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University of Southampton study: Using copper to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses

30 Mar

Gregor Grass, Christopher Rensing, and Marc Solioz wrote in the 2010 article, PMCID: Metallic Copper as an Antimicrobial Surface:

ABSTRACT
Bacteria, yeasts, and viruses are rapidly killed on metallic copper surfaces, and the term “contact killing” has been coined for this process. While the phenomenon was already known in ancient times, it is currently receiving renewed attention. This is due to the potential use of copper as an antibacterial material in health care settings. Contact killing was observed to take place at a rate of at least 7 to 8 logs per hour, and no live microorganisms were generally recovered from copper surfaces after prolonged incubation. The antimicrobial activity of copper and copper alloys is now well established, and copper has recently been registered at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the first solid antimicrobial material. In several clinical studies, copper has been evaluated for use on touch surfaces, such as door handles, bathroom fixtures, or bed rails, in attempts to curb nosocomial infections. In connection to these new applications of copper, it is important to understand the mechanism of contact killing since it may bear on central issues, such as the possibility of the emergence and spread of resistant organisms, cleaning procedures, and questions of material and object engineering. Recent work has shed light on mechanistic aspects of contact killing. These findings will be reviewed here and juxtaposed with the toxicity mechanisms of ionic copper. The merit of copper as a hygienic material in hospitals and related settings will also be discussed…. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3067274/

See, Antimicrobial applications of copper https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1438463916300669

Some examples of antimicrobial copper products https://www.bing.com/shop?q=antimicrobial+copper+consumer+products&FORM=SHOPPA&originIGUID=28A0FB6787B744CFAE086762DF2CC635

Science Daily reported in the 2015 article,  Using copper to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

New research from the University of Southampton has found that copper can effectively help to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, which are linked to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
Animal coronaviruses that ‘host jump’ to humans, such as SARS and MERS, result in severe infections with high mortality. The Southampton researchers found that a closely-related human coronavirus — 229E — can remain infectious on common surface materials for several days, but is rapidly destroyed on copper.
A newly-published paper in mBio — a journal of the American Society for Microbiology — reports that human coronavirus 229E, which produces a range of respiratory symptoms from the common cold to more lethal outcomes such as pneumonia, can survive on surface materials including ceramic tiles, glass, rubber and stainless steel for at least five days. While human-to-human transmission is important, infections can be contracted by touching surfaces contaminated by respiratory droplets from infected individuals, or hand touching, leading to a wider and more rapid spread
On copper, and a range of copper alloys — collectively termed ‘antimicrobial copper’ — the coronavirus was rapidly inactivated (within a few minutes, for simulated fingertip contamination). Exposure to copper destroyed the virus completely and irreversibly, leading the researchers to conclude that antimicrobial copper surfaces could be employed in communal areas and at any mass gatherings to help reduce the spread of respiratory viruses and protect public health.
Lead researcher Dr Sarah Warnes said: “Transmission of infectious diseases via contaminated surfaces is far more important than was originally thought, and this includes viruses that cause respiratory infections. This is especially important when the infectious dose is low and just a few virus particles can initiate an infection.
“Human coronavirus, which also has ancestral links with bat-like viruses responsible for SARS and MERS, was found to be permanently and rapidly deactivated upon contact with copper. What’s more, the viral genome and structure of the viral particles were destroyed, so nothing remained that could pass on an infection. With the lack of antiviral treatments, copper offers a measure that can help reduce the risk of these infections spreading.”
Speaking on the importance of the study, Professor Bill Keevil, co-author and Chair in Environmental Healthcare at the University of Southampton, said: “Respiratory viruses are responsible for more deaths, globally, than any other infectious agent. The evolution of new respiratory viruses, and the re-emergence of historic virulent strains, poses a significant threat to human health…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151110102147.htm

Citation:

Using copper to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses
Date: November 10, 2015
Source: University of Southampton
Summary:
Copper can effectively help to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, which are linked to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), new research shows. Animal coronaviruses that ‘host jump’ to humans, such as SARS and MERS, result in severe infections with high mortality. Researchers found that a closely-related human coronavirus – 229E – can remain infectious on common surface materials for several days, but is rapidly destroyed on copper.

Journal Reference:
S. L. Warnes, Z. R. Little and C. W. Keevil. Human coronavirus 229E remains infectious on common touch surface materials. mBio, November 2015 DOI: 10.1128/mBio.01697-15

Here is the 2015 press release from the University of Southampton:

PUBLIC RELEASE: 10-NOV-2015

Using copper to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON

New research from the University of Southampton has found that copper can effectively help to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, which are linked to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
Animal coronaviruses that ‘host jump’ to humans, such as SARS and MERS, result in severe infections with high mortality. The Southampton researchers found that a closely-related human coronavirus – 229E – can remain infectious on common surface materials for several days, but is rapidly destroyed on copper.
A newly-published paper in mBio – a journal of the American Society for Microbiology – reports that human coronavirus 229E, which produces a range of respiratory symptoms from the common cold to more lethal outcomes such as pneumonia, can survive on surface materials including ceramic tiles, glass, rubber and stainless steel for at least five days. While human-to-human transmission is important, infections can be contracted by touching surfaces contaminated by respiratory droplets from infected individuals, or hand touching, leading to a wider and more rapid spread
On copper, and a range of copper alloys – collectively termed ‘antimicrobial copper’ – the coronavirus was rapidly inactivated (within a few minutes, for simulated fingertip contamination). Exposure to copper destroyed the virus completely and irreversibly, leading the researchers to conclude that antimicrobial copper surfaces could be employed in communal areas and at any mass gatherings to help reduce the spread of respiratory viruses and protect public health.
Lead researcher Dr Sarah Warnes said: “Transmission of infectious diseases via contaminated surfaces is far more important than was originally thought, and this includes viruses that cause respiratory infections. This is especially important when the infectious dose is low and just a few virus particles can initiate an infection.
“Human coronavirus, which also has ancestral links with bat-like viruses responsible for SARS and MERS, was found to be permanently and rapidly deactivated upon contact with copper. What’s more, the viral genome and structure of the viral particles were destroyed, so nothing remained that could pass on an infection. With the lack of antiviral treatments, copper offers a measure that can help reduce the risk of these infections spreading.”
Speaking on the importance of the study, Professor Bill Keevil, co-author and Chair in Environmental Healthcare at the University of Southampton, said: “Respiratory viruses are responsible for more deaths, globally, than any other infectious agent. The evolution of new respiratory viruses, and the re-emergence of historic virulent strains, poses a significant threat to human health.
“The rapid inactivation and irreversible destruction of the virus observed on copper and copper alloy surfaces suggests that the incorporation of copper alloy surfaces – in conjunction with effective cleaning regimes and good clinical practice – could help control transmission of these viruses.”
Previous research by Professor Keevil and Dr Warnes has proved copper’s efficacy against norovirus, influenza and hospital superbugs, such as MRSA and Klebsiella, plus stopping the transfer of antibiotic resistance genes to other bacteria to create new superbugs.
###
For more information on antimicrobial copper, visit http://www.antimicrobialcopper.org
Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

See, EPA Registration Copper Stewardship Site https://www.copperalloystewardship.com/

ScienceNetLinks wrote in Antibacterial Doorknobs:

Making Sense of the Research
You may have heard that doorknobs and sink handles are big germ-carriers. With so many people handling them all day long, often one right after another, it isn’t hard to see how germs from one person’s hand could end up on another’s by way of a doorknob.
You probably didn’t know that copper had antibacterial properties. But if it were your job to design the interiors of large buildings, or buy fixtures for schools, hospitals, or other big institutions, you’d probably have heard this. Manufacturers often promote copper’s proven bacteria-killing properties to sell fixtures made of brass, bronze, or other metals with a high copper content.
This experiment shows the importance of considering all factors before reaching a conclusion. Copper helps kill germs; therefore, it makes sense that copper-based doorknobs would pass along fewer germs than knobs made of glass, plastic, steel, or other materials. However, there’s a crucial factor that may be left out of this scenario: the sweat from the hands that touch the doorknobs.
It was known that sweat can corrode copper alloys (metal mixtures) like brass in the long term. But in this study, the researchers studied the effects of sweat on copper surfaces within a few hours of contact. They found that within as little as an hour, the salt in sweat can form a corrosive layer on the surface of the metal, which would prevent the electrochemical reaction that kills microorganisms.
Now, a full hour after someone touches a doorknob may sound like a long time for this effect to take hold. But consider how many people handle doorknobs or similar fixtures in a day: more than enough to neutralize the metal’s germ-killing powers as long as the building stays busy. What’s more, Bond points out that frequently touched items collect salts from the sweat of many people, which makes the corrosive layer tougher and longer lasting.
It would be difficult to study this in a real-life setting, for a number of reasons. In order to control the study properly, researchers would have to study bacterial colonies on brass fixtures handled all day long, and compare them to other brass fixtures that were somehow protected from sweat but exposed to the same people’s skin microorganisms. However, the research suggests that institutions using copper-based fixtures shouldn’t slack off on cleaning them, nor should they make any less of an effort to make sure people keep washing their hands.
Now try and answer these questions:
1. Why have copper-based doorknobs, sink handles, and other fixtures been promoted as healthy choices for schools, hospitals, and surgical wards?
2. What did this study find out about the relationship between sweat and the usual properties of copper?
3. What does this say, in your opinion, about the challenges of coming up with practical uses for scientific discoveries?
You may want to check out these related resources:

In the Science Update Triclosan and Staph , http://sciencenetlinks.com/science-news/science-updates/triclosan-and-staph/ learn how some antibacterial chemicals may actually backfire and actively help a kind of bacteria they’re designed to kill.
The Science Update UV Disinfectant http://sciencenetlinks.com/science-news/science-updates/uv-disinfectant/ describes another approach to helping keep hospitals germ-free.
For more about alloys, see the video Shape Memory Alloys, http://sciencenetlinks.com/videos/shape-memory-alloys/ in which Dr. Ainissa Ramirez, associate professor of mechanical engineering and materials science at Yale, demonstrates “metals with a memory” used in space, in robots, and even in your mouth! http://sciencenetlinks.com/science-news/science-updates/antibacterial-doorknobs/

More research is necessary to find products and techniques to halt the destructive properties of viruses.

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Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

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http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

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Babraham Institute study: How to boost immune response to vaccines in older people

28 Mar

The WebMD article What Is Your Immune System? described the immune system:

You’ve heard of your immune system. But how much do you know about it?
There’s a good reason to find out. When you understand everything that it does for you, and how everyday things affect it, you can help it keep you well.
1. It Looks Out for You
Your immune system works to root out germs and other invaders that have no business in your body.
For example, if you inhale a cold virus through your nose, your immune system targets that virus and either stops it in its tracks or primes you to recover. It takes time to get over an infection, and sometimes you need medicine to help, but the immune system is the cornerstone of prevention and recovery.
2. It Likes It When You Relax
Do your best to tame your stress. When you’re wound up, your immune system doesn’t work as well as it does when you’re confident and mellow about your challenges. That may make you more likely to get sick.
3. It’s Got Agents Standing By.
Other than your nervous system, your immune system is the most complex system in your body. It’s made up of tissues, cells, and organs, including:
• Your tonsils
• Your digestive system
• Your bone marrow
• Your skin
• Your lymph nodes
• Your spleen
• Thin skin on the inside of your nose, throat, and genitals
All of these help create or store cells that work around the clock to keep your whole body healthy.
4. It Learns From Your Past
You’re born with a certain level of protection, or “immunity.” But it can get better.
Think of a baby or young child who comes down with colds, earaches, or other everyday illnesses often and babies who are breast feed continue to get antibodies from their mother while they are making their own.. Their immune system is creating a “bank”of antibodies as they are exposed to illnesses for the first time, enabling them to fight off future invaders.
Vaccines work in much the same way. They turn on your immune system by introducing your body to a tiny amount of a virus (usually a killed or weakened one). Your body makes antibodies in response that protects against threats like measles, whooping cough, flu, or meningitis.Then, when you come in contact with that virus in your everyday life, your immune system is already primed to kick in so that you don’t get sick….. https://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/immune-system-function

The immune system of seniors is weaker than those of healthy young people.

Camille Noe Pagán wrote in the WebMD article, How Aging Affects Your Immune System:

What’s Happening With Your Immune System?
It’s a complex network of cells, tissues, and organs. Together, they defend your body against things that can cause infection, like bacteria.
Why does it ease a bit as you get older? That’s still a bit of a mystery.
“The medical community is still trying to determine exactly how and why immunity decreases with age,” says Kira Rubtsova, PhD. Rubtsova is an immunity researcher at National Jewish Health in Denver.
What researchers do know is that most older adults:
Don’t respond as well to vaccines: Your immune system includes T cells, which attack other, illness-causing cells. They’re able to “remember” an invader, then defend against it better later. When you’re older, you make fewer T cells, and most vaccines require new ones to work.
The exception? The shingles vaccine. That’s one of the reasons it works so well for the senior set.
Are more likely to get sick: Not only do you have fewer immune cells as you age, the ones you do have don’t communicate with each other as well. That means they take longer to react to harmful germs.
Recover from injuries, infection, and illness more slowly: “Your body produces fewer immune cells, including white blood cells,” Rubtsova says. “That can slow down healing.”
How Do You Know When It’s Happening?
There’s no set age when immunity decreases.
“It’s like gray hair — it happens for everyone at a different rate,” Rubtsova says. There’s no single test that can tell you that your immune system isn’t functioning optimally. “There are certain immune markers we can test for, but it’s not the same as being tested for, say, heart disease,” Glatt says.
That’s why it’s important to go to the doctor regularly, and get medical help if you get sick often or if you’re having trouble healing after an injury or illness.
How Can You Stay Healthy?
Stay on top of your health. If you have diabetes, arthritis, or other things that affect how you feel and function, follow your doctor’s recommendations. “Keeping illnesses like diabetes well-controlled takes less of a toll on your immune system,” Glatt says.
Sleep well. “Research clearly shows that too little sleep — or poor-quality sleep — lowers immunity, even in young healthy people,” says Gisele Wolf-Klein, MD. You should be getting at least 7 hours a night. If you snore or have trouble falling or staying asleep, see your doctor. You could have a sleep disorder.
Look for ways to reduce stress. Over time, stress may lessen your immune response. “When you’re constantly worried about something, it takes a toll on your body,” Wolf-Klein says. It can also trigger other issues, like poor sleep and a bad diet, which both may affect your immunity.
Steer clear of sick people. “The truth is, when you’re older, you have to be especially careful about germ exposure, because you’re more likely to become ill, too,” Wolf-Klein says. When you are around people who have contagious conditions, like a cold or the flu, try not to get too close, and wash your hands more often.
Don’t skip your vaccines. Even though they may not be as effective when you’re older, they’re still an important way to lower your risk of many serious illnesses, including the flu and pneumonia. Check with your doctor to make sure you’re up to date on your vaccinations.
Move more often. Moderate exercise helps keep you fit, which makes your immune system stronger. Research also suggests it helps cells move more freely, which helps them do their job better.
Eat well. There’s no one diet that improves immunity. But researchers do know that a varied diet full of vitamin- and mineral-rich foods (like fresh vegetables and fruit) helps your body — including your immune system — function at its best. Eating a healthy diet also helps you weigh what you should, which may put less stress on your body and improve immunity.
Don’t smoke. Smoking weakens your body’s immune response, making you more susceptible to illness and infection. Your doctor can help you figure out how you can quit….                                                                                                     https://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/guide/seniors-boost-immunity#1

See, 5 Ways Seniors Can Strengthen Their Immune System https://www.homecareassistancemesa.com/strengthen-seniors-immune-system

Science Daily reported in How to boost immune response to vaccines in older people: Apply immune expertise and some genital wart cream!

