OPINION: Anti-“Reasons” From Anti-Vaxxers

OPINION:

Anti- “Reasons” From Anti-Vaxxers

OPINION:

Anti- “Reasons” From Anti-Vaxxers

Editor: This is a reminder to get vaxxed.  It’s importance for us as a nation to increase our vaccination level. We’re doing good, but we can and need to do just a bit better. So, here again, for those who missed the message, Anna and Wes Hessel’s take on COVID anti-vaxxers.

 

By Anna Hessel with Wes Hessel

 

To Vaxx or Not to Vaxx, That Shouldn’t Be A Question

I admit I had qualms about the COVID-19 vaccine when it first came out.  I am an anaphylactic, and side effects concerned me, but shortly after the vaccines became available, I talked to trusted friends and medical professionals, did some research, and then did the right thing by getting vaccinated.  My spouse and myself are fully Pfizer vaccinated. We’ve had our first booster, and are planning on having the second booster because we are both over 50.  We are both happily vaxxed and proud to show our vaccine cards as proof that we took a stand against this deadly virus.  Some of the worst excuses for refusing to get vaccinated follow:

Unsafe “Shortcuts”

  1. “I would rather take a horse de-wormer,” a product not intended for humans – this speaks for itself.
  2. “I would rather drink bleach” – this is toxic and has never been proven to prevent COVID. When President Biden was campaigning, he made a comment that he couldn’t believe he had to say it but, “Don’t drink bleach”.

But It Will…No, It Won’t

  1. “The vaccine will make me infertile.” Then why are fully vaccinated women getting pregnant?
  2. “There are side effects.” I will admit, I was very afraid of side effects when the vaccine first came out. I, however, did the right thing and got my two shot Pfizer vaccine along with my spouse, and got my booster, too.  My side effects were minimal, even having more than one autoimmune disease, and I not only protected myself with the shots but am helping to protect others from getting COVID-19.  Some minor symptoms are much better than in a hospital on a ventilator, having a tracheotomy, or worse.  Getting the vaccine is the right thing to do.
  3. “There will be sudden serious side effects years down the road.” There is no proof of this, and it is paranoid to think this.  If there were horrific side effects, they would have shown up by now.  The COVID vaccines have been repeatedly tested for safety.  Those of us who are vaccinated have not grown a tail or get radio frequency in our arms.

Misleading “Faith”

  1. “God is protecting me; I choose faith over fear.” As a devout Christian with Jewish heritage, this attitude appalls me.  God protects those that protect themselves and do what is right to help themselves and others.  This misuse of the “faith over fear”-type statement smacks of the misleading rhetoric of cult-like groups such as “Christian Scientists”, or the also not-Biblical tenets of the so-called “health and wealth gospel” adherents.  I listen to actual science; God gives aptitude and wisdom to medical professionals.  If you need surgery, or have other illnesses, do you go to a doctor?  Most Christians will say yes, so there is no difference between this and a vaccine.  If you don’t have polio, diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), TB (tuberculosis), pneumonia, chicken pox, or shingles, it is because of vaccines.  Vaccines are effective.
  2. “It is a sin to get vaccinated.” Nowhere in the Bible is there any indication of this.  A popular gospel singer had COVID, and she spoke out in favor of vaccines, posting a photo of her getting the shot on social media.  Many of her fans were outraged, spewing hateful comments on her page.  Again hypocrisy, because the Word of God teaches us that we should not judge, lest we be judged and to love one another unconditionally, as we love ourselves.  And it is certainly not sinful behavior to listen to science.  Listening to science is listening to the God who created it and gave the knowledge of it to people He chose.
  3. “It’s ‘the mark of the beast’.” Well, I do agree Donald Trump is an anti-Christ, but check the Book of Revelation in the Bible, the war of Armageddon had not yet even begun, this prophecy has not yet come to pass, so the mark of the beast has not begun.  The Bible indicates this mark to be on the forehead, not in the arm.  The idea of any chip being inserted with a very thin fine needle and a clear liquid vaccine is ludicrous.  Technology may exist to do this, but it would cost hundreds of millions of dollars, if not billions, to do so, and there is no way that the government would spend this money on so very many people, when they have your cell phone number.

