Archive for September, 2021

Coffee Talk

No, we are not going to discuss the hilarious Saturday Night Live skits where comedian Mike Myers portrayed a TV host, Linda Richman. (That topic would likely be more fun). I’ll cover some pros, cons and factoids about what is apparently the most popular source of the world’s most widely-used drug, caffeine. I may also cover an alternative caffeine source and runner up in US popularity—tea.

I don’t pretend that these are exhaustive lists, but they give a general idea. (I’ll bet most people pick and choose in the points to justify continuing to do what they have been doing).

Coffee Pros:

  • It smells fantastic. In fact, on a hunch, I just did an internet search for “coffee scent air freshener”, and yes there are tons—candles, diffusers of various types, sprays, and some to hang in your car. Not enough? There is even coffee scented perfume and aftershave.
  • It tastes good. I remember NOT liking my first cup. I was a senior in high school working a summer in my dad’s office. I wanted to be like the adult staff and said “yes” when someone took orders. The second time, I asked for mine with cream and sugar but it was still disgusting. Now I love it black.
  • It wakes up our brains. It increases mental activity and alertness and even has anti-depressant effects.
  • No calories. It may also cause you to eat less.
  • Stimulates metabolism. That is why coffee is often a part of diet plans.
  • Contains antioxidants. Some of the many health benefits of coffee are likely because antioxidants (phenols) are among the 1000 substances it contains. Studies show that daily coffee consumption protects against Alzheimer’s, cancers, diabetes, gallstones, gum disease, heart failure, liver disease, neck pain, Parkinson’s, suicide and deaths from all causes. (The studies were done pre-pandemic, but who knows?)
  • Removes floor wax. Years ago, when I got to my office (as Operations Manager at Goodwill Industries) and I started up the communal coffee pot and walked down the hall. When I returned, it was obvious that I had not put the pot in place! The coffee, which was now on the floor, cleaned the tile…including removing most of the wax. This is not a widely recommended procedure. (I guess I needed to drink coffee to be awake enough to be trusted to make coffee.)

CONS and Questions:

  • Over stimulation. Some people don’t handle the caffeine in coffee well and become nervous, anxious, or irritated. However, we probably all know someone who is irritated before and until they have their coffee. Coffee is more likely to interfere with sleep if consumed late in the day, but everyone is different, and it can take 24 hours to totally clear caffeine from the liver.
  • Diuretic? I’ve seen science on both sides of this issue. Perhaps the usual quick trip to the restroom is simply the water intake and that the caffeine may make nerves in the urinary tract more sensitive.
  • Causes hairy warts. Certainly, it does not. I totally made that up just to see if you were still paying attention.
  • Interfere with intermittent fasting? Moderate amounts of black coffee do not interfere, but adding cream and sugar do.
  • Causes calcium loss. Coffee does stimulate the urinary loss of calcium but adding milk to coffee can offset that. Besides dairy products, many foods such as kale, broccoli, almonds and fortified cereals are rich in calcium.
  • Migraines? Some people think that coffee triggers their headaches. Others think it provides relief. Excedrin thinks so because their pain relievers contain caffeine.
  • Vitamin B1 loss. As Bill Sardi has taught us, coffee (along with alcohol and sugar consumption) interferes with our use of critically important vitamin B1. Don’t take your B supplements within a couple of hours of having coffee. To be safe, supplement the vitamin.
  • Cardiovascular effects? Coffee does not seem to increase blood pressure at least for most people. Anyone with irregular heartbeat should check with their doctor and perhaps experiment to see if cutting caffeine helps.
  • Fake energy. If you have no energy without your coffee fix, it is not a caffeine deficiency. It is probably time to review the health basics and identify the real problem.
  • Haters. I was given a book by some anti-coffee activists. It did not mention any benefits and blamed coffee for everything from low birth weight babies and preterm labor to climate change (well, almost). I don’t think there was science to back up their assertions. Decades ago when I had health food stores, there were  coffee substitutes such as Dacopa made from Dalia root. At the time, nutrition lore was basically that since it was enjoyable, it must not be good for us. (Same thinking as carob to replace chocolate.)
  • Read the labels. It is quite possible that the worst problem with coffee beverages is what else they contain…i.e., sugar. Here is an example: A Starbucks’ venti size Caramel Ribbon Crunch Crème Frappuccino® Blended Crème contains 78 grams (about 20 teaspoons) of sugar or more than 2 full size Snickers® bars!