Research just published by the Linterman lab shows that the immune system of older mice can be given a helping hand by applying immunology expertise and some genital wart treatment (don’t try this at home just yet)!
Mice and humans show similar age-dependent changes in their immune system so this finding offers hope for easily increasing the robustness of vaccination response in the older population.
As we age, the function of our immune system declines, rendering us more susceptible to infections, and making us less able to generate protective immunity after vaccination. By understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underpin this poor response in older individuals, researchers in the Linterman lab were able to repurpose an existing treatment for genital warts, and demonstrate that this was effective in overcoming the age-related effects on two of the many cell types making up our immune system. The research is published online in the journal eLife.
Dr Michelle Linterman, a group leader in the Institute’s Immunology research programme, said: “The current coronavirus pandemic highlights that older members of our families and communities are more susceptible to the morbidity and mortality associated with infectious diseases. Therefore, it is imperative that we understand how the immune system in older people works, and to explore how we might be able to boost their immune responses to vaccines to ensure they work well in this vulnerable part of our society.”
Vaccines work by generating antibodies that are able to block the ability of pathogens to infect us. Antibody secreting cells are produced in the germinal centre, immune reaction hubs that forms after infection or vaccination. With age, the magnitude and quality of the germinal centre reaction declines.
Immune cells called T follicular helper cells are essential to the germinal centre response. In this study the team used mice and humans to investigate why T follicular helper cell numbers decline with age, and if there is a way to boost them upon vaccination.
“The germinal centre response is a highly collaborative process that requires multiple cell types to interact at the right place and the right time. Therefore, it made sense to us that defects in one or more of these cell types could explain the poor germinal centre response observed in older individuals after vaccination,” explains Dr Linterman.
The researchers found that older mice and humans form fewer T follicular helper cells after vaccination, which is linked with a poor germinal centre response and antibody response…..      [Emphasis Added]                      https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200327113752.htm

Citation:

How to boost immune response to vaccines in older people
Apply immune expertise and some genital wart cream!
Date: March 27, 2020
Source: Babraham Institute
Summary:
Identifying interventions that improve vaccine efficacy in older persons is vital to deliver healthy aging for an aging population. Immunologists have identified a route for counteracting the age-related loss of two key immune cell types by using genital wart cream to boost immune response to vaccination in aged mice. After this validation in mice, the findings offer an attractive intervention to tailor the make-up of vaccines for older people.

Journal Reference:
Marisa Stebegg, Alexandre Bignon, Danika Lea Hill, Alyssa Silva-Cayetano, Christel Krueger, Ine Vanderleyden, Silvia Innocentin, Louis Boon, Jiong Wang, Martin S Zand, James Dooley, Jonathan Clark, Adrian Liston, Edward Carr, Michelle A Linterman. Rejuvenating conventional dendritic cells and T follicular helper cell formation after vaccination. eLife, 2020; 9 DOI: 10.7554/eLife.52473

Here is the press release from Babraham Institute:

NEWS RELEASE 27-MAR-2020
How to boost immune response to vaccines in older people
Apply immune expertise and some genital wart cream!
BABRAHAM INSTITUTE
Research just published by the Linterman lab shows that the immune system of older mice can be given a helping hand by applying immunology expertise and some genital wart treatment (don’t try this at home just yet)!
Mice and humans show similar age-dependent changes in their immune system so this finding offers hope for easily increasing the robustness of vaccination response in the older population.
As we age, the function of our immune system declines, rendering us more susceptible to infections, and making us less able to generate protective immunity after vaccination. By understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underpin this poor response in older individuals, researchers in the Linterman lab were able to repurpose an existing treatment for genital warts, and demonstrate that this was effective in overcoming the age-related effects on two of the many cell types making up our immune system. The research is published online in the journal eLife.
Dr Michelle Linterman, a group leader in the Institute’s Immunology research programme, said: “The current coronavirus pandemic highlights that older members of our families and communities are more susceptible to the morbidity and mortality associated with infectious diseases. Therefore, it is imperative that we understand how the immune system in older people works, and to explore how we might be able to boost their immune responses to vaccines to ensure they work well in this vulnerable part of our society.”
Vaccines work by generating antibodies that are able to block the ability of pathogens to infect us. Antibody secreting cells are produced in the germinal centre, immune reaction hubs that forms after infection or vaccination. With age, the magnitude and quality of the germinal centre reaction declines.
Immune cells called T follicular helper cells are essential to the germinal centre response. In this study the team used mice and humans to investigate why T follicular helper cell numbers decline with age, and if there is a way to boost them upon vaccination.
“The germinal centre response is a highly collaborative process that requires multiple cell types to interact at the right place and the right time. Therefore, it made sense to us that defects in one or more of these cell types could explain the poor germinal centre response observed in older individuals after vaccination,” explains Dr Linterman.
The researchers found that older mice and humans form fewer T follicular helper cells after vaccination, which is linked with a poor germinal centre response and antibody response. By developing our understanding of the cellular and molecular events occurring in the germinal centre after vaccination, the researchers identified that T follicular helper cells in older mice and people received less stimulatory interactions from their immune system co-workers. By using a cream (imiquimod, currently used to treat genital warts in humans) on the site of immunisation to boost the number of stimulatory cells, they were able to restore the formation of T follicular helper cells in older mice and also rescue the age-dependent defects in another immune cell type (dendritic cells). Encouragingly, this demonstrates that the age-related defects in T follicular helper cell formation in ageing are not irreversible, and can be overcome therapeutically.
The full picture and evaluation of whether this approach will work as an intervention in humans requires more research into why the germinal centre response changes with age, and what can be done to overcome this. Once achieved, it could be that clinical trials are established to incorporate this knowledge into new vaccine formulations for older people.
###
Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

Resources:

How Your Immune System Works – HowStuffWorks https://health.howstuffworks.com/human-body/systems/immune/immune-system3.htm

Difference Between Immune Response to Bacteria and Virus … https://pediaa.com/difference-between-immune-response-to-bacteria-and-virus

Bats’ immune system may be why their viruses can be deadly … https://www.sciencenews.org/article/bats-immune-system-viruses-ebola-marburg-people

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©
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North Carolina State University study: To stay positive, live in the moment — but plan ahead

26 Mar

Medical News Today described health in What is good health?

Fast facts on health
Here are some key points about health. More detail is in the main article.
• Health can be defined as physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and as a resource for living a full life.
• It refers not only to the absence of disease, but the ability to recover and bounce back from illness and other problems.
• Factors for good health include genetics, the environment, relationships, and education.
• A healthful diet, exercise, screening for diseases, and coping strategies can all enhance a person’s health….
Types
Mental and physical health are the two most commonly discussed types of health. We also talk about “spiritual health,” “emotional health,” and “financial health,” among others. These have also been linked to lower stress levels and mental and physical wellbeing.
Physical health
In a person who experiences physical health, bodily functions are working at peak performance, due not only to a lack of disease, but also to regular exercise, balanced nutrition, and adequate rest. We receive treatment, when necessary, to maintain the balance.
Physical wellbeing involves pursuing a healthful lifestyle to decrease the risk of disease. Maintaining physical fitness, for example, can protect and develop the endurance of a person’s breathing and heart function, muscular strength, flexibility, and body composition.
Physical health and well-being also help reduce the risk of an injury or health issue. Examples include minimizing hazards in the workplace, practicing safe sex, practicing good hygiene, or avoiding the use of tobacco, alcohol, or illegal drugs.
Mental health
Mental health refers to a person’s emotional, social, and psychological wellbeing. Mental health is as important as physical health to a full, active lifestyle.
It is harder to define mental health than physical health, because, in many cases, diagnosis depends on the individual’s perception of their experience. With improvements in testing, however, some signs of some types of mental illness are now becoming “visible” in CT scans and genetic testing.
Mental health is not only the absence of depression, anxiety, or another disorder.
It also depends on the ability to:
• enjoy life
• bounce back after difficult experiences
• achieve balance
• adapt to adversity
• feel safe and secure
• achieve your potential
Physical and mental health are linked. If chronic illness affects a person’s ability to complete their regular tasks, this may lead to depression and stress, for example, due to money problems…. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/150999#types

Mindfulness is a possible technique for coping with stress.

Psychology Today defined mindfulness in What Is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention to the present. This state encompasses observing one’s thoughts and feelings without judging them as good or bad.
To live mindfully is to live in the moment and reawaken oneself to the present, rather than dwelling on the past or anticipating the future. Mindfulness can also be a healthy way to identify and manage latent emotions that are causing problems in personal or professional relationships.
Mindfulness is frequently used in meditation and certain kinds of therapy. It has many positive benefits, including lowering stress levels, reducing harmful ruminating, and protecting against depression and anxiety. Research even suggests that mindfulness can help people better cope with rejection and social isolation…. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/basics/mindfulness
Mindfulness can help individuals become more resilient in difficult situations.
Tamara A. Russell and Gerson Siegmund wrote in What and who? Mindfulness in the mental health setting:
Summary and conclusions
When used as a clinical intervention for major depressive disorder, there is good evidence that MBCT can prevent relapse to a degree that is at least similar to currently available treatments. It may have advantages for particular subgroups of depressed individuals with more long-standing, recurrent depressive illness and childhood adversity. Evidence for efficacy in other domains of mental ill health is less convincing, but it is emerging. Although strong evidence exists for the application of mindfulness in the management of anxiety (generalised), this work does not seem as prevalent in the UK setting. This may be because CBT approaches are very effective for anxiety disorders so there is less of a driver to find alternatives.
The breadth of ‘mindfulness interventions’ continues to grow, from standardised protocols to peer-led drop-ins, apps and self-help materials. Navigating this growing landscape in a way that is true to the transformational possibilities of mindfulness and that allows clients to connect to mindfulness in a meaningful and healthy way presents some challenges. Some recommendations have been made here to help in this endeavour. Specifically, to know the state of the evidence, to be aware of relevant client characteristics, and to know your own limitations as a teacher or facilitator of mindfulness. Continuing personal and professional development is essential and will have an impact on efficacy. These are exciting times as the impact of mindfulness training spreads throughout our health services, offering a chance for both staff and clients to benefit and improve their mental ‘wealth’. However, it is most important that this endeavour is conducted in a mindful way – paying attention, on purpose, moment by moment and without judgement…. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5353507/

A North Carolina State University examined how to stay positive.

Science Daily reported in To stay positive, live in the moment — but plan ahead:

A recent study from North Carolina State University finds that people who manage to balance living in the moment with planning for the future are best able to weather daily stress without succumbing to negative moods.
“It’s well established that daily stressors can make us more likely to have negative affect, or bad moods,” says Shevaun Neupert, a professor of psychology at NC State and corresponding author of a paper on the recent work. “Our work here sheds additional light on which variables influence how we respond to daily stress.”
Specifically, the researchers looked at two factors that are thought to influence how we handle stress: mindfulness and proactive coping.
Mindfulness is when people are centered and living in the moment, rather than dwelling in the past or worrying about the future. Proactive coping is when people engage in planning to reduce the likelihood of future stress.
To see how these factors influence responses to stress, the researchers looked at data from 223 study participants. The study included 116 people between the ages of 60 and 90, and 107 people between the ages of 18 and 36. All of the study participants were in the United States.
All of the study participants were asked to complete an initial survey in order to establish their tendency to engage in proactive coping. Participants were then asked to complete questionnaires for eight consecutive days that explored fluctuations in mindfulness. On those eight days, participants were also asked to report daily stressors and the extent to which they experienced negative mood.
The researchers found that engaging in proactive coping was beneficial at limiting the effect of daily stressors, but that this advantage essentially disappeared on days when a participant reported low mindfulness.
“Our results show that a combination of proactive coping and high mindfulness result in study participants of all ages being more resilient against daily stressors,” Neupert says. “Basically, we found that proactive planning and mindfulness account for about a quarter of the variance in how stressors influenced negative affect…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200325130650.htm

Citation:

To stay positive, live in the moment — but plan ahead
Date: March 25, 2020
Source: North Carolina State University
Summary:
A recent study finds that people who balance living in the moment with planning for the future are best able to weather daily stress without succumbing to negative moods.

Journal Reference:
Melody G. Polk, Emily L. Smith, Ling-Rui Zhang, Shevaun D. Neupert. Thinking ahead and staying in the present: Implications for reactivity to daily stressors. Personality and Individual Differences, 2020; 161: 109971 DOI: 10.1016/j.paid.2020.109971

Here is the press release from the University of North Carolina: March 25, 2020

To Stay Positive, Live in the Moment – But Plan Ahead

March 25, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Shevaun Neupertshevaun_neupert@ncsu.edu919.513.7952
Matt Shipmanmatt_shipman@ncsu.edu
A recent study from North Carolina State University finds that people who manage to balance living in the moment with planning for the future are best able to weather daily stress without succumbing to negative moods.
“It’s well established that daily stressors can make us more likely to have negative affect, or bad moods,” says Shevaun Neupert, a professor of psychology at NC State and corresponding author of a paper on the recent work. “Our work here sheds additional light on which variables influence how we respond to daily stress.”
Specifically, the researchers looked at two factors that are thought to influence how we handle stress: mindfulness and proactive coping.
Mindfulness is when people are centered and living in the moment, rather than dwelling in the past or worrying about the future. Proactive coping is when people engage in planning to reduce the likelihood of future stress.
To see how these factors influence responses to stress, the researchers looked at data from 223 study participants. The study included 116 people between the ages of 60 and 90, and 107 people between the ages of 18 and 36. All of the study participants were in the United States.
All of the study participants were asked to complete an initial survey in order to establish their tendency to engage in proactive coping. Participants were then asked to complete questionnaires for eight consecutive days that explored fluctuations in mindfulness. On those eight days, participants were also asked to report daily stressors and the extent to which they experienced negative mood.
The researchers found that engaging in proactive coping was beneficial at limiting the effect of daily stressors, but that this advantage essentially disappeared on days when a participant reported low mindfulness.
“Our results show that a combination of proactive coping and high mindfulness result in study participants of all ages being more resilient against daily stressors,” Neupert says. “Basically, we found that proactive planning and mindfulness account for about a quarter of the variance in how stressors influenced negative affect.
“Interventions targeting daily fluctuations in mindfulness may be especially helpful for those who are high in proactive coping and may be more inclined to think ahead to the future at the expense of remaining in the present.”
The paper, “Thinking Ahead and Staying in the Present: Implications for Reactivity to Daily Stressors,” is published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences. First author of the paper is Melody Polk, an undergraduate at NC State. The paper was co-authored by Emily Smith and Ling-Rui Zhang, graduate students at NC State. The work was done with support from NC State’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Note to Editors: The study abstract follows.
“Thinking Ahead and Staying in the Present: Implications for Reactivity to Daily Stressors”
Authors: Melody G. Polk, Emily L. Smith, Ling-Rui Zhang and Shevaun D. Neupert, North Carolina State University
Published: March 25, Personality and Individual Differences
DOI:10.1016/j.paid.2020.109971
Abstract: We examined how proactive coping and daily mindfulness may work together to predict emotional reactivity to daily stressors. Using data from the Mindfulness and Anticipatory Coping Everyday study, 116 older adults and 107 younger adults participated in a daily diary study for nine consecutive days. Results from multilevel models suggest that people high in proactive coping were more emotionally reactive to daily stressors on days with decreased mindfulness. Due to the trait-like future-oriented thinking of proactive coping and the state-like present-oriented aspect of daily mindfulness, these results underscore the importance of simultaneously considering state and trait information to elucidate antecedents, correlates, and consequences of daily stressors.

Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties.
Helen Keller

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University of Otago study: Misinformation on vaccines readily available online

23 Mar

Michaeleen Doucleff reported in the NPR story, How Vaccine Fears Fueled The Resurgence Of Preventable Diseases:

For most of us, measles and whooping cough are diseases of the past. You get a few shots as a kid and then hardly think about them again.
But that’s not the case in all parts of the world — not even parts of the U.S.
As an interactive map http://www.cfr.org/interactives/GH_Vaccine_Map/index.html#map from the Council on Foreign Relations illustrates, several diseases that are easily prevented with vaccines have made a comeback in the past few years. Their resurgence coincides with changes in perceptions about vaccine safety.
Since 2008 folks at the think tank CFR have been plotting all the cases of measles, mumps, rubella, polio and whooping cough around the world. Each circle on the map represents a local outbreak of a particular disease, while the size of the circle indicates the number of people infected in the outbreak.
As you flip through the various maps over the years, two trends clearly emerge: Measles has surged back in Europe, while whooping cough is has become a problem here in the U.S.
Childhood immunization rates plummeted in parts of Europe and the U.K. after a 1998 study falsely claimed that the vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella was linked to autism.
That study has since been found to be fraudulent. But fears about vaccine safety have stuck around in Europe and here in the U.S.
Viruses and bacteria have taken full advantage of the immunization gaps.
In 2011, France reported a massive measles outbreak with nearly 15,000 cases. Only the Democratic Republic of Congo, India, Indonesia, Nigeria and Somalia suffered larger measles outbreaks that year.
In 2012, the U.K. reported more than 2,000 measles cases, the largest number since 1994.
Here in the U.S., the prevalence of whooping cough shot up in 2012 to nearly 50,000 cases. Last year cases declined to about 24,000 — which is still more than tenfold the number reported back in the early ’80s when the bacteria infected less than 2,000 people.
So what about countries in Africa? Why are there so many big, colorful circles dotting the continent? For many parents there, the problem is getting access to vaccines, not fears of it.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/01/25/265750719/how-vaccine-fears-fueled-the-resurgence-of-preventable-diseases?utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=20140202&utm_source=mostemailed

There are many myths regarding vaccination of children.

Dina Fine Maron wrote in the Daily Beast article, 6 Top Vaccine Myths:

To sort through the onslaught of information and misinformation about childhood immunizations, we asked Austin, Texas-based pediatrician Ari Brown, coauthor of “Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for your Baby’s First Year,” to debunk some of the most common vaccination myths.
Myth 1: It’s not necessary to vaccinate kids against diseases that have been largely eradicated in the United States.
Reality: Although some diseases like polio and diphtheria aren’t often seen in America (in large part because of the success of the vaccination efforts), they can be quite common in other parts of the world. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that travelers can unknowingly bring these diseases into the United States, and if we were not protected by vaccinations, these diseases could quickly spread throughout the population. At the same time, the relatively few cases currently in the U.S. could very quickly become tens or hundreds of thousands of cases without the protection we get from vaccines. Brown warns that these diseases haven’t disappeared, “they are merely smoldering under the surface.”
Most parents do follow government recommendations: U.S. national immunization rates are high, ranging from 85 percent to 93 percent, depending on the vaccine, according to the CDC. But according to a 2006 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the 20 states that allow personal-belief opt outs in addition to religious exemptions saw exemptions grow by 61 percent, to 2.54 percent between 1991 and 2004.
Brown is concerned that parents who opt out or stagger the vaccine schedule can end up having to deal with confusing follow-up care, which could produce an increase in disease outbreaks like last summer’s measles epidemic. A 2008 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology reported that when there are more exemptions, children are at an increased risk of contracting and transmitting vaccine-preventable diseases.
For more on the pros and cons of staggering or skipping vaccinations, visit MSN’s guide or read this U.S. News and World Report piece. For information on vaccine safety, check out the CDC’s information page. To search for your state’s vaccine requirements, see the National Network for Immunization Information.
Myth 2: Mercury is still in kids’ vaccines.
Reality: At the center of this issue is a preservative called thimerosal (a compound containing mercury) that once was a common component in many vaccines because it allowed manufacturers to make drugs more cheaply and in multidose formulations. But public concern, new innovations and FDA recommendations led to its removal from almost all children’s vaccines manufactured after 2001. (More thimerosal background can be found at the FDA’s Web site) Since flu vaccines are not just for children, manufacturers still put thimerosal in some flu-shot formulations. You can ask your pediatrician for the thimerosal-free version, says Brown.
If your child does not have asthma and is at least 2 years old, Brown recommends the FluMist nasal-spray vaccination over the flu shot. “It seems to have better immune protection and it could help your child avoid another shot,” she says. (Caveat: the spray does contain a live version of the virus, which can result in a slight increase in flulike symptoms).
Myth 3: Childhood vaccines cause autism.
Reality: There is no scientific evidence that this link exists. Groups of experts, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Institute of Medicine (IOM), agree that vaccines are not responsible for the growing number of children now recognized to have autism.
Earlier this month, the law supported scientists’ conclusions in this arena with three rulings from a section of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, which stated that vaccines were not the likely cause of autism in three unrelated children. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said in an online statement following the ruling, “The medical and scientific communities have carefully and thoroughly reviewed the evidence concerning the vaccine-autism theory and have found no association between vaccines and autism.” Noting the volume of scientific evidence disproving this link, an executive member of one of the nation’s foremost autism advocacy groups, Autism Speaks, recently stepped down from her position because she disagrees with the group’s continued position that there is a connection between the vaccines and autism.
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Myth 4: Getting too many vaccines can overwhelm the immune system and cause adverse reactions or even serious illness.
Reality: Children’s immune systems are capable of combating far more antigens (weak or killed viruses) than they encounter via immunizations. In fact, the jury is still out on if there’s an actual limit on how many the body can handle—though one study puts the number around a theoretical 10,000 vaccines in one day.(Visit the American Academy of Pediatrics’ site or the Network for Immunization Information for more information)
Currently, “There is even less of a burden on the immune system [via vaccines] today than 40 years ago,” says Edgar Marcuse, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington who works on immunization policy and vaccines. He points to the whooping-cough vaccine as an example where there are far fewer antigens in the shot than the earlier version administered decades ago. Brown says she supports following the recommended schedule for vaccinations, which outlines getting as many as five shots in one day at a couple check-ups. (The CDC’s recommended vaccination schedule can be found here.) “I have kids, and I wouldn’t recommend doing anything for my patients that I wouldn’t do for my own kids,” she says.
The CDC reports that most vaccine adverse events are minor and temporary, such as a sore arm or mild fever and “so few deaths can plausibly be attributed to vaccines that it is hard to assess the risk statistically.” Of all deaths reported to the Health and Human Services’ Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting site between 1990 and 1992, only one is believed to be even possibly associated with a vaccine. The Vaccine Safety Datalink Project, an initiative of the CDC and eight health-care organizations, looks for patterns in these reports and determines if a vaccine is causing a side effect or if symptoms are largely coincidental.
If you have concerns about following the recommended vaccination, schedule don’t wait until a check-up. Set up a consultation appointment with your pediatrician, or even outline a strategy for care with your doctor during your pregnancy.
Myth 5: It’s better to let my kid get chickenpox “naturally.”
Reality: Before the chickenpox vaccine was licensed in 1995, parents sometimes brought their child to a party or playground hoping that their child might brush up against a pox-laden kid to get their dose of chickenpox over since cases were usually less severe for children than adults. But pediatricians say severe complications are possible with chickenpox—including bacterial infections that could result in a child’s hospitalization or death. (More information on the chickenpox vaccine is available at the CDC’s Web site.)
Now that there’s a vaccine for chickenpox, more than 45 states require the shots (unless your child already had the chicken pox or can prove natural immunity). Two shots usually guarantees your child a way out of being bedecked in calamine lotion for two feverish weeks, but some individuals do still come down with a milder form of the pox. Most pediatricians recommend getting the shot.
Myth 6: The flu shot causes the flu.
Reality: The flu shot does not contain a live virus, so your child can’t get the flu from this shot. But, after the shot, it’s not uncommon to feel a bit achy while the immune system mounts its response. Remember that for two weeks following the shot, your child can still get the flu, so be sure to help your child avoid that feverish kid next door. http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2009/02/22/six-top-vaccine-myths.html

A question in the current climate is what can be done to make parents responsible for putting other children at risk.

See, https://drwilda.com/tag/vaccines/ and https://drwilda.com/tag/vaccination/

Science Daily reported in Misinformation on vaccines readily available online:

Parents researching childhood vaccinations online are likely to encounter significant levels of negative information, researchers at the University of Otago, Wellington, have found.
Lead researcher Dr Lucy Elkin says negative information about vaccines remains readily available on Google, Facebook and YouTube, despite attempts by the internet platforms to better control access to misinformation through algorithm and policy changes.
The researchers searched the three platforms for information on vaccines, mimicking the kind of ‘real-life’ search that would be conducted by a parent looking for information on childhood vaccinations. Their research is published in the leading scientific journal Vaccine.
Dr Elkin says that while most of the websites generated by Google (80 per cent) and videos published on YouTube (75 per cent) were positive about vaccines, half of the Facebook pages were negative towards vaccines.
“Parents would be able to find information encouraging or discouraging vaccination on the vast majority of the websites, Facebook pages and YouTube videos analysed, but popular pages on Facebook containing vaccine information were more polarised.”
She says steps being taken to reduce the amount of “vaccine misinformation” shared on websites are likely to be improving the quality of information available on Google and YouTube.
“The greater proportion of vaccine negative content on Facebook compared to YouTube may reflect the different degrees to which providers are censoring vaccine-negative content.
“Facebook state that the purpose of their platform is to ‘build community’ and to ‘connect with others’. This could mean that Facebook may intentionally connect people with like-minded views on vaccination and therefore have little interest in censoring vaccine-negative content…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200312142300.htm

Citation:

Misinformation on vaccines readily available online
Date: March 12, 2020
Source: University of Otago
Summary:
Parents researching childhood vaccinations online are likely to encounter significant levels of negative information, researchers have found.

Journal Reference:
Lucy E Elkin, Susan R.H. Pullon, Maria H. Stubbe. ‘Should I vaccinate my child?’ comparing the displayed stances of vaccine information retrieved from Google, Facebook and YouTube. Vaccine, 2020; 38 (13): 2771 DOI: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2020.02.041

Here is the press release from the University of Otago:

NEWS RELEASE 12-MAR-2020
Misinformation on vaccines readily available online
UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO
Parents researching childhood vaccinations online are likely to encounter significant levels of negative information, researchers at the University of Otago, Wellington, have found.
Lead researcher Dr Lucy Elkin says negative information about vaccines remains readily available on Google, Facebook and YouTube, despite attempts by the internet platforms to better control access to misinformation through algorithm and policy changes.
The researchers searched the three platforms for information on vaccines, mimicking the kind of ‘real-life’ search that would be conducted by a parent looking for information on childhood vaccinations. Their research is published in the leading scientific journal Vaccine.
Dr Elkin says that while most of the websites generated by Google (80 per cent) and videos published on YouTube (75 per cent) were positive about vaccines, half of the Facebook pages were negative towards vaccines.
“Parents would be able to find information encouraging or discouraging vaccination on the vast majority of the websites, Facebook pages and YouTube videos analysed, but popular pages on Facebook containing vaccine information were more polarised.”
She says steps being taken to reduce the amount of “vaccine misinformation” shared on websites are likely to be improving the quality of information available on Google and YouTube.
“The greater proportion of vaccine negative content on Facebook compared to YouTube may reflect the different degrees to which providers are censoring vaccine-negative content.
“Facebook state that the purpose of their platform is to ‘build community’ and to ‘connect with others’. This could mean that Facebook may intentionally connect people with like-minded views on vaccination and therefore have little interest in censoring vaccine-negative content.
“This is significant because, typically, when browsing anything on the internet, a person’s search history is remembered and further similar content will be generated. Those reading vaccine-critical information on Facebook are more likely to come across vaccine-critical information in subsequent searches on any platform, regardless of whether they are looking on social media, or on a search engine.”
Dr Elkin says the level of vaccine critical information on Facebook is concerning because evidence shows those viewing vaccine-critical information online are more likely to be hesitant about getting their children vaccinated.
“It is important that vaccine-promoting agencies continue to make every effort to maximize their presence online so that parents who are researching whether or not to vaccinate their children will encounter evidence-based information online.”
She says health professionals can also help to accurately inform and support parents by referring them to credible websites containing well-validated information.
The research paper, ‘Should I vaccinate my child? comparing the displayed stances of vaccine information retrieved from Google, Facebook and YouTube’ is published in the international journal Vaccine.
###
Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

See, Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania study: Vaccine misinformation and social media https://drwilda.com/tag/annenberg-public-policy-center-of-the-university-of-pennsylvania/

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University of Western Ontario study: Molecule found in oranges could reduce obesity and prevent heart disease and diabetes

8 Mar

Medical News Today reported in What to know about oranges:

As an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin C, oranges may help combat the formation of free radicals that cause cancer.
Although an adequate vitamin C intake is necessary and very beneficial, the amount a person would need for the desired therapeutic effect on cancer is more than they could realistically consume.
For example, one study concluded that medical scientists could harness the power of vitamin C from oranges to inhibit colorectal cancer cells in the future. However, the authors concede that 300 oranges’ worth of vitamin C would be necessary.
That said, in 2015, a study linked grapefruit and orange juice with a higher risk of skin cancer. Researchers found that people who consumed high amounts of whole grapefruit or orange juice were over a third more likely to develop melanoma than those who consumed low amounts. This may have been due to citrus compounds that exert photocarcinogen properties.
More research is necessary to confirm the effects of orange consumption on cancer risk.
Blood pressure
Oranges contain no sodium, which helps keep a person below their daily limit. On the other hand, a cup of orange juice can boost daily potassium intake by 14%….
According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS), increasing potassium intake can reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.
Heart health
Oranges are a good source of fiber and potassium, both of which can support heart health.
According to one 2017 review of previous meta-analyses, consuming enough fiber can significantly reduce the risk of heart disease both developing and being fatal. The review links this effect to its ability to lower cholesterol levels in the blood.
One cup of orange juice can provide 14% of a person’s daily potassium requirement….
Diabetes
A medium orange weighing 131 grams (g) contributes 3.14 g of fiber, which is nearly 10% of an adult’s daily fiber requirement. Several studies have found that fiber can improve some factors that contribute to diabetes development and progression.
For example, one 2019 study found that consuming 4 g of a dietary fiber supplement per day did not reduce blood glucose but improved how the body responds to insulin. Low insulin sensitivity can contribute to type 2 diabetes.
Weight control is also important for reducing the risk of diabetes, as obesity and overweight can contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes. The body processes fiber more slowly than other nutrients, so it can help a person feel fuller for longer and reduce their urge to eat snacks throughout the day.
Following a diet that contains a high proportion of fruits and vegetables can support blood sugar control and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and disease progression. That said, a diabetes friendly diet should include healthful foods from a variety of food groups.
Skin
Consuming enough vitamin C can help a person maintain skin health and appearance.
Vitamin C contributes to collagen production. Collagen supports the skin, promotes wound healing, and improves skin strength….. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/272782#benefits

The risk cited by Medical News was “People with gastroesophageal reflux disease may experience an increase in symptoms such as heartburn and regurgitation when consuming citrus fruits. This is due to their high acid content.”