Big Brother or Big Business

  1. “The vaccines contain magnetic government implantation and/or “mark of the beast” inserts.” I feel the way President Biden felt about warning against drinking bleach.  I don’t believe I need to say this, but the syringe is full of a clear, see-through liquid and the needle is far too thin to contain anything but the clear thin liquid.  The so-called metal that magnets supposedly cling to is either adhesion caused by sweat and body oils on the skin or, even less likely, the iron and other metals found naturally in the bloodstream.  No magnets or implants; it’s a vaccine to prevent COVID, nothing more.
  2. “The government has no right to tell me what to do with my body” – this comment is mostly made by the same individuals that claim denying a woman’s right to choose is not telling her what to do with her own body. I am not making a pro-choice or a pro-life statement here, but simply pointing out hypocrisy.  No, the government is not “trying to control me”, the government is trying to control COVID-19.
  3. “This vaccine is just a way for pharmaceutical companies to make money.” Just like any for profit company, drug companies do need to make money to stay in business and bring us medicines.  I agree that they often gouge prices, but the vaccines are free of cost, including the boosters, so consumers are not paying out of pocket for the vaccinations.  Democrats and our current administration are trying to get large corporations to pay their fair share in taxes also – this is in direct contradiction to the idea that liberals who agree with vaccines are simply trying to put money into the deep pockets of the drug manufacturers.  Yes, this vaccine took a shorter period to create than other vaccines but with the number of COVID-19 deaths, time was of the essence, an emergency situation and worldwide pandemic.  When Jonas Salk created the polio vaccine, he refused to patent it to make it as widely and swiftly available as possible.  Medical technology is far better today than it was when other vaccines were being created, allowing those working tirelessly to create a safe and effective vaccine much more quickly.  The competing cooperating research units of the pharmaceutical companies means the groups who develop safe, effective vaccines first make the most profit from the paid for vaccinations.  Conversely, a group creating a vaccine which has serious side effects or high risks would open that corporation to the vulnerability of liability and the associated lawsuits. In the end costing them hundreds of millions or more, so it behooves them to make a product that will help, and not harm.

Selective Science

  1. “Vaccines should not need a booster shot.” Flu shots are annual, and for the same reason as the need for coronavirus booster shots: COVID-19 is a virus, which means it mutates quickly, making it harder for the body to adapt to fighting variants.  I will gladly get additional jabs to avoid a ventilator and death.
  2. “The vaccines were created too quickly.” With millions of people dying from the COVID-19 pandemic, it was imperative to act fast.  We have medical technology that is far more sophisticated today, than yesteryear when the other vaccines were created. We have the ability to create safe vaccines much faster than scientists did back in the day.  When Jonas Salk and his team had created the polio vaccine, the testing was done over one year – 1954 to 1955.  Computer modeling and so many other medical research improvements have occurred in the 65 years since then.
  3. “Having COVID-19 will cause you to have better immunity against it.” Again, like many of the anti-vaxxers arguments, this is not proven and there is the little factor of if you don’t actually die from COVID involved here or suffer from long-term effects from the virus which are becoming apparent.
  4. “Getting the vaccine will change or destroy my DNA”- this again makes no sense. It’s a vaccine, to save lives just like the ones for polio, diphtheria, shingles, or chicken pox.  It is not DNA altering, it is just a weakened or “killed” virus which protects us from getting COVID or getting a worst case scenario bout of the virus.
  5. “COVID-19 is not really a pandemic of the unvaccinated’” – yes, it is. Even with some vaccinated individuals getting Omicron or other variants.  While “breakthrough” infections will occur, studies continue to show that vaccinations, especially boosted, significantly reduce death and hospitalizations.
  6. “COVID is just like the flu”, as many anti-vaxxer, anti-maskers want to believe – scientific fact proves otherwise. WHO estimates about 1 billion people get influenza every year, with around 290,000 to 650,000 flu-related deaths per year (presumably the fluctuation due to the flu variants prevalent at the time).  Per Johns Hopkins online COVID-19 statistics (https://www.arcgis.com/apps/dashboards/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6), as of the morning of April 5th, 2022, there have been over 494 million identified cases of the coronavirus, and over 6.17 million related deaths worldwide.  In the United States alone, there have been almost 81.5 million cases of COVID, and approaching one million connected deaths.  Reasonable people with intelligence recognize this truth and get vaccinated.  Those refusing to believe this do often end up dying or hospitalized from the virus but anti-vaxxers choose not to see reason.  This frightening belief among those refusing to do their part to eradicate COVID is alarming.  People who insist that we should just enjoy one another and live life without regard to COVID-19, in my opinion, are lying to themselves.  I find their attitudes to be irresponsible and appalling, especially when it is done in the name of the Lord.  It is certainly not possible to simply enjoy life or one another if you are dead or on a ventilator.