Factoids:

  • Espresso. The caffeine content of a shot of espresso (resist the temptation to pronounce it eXpresso) is 63 mg per ounce. You might expect that to be higher than coffee but read on.
  • Brewed. Depending on the bean and how it is brewed, according to Consumer Reports (CR), coffee contains about 12 mg caffeine per ounce…therefore, an 8-ounce cup would contain 96 mg. Again according to CR, a tall Starbucks Pike’s Place Medium Roast has 160 mg caffeine. Starbucks “Tall”, of course, translates to “short”. (You sometimes see a person ask for a shot of espresso to be added to their cup of coffee…you do the math on that.) Starbucks (30 ounce) Iced Coffee contains 280 mg of caffeine.
  • NoDoz® tablets / Mountain Dew. Just as a frame of reference, the pills that one might take to stay awake driving across West Texas each contain 200 mg. A 20-ounce bottle of Mountain Dew soda contains 91 mg. of caffeine and 77 grams of sugar (19 teaspoon) from high fructose corn syrup.
  • Decaf. Decaf is not without caffeine, depending on brand and preparation may contain from 1% to 20% as much as regular.
  • Organic is better. Lots of pesticides are used on coffee. In fact, it may be one of the most chemically treated crops in the world.

TEAS

  • This blog is getting too long, so I think I’ll write about tea another time. In closing, let me just note that white and black tea also have benefits, not just green tea. (They all come from the same plant but are processed differently.) I hear good things about Macha, but personally, I think it tastes like it must have been scraped from under the lawnmower. If you were particularly interested in tea info and don’t want to wait for me, this website seems to be a useful reference.

Useful Notes About This and That

Note: [brackets like these containing italics when in quotations from others are just me putting in my two cents.]

  • A listener asked if Bill Sardi would give us a protocol for Epstein Barr Virus and Herpes. His reply: supplement quercetin = 250 mg or so, Vitamin C = 1000 mg 3x/day [I’d take Formula 216 at least before bed so that you can have vitamin C working for you around the clock], Vitamin D3 = 8,000 IU/day, Zinc = 30 mg, Selenium = 200 mcg (for one reason, selenium unbinds zinc [Note that Molecular Multi contains the full 30 mg of zinc and a head start on vitamin D with 2,500 IU and 100 mcg of selenium]. Take the amino acid L-lysine = 500-1000 mg / day [Consider taking two of the 500 size because the 1,000 tablets are HUGE.] Avoid eating chocolate and nuts [because they are high in the amino acid arginine which does the opposite of L-lysine.] [Learn more in the Library about the care and feeding of your immune system.]
  • Most people are not aware that 70% or more of our immune function is in the gastrointestinal tract. Much of that benefit is due to the work of our friendly bacteria. As I point out in my book, The Probiotic Cure: Harnessing the Power of Good Bacteria for Better Health, our microbes perform over 20,000 biochemical functions in the body and they carry 1,000 times more genetic information than is in our own cells. It appears the bacteria are a much-neglected part of our natural “Instruction Manual”. Eating vegetables and other fibrous foods and spices helps them. Chemicals and antibiotics hurt them. It is smart to supplement with Ohhira’s Probiotics.]
  • I just added this text to the Library page on Vaccine Pros and Cons: MYTH = Clots caused by the shots are RARE. This short video of Dr. Charles Hoffe, a Canadian physician, explains quite clearly how the clots form due to the vaccine. He has shown by testing his patients that 62% of those vaccinated have recently developed blood clots. What he explains tracks with what we’ve heard from Bill Sardi and Peter McCullough, MD and other experts. However, the news agency Reuters’ “fact checkers” disagree, But, what if the checkers are lazy, uninformed, brainwashed and/or too easily impressed by fancy job titles? Part of the confusion is likely that while major heart attack and stroke-inducing clots shortly after vaccines may be rare, the insidious, long-acting, system-wide MICRO clots seem routine.
  • Check out the vaccine side effects and deaths in this database that sorts and analyzes CDC reports. The New York Times has a good reference page on covid disease stats and keeps it updated. It would be logical and handy if the government would let us in on the secret of which vaccines work better and how many cases of covid-19 occur in the fully vaccinated. But at least the NBC network did a survey that can give us an idea. July 19, 2021, they reported that in 27 states surveyed, there were more than 65,000 breakthrough cases. Those fully vaccinated who became seriously ill or died were typically elderly and had other health problems…hmm…those are the same folks strongly encouraged to get the vaccine. (Gets a little confusing doesn’t it.)