Resources:

9 Health Benefits of Citrus Fruit | Health.com
https://www.health.com/nutrition/citrus-fruit-health-benefits

What Are the Health Benefits of Citrus Fruits?
https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/health-benefits-citrus-fruits-7925.html

Oranges 101: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/oranges

Science Daily reported in Molecule found in oranges could reduce obesity and prevent heart disease and diabetes:

Researchers at Western University are studying a molecule found in sweet oranges and tangerines called nobiletin, which they have shown to drastically reduce obesity in mice and reverse its negative side-effects.
But why it works remains a mystery.
New research published in the Journal of Lipid Research demonstrates that mice fed a high-fat, high-cholesterol diet that were also given nobiletin were noticeably leaner and had reduced levels of insulin resistance and blood fats compared to mice that were fed a high-fat, high-cholesterol diet alone.
“We went on to show that we can also intervene with nobiletin,” said Murray Huff, PhD, a Professor at Western’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry who has been studying nobiletin’s effects for over a decade. “We’ve shown that in mice that already have all the negative symptoms of obesity, we can use nobelitin to reverse those symptoms, and even start to regress plaque build-up in the arteries, known as atherosclerosis.”
But Huff says he and his team at Robarts Research Institute at Western still haven’t been able to pinpoint exactly how nobiletin works. The researchers hypothesized that the molecule was likely acting on the pathway that regulates how fat is handled in the body. Called AMP Kinase, this regulator turns on the machinery in the body that burns fats to create energy, and it also blocks the manufacture of fats.
However, when the researchers studied nobiletin’s effects on mice that had been genetically modified to remove AMP Kinase, the effects were the same.
“This result told us that nobiletin is not acting on AMP Kinase, and is bypassing this major regulator of how fat is used in the body,” said Huff. “What it still leaves us with is the question — how is nobiletin doing this?” https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200303140158.htm

Citation:

Molecule found in oranges could reduce obesity and prevent heart disease and diabetes

Date: March 3, 2020
Source: University of Western Ontario
Summary:
Researchers are studying a molecule found in sweet oranges and tangerines called nobiletin, which they have shown to drastically reduce obesity and reverse its negative side-effects. But why it works remains a mystery.

Journal Reference:
Nadya M. Morrow, Amy C. Burke, Joshua P. Samsoondar, Kyle E. Seigel, Andrew Wang, Dawn E. Telford, Brian G. Sutherland, Conor O’Dwyer, Gregory R. Steinberg, Morgan D. Fullerton, Murray W. Huff. The citrus flavonoid nobiletin confers protection from metabolic dysregulation in high-fat-fed mice independent of AMPK. Journal of Lipid Research, 2020; 61 (3): 387 DOI: 10.1194/jlr.RA119000542

Here is the press release from the University of Western Ontario:

Study: Daily citrus may help combat obesity

MARCH 2, 2020 BY CRYSTAL MACKAY

The equivalent of just two or three oranges or tangerines a day could reverse obesity and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes – a benefit Western researchers attribute to nobiletin, a molecule found in popular citrus fruits.
The Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry-led study showed mice fed a high-fat, high-cholesterol diet that were also given nobiletin were noticeably leaner and had reduced levels of insulin resistance and blood fats compared to mice that were fed a high-fat, high-cholesterol diet alone.
The study, The citrus flavonoid nobiletin confers protection from metabolic dysregulation in high-fat-fed mice independent of AMPK, was recently published in the Journal of Lipid Research.
“We went on to show that we can also intervene with nobiletin,” said Schulich professor Murray Huff, who has been studying nobiletin’s effects for more than a decade. “We‘ve shown that in mice that already have all the negative symptoms of obesity, we can use nobelitin to reverse those symptoms, and even start to regress plaque build-up in the arteries, known as atherosclerosis.”
But Huff says he and his team at Robarts Research Institute still haven’t been able to pinpoint exactly how nobiletin works.
Researchers hypothesized the molecule was likely acting on the pathway that regulates how fat is handled in the body. Called AMP Kinase, this regulator ‘turns on’ the machinery in the body that burns fats to create energy, and it also blocks the manufacture of fats.
However, when the researchers studied nobiletin’s effects on mice genetically modified to remove AMP Kinase, the effects were the same.
“This result told us that nobiletin is not acting on AMP Kinase and is bypassing this major regulator of how fat is used in the body,” Huff said. “What it still leaves us with is the question – how is nobiletin doing this?”
Huff says while the mystery remains, this recent result is still clinically important because it shows that nobiletin won’t interfere with other drugs that act on the AMP Kinase system. He says current therapeutics for diabetes like metformin for example, work through this pathway.
The next step is to move these studies into humans to determine if nobiletin has the same positive metabolic effects in human trials.
“Obesity and its resulting metabolic syndromes are a huge burden to our health care system, and we have very few interventions that have been shown to work effectively,” Huff said. “We need to continue this emphasis on the discovery of new therapeutics.”
Tags: Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry https://news.westernu.ca/2020/03/study-oj-ingredient-may-help-combat-obesity/

Heathline described a balanced diet:  What is a balanced diet?

A balanced diet is one that gives your body the nutrients it needs to function correctly. To get the proper nutrition from your diet, you should consume the majority of your daily calories in:
• fresh fruits
• fresh vegetables
• whole grains
• legumes
• nuts
• lean proteins
About calories
The number of calories in a food is a measurement of the amount of energy stored in that food. Your body uses calories from food for walking, thinking, breathing, and other important functions.
The average person needs to eat about 2,000 calories every day to maintain their weight. However, a person’s specific daily calorie intake can vary depending on their age, gender, and physical activity level. Men generally need more calories than women, and people who exercise need more calories than people who don’t.
The following examples of daily calorie intake are based on United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)Trusted Source guidelines:
• children ages 2 to 8 years: 1,000 to 1,400 calories
• girls ages 9 to 13 years: 1,400 to 1,600 calories
• boys ages 9 to 13 years: 1,600 to 2,000 calories
• active women ages 14 to 30 years: 2,400 calories
• sedentary women ages 14 to 30 years: 1,800 to 2,000 calories
• active men ages 14 to 30 years: 2,800 to 3,200 calories
• sedentary men ages 14 to 30 years: 2,000 to 2,600 calories
• active men and women over 30 years: 2,000 to 3,000 calories
• sedentary men and women over 30 years: 1,600 to 2,400 calories
The source of your daily calories is just as important as the number of calories you consume. You should limit your consumption of empty calories, meaning those that provide little or no nutritional value. The USDA defines empty calories as calories that come from sugars and solid fats, such as butter and shortening….
Why a balanced diet is important
A balanced diet is important because your organs and tissues need proper nutrition to work effectively. Without good nutrition, your body is more prone to disease, infection, fatigue, and poor performance. Children with a poor diet run the risk of growth and developmental problems and poor academic performance, and bad eating habits can persist for the rest of their lives. Learn more about healthy meal plans for kids.
Rising levels of obesity and diabetes in America are prime examples of the effects of a poor diet and a lack of exercise. The Center for Science in the Public Interest reports that 4 of the top 10 leading causes of death in the United States are directly influenced by diet. These are:
• heart disease
• cancer
• stroke
• diabetes

https://www.healthline.com/health/balanced-diet#importance

BEFORE EMBARKING ON ANY CHANGE IN DIET OR PHYSCIAL ACTIVITY A COMPETENT MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL SHOULD BE CONSULTED.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology study: The catch to putting warning labels on fake news

5 Mar

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD BLACK FART:

Moi read with interest the following article from the Daily Mail, Can tear-jerkers turn you liberal? As Good As It Gets and The Rainmaker make you soppy, says study:

Sentimental films make you more liberal, research suggests.
Political scientists found that Hollywood movies are better able to change attitudes – in a left-wing direction – than advertising or news reports.
Todd Adkins, of the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, said audiences seemed to turn off their critical faculties when they reach the cinema.
Sentimental films, such as The Rainmaker (pictured), make you more liberal, research suggests
‘Viewers come expecting to be entertained and are not prepared to encounter and evaluate political messages as they would during campaign advertisements or network news,’ he said.
Dr Adkins’ research, published in the journal Social Science Quarterly, was based on a study of 268 students who were asked about their political views, shown a film and then questioned again.
Half identified themselves as politically conservative.
Political scientists found that Hollywood movies are better able to change attitudes – in a left-wing direction – than advertising or news reports….
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2530224/Can-tear-jerkers-turn-liberal-As-Good-As-It-Gets-The-Rainmaker-make-soppy-says-study.html#ixzz2pC6I7eaD

See, Moving Pictures? Experimental Evidence of Cinematic Influence on Political Attitudes†
Todd Adkins,
Jeremiah J. Castle*
Article first published online: 18 NOV 2013
DOI: 10.1111/ssqu.12070
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ssqu.12070/abstract

There is a long history of movies being used as propaganda. The History Learning Site said this in the article, Propaganda in Nazi Germany:

Hitler came to power in January 1933. By May 1933, the Nazi Party felt sufficiently strong to publicly demonstrate where their beliefs were going when Goebbels organised the first of the infamous book burning episodes. Books that did not match the Nazi ideal was burnt in public – loyal Nazis ransacked libraries to remove the ‘offending’ books. “Where one burns books, one eventually burns people” commented the author Brecht.
The same approach was used in films. The Nazis controlled film production. Films released to the public concentrated on certain issues : the Jews; the greatness of Hitler; the way of life for a true Nazi especially children, and as World War Two approached, how badly Germans who lived in countries in Eastern Europe were treated. Leni Riefenstahl was given a free hand in producing Nazi propaganda films. A young film producer, she had impressed Hitler with her ability. It was Riefenstahl who made “Triumph of Will” – considered one of the greatest of propaganda films despite its contents.
http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/propaganda_in_nazi_germany.htm

Hollywood films quite often represent cultural propaganda.

Jonathan Chait wrote in the New York article, The Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy Is on Your Screen:

You don’t have to be an especially devoted consumer of film or television (I’m not) to detect a pervasive, if not total, liberalism. Americans for Responsible Television and Christian Leaders for Responsible Television would be flipping out over the modern family in Modern Family, not to mention the girls of Girls and the gays of Glee, except that those groups went defunct long ago. The liberal analysis of the economic crisis—that unregulated finance took wild gambles—has been widely reflected, even blatantly so, in movies like Margin Call, Too Big to Fail, and the Wall Street sequel. The conservative view that all blame lies with regulations forcing banks to lend to poor people has not, except perhaps in the amateur-hour production of Atlas Shrugged. The muscular Rambo patriotism that briefly surged in the eighties, and seemed poised to return after 9/11, has disappeared. In its place we have series like Homeland, which probes the moral complexities of a terrorist’s worldview, and action stars like Jason Bourne, whose enemies are not just foreign baddies but also paranoid Dick Cheney figures. The conservative denial of climate change, and the low opinion of environmentalism that accompanies it, stands in contrast to cautionary end-times tales like Ice Age 2: The Meltdown and the tree-hugging mysticism of Avatar. The decade has also seen a revival of political films and shows, from the Aaron Sorkin oeuvre through Veep and The Campaign, both of which cast oilmen as the heavies. Even The Muppets features an evil oil driller stereotypically named “Tex Richman.”
In short, the world of popular culture increasingly reflects a shared reality in which the Republican Party is either absent or anathema. That shared reality is the cultural assumptions, in particular, of the younger voters whose support has become the bedrock of the Democratic Party….
A trio of communications professors found that watching Will & Grace made audiences more receptive to gay rights, and especially viewers who had little contact in real life with gays and lesbians. And that one show was merely a component of a concerted effort by Hollywood—dating back to Soap in the late seventies, which featured Billy Crystal’s groundbreaking portrayal of a sympathetic gay character, through Modern Family—to prod audiences to accept homosexuality. Likewise, the political persona of Barack Obama attained such rapid acceptance and popularity in part because he represented the real-world version of an archetype that, after a long early period of servile black stereotypes, has appeared in film and television for years: a sober, intelligent African-American as president, or in some other position of power….
This capacity to mold the moral premises of large segments of the public, and especially the youngest and most impressionable elements, may or may not be unfair. What it is undoubtedly is a source of cultural (and hence political) power. Liberals like to believe that our strength derives solely from the natural concordance of the people, that we represent what most Americans believe, or would believe if not for the distorting rightward pull of Fox News and the Koch brothers and the rest. Conservatives surely do benefit from these outposts of power, and most would rather indulge their own populist fantasies than admit it. But they do have a point about one thing: We liberals owe not a small measure of our success to the propaganda campaign of a tiny, disproportionately influential cultural elite. http://nymag.com/news/features/chait-liberal-movies-tv-2012-8/

Some social media companies are labeling news or posts which they consider fake as “fake news” based upon their standards.