But…

  1. “I don’t have time to get vaccinated” – the reality is, it takes a little waiting time, a few minutes for the actual shot, and 15 minutes for safety observation after. If you don’t get vaccinated, you will lose all time after your death, or the time eaten up in a hospital.
  2. “I hate needles” – so do I, very much. But presumably, you had other vaccinations when you were young, and you got through it.  Focus on the good it does for you, rather than the little pinch.  Also, my husband cued in the nurse who did our first injections, and she chatted me up while in the process.  The distraction of conversation or the like can also help.
  3. “I don’t want to.” Ultimately, this is what almost all the so-called “reasons” to not get the vaccination boil down to justifying – selfishness.  The idea in psychology of “the personal fable” strongly applies – that is the concept of denial which says, “it won’t happen to me”, and these days it seems, the “me” is all that matters.  This isn’t borne out in the number of COVID-19 infections, and the significantly stronger likelihood of serious complications if you are unvaccinated.  Not to mention in general, if everyone is only looking out for “me”, then all the other “me’s” are at risk, which sooner or later will lead back around to your “me”.  And as a Christian, I see the Bible via Jesus’ words to be clear: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:31).

Religious or true medical reasons aside, most human beings have no legitimate reason to not vaccinate.  So, let’s not continue to focus on the self in this or any other way, because to do so will eventually seriously threaten oneself.

Engineered Immune Cells Offer Promise

Engineered Immune Cells Offer Promise

Engineered Immune Cells Offer Promise

 

By D. S. Mitchell

 

Sending Signals

Scientists have genetically engineered immune cells cable of delivering anticancer-signals to organs where cancer may spread. Immunotherapy is a pillar of cancer treatment; strengthening the patient’s immune system and then directing the bolstered immune system to attack tumors. In this effort, Adoptive Cell Transfer is proving successful. With this immunotherapy treatment a patient’s immune cells are collected, engineered for the patient’s specific cancer and then reintroduced into the patient to treat their cancer. There are numerous types of Adoptive Cell Transfer and the most prominent one is called CAR T Cell Therapy.

Cancer Fighting Immune Cells

In 2010 two blood cancer patients received an experimental immunotherapy, and their disease went into remission. The cancer fighting immune cells used in the treatment were still circulating in their bodies,  ten years after the experimental dosing. It indicates that the treatment can be long lasting. Doug Olsen, a native Californian, was one of the patients, “From a patient’s viewpoint, when you are told you are pretty much out of options, the important thing is always to maintain hope. And certainly, I hoped this was going to work”, said Doug Olsen at a news briefing. The CAR T Cell Therapy used the patients’ genetically engineered immune cells to track down and destroy cells that cause cancer.

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Patient Gets Genetically Modified Pig Heart

57 Year Old Gets Genetically Modified Pig Heart

57 year old American man gets genetically engineered pig heart in historic surgery.

57 Year Old Gets Genetically Modified Pig Heart

“It was either die or do this transplant. I want to live. I know it is a shot in the dark, but it is my last chance,” said the recipient of a genetically modified pig heart last week. 

By MAHINROOP PM and D. S. Mitchell

 

A Major Breakthrough 

American doctors have successfully transplanted a genetically modified pig heart into a desperately ill 57 year old patient. It is an unquestionable achievement, a breakthrough for medical science. The patient, David Bennet is doing well after the surgery. The organ transplant proved that a genetically modified animal heart can serve like a human heart without immediate rejection by the body. Bennet had been connected to Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation, a heart lung bypass machine, in order to remain alive. The patient was informed of the procedure’s risks and that the procedure was experimental with unknown risks before consenting to receive the heart transplant.

Emergency 

Because Bennet faced certain death without the Food and Drug Administration granted an emergency authorization for the surgery last week. The doctors at University of Maryland Medicine performed the procedure called Xenotransplantation.  Bennet had been on cardiac support for almost two months and couldn’t receive a mechanical heart pump because of an irregular heart beat. Neither could he receive a human transplant, because he had a history of treatment noncompliance.