Peter A. McCullough, MD

Our revered leader in the fight for truth and for early treatment of covid-19 always provides so much good information that it seems only fair to share notes from the show so that listeners don’t miss anything. This review is from the August 28, 2021 HBN interview. (I did my best, but if you didn’t hear the show, you might want to listen to the archive I just linked to.)

Overview. Dr. McCullough started with an overview of the current situation, stating that we are at the apex of the Delta variant outbreak. (Meaning that hopefully cases and hospitalizations will begin to wane soon and it seems to be the case.) Dr. McCullough is one of the few experts you will see in the media who actually treats covid patients. He says that the Delta variant is indeed more contagious, is affecting young folks, sickens the vaccinated as well as the unvaccinated and is harder to treat. There may be greater numbers of unvaccinated patients in the hospital, but interestingly, most of the vaccinated people who end up in the hospital are elderly. The CDC’s Aug 23 report was that at least 11,050 fully vaccinated persons have been hospitalized or died due to covid-19 shots since mid-December 2020. While seniors are more at risk for covid, they are also more easily harmed by the vaccine. (It also doesn’t work as well for them).

Vaccinated spreaders. Studies have shown that vaccinated people getting infected with Delta can spread the disease. They may carry viral loads more than 250 times greater than unvaccinated persons who were infected with the original covid variant. Remember that if they are exposed, vaccinated parents can transmit the disease to their children.

Unusual results. The “standard” to decide what is an acceptable vaccine is that protection must last one year or more and have an effectiveness of at least 50%. Real world results (e.g. in Israel) show an effectiveness of 39%. We are now being told to get boosters at only 6-8 months.

Treatments. When Dr. McCullough had covid last fall, he was in a study and received hydroxychloroquine . It worked.  He is now immune because of that and, in spite of direct exposures, has remained covid-free. He and his colleagues are now also enthusiastically recommending infusions of monoclonal antibodies. (Official government monoclonal antibody website. The call center for information on receiving monoclonal antibodies is 877-332-6585.)

Increase in children being hospitalized. Part of the problem is that there is another respiratory illness circulating, RSV. Also, unfortunately, kids with covid are not receiving treatment at home and so they can become worse. Dr. McCullough said they need asthma inhalers, perhaps an antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory. [I’d add child-sized doses of our nutrient helpers.]

Positive tested parents of a newborn. In answer to a listener question, Dr. McCullough said that if parents of a newborn test positive, what they do for the infant is give it fresh air (sunshine for vitamin D) and supportive care as needed for symptoms such as tylenol for a problematic fever and Pedialyte® for hydration. He said to open the windows even if it is hot and reduce the parents’ viral shedding as explained in the next section below. (That is probably a good idea for parents of a newborn even if they have been vaccinated.)

New tool. Dr. McCullough said there is increasing interest in his network in using povidone iodine mouthwash, gargle, and nasal spray to reduce nose and throat viral load in patients with covid-19. He cautioned not to swallow the solution. You can make your own by diluting this drug store product or betadine skin cleanser. Dilution = a few drops in a juice glass (4 ounce) of water. This solution sterilizes the mouth and if used on a Q-tip or as a spray, the nose. A study showed efficacy for this idea but noted that persons with thyroid problems may need to use extra caution. For those who are allergic to iodine, Dr. McCullough says diluted 3% hydrogen peroxide will work, or, if all else fails, original yellow Listerine. Swish and spit. [Don’t forget about what Dr. Levy told us about nebulizing hydrogen peroxide.}

Nutrition deficiencies. McCullough says that nutrition deficiencies (e.g. vitamin D and zinc) set you up for a poor outcome with covid-19. (Thank you, Bill Sardi, for teaching us that long ago.)