Science Daily reported in The catch to putting warning labels on fake news:

After the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Facebook began putting warning tags on news stories fact-checkers judged to be false. But there’s a catch: Tagging some stories as false makes readers more willing to believe other stories and share them with friends, even if those additional, untagged stories also turn out to be false.
That is the main finding of a new study co-authored by an MIT professor, based on multiple experiments with news consumers. The researchers call this unintended consequence — in which the selective labeling of false news makes other news stories seem more legitimate — the “implied-truth effect” in news consumption.
“Putting a warning on some content is going to make you think, to some extent, that all of the other content without the warning might have been checked and verified,” says David Rand, the Erwin H. Schell Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management and co-author of a newly published paper detailing the study.
“There’s no way the fact-checkers can keep up with the stream of misinformation, so even if the warnings do really reduce belief in the tagged stories, you still have a problem, because of the implied truth effect,” Rand adds.
Moreover, Rand observes, the implied truth effect “is actually perfectly rational” on the part of readers, since there is ambiguity about whether untagged stories were verified or just not yet checked. “That makes these warnings potentially problematic,” he says. “Because people will reasonably make this inference.”
Even so, the findings also suggest a solution: Placing “Verified” tags on stories found to be true eliminates the problem.
The paper, “The Implied Truth Effect,” has just appeared in online form in the journal Management Science. In addition to Rand, the authors are Gordon Pennycook, an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Regina; Adam Bear, a postdoc in the Cushman Lab at Harvard University; and Evan T. Collins, an undergraduate researcher on the project from Yale University.
BREAKING: More labels are better
To conduct the study, the researchers conducted a pair of online experiments with a total of 6,739 U.S. residents, recruited via Amazon’s Mechanical Turk platform. Participants were given a variety of true and false news headlines in a Facebook-style format. The false stories were chosen from the website Snopes.com and included headlines such as “BREAKING NEWS: Hillary Clinton Filed for Divorce in New York Courts” and “Republican Senator Unveils Plan To Send All Of America’s Teachers Through A Marine Bootcamp.”
The participants viewed an equal mix of true stories and false stories, and were asked whether they would consider sharing each story on social media. Some participants were assigned to a control group in which no stories were labeled; others saw a set of stories where some of the false ones displayed a “FALSE” label; and some participants saw a set of stories with warning labels on some false stories and “TRUE” verification labels for some true stories.
In the first place, stamping warnings on false stories does make people less likely to consider sharing them. For instance, with no labels being used at all, participants considered sharing 29.8 percent of false stories in the sample. That figure dropped to 16.1 percent of false stories that had a warning label attached.
However, the researchers also saw the implied truth effect take effect. Readers were willing to share 36.2 percent of the remaining false stories that did not have warning labels, up from 29.8 percent.
“We robustly observe this implied-truth effect, where if false content doesn’t have a warning, people believe it more and say they would be more likely to share it,” Rand notes.
But when the warning labels on some false stories were complemented with verification labels on some of the true stories, participants were less likely to consider sharing false stories, across the board. In those circumstances, they shared only 13.7 percent of the headlines labeled as false, and just 26.9 percent of the nonlabeled false stories.
“If, in addition to putting warnings on things fact-checkers find to be false, you also put verification panels on things fact-checkers find to be true, then that solves the problem, because there’s no longer any ambiguity,” Rand says. “If you see a story without a label, you know it simply hasn’t been checked.”
Policy implications
The findings come with one additional twist that Rand emphasizes, namely, that participants in the survey did not seem to reject warnings on the basis of ideology. They were still likely to change their perceptions of stories with warning or verifications labels, even if discredited news items were “concordant” with their stated political views.
“These results are not consistent with the idea that our reasoning powers are hijacked by our partisanship,” Rand says…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200303140216.htm

Citation:

The catch to putting warning labels on fake news
Date: March 3, 2020
Source: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Summary:
A new study finds disclaimers on some false news stories make people more readily believe other false stories.

Journal Reference:
Gordon Pennycook, Adam Bear, Evan T. Collins, David G. Rand. The Implied Truth Effect: Attaching Warnings to a Subset of Fake News Headlines Increases Perceived Accuracy of Headlines Without Warnings. Management Science, 2020; DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.2019.3478

Here is the press release from MIT:

The catch to putting warning labels on fake news

Study finds disclaimers on some false news stories make people more readily believe other false stories.

Peter Dizikes | MIT News Office

March 2, 2020

After the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Facebook began putting warning tags on news stories fact-checkers judged to be false. But there’s a catch: Tagging some stories as false makes readers more willing to believe other stories and share them with friends, even if those additional, untagged stories also turn out to be false.

That is the main finding of a new study co-authored by an MIT professor, based on multiple experiments with news consumers. The researchers call this unintended consequence — in which the selective labeling of false news makes other news stories seem more legitimate — the “implied-truth effect” in news consumption.

“Putting a warning on some content is going to make you think, to some extent, that all of the other content without the warning might have been checked and verified,” says David Rand, the Erwin H. Schell Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management and co-author of a newly published paper detailing the study.

“There’s no way the fact-checkers can keep up with the stream of misinformation, so even if the warnings do really reduce belief in the tagged stories, you still have a problem, because of the implied truth effect,” Rand adds.

Moreover, Rand observes, the implied truth effect “is actually perfectly rational” on the part of readers, since there is ambiguity about whether untagged stories were verified or just not yet checked. “That makes these warnings potentially problematic,” he says. “Because people will reasonably make this inference.”

Even so, the findings also suggest a solution: Placing “Verified” tags on stories found to be true eliminates the problem.

The paper, “The Implied Truth Effect,” has just appeared in online form in the journal Management Science. In addition to Rand, the authors are Gordon Pennycook, an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Regina; Adam Bear, a postdoc in the Cushman Lab at Harvard University; and Evan T. Collins, an undergraduate researcher on the project from Yale University.
BREAKING: More labels are better

To conduct the study, the researchers conducted a pair of online experiments with a total of 6,739 U.S. residents, recruited via Amazon’s Mechanical Turk platform. Participants were given a variety of true and false news headlines in a Facebook-style format. The false stories were chosen from the website Snopes.com and included headlines such as “BREAKING NEWS: Hillary Clinton Filed for Divorce in New York Courts” and “Republican Senator Unveils Plan To Send All Of America’s Teachers Through A Marine Bootcamp.”

The participants viewed an equal mix of true stories and false stories, and were asked whether they would consider sharing each story on social media. Some participants were assigned to a control group in which no stories were labeled; others saw a set of stories where some of the false ones displayed a “FALSE” label; and some participants saw a set of stories with warning labels on some false stories and “TRUE” verification labels for some true stories.
In the first place, stamping warnings on false stories does make people less likely to consider sharing them. For instance, with no labels being used at all, participants considered sharing 29.8 percent of false stories in the sample. That figure dropped to 16.1 percent of false stories that had a warning label attached.

However, the researchers also saw the implied truth effect take effect. Readers were willing to share 36.2 percent of the remaining false stories that did not have warning labels, up from 29.8 percent.

“We robustly observe this implied-truth effect, where if false content doesn’t have a warning, people believe it more and say they would be more likely to share it,” Rand notes.
But when the warning labels on some false stories were complemented with verification labels on some of the true stories, participants were less likely to consider sharing false stories, across the board. In those circumstances, they shared only 13.7 percent of the headlines labeled as false, and just 26.9 percent of the nonlabeled false stories.

“If, in addition to putting warnings on things fact-checkers find to be false, you also put verification panels on things fact-checkers find to be true, then that solves the problem, because there’s no longer any ambiguity,” Rand says. “If you see a story without a label, you know it simply hasn’t been checked.”
Policy implications

The findings come with one additional twist that Rand emphasizes, namely, that participants in the survey did not seem to reject warnings on the basis of ideology. They were still likely to change their perceptions of stories with warning or verifications labels, even if discredited news items were “concordant” with their stated political views.

“These results are not consistent with the idea that our reasoning powers are hijacked by our partisanship,” Rand says.
Rand notes that, while continued research on the subject is important, the current study suggests a straightforward way that social media platforms can take action to further improve their systems of labeling online news content.

“I think this has clear policy implications when platforms are thinking about attaching warnings,” he says. “They should be very careful to check not just the effect of the warnings on the content with the tag, but also check the effects on all the other content.”

Support for the research was provided, in part, by the Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Initiative of the Miami Foundation, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
________________________________________
More information: Gordon Pennycook et al, The Implied Truth Effect: Attaching Warnings to a Subset of Fake News Headlines Increases Perceived Accuracy of Headlines Without Warnings, Management Science (2020). DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.2019.3478

The issue is whether the public in a “captive” environment have the maturity and critical thinking skills to evaluate the information contained in content. Schools must teach children critical thinking skills and point out reality does not often involve perfection, there are warts.

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University of Texas at San Antonio study: Role culture plays in feeling sick

2 Mar

Medical News Today described health in What is good health?

Fast facts on health
Here are some key points about health. More detail is in the main article.
• Health can be defined as physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and as a resource for living a full life.
• It refers not only to the absence of disease, but the ability to recover and bounce back from illness and other problems.
• Factors for good health include genetics, the environment, relationships, and education.
• A healthful diet, exercise, screening for diseases, and coping strategies can all enhance a person’s health….

Types
Mental and physical health are the two most commonly discussed types of health. We also talk about “spiritual health,” “emotional health,” and “financial health,” among others. These have also been linked to lower stress levels and mental and physical wellbeing.
Physical health
In a person who experiences physical health, bodily functions are working at peak performance, due not only to a lack of disease, but also to regular exercise, balanced nutrition, and adequate rest. We receive treatment, when necessary, to maintain the balance.
Physical wellbeing involves pursuing a healthful lifestyle to decrease the risk of disease. Maintaining physical fitness, for example, can protect and develop the endurance of a person’s breathing and heart function, muscular strength, flexibility, and body composition.
Physical health and well-being also help reduce the risk of an injury or health issue. Examples include minimizing hazards in the workplace, practicing safe sex, practicing good hygiene, or avoiding the use of tobacco, alcohol, or illegal drugs.
Mental health
Mental health refers to a person’s emotional, social, and psychological wellbeing. Mental health is as important as physical health to a full, active lifestyle.
It is harder to define mental health than physical health, because, in many cases, diagnosis depends on the individual’s perception of their experience. With improvements in testing, however, some signs of some types of mental illness are now becoming “visible” in CT scans and genetic testing.
Mental health is not only the absence of depression, anxiety, or another disorder.
It also depends on the ability to:
• enjoy life
• bounce back after difficult experiences
• achieve balance
• adapt to adversity
• feel safe and secure
• achieve your potential
Physical and mental health are linked. If chronic illness affects a person’s ability to complete their regular tasks, this may lead to depression and stress, for example, due to money problems…. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/150999#types

University of Texas at  San Antonio studied the role culture played in an individual’s assessment of their health.

Science Daily reported in Role culture plays in feeling sick:

The physical and mental sensations we associate with feeling sick are a natural biological response to inflammation within the body. However, the strength and severity of these sensations go beyond biology and may be affected by gender, ethnicity and various social norms we’ve all internalized. These are the latest research findings, according to social scientists at UTSA, who have discovered a link between a person’s culture and how one classifies being ill.
Social scientists think that a person’s values may shape internal views on “socially appropriate sickness.” This has implications for how different individuals may take more action in dealing with illness rather than spreading further disease.
Eric Shattuck, a biological anthropologist with UTSA’s Institute for Health Disparities Research; sociology professor Thankam Sunil, who is director of the IHDR; and Xiaohe Xu, chair of UTSA’s Department of Sociology, found that sickness expression is affected by gender, income and cultural values.
Specifically, study participants who (1) earned less than the U.S. median household income, (2) claimed to be stoics with a high tolerance for pain or (3) had symptoms of depression were more likely to express being sick. In men with stronger family bonds, feeling sick was also more likely to be reported.
“It’s ironic. You think that being a stoic would mean that you are more likely to be reserved, but according to our survey, it has the opposite effect,” said Shattuck. “Stoics could own up to being ill as a bragging right and maintain a disease for longer than is necessary.”
According to the researchers, stoics — regardless of gender — and individuals with household incomes lower than $60,000 were more likely to claim being ill.
“In regard to lower income levels, perhaps those individuals were more likely to claim to have been sick because they didn’t necessarily have the means to seek medical attention and, therefore, symptoms became severe,” added Shattuck. “This perhaps made them remember the illness.”
The researchers also pointed that men with stronger family ties were more likely to report stronger sickness sensations over the past year.
“It could be that family support allows men to feel more cared for and therefore rely on that social safety net,” said Shattuck.
The researchers analyzed the self-reported surveys of 1,259 respondents who claimed to have been sick with influenza or the common cold in the past year. Participants were also asked to rate their current feelings of sickness from “not sick” to “severely sick” using a Likert-type scale in order to control for any possible compounding effect.
Sickness behavior, including lethargy, social withdrawal and appetite changes, is “one of the responses that all living creatures from ants to bees to humans seem to have in common. Yet socioeconomic and cultural norms play a part with us,” said Shattuck. “For example, other researchers have shown that the majority of individuals who work in many fields, including medicine, are often likely to show up to work while being sick. If you think about it, this is about work culture and it has consequences.”
The next step for the researchers is to repeat the study with individuals who are actively sick versus those that had to recall an illness. Areas of future investigation will explore how the severity of an illness affects reporting being sick…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200302113312.htm

Citation:

Role culture plays in feeling sick
Date: March 2, 2020
Source: University of Texas at San Antonio
Summary:
Scientists think that a person’s values may shape views on ”socially appropriate sickness.” This has implications for how individuals may take more action in dealing with illness rather than spreading further disease. According to the researchers, stoics or individuals with incomes lower than $60,000 were more likely to claim being ill. People may be comfortable reporting being sick when it’s a common cold but questions arise with stigmatized infections, such as HIV and now coronavirus.

