information has been around. But to this day it’s mostly ignored or misunderstood by the masses and even medical doctors. Since it doesn’t seem to catch on, some people may be thinking that the Omega-3 story is just another worn out marketing gimmick and it’s time to move on. They couldn’t be more mistaken.
Back in 1969 I purchased my first horse. His given name was Big Red and he was named appropriately. I always just called him Big. He was green broke when I got him and it took quite some time to straighten both of us out. Over the many years we were together we had some really interesting adventures.
Big had a mind of his own, but he was usually on his best behavior when in the mountains. Together we traveled wilderness trails, crossed swift mountain rivers, and plowed through snow packed mountain hillsides. In 1974, when following a game trial in the Wallowa Whiteman National Forest in NE Oregon, the ride turned into an adventure of the highest sort.
It’s an uncomfortable feeling when one’s fundamental premises forming his worldview are revealed as inadequate or simply wrong. When it happens to bureaucrats, career politicians, educators, and even medical professionals too often they end up struggling against the truth and doubling down.1
People who are sheltered from competing in the free market are more likely to defy new realities. If misguided businessmen or underperforming employees don’t make a profit, they are eventually forced out of business. This is why entrepreneurs and nonunion workers are considered to be natural risk takers because they do not seek positions that promise the greatest security. That’s why when bureaucrats make decisions that impact those of us in the private sector, quite often they do not understand our objections or motives.