Organ Shortage Crisis

“This was a breakthrough surgery and brings us one step closer to solving the organ shortage crisis. There are simply not enough human hearts available to meet the long list of potential recipients. We are proceeding cautiously, but we are also optimistic that this first in the world surgery will provide an important new option for patients in the future,” said Bartley P Griffith, Professor in transplant surgery at University of Maryland Medicine.

High Risk 

Although the process can potentially save thousands of lives, it comes with many risks including the chance of triggering a dangerous immune response. Such responses can trigger an immediate rejection of the organ, leading to the immediate death of the patient. A  new drug was combined with conventional anti-rejection drugs to suppress the immune system and hopefully will prevent Benet’s body from rejecting the foreign organ.

Ethical and Technical Hurdles

Doctors will monitor Bennet for the rest of his life to determine whether the transplant provides the hoped for lifesaving benefits vs complications. The ultimate focus of xenotransplantation research is on genetically modified pigs because of the physiologic similarities between pigs, human  and non-human primates. Revivicor, a biotechnology company located in Virginia provided the pig heart for the transplantation.

What The Future Offers

Transplant surgeons are hoping that recent advances will enable them to give more people animal organs. Physicians believe that the surgery will kickstart clinical xenotransplantation. As with everything, there are numerous ethical, as well as regulatory issues confronting the wholesale use of animal harvested hearts, and other organs, to sustain human life. Only time will tell.

Looking At Elder Care

Looking At Elder Care

Caring for an elder family member requires strength, patience, and support.

Looking At Elder Care

The Build Back Better legislation stuck in the Senate would provide relief for many American family members struggling to keep a family member living at home vs being placed in a nursing home.

By D. S. Mitchell

Caregiver Risks

Most of the people called on to help an ill or disabled family member have no training in being a caregiver. Not only that, but many spouses, sisters, brothers, sons and daughters have their own health problems and physical limitations. The risks of being a family caregiver is premature aging, sickness, death, depression, anger, resentment and potential financial loss. Aside from that, it can be rewarding and more worthwhile than anything you will ever do.

Financial Resources Make the Difference

Receiving affordable or free home care may be what makes the difference between a family member being able to stay in their home or being moved into an assisted living or nursing home. One in five Americans provide unpaid care to family members so they can continue to live in their home, according to a recent AARP report.

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OPINION: Joe Manchin Shows His Political Ass

OPINION: Joe Manchin Shows His Political Ass

OPINION: Joe Manchin Show His Political Ass

I think it is time to remove the obstructionists from the Democratic Party

D. S. Mitchell

Joe’s Talking on Fox

12/19/2021. Joe Manchin (D.W.V.) is on FoxNews (sic) telling Bret Baier he “cannot vote” for the Build Back Better bill. Finally after months of dancing about, throwing up one road block after another Manchin, playing with the press and his colleagues has finally come clean and said it out loud. He, the lone Democrat,  was now going to squash the bill, that would have given assistance to 70% of his constituents.

Out of Touch

I am dumbfounded. How could this rich, fat, white, yacht sunning, coal mine owning, entitled man be so cruel, and corrupt? How can he shut his eyes to the basic needs of the most vulnerable people in his state? West Virginia is one of the poorest states in this country, it seems Joe wants to keep it that way. By standing against the BBB act Manchin is not only denying West Virginians food on the table, affordable prescriptions for life saving medicines, and dentures in their mouths, but every other person in the country. Without remorse, apparently.  Enraged, I switched to CNN where Jake Tapper was interviewing Bernie Sanders (I.Vt).

Unrestrained Passion

Bernie Sanders went after the failed senator from West Virginia with unrestrained passion. Bernie called Manchin a “coward” for not standing up to the lobbyists and special interest groups (which Manchin is part of). Bernie, is also a wealthy man, just like Joe Manchin. But, Bernie seems to have a deep well of human empathy, decency, and compassion, which apparently, Manchin cannot understand or emulate. Is Manchin capable of embarrassment?  Being the only Democratic senator that is willing to let kids go hungry, not only in West Virginia, but across the nation, should make him red faced with shame and embarrassment.

Purge the Party 

It is time to purge the Democratic party of obstructionists, like Manchin, that are willing to stop a president and his policies by their single vote. Joe Manchin you were not elected president of the United States. Get in line and support President Biden and the Democratic platform. Support voting rights. If you are a Republican, Mr. Manchin, run as one, don’t pretend to be a Democrat. Be brave. Be courageous. As I see it Mr. Manchin, is intent on his legacy being nothing more than the dark smear left by a wet fart.