Journal Reference:
Eric C. Shattuck, Jessica K. Perrotte, Colton L. Daniels, Xiaohe Xu, Thankam S. Sunil. The Contribution of Sociocultural Factors in Shaping Self-Reported Sickness Behavior. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 2020; 14 DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2020.00004

Here is the press release from University of Texas at San Antonio:

MARCH 2, 2020

Researchers study role culture plays in feeling sick
by Milady Nazir, University of Texas at San Antonio

The physical and mental sensations we associate with feeling sick are a natural biological response to inflammation within the body. However, the strength and severity of these sensations go beyond biology and may be affected by gender, ethnicity and various social norms we’ve all internalized. These are the latest research findings, according to social scientists at UTSA, who have discovered a link between a person’s culture and how one classifies being ill.
Social scientists think that a person’s values may shape internal views on “socially appropriate sickness.” This has implications for how different individuals may take more action in dealing with illness rather than spreading further disease.
Eric Shattuck, a biological anthropologist with UTSA’s Institute for Health Disparities Research; sociology professor Thankam Sunil, who is director of the IHDR; and Xiaohe Xu, chair of UTSA’s Department of Sociology, found that sickness expression is affected by gender, income and cultural values.
Specifically, study participants who (1) earned less than the U.S. median household income, (2) claimed to be stoics with a high tolerance for pain or (3) had symptoms of depression were more likely to express being sick. In men with stronger family bonds, feeling sick was also more likely to be reported.
“It’s ironic. You think that being a stoic would mean that you are more likely to be reserved, but according to our survey, it has the opposite effect,” said Shattuck. “Stoics could own up to being ill as a bragging right and maintain a disease for longer than is necessary.”
According to the researchers, stoics—regardless of gender—and individuals with household incomes lower than $60,000 were more likely to claim being ill.
“In regard to lower income levels, perhaps those individuals were more likely to claim to have been sick because they didn’t necessarily have the means to seek medical attention and, therefore, symptoms became severe,” added Shattuck. “This perhaps made them remember the illness.”
The researchers also pointed that men with stronger family ties were more likely to report stronger sickness sensations over the past year.
“It could be that family support allows men to feel more cared for and therefore rely on that social safety net,” said Shattuck.
The researchers analyzed the self-reported surveys of 1,259 respondents who claimed to have been sick with influenza or the common cold in the past year. Participants were also asked to rate their current feelings of sickness from “not sick” to “severely sick” using a Likert-type scale in order to control for any possible compounding effect.
Sickness behavior, including lethargy, social withdrawal and appetite changes, is “one of the responses that all living creatures from ants to bees to humans seem to have in common. Yet socioeconomic and cultural norms play a part with us,” said Shattuck. “For example, other researchers have shown that the majority of individuals who work in many fields, including medicine, are often likely to show up to work while being sick. If you think about it, this is about work culture and it has consequences.”
The next step for the researchers is to repeat the study with individuals who are actively sick versus those that had to recall an illness. Areas of future investigation will explore how the severity of an illness affects reporting being sick.
“Maybe people are more comfortable reporting being sick when it’s a common cold,” Shattuck said, “but what about those stigmatized infections, such as HIV. What about the coronavirus? How are infectious diseases claimed using a cultural or economic lens?”
________________________________________
Explore further
Dry landscapes can increase disease transmission
________________________________________
More information: Eric C. Shattuck et al. The Contribution of Sociocultural Factors in Shaping Self-Reported Sickness Behavior, Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience (2020). DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2020.00004
Provided by University of Texas at San Antonio

More research should be aimed at why some folk have an illness, but display less severe symptoms.

The Medical News Today article, What to know about general adaptation syndrome points to a possible research direction:

General adaptation syndrome is a three-stage response that the body has to stress. But what do the different stages involve and what examples are there of GAS in action?
Stress is sometimes thought of as a mental pressure, but it also has a physical effect on the body. Understanding the stages the body goes through when exposed to stress helps people become more aware of these physical signs of stress when they occur….

The three stages of GAS are:
• alarm reaction
• resistance
• exhaustion
What happens within the body during each of these stages is explored below.

Alarm reaction stage

At the alarm reaction stage, a distress signal is sent to a part of the brain called the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus enables the release of hormones called glucocorticoids.
Glucocorticoids trigger the release of adrenaline and cortisol, which is a stress hormone. The adrenaline gives a person a boost of energy. Their heart rate increases and their blood pressure rises. Meanwhile, blood sugar levels also go up.
These physiological changes are governed by a part of a person’s autonomic nervous system (ANS) called the sympathetic branch.
The alarm reaction stage of the GAS prepares a person to respond to the stressor they are experiencing. This is often known as a “fight or flight” response.

Resistance

During the resistance stage, the body tries to counteract the physiological changes that happened during the alarm reaction stage. The resistance stage is governed by a part of the ANS called the parasympathetic.
The parasympathetic branch of the ANS tries to return the body to normal by reducing the amount of cortisol produced. The heart rate and blood pressure begin to return to normal.
If the stressful situation comes to an end, during the resistance stage, the body will then return to normal.
However, if the stressor remains, the body will stay in a state of alert, and stress hormones continue to be produced.
This physical response can lead to a person struggling to concentrate and becoming irritable.

Exhaustion stage

After an extended period of stress, the body goes into the final stage of GAS, known as the exhaustion stage. At this stage, the body has depleted its energy resources by continually trying but failing to recover from the initial alarm reaction stage.

Once it reaches the exhaustion stage, a person’s body is no longer equipped to fight stress. They may experience:
• tiredness
• depression
• anxiety
• feeling unable to cope

If a person does not find ways to manage stress levels at this stage, they are at risk of developing stress-related health conditions…. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320172#the-three-stages-of-gas

An important research question is why some individuals are more resilient when dealing with illness?

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University of Virginia Health System study: How green space can reduce violent crime

29 Feb

The Nature Conservancy published How Urban Trees Can Save Lives:

The Planting Healthy Air report documents which cities stand to benefit most from tree plantings, in terms of both heat and PM reduction, and how much investment would be required to achieve meaningful benefits.
The analysis found that investing just US$4 per resident in each of these cities in tree planting efforts could improve the health of millions of people, and that trees are as cost-effective as many other common solutions.
Most of the cooling and filtering effects created by trees are fairly localized, so densely populated cities—as well as those with higher overall pollution levels—tend to see the highest overall return on investment (ROI) from tree plantings…. https://global.nature.org/content/healthyair

Exeter University reported that asthma attacks were reduced in tree-lined urban areas.

Science Daily reported in Asthma attacks reduced in tree-lined urban neighborhoods:

People living in polluted urban areas are far less likely to be admitted to hospital with asthma when there are lots of trees in their neighbourhood, a study by the University of Exeter’s medical school has found.
The study into the impact of urban greenery on asthma suggests that respiratory health can be improved by the expansion of tree cover in very polluted urban neighbourhoods.
The study, published in the journal Environment International, looked at more than 650,000 serious asthma attacks over a 15 year period. Emergency hospitalisations were compared across 26,000 urban neighbourhoods in England.
In the most polluted urban areas, trees had a particularly strong association with fewer emergency asthma cases. In relatively unpolluted urban neighbourhoods trees did not have the same impact.
In a typical urban area with a high level of background air pollution — for example, around 15 micrograms of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) per cubic metre, or a nitrogen dioxide concentration around 33 micrograms per cubic metre — an extra 300 trees per square kilometre was associated with around 50 fewer emergency asthma cases per 100,000 residents over the 15 year study period.
The findings could have important implications for planning and public health policy, and suggest that tree planting could play a role in reducing the effects of air pollution from cars.
Over 5.4 million people receive treatment for asthma in the UK with an annual cost to the NHS of around £1 billion. 18 per cent of adults report asthma in the previous 12 months, and a quarter of 13-14 year olds report symptoms. Asthma causes over a thousand deaths a year.
The study led by Dr Ian Alcock, research fellow at the University of Exeter’s Medical School, found that trees and green space were both related to a decrease in people admitted to hospital with asthma…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/11/171117103814.ht

Urban trees can affect the quality of life and health.

See, https://drwilda.com/tag/tree-canopy/
https://drwilda.com/tag/native-american-forest-practices/

Science Daily reported in How green space can reduce violent crime: Researchers seek to enhance public safety by harnessing nature:

Properly designed and maintained outdoor green space has the potential to reduce violent crime and gun violence, to make communities safer and keep residents healthier, a new study suggests. Conversely, green space that is poorly designed and inadequately maintained can help crime take root and spread.
The findings come from a team of scientists that has assembled a big-picture review of research on the complicated relationship between nature and crime in urban areas. They identified several patterns that can help inform public policy, guide urban design and promote neighborhoods that are safe and pleasant to live in.
The project came about because members of the research team had been touched by crime, either directly or indirectly. “All of us had some sort of experience, personally or through family members. And we thought maybe we can do something about it,” said Hessam Sadatsafavi, PhD, of the School of Medicine. “How to control violent crime is a polarizing issue. We are interested to see, as designers whose work is to shape the physical environment, if it’s possible for us to contribute to this conversation and to take some actions to see if we, personally, can contribute to reducing crime.”
The Weed of Crime Bears Bitter Fruit
The research, initiated at Cornell University, sought to synthesize the findings of many previous studies that looked at the effects of various forms of green space on crime and criminal behavior. “We said, OK, we have to start by understanding what is out there in terms of theory, what other people have found,” Sadatsafavi said. “Green space can be a source of or increase the risk of crime in a neighborhood through some mechanism, and it can also reduce the risk. So why is that happening? Is there any way to find a solution to make the risk reduction more effective?”
The researchers initially considered more than 14,000 papers but ultimately winnowed those down to 45 done in the United States, which offered the most relevant insights into how access to nature might improve public safety.
The initial review was challenging because the topic is vast and can be approached from many angles. “You might talk about community gardens, you might talk about people’s lawns,” Sadatsafavi explained. “People who do the studies might go out and count the number of trees on sidewalks, or examine satellite images. Or look at the number of vacant lots that were turned into green space.”
That, combined with the wide variety of crime examined and how it was reported, made it difficult for the researchers to draw specific conclusions. “But,” Sadatsafavi said, “there are definitely patterns.”
For example, nine studies looked at the effect of green space on gun violence. Six found that such interventions reduced crime, while three were inconclusive. “There is evidence that greening interventions at the urban level reduces violent crime, specifically gun violence,” said Sadatsafavi, of UVA’s Department of Emergency Medicine.
“By looking at all these studies, we were able to propose possible pathways [to reduce crime and] put together an overall picture of why this is happening, both in terms of gun violence and in terms of overall crime rate.”
Using Nature to Reduce Crime
Sadatsafavi hopes that the researchers’ findings, outlined in a paper in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, will lead to community interventions that keep people safe, decrease crime and promote better quality of life…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200227144253.htm

Citation:

How green space can reduce violent crime
Researchers seek to enhance public safety by harnessing nature
Date: February 27, 2020
Source: University of Virginia Health System
Summary:
Researchers identified patterns that can inform public policy, guide urban design and promote neighborhoods that are safe and low in crime.

Journal Reference:
Mardelle Shepley, Naomi Sachs, Hessam Sadatsafavi, Christine Fournier, Kati Peditto. The Impact of Green Space on Violent Crime in Urban Environments: An Evidence Synthesis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2019; 16 (24): 5119 DOI: 10.3390/ijerph16245119

Here is the press release from the University of Virginia Health System:

Study Reveals How Green Space Can Reduce Violent Crime
February 27 2020

Properly designed and maintained outdoor green space has the potential to reduce violent crime and gun violence, to make communities safer and keep residents healthier, a new study suggests. Conversely, green space that is poorly designed and inadequately maintained can help crime take root and spread.
The findings come from a team of scientists that has assembled a big-picture review of research on the complicated relationship between nature and crime in urban areas. They identified several patterns that can help inform public policy, guide urban design and promote neighborhoods that are safe and pleasant to live in.
The project came about because members of the research team had been touched by crime, either directly or indirectly. “All of us had some sort of experience, personally or through family members. And we thought maybe we can do something about it,” said Hessam Sadatsafavi, PhD, of the School of Medicine. “How to control violent crime is a polarizing issue. We are interested to see, as designers whose work is to shape the physical environment, if it’s possible for us to contribute to this conversation and to take some actions to see if we, personally, can contribute to reducing crime.”
The Weed of Crime Bears Bitter Fruit
The research, initiated at Cornell University, sought to synthesize the findings of many previous studies that looked at the effects of various forms of green space on crime and criminal behavior. “We said, OK, we have to start by understanding what is out there in terms of theory, what other people have found,” Sadatsafavi said. “Green space can be a source of or increase the risk of crime in a neighborhood through some mechanism, and it can also reduce the risk. So why is that happening? Is there any way to find a solution to make the risk reduction more effective?”
The researchers initially considered more than 14,000 papers but ultimately winnowed those down to 45 done in the United States, which offered the most relevant insights into how access to nature might improve public safety.
The initial review was challenging because the topic is vast and can be approached from many angles. “You might talk about community gardens, you might talk about people’s lawns,” Sadatsafavi explained. “People who do the studies might go out and count the number of trees on sidewalks, or examine satellite images. Or look at the number of vacant lots that were turned into green space.”
That, combined with the wide variety of crime examined and how it was reported, made it difficult for the researchers to draw specific conclusions. “But,” Sadatsafavi said, “there are definitely patterns.”
For example, nine studies looked at the effect of green space on gun violence. Six found that such interventions reduced crime, while three were inconclusive. “There is evidence that greening interventions at the urban level reduces violent crime, specifically gun violence,” said Sadatsafavi, of UVA’s Department of Emergency Medicine.
“By looking at all these studies, we were able to propose possible pathways [to reduce crime and] put together an overall picture of why this is happening, both in terms of gun violence and in terms of overall crime rate.”
Using Nature to Reduce Crime
Sadatsafavi hopes that the researchers’ findings, outlined in a paper in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, will lead to community interventions that keep people safe, decrease crime and promote better quality of life.
“The dream scenario for me, personally, is to raise awareness about the effectiveness and the cost effectiveness of these strategies,” he said. “Our next goal as a team is to develop design guidelines for, say, how a community garden or small community park should be designed, to improve the positive effects of the green space and provide practical, hands-on information for people who are in the field, whether landscape architects or people who are starting their own community garden.”
About the Study
The study’s authors were Mardelle Shepley, Naomi Sachs, Sadatsafavi, Christine Fournier and Kati Peditto. To keep up with the latest medical research news from UVA, subscribe to the Making of Medicine blog.
MEDIA CONTACT
Joshua Barney
Deputy Public Information Officer
Email: jdb9a@virginia.edu
Phone: 434.906.8864

See, Envisioning a Great Green City: Nature needs cities. Cities need nature. https://www.nature.org/en-us/what-we-do/our-insights/perspectives/envisioning-a-great-green-city/

Resources:

Urban Forestry & Energy Conservation Bibliography https://articles.extension.org/pages/71120/urban-forestry-energy-conservation-bibliography

Urban Forestry Bibliography Created by the Forest Service … https://www.milliontreesnyc.org/downloads/pdf/urban_tree_bib.pdf
Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

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Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

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http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

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Purdue University study: Alcoholism in the family affects how your brain switches between active and resting states

24 Feb

Substance abuse is a serious problem for many young people. The Centers for Disease Control provide statistics about underage drinking in the Fact Sheet: Underage Drinking:

Underage Drinking

Alcohol use by persons under age 21 years is a major public health problem.1 Alcohol is the most commonly used and abused drug among youth in the United States, more than tobacco and illicit drugs. Although drinking by persons under the age of 21 is illegal, people aged 12 to 20 years drink 11% of all alcohol consumed in the United States.2 More than 90% of this alcohol is consumed in the form of binge drinks.2 On average, underage drinkers consume more drinks per drinking occasion than adult drinkers.3 In 2008, there were approximately 190,000 emergency rooms visits by persons under age 21 for injuries and other conditions linked to alcohol.4
Drinking Levels among Youth
The 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Survey5 found that among high school students, during the past 30 days
• 42% drank some amount of alcohol.
• 24% binge drank.
• 10% drove after drinking alcohol.
• 28% rode with a driver who had been drinking alcohol.
Other national surveys indicate
• In 2008 the National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that 28% of youth aged 12 to 20 years drink alcohol and 19% reported binge drinking.6
• In 2009, the Monitoring the Future Survey reported that 37% of 8th graders and 72% of 12th graders had tried alcohol, and 15% of 8th graders and 44% of 12th graders drank during the past month.7
Consequences of Underage Drinking
Youth who drink alcohol1, 3, 8 are more likely to experience
• School problems, such as higher absence and poor or failing grades.
• Social problems, such as fighting and lack of participation in youth activities.
• Legal problems, such as arrest for driving or physically hurting someone while drunk.
• Physical problems, such as hangovers or illnesses.
• Unwanted, unplanned, and unprotected sexual activity.
• Disruption of normal growth and sexual development.
• Physical and sexual assault.
• Higher risk for suicide and homicide.
• Alcohol-related car crashes and other unintentional injuries, such as burns, falls, and drowning.
• Memory problems.
• Abuse of other drugs.
• Changes in brain development that may have life-long effects.
• Death from alcohol poisoning.
In general, the risk of youth experiencing these problems is greater for those who binge drink than for those who do not binge drink.8
Youth who start drinking before age 15 years are five times more likely to develop alcohol dependence or abuse later in life than those who begin drinking at or after age 21 years.9, 10                                                                                             http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/underage-drinking.htm

See, Alcohol Use Among Adolescents and Young Adults http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/arh27-1/79-86.htm

https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/seattle-childrens-institute-study-supportive-middle-school-teachers-affect-a-kids-alcohol-use/

See,      https://drwilda.com/tag/alcohol-abuse/
https://drwilda.com/tag/alcoholism-clinical-and-experimental-research/
https://drwilda.com/tag/substance-abuse/
https://drwilda.com/tag/alcohol-and-children/

A Purdue University study found alcoholism affects those who may not be alcoholics.

Science Daily reported in Alcoholism in the family affects how your brain switches between active and resting states:

You don’t have to be a drinker for your brain to be affected by alcoholism.
A new study shows that just having a parent with an alcohol use disorder affects how your brain transitions between active and resting states — regardless of your own drinking habits.
The study, performed by researchers at Purdue University and the Indiana University School of Medicine, discovered that the brain reconfigures itself between completing a mentally demanding task and resting.
But for the brain of someone with a family history of an alcohol use disorder, this reconfiguration doesn’t happen.
While the missing transition doesn’t seem to affect how well a person performs the mentally demanding task itself, it might be related to larger scale brain functions that give rise to behaviors associated with addiction. In particular, study subjects without this brain process demonstrated greater impatience in waiting for rewards, a behavior associated with addiction.
Findings are published in the journal NeuroImage. The work was led by Enrico Amico, a former Purdue postdoctoral researcher who is now a researcher at EPFL in Lausanne, Switzerland.
How the brain reconfigures between active and resting states is like how a computer closes down a program after you’re finished with it.
“The moment you close a program, a computer has to remove it from memory, reorganize the cache and maybe clear out some temporary files. This helps the computer to prepare for the next task,” said Joaquín Goñi, a Purdue assistant professor in the School of Industrial Engineering and the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering.
“In a similar way, we’ve found that this reconfiguration process in the human brain is associated with finishing a task and getting ready for what’s next.” Goñi’s research group, the CONNplexity Lab, takes a computational approach to neuroscience and cognitive science.
Past research has shown that a family history of alcoholism affects a person’s brain anatomy and physiology, but most studies have looked at this effect only in separate active and quiet resting states rather than the transition between them.
“A lot of what brains do is switch between different tasks and states. We suspected that this task switching might be somewhat lower in people with a family history of alcoholism,” said David Kareken, a professor of neurology at the Indiana University School of Medicine and director of the Indiana Alcohol Research Center.
The study defined a “family history of alcoholism” as someone with a parent who had enough symptoms to constitute an alcohol use disorder. About half of the 54 study participants had this history.
Researchers at Indiana University measured the brain activity of subjects with an MRI scanner as they completed a mentally demanding task on a computer. The task required them to unpredictably hold back from pressing a left or right key. After completing the task, the subjects rested while watching a fixed point on the screen…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200210133222.htm

Citation:

Alcoholism in the family affects how your brain switches between active and resting states
Date: February 10, 2020
Source: Purdue University
Summary:
A new study shows that just having a parent with an alcohol use disorder affects how your brain transitions between active and resting states — regardless of your own drinking habits.

Journal Reference:
Enrico Amico, Mario Dzemidzic, Brandon G. Oberlin, Claire R. Carron, Jaroslaw Harezlak, Joaquín Goñi, David A. Kareken. The disengaging brain: Dynamic transitions from cognitive engagement and alcoholism risk. NeuroImage, 2020; 209: 116515 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.116515

Here is the press release from Purdue University:

February 10, 2020

Alcoholism in the family affects how your brain switches between active and resting states

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — You don’t have to be a drinker for your brain to be affected by alcoholism.
A new study shows that just having a parent with an alcohol use disorder affects how your brain transitions between active and resting states – regardless of your own drinking habits.
The study, performed by researchers at Purdue University and the Indiana University School of Medicine, discovered that the brain reconfigures itself between completing a mentally demanding task and resting.
But for the brain of someone with a family history of an alcohol use disorder, this reconfiguration doesn’t happen.
While the missing transition doesn’t seem to affect how well a person performs the mentally demanding task itself, it might be related to larger scale brain functions that give rise to behaviors associated with addiction. In particular, study subjects without this brain process demonstrated greater impatience in waiting for rewards, a behavior associated with addiction.
Findings are published in the journal NeuroImage. The work was led by Enrico Amico, a former Purdue postdoctoral researcher who is now a researcher at EPFL in Lausanne, Switzerland.
How the brain reconfigures between active and resting states is like how a computer closes down a program after you’re finished with it.
“The moment you close a program, a computer has to remove it from memory, reorganize the cache and maybe clear out some temporary files. This helps the computer to prepare for the next task,” said Joaquín Goñi, a Purdue assistant professor in the School of Industrial Engineering and the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering.
“In a similar way, we’ve found that this reconfiguration process in the human brain is associated with finishing a task and getting ready for what’s next.” Goñi’s research group, the CONNplexity Lab, takes a computational approach to neuroscience and cognitive science.
Past research has shown that a family history of alcoholism affects a person’s brain anatomy and physiology, but most studies have looked at this effect only in separate active and quiet resting states rather than the transition between them.
“A lot of what brains do is switch between different tasks and states. We suspected that this task switching might be somewhat lower in people with a family history of alcoholism,” said David Kareken, a professor of neurology at the Indiana University School of Medicine and director of the Indiana Alcohol Research Center.
The study defined a “family history of alcoholism” as someone with a parent who had enough symptoms to constitute an alcohol use disorder. About half of the 54 study participants had this history.
Researchers at Indiana University measured the brain activity of subjects with an MRI scanner as they completed a mentally demanding task on a computer. The task required them to unpredictably hold back from pressing a left or right key. After completing the task, the subjects rested while watching a fixed point on the screen.
A separate task outside of the MRI scanner gauged how participants responded to rewards, asking questions such as if they would like $20 now or $200 in one year.
Amico and Goñi processed the data and developed a computational framework for extracting different patterns of brain connectivity between completing the mentally demanding task and entering the resting state, such as when brain areas rose and fell together in activity, or one brain area rose while another fell at the same time.
The data revealed that these brain connectivity patterns reconfigured within the first three minutes after finishing the task. By the fourth minute of rest, the effect had completely disappeared.
And it’s not a quiet process: Reconfiguration involves multiple parts of the brain at once.
“These brain regions talk to each other and are very strongly implicated in the task even though by this point, the task is already completed. It almost seems like an echo in time of what had been going on,” Kareken said.
Subjects lacking the transition also had the risk factors that researchers have seen to be consistent with developing alcoholism. These include being male, a greater number of symptoms of depression, and reward-impatience.
A family history of alcoholism, however, stood out as the most statistically significant difference in this brain reconfiguration.
The finding affects research going forward.
“In the past, we’ve assumed that a person who doesn’t drink excessively is a ‘healthy’ control for a study. But this work shows that a person with just a family history of alcoholism may also have some subtle differences in how their brains operate,” Goñi said.
The code used to analyze data in this study is available at https://engineering.purdue.edu/ConnplexityLab/publications.
This research was funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (grant P60AA07611) and the Purdue Discovery Park Data Science Award “Fingerprints of the Human Brain: A Data Science Perspective.” The work was also partially supported by the National Institutes of Health (grants R01EB022574, R01MH108467, and R00AA023296).
About Discovery Park
Discovery Park is a place where Purdue researchers move beyond traditional boundaries, collaborating across disciplines and with policymakers and business leaders to create solutions for a better world. Grand challenges of global health, global conflict and security, and those that lie at the nexus of sustainable energy, world food supply, water and the environment are the focus of researchers in Discovery Park. The translation of discovery to impact is integrated into the fabric of Discovery Park through entrepreneurship programs and partnerships.
Writer: Kayla Wiles, 765-494-2432, wiles5@purdue.edu
Sources:
Joaquín Goñi, jgonicor@purdue.edu
David Kareken, dkareken@iu.edu

Note to Journalists: The paper is available online open-access at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053811920300021. An illustration and brain images are available via a Google Drive folder at https://bit.ly/2UE8aSL
________________________________________
ABSTRACT
The Disengaging brain: Dynamic Transitions from Cognitive Engagement and Alcoholism Risk
Enrico Amico1,2, Mario Dzemidzic3, Brandon G. Oberlin3,4, Claire R. Carron3, Jaroslaw Harezlak5, Joaquín Goñi1,2,6, & David A. Kareken3,
1Purdue Institute for Integrative Neuroscience, Purdue University
2 School of Industrial Engineering, Purdue University
3 Department of Neurology, Indiana University School of Medicine; Indiana Alcohol Research Center
4Department of Psychiatry, Indiana University School of Medicine
5 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Indiana University
6 Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, Purdue University
DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.116515
Human functional brain connectivity is usually measured either at “rest” or during cognitive tasks, ignoring life’s moments of mental transition. We propose a different approach to understanding brain network transitions. We applied a novel independent component analysis of functional connectivity during motor inhibition (stop signal task) and during the continuous transition to an immediately ensuing rest. A functional network reconfiguration process emerged that: (i) was most prominent in those without familial alcoholism risk, (ii) encompassed brain areas engaged by the task, yet (iii) appeared only transiently after task cessation. The pattern was not present in a pre-task rest scan or in the remaining minutes of post-task rest. Finally, this transient network reconfiguration related to a key behavioral trait of addiction risk: reward delay discounting. These novel findings illustrate how dynamic brain functional reconfiguration during normally unstudied periods of cognitive transition might reflect addiction vulnerability, and potentially other forms of brain dysfunction.

Assuming you are not one of those ill-advised parents who supply their child with alcohol or drugs like marijuana in an attempt to be hip or cool, suspicions that your child may have a substance abuse problem are a concern. Confirmation that your child has a substance abuse problem can be heartbreaking. Even children whose parents have seemingly done everything right can become involved with drugs. The best defense is knowledge about your child, your child’s friends, and your child’s activities. You need to be aware of what is influencing your child.
Our goal should be:

A Healthy Child In A Healthy Family Who Attends A Healthy School In A Healthy Neighborhood. ©

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Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania study: Vaccine misinformation and social media

22 Feb

Michaeleen Doucleff reported in the NPR story, How Vaccine Fears Fueled The Resurgence Of Preventable Diseases:

For most of us, measles and whooping cough are diseases of the past. You get a few shots as a kid and then hardly think about them again.
But that’s not the case in all parts of the world — not even parts of the U.S.
As an interactive map http://www.cfr.org/interactives/GH_Vaccine_Map/index.html#map from the Council on Foreign Relations illustrates, several diseases that are easily prevented with vaccines have made a comeback in the past few years. Their resurgence coincides with changes in perceptions about vaccine safety.
Since 2008 folks at the think tank CFR have been plotting all the cases of measles, mumps, rubella, polio and whooping cough around the world. Each circle on the map represents a local outbreak of a particular disease, while the size of the circle indicates the number of people infected in the outbreak.
As you flip through the various maps over the years, two trends clearly emerge: Measles has surged back in Europe, while whooping cough is has become a problem here in the U.S.
Childhood immunization rates plummeted in parts of Europe and the U.K. after a 1998 study falsely claimed that the vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella was linked to autism.
That study has since been found to be fraudulent. But fears about vaccine safety have stuck around in Europe and here in the U.S.
Viruses and bacteria have taken full advantage of the immunization gaps.
In 2011, France reported a massive measles outbreak with nearly 15,000 cases. Only the Democratic Republic of Congo, India, Indonesia, Nigeria and Somalia suffered larger measles outbreaks that year.
In 2012, the U.K. reported more than 2,000 measles cases, the largest number since 1994.
Here in the U.S., the prevalence of whooping cough shot up in 2012 to nearly 50,000 cases. Last year cases declined to about 24,000 — which is still more than tenfold the number reported back in the early ’80s when the bacteria infected less than 2,000 people.
So what about countries in Africa? Why are there so many big, colorful circles dotting the continent? For many parents there, the problem is getting access to vaccines, not fears of it.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/01/25/265750719/how-vaccine-fears-fueled-the-resurgence-of-preventable-diseases?utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=20140202&utm_source=mostemailed

There are many myths regarding vaccination of children.

