vitamin D

Vitamin D Deficiency Increases Risk of Severe COVID Infection & Mortality

More research confirms that maintaining optimal vitamin D levels is extremely important for reducing the risk of infection with SARS Cov-2. A six-week observational study of 154 people published in Nature found that 97 percent of individuals with severe COVID-19 had vitamin D deficiency (mean concentration was 14 ng/mL) compared to 33 percent of people…

Vegan foods

JAMA Article Attributes Dietary Benefits to Veganism But Misses Other Potential Contributors

The results from a newly-published trial on the effects of a dietary intervention in overweight adults are impressive: 14 lbs weight loss, increased insulin sensitivity, a 19.3 mg/dL reduction in total cholesterol, 15.4 mg/dL reduction in LDL cholesterol, and reduced fat distribution in the liver and muscles (associated with reduced risk for fatty liver and…

cancer therapy

Nearly Half of New Cancer Therapies Approved by FDA Lack Randomized Clinical Trial Evidence & Only Prolong Life by Weeks

A large number of cancer therapies are approved by the FDA without randomized clinical trials and only increase median survival by 2.4 months, according to a new review article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). This may come as a surprise and disappointment considering the urgent goals of cancer research to…

WHO-exercise

Let’s Get Moving! WHO Updates Exercise Guidelines for All Ages

People of all ages, from kids to older adults, are encouraged to limit sedentary behavior and increase daily exercise, according to updated guidelines from the World Health Organization (WHO). These guidelines, which replace 2010 WHO recommendations, highlight the importance of combining aerobic plus strength training, and include guidance for pregnancy, postpartum women, and individuals with…

green-tea-covid

Polyphenols in Green Tea, Chocolate and Other Foods May Protect Against COVID

Some of our favorite polyphenol-rich foods, including green tea, muscadine grapes, cacao, and dark chocolate appear to block an enzyme in the SARS-CoV-2 virus, inhibiting its replication. A docking simulation and in vitro study published in Frontiers in Plant Science found that these flavan-3-ol and proanthocyandin-containing foods can block and bind the function of this enzyme, or protease, which…

melanin-covid

Melatonin May Offer Significant Protection from COVID Infection, and especially for African Americans

Supplementing with melatonin may decrease the likelihood of contracting COVID, particularly among African Americans. Researchers analyzed data from an observational study of over 26,000 people from a COVID-19 registry at the Cleveland Clinic Health System and found that melatonin use is associated with a 52% reduced likelihood of a positive SARS-CoV-2 test in African Americans.…

covid-cold

Two Mechanisms Potentially Improving Acquired Immunity to COVID-19: The Common Cold and Breastmilk

People who have been exposed to a seasonal “common cold” may experience less severe COVID-19 symptoms. While we’ve discussed this topic previously, a study from the Journal of Clinical Investigation reports the first clinical evidence of cross reactivity with the common cold and COVID. This is due to previous immune responses against the four endemic…

Sick woman using laptop at home

Are You Nutritionally Prepared? Protect Your Body and Mind This Cold and Flu Season

Judging from the way 2020 has shaped up, this winter season may be like no other we’ve experienced before. Metabolic Maintenance, our sponsor this month, tells us about the mood and immune-boosting nutrients we need to have on hand for an unprecedented cold season. I have a long history with this family-owned company, going back to my days as a resident at Metametrix Clinical Laboratory. They make high-quality, novel therapeutics that I trust and use in my practice routinely. I especially like their vitamin D, zinc, and antioxidants. Don’t get caught unprepared for illness this winter. Shore up your immune defenses early so you can have a fun, safe, and healthy winter season!