FDA final approval? Apparently, FDA’s so-called “final approval” of the Pfizer vaccine took place without the normal safety and disclosure steps. It was also based on data about the original, not the new, now pervasive, Delta variant! There was also some slight of hand wherein the agency didn’t actually approve the Pfizer vaccine that has been in use but another one, Comirnaty, by BioNTech. That one hasn’t even been manufactured yet and therefore is not available. This situation has caused confusion about the legality of corporate vaccine mandates and about Pfizer’s liability. Oddly, all the warnings about possible heart side effects, pregnancy, etc. will be in the Comirnaty product package insert, NOT the shot everyone is receiving.

Vaccinating younger children? Dr. McCullough says we have no way of knowing the appropriate dose for kids. Also, the genetic mRNA mechanism is of concern because younsters’ organs are still developing. We don’t know the effect of the mRNA collecting in them. It looks like the risk of harm is much greater than the chance of benefit. He says that one study prevented only 18 cases of the sniffles and made the kids sick as dogs. Young people (over 4,000 known so far) are suffering hard-to-treat heart inflammation, myocarditis, from the shots. [That potentially leads to heart failure and death]  BioNTech is on notice by the FDA to do more studies on this problem and use of their upcoming Comirnaty product and to include warnings in the package insert. Plus, Dr. McCullough says that the shots do not provide much offsetting benefit from serious covid disease.

Which vaccine is best? Dr. McCullough believes we will reach herd immunity and pointed out that we’ve now had about as many covid deaths since the vaccine as before it. Vaccination has not affected the scope of the pandemic. It is disconcerting that we are flying blind because we haven’t gotten any CDC reports about which of the 3 vaccine brands is performing better and is safer. He has seen science showing that Moderna contains more than 3 times the dose that Pfizer does and is 72% effective. By comparison Pfizer is now 42% effective. J & J we just don’t know. He noted that if a corporation is going to mandate a vaccine, wouldn’t they want to use the best one? [I want to know if Moderna causes 3 times the side effects!] He predicts an increase in reports of harm and lawsuits.

Booster shot for the immune compromised. Dr. McCullough thinks that we need better metrics to know how the vaccines are working and that better tests are coming. As for the idea of boosters for everyone after full vaccination (5, 6, or 8 months after depending on who is talking), It is suspicious that 2 high level FDA vaccine reviewer staffers  suddenly resigned apparently at least in part because of the way that recommendation came about.

Novavax. He is positive about the Novavax vaccine, but it will not be available until 4th quarter.

Why not vaccinate during a pandemic? Because that generates more variants.

Ivermectin. Pay no mind to the press about Ivermectin. E.g. Media called attention to Hydroxychloroquine calls to the Poison Control Centers but didn’t mention that they were mostly just to ask about dosage, not report trouble. Ivermectin should be taken with a meal or right after. Take all the prescribed tablets at one time rather than splitting. Avoid using veterinary Ivermectin products because of the difficulty translating animal dosage to human scale. Check this Library page for info on getting a prescription.

Monoclonal antibodies. This effective therapy is underutilized, especially by elders with health problems. Use them EARLY, as soon as possible after infection. If you go to the ER to get them, don’t let them “admit you as a hospital patient” because then for some bizarre reason you are no longer eligible. (!) For more information, visit the official government website. The call center for information on receiving monoclonal antibodies is 877-332-6585. Does not have side effects but is not a standalone treatment. It should be followed by the multi-drug and nutrient protocol we have discussed.

  • The way that the US government behaved in response to the swine flu “pandemic” of 1976 and the fallout from its vaccine pressure should give us serious pause about their pressure to get today’s covid-19 vaccines. A vintage 15-minute video clip of Mike Wallace from 60 Minutes is enlightening because that was back when the news media did real investigation and reported even uncomfortable facts…rather than just repeating government propaganda. Watch the video.
  • This Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance website is a great resource.


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