Dina Fine Maron wrote in the Daily Beast article, 6 Top Vaccine Myths:

To sort through the onslaught of information and misinformation about childhood immunizations, we asked Austin, Texas-based pediatrician Ari Brown, coauthor of “Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for your Baby’s First Year,” to debunk some of the most common vaccination myths.
Myth 1: It’s not necessary to vaccinate kids against diseases that have been largely eradicated in the United States.
Reality: Although some diseases like polio and diphtheria aren’t often seen in America (in large part because of the success of the vaccination efforts), they can be quite common in other parts of the world. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that travelers can unknowingly bring these diseases into the United States, and if we were not protected by vaccinations, these diseases could quickly spread throughout the population. At the same time, the relatively few cases currently in the U.S. could very quickly become tens or hundreds of thousands of cases without the protection we get from vaccines. Brown warns that these diseases haven’t disappeared, “they are merely smoldering under the surface.”
Most parents do follow government recommendations: U.S. national immunization rates are high, ranging from 85 percent to 93 percent, depending on the vaccine, according to the CDC. But according to a 2006 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the 20 states that allow personal-belief opt outs in addition to religious exemptions saw exemptions grow by 61 percent, to 2.54 percent between 1991 and 2004.
Brown is concerned that parents who opt out or stagger the vaccine schedule can end up having to deal with confusing follow-up care, which could produce an increase in disease outbreaks like last summer’s measles epidemic. A 2008 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology reported that when there are more exemptions, children are at an increased risk of contracting and transmitting vaccine-preventable diseases.
For more on the pros and cons of staggering or skipping vaccinations, visit MSN’s guide or read this U.S. News and World Report piece. For information on vaccine safety, check out the CDC’s information page. To search for your state’s vaccine requirements, see the National Network for Immunization Information.
Myth 2: Mercury is still in kids’ vaccines.
Reality: At the center of this issue is a preservative called thimerosal (a compound containing mercury) that once was a common component in many vaccines because it allowed manufacturers to make drugs more cheaply and in multidose formulations. But public concern, new innovations and FDA recommendations led to its removal from almost all children’s vaccines manufactured after 2001. (More thimerosal background can be found at the FDA’s Web site) Since flu vaccines are not just for children, manufacturers still put thimerosal in some flu-shot formulations. You can ask your pediatrician for the thimerosal-free version, says Brown.
If your child does not have asthma and is at least 2 years old, Brown recommends the FluMist nasal-spray vaccination over the flu shot. “It seems to have better immune protection and it could help your child avoid another shot,” she says. (Caveat: the spray does contain a live version of the virus, which can result in a slight increase in flulike symptoms).
Myth 3: Childhood vaccines cause autism.
Reality: There is no scientific evidence that this link exists. Groups of experts, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Institute of Medicine (IOM), agree that vaccines are not responsible for the growing number of children now recognized to have autism.
Earlier this month, the law supported scientists’ conclusions in this arena with three rulings from a section of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, which stated that vaccines were not the likely cause of autism in three unrelated children. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said in an online statement following the ruling, “The medical and scientific communities have carefully and thoroughly reviewed the evidence concerning the vaccine-autism theory and have found no association between vaccines and autism.” Noting the volume of scientific evidence disproving this link, an executive member of one of the nation’s foremost autism advocacy groups, Autism Speaks, recently stepped down from her position because she disagrees with the group’s continued position that there is a connection between the vaccines and autism.
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Myth 4: Getting too many vaccines can overwhelm the immune system and cause adverse reactions or even serious illness.
Reality: Children’s immune systems are capable of combating far more antigens (weak or killed viruses) than they encounter via immunizations. In fact, the jury is still out on if there’s an actual limit on how many the body can handle—though one study puts the number around a theoretical 10,000 vaccines in one day.(Visit the American Academy of Pediatrics’ site or the Network for Immunization Information for more information)
Currently, “There is even less of a burden on the immune system [via vaccines] today than 40 years ago,” says Edgar Marcuse, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington who works on immunization policy and vaccines. He points to the whooping-cough vaccine as an example where there are far fewer antigens in the shot than the earlier version administered decades ago. Brown says she supports following the recommended schedule for vaccinations, which outlines getting as many as five shots in one day at a couple check-ups. (The CDC’s recommended vaccination schedule can be found here.) “I have kids, and I wouldn’t recommend doing anything for my patients that I wouldn’t do for my own kids,” she says.
The CDC reports that most vaccine adverse events are minor and temporary, such as a sore arm or mild fever and “so few deaths can plausibly be attributed to vaccines that it is hard to assess the risk statistically.” Of all deaths reported to the Health and Human Services’ Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting site between 1990 and 1992, only one is believed to be even possibly associated with a vaccine. The Vaccine Safety Datalink Project, an initiative of the CDC and eight health-care organizations, looks for patterns in these reports and determines if a vaccine is causing a side effect or if symptoms are largely coincidental.
If you have concerns about following the recommended vaccination, schedule don’t wait until a check-up. Set up a consultation appointment with your pediatrician, or even outline a strategy for care with your doctor during your pregnancy.
Myth 5: It’s better to let my kid get chickenpox “naturally.”
Reality: Before the chickenpox vaccine was licensed in 1995, parents sometimes brought their child to a party or playground hoping that their child might brush up against a pox-laden kid to get their dose of chickenpox over since cases were usually less severe for children than adults. But pediatricians say severe complications are possible with chickenpox—including bacterial infections that could result in a child’s hospitalization or death. (More information on the chickenpox vaccine is available at the CDC’s Web site.)
Now that there’s a vaccine for chickenpox, more than 45 states require the shots (unless your child already had the chicken pox or can prove natural immunity). Two shots usually guarantees your child a way out of being bedecked in calamine lotion for two feverish weeks, but some individuals do still come down with a milder form of the pox. Most pediatricians recommend getting the shot.
Myth 6: The flu shot causes the flu.
Reality: The flu shot does not contain a live virus, so your child can’t get the flu from this shot. But, after the shot, it’s not uncommon to feel a bit achy while the immune system mounts its response. Remember that for two weeks following the shot, your child can still get the flu, so be sure to help your child avoid that feverish kid next door. http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2009/02/22/six-top-vaccine-myths.html

A question in the current climate is what can be done to make parents responsible for putting other children at risk.

See, https://drwilda.com/tag/vaccines/ and https://drwilda.com/tag/vaccination/

Science Daily reported in Vaccine misinformation and social media: People exposed to vaccine content on social media more likely misinformed than those exposed to it on traditional media:

People who rely on social media for information were more likely to be misinformed about vaccines than those who rely on traditional media, according to a study of vaccine knowledge and media use by researchers at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.
The study, based on nationally representative surveys of nearly 2,500 U.S. adults, found that up to 20% of respondents were at least somewhat misinformed about vaccines. Such a high level of misinformation is “worrying” because misinformation undermines vaccination rates, and high vaccination rates are required to maintain community immunity, the researchers said.
The study, published in the Harvard Kennedy School Misinformation Review, was conducted in the spring and fall of 2019, when the United States experienced its largest measles outbreak in a quarter century. Between the two survey periods, 19% of the respondents’ levels of vaccine misinformation changed in a substantive way — and within that group, almost two-thirds (64%) were more misinformed in the fall than in the spring.
Media consumption patterns helped to explain the change in misinformation levels, the researchers found. Those respondents who reported increased exposure to information about measles and the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine on social media were more likely to grow more misinformed about vaccines. By contrast, those people who reported an increased exposure to news accounts about those topics in traditional media were more likely to grow less misinformed about vaccines.
“People who received their information from traditional media were less likely to endorse anti-common vaccination claims,” said lead author Dominik Stecula, a postdoctoral fellow in the science of science communication program at the Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC). He co-authored the study with Ozan Kuru, another APPC postdoctoral fellow, and APPC Director Kathleen Hall Jamieson.
The result is consistent with research suggesting that social media contain a fair amount of misinformation about vaccination while traditional media are more likely to reflect the scientific consensus on its benefits and safety, according to the Annenberg researchers.
‘Worrying’ levels of vaccine misinformation
The researchers found that:
• 18% of respondents mistakenly say that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that vaccines cause autism;
• 15% mistakenly agree that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that vaccines are full of toxins;
• 20% wrongly report that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that it makes no difference whether parents choose to delay or spread out vaccines instead of relying on the official vaccine schedule from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC);
• and 19% incorrectly say it is very or somewhat accurate to state that it is better to develop immunity by getting the disease than by vaccination.
Medical experts and media consumption
The researchers also found that an individual’s level of trust in medical experts affects the likelihood that a person’s beliefs about vaccination will change. Low levels of trust in medical experts coincide with believing vaccine misinformation, the researchers said.
In addition, the research found that vaccine misinformation proved resilient over time. Most of those in the sample (81%) were just as informed or misinformed in the spring (February/March) as they were months later, in the fall (September/October), despite the extensive news coverage of the measles outbreak and attempts by the CDC to educate the public. Among the 19% whose level of knowledge changed substantially, 64% were more misinformed and 36% were better informed.
The researchers point out that although the findings only show correlations between media coverage and individual attitudes — not causation — these findings still hold implications for the effectiveness of national pro-vaccination campaigns, the role of health professionals in addressing misinformation, and the impact of social media misinformation.
The findings, Kuru noted, come as a number of states have been debating whether to tighten their laws surrounding vaccination exemptions and social media companies have been wrestling with how to respond to different forms of misinformation…. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200217163004.htm

Citation:

Vaccine misinformation and social media
People exposed to vaccine content on social media more likely misinformed than those exposed to it on traditional media
Date: February 17, 2020
Source: Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Summary:
People who rely on social media for information were more likely to be misinformed about vaccines than those who rely on traditional media, according to a new study. The study, based on surveys of nearly 2,500 US adults, found that up to 20% of respondents were at least somewhat misinformed about vaccines.

Journal Reference:
Dominik Andrzej Stecula, Ozan Kuru, Kathleen Hall Jamieson. How Trust in Experts and Media Use Affect Acceptance of Common Anti-Vaccination Claims. Harvard Kennedy School Misinformation Review, 2020; DOI: 10.37016/mr-2020-007

Here is the press release from the University of Pennsylvania:

NEWS RELEASE 17-FEB-2020
Vaccine misinformation and social media
People exposed to vaccine content on social media more likely misinformed than those exposed to it on traditional media
ANNENBERG PUBLIC POLICY CENTER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA
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People who rely on social media for information were more likely to be misinformed about vaccines than those who rely on traditional media, according to a study of vaccine knowledge and media use by researchers at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.
The study, based on nationally representative surveys of nearly 2,500 U.S. adults, found that up to 20% of respondents were at least somewhat misinformed about vaccines. Such a high level of misinformation is “worrying” because misinformation undermines vaccination rates, and high vaccination rates are required to maintain community immunity, the researchers said.
The study, published in the Harvard Kennedy School Misinformation Review, was conducted in the spring and fall of 2019, when the United States experienced its largest measles outbreak in a quarter century. Between the two survey periods, 19% of the respondents’ levels of vaccine misinformation changed in a substantive way – and within that group, almost two-thirds (64%) were more misinformed in the fall than in the spring.
Media consumption patterns helped to explain the change in misinformation levels, the researchers found. Those respondents who reported increased exposure to information about measles and the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine on social media were more likely to grow more misinformed about vaccines. By contrast, those people who reported an increased exposure to news accounts about those topics in traditional media were more likely to grow less misinformed about vaccines.
“People who received their information from traditional media were less likely to endorse common anti-vaccination claims,” said lead author Dominik Stecula, a postdoctoral fellow in the science of science communication program at the Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC). He co-authored the study with Ozan Kuru, another APPC postdoctoral fellow, and APPC Director Kathleen Hall Jamieson.
The result is consistent with research suggesting that social media contain a fair amount of misinformation about vaccination while traditional media are more likely to reflect the scientific consensus on its benefits and safety, according to the Annenberg researchers.
‘Worrying’ levels of vaccine misinformation
The researchers found that:
• 18% of respondents mistakenly say that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that vaccines cause autism;
• 15% mistakenly agree that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that vaccines are full of toxins;
• 20% wrongly report that it is very or somewhat accurate to state that it makes no difference whether parents choose to delay or spread out vaccines instead of relying on the official vaccine schedule from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC);
• and 19% incorrectly say it is very or somewhat accurate to state that it is better to develop immunity by getting the disease than by vaccination.
Medical experts and media consumption
The researchers also found that an individual’s level of trust in medical experts affects the likelihood that a person’s beliefs about vaccination will change. Low levels of trust in medical experts coincide with believing vaccine misinformation, the researchers said.
In addition, the research found that vaccine misinformation proved resilient over time. Most of those in the sample (81%) were just as informed or misinformed in the spring (February/March) as they were months later, in the fall (September/October), despite the extensive news coverage of the measles outbreak and attempts by the CDC to educate the public. Among the 19% whose level of knowledge changed substantially, 64% were more misinformed and 36% were better informed.
The researchers point out that although the findings only show correlations between media coverage and individual attitudes – not causation – these findings still hold implications for the effectiveness of national pro-vaccination campaigns, the role of health professionals in addressing misinformation, and the impact of social media misinformation.
The findings, Kuru noted, come as a number of states have been debating whether to tighten their laws surrounding vaccination exemptions and social media companies have been wrestling with how to respond to different forms of misinformation.
The researchers said this study suggests that “increasing the sheer amount of pro-vaccination content in media of all types may be of value over the longer term.” They said the findings also underscore the importance of decisions by Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest to reduce or block access to anti-vaccine misinformation.
###
“How Trust in Experts and Media Use Affect Acceptance of Common Anti-Vaccination Claims,” was published in the inaugural issue of the Harvard Kennedy School Misinformation Review in January 2020.
The Annenberg Public Policy Center was established in 1993 to educate the public and policy makers about communication’s role in advancing public understanding of political, health, and science issues at the local, state and federal levels.
Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

It is just a matter of time before there will be lawsuits regarding whether a parent owed a duty to the public to vaccinate their child.

Here is information from the 6 Top Vaccine Myths regarding vaccination schedules:
For Health Care Professionals
Birth-18 Years and Catch-up
• View combined schedules (birth-18 years and catch-up)
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/su6201a2.htm
• Print combined schedules (including intro, summary of changes, references…) [355 KB, 7 pages]

Click to access mmwr-0-18yrs-catchup-schedule.pdf


• Print combined schedules in color (chart in landscape format) [202 KB, 5 pages] also in black & white [348 KB, 5 pages]

Click to access mmwr-0-18yrs-catchup-schedule.pdf


• Print full MMWR supplement (birth-18 years, catch-up, adult, adult medical and other indications, adult contraindications and precautions) [1MB, 21 pages]

Click to access mm62e0128.pdf


• Order free copies from CDC
http://wwwn.cdc.gov/pubs/ncird.aspx#schedules

For Everyone
Easy-to-read Schedules for All Ages
Easy-to-read formats to print, tools to download, and ways to prepare for your office visit.
• Infants and Children (birth through 6 years old)Find easy-to-read formats to print, create an instant schedule for your child, determine missed or skipped vaccines, and prepare for your office visit…
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/easy-to-read/child.html
• Preteens & Teens (7 through 18 years old)Print this friendly schedule, take a quick quiz, fill out the screening form before your child’s doctor visit, or download a tool to determine vaccines needed…
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/easy-to-read/preteen-teen.html
• Adults (19 years and older)Print the easy-to-read adult schedule, take the quiz, or download a tool to
• determine vaccines needed…
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/easy-to-read/adult.html
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/

Here is information from the American Academy of Pediatrics regarding vaccination.
http://www2.aap.org/immunization/ Parents must consult their doctors about vaccinations.

Related:

3rd World America: Tropical diseases in poor neighborhoods
https://drwilda.com/2012/08/20/3rd-world-america-tropical-diseases-in-poor-neighborhoods/

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