Quotes on Courage

Here’s a brief collection of some pretty smart comments by some pretty smart people on the topic of courage in life and politics.

1.) “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen,” Winston Churchill

3.) “Courage conquers all things,”  Ovid

4.) “The strongest, most generous and proudest of all virtues is courage,” Michel De Montaigne

Conclusion

It is time to fight the obstructionists in the Democratic party. Joe Manchin cannot be allowed to stand in the way of progress much longer. He has ‘shown his ass.’ as they say in Texas, and a few other places; time for Mr. Manchin to vote with his party or leave the party.

*uck The Tuck

*uck The Tuck

Tucker Carlson started out as a bowtie preppie pundit on CNN

*uck The Tuck

By D. S. Mitchell

Remember When

I remember when Tucker Carlson was a bowtie preppie pundit on CNN and then later on MSNBC. This was when he was at least a semi-accurate, semi-reputable, semi-serious, semi-cautious journalist, that appeared to crave authenticity and most of all respectability. Truthfully since his move to Fox News(sic) I feel as though I have been watching the making of the Republican Darth Vader.  Anakin Skywalker, lured to the dark side, is now in his full power bending the minds of Americans and directing the guns of his Death Star at the foundations of American democratic thought every night at 8 pm.

Outrage-Driven Commentary

The Tuckster has turned deranged populism, hate spewing madness, irreverent contempt for decency, white outrage, racial grievance, and aggressive nastiness, into a combustive cocktail for his audience of over 3 million devoted followers. Whatever the topic may be-crime, ‘defund the police’, BLM, immigration, race, vaccines, education, health care, or the Democrats, Carlson uses it as fuel for his outrage-driven commentary. Red meat to the masses. Fox News is the Roman Coliseum of today.

Red Meat Culture

Carlson is a product of wealth and privilege. Some might call him a boarding school elitist. His racism and homophobia near legendary. He has always been a bomb thrower and a pompous ass, but over the last decade at Fox he has given up any pretense of journalism and his schtick has devolved into open senseless cruelty. After a visit to Iraq Carlson is reputed to have said, “it’s a crappy place filled with a bunch of, you known, semi-illiterate monkeys.” He has famously called women both “whores” and “pigs.”

A Change Overcomes Him

Tucker Carlson is now approaching five years as host of his hugely popular nightly political talk show, ‘Tucker Carlson, Tonight.’  His stint of peddling bullshit on Fox seems to have self-radicalized the man.  Whatever the topic he offers, he’s pissed off about it, and so should you be, he tells his audience.

Strongman Support

Whether it is vaccine skepticism, white nationalism, or his increased support of anti-democratic right-wing regimes around the world, Carlson is all about being an entitled white man. He recently wasted a week embracing and promoting Hungarian strongman, Viktor Orban. Even I have been amazed at Tuck’s open love affair with authoritarianism.  Of course it is white male authoritarianism he likes and supports, certainly not black,  brown, or female (ha, ha) dictators.

Are Tuck’s Questions Really Legitimate?

Carlson uses his platform to portray his bad faith attacks as honest, good faith inquiries. He sounds alarm bells over issues of fact under the guise of asking legitimate questions. There are answers to his questions, but Carlson suggests there are not. Conspiracy theories fill the ether as well as outright lies. Tucker, like Hannity has grown fat and bloated, continually sneering at liberal democracy as the seed of our destruction. He focuses on culture war stories that fuel the Republican base. Tucker Carlson is certainly the best the extremist right has to fan the fires of Trumpism and righteous Americana outrage.

Carlson’s Message

Tucker Carlson’s message is simple and he does not hesitate to play it over and over. The existential future of America is at stake. At the heart of the matter is the doomsday scenario painted by the right wing media.  Tucker Carlson believes America is on the verge of being lost, because old white men might lose political power in the United States. I’d say to Tucker, “about time.”

https://www.calamitypolitics.com/2021/08/21/opinion-fox-news-and-its-shameless-bias/

“Just Dave” 09/19/2021

“Just Dave” 09/19/2021

“Just Dave” 09/19/2021

Today, Dave is talking about the unvaccinated. The current epidemic is one of the unvaccinated. How come suddenly people would rather die on the battleground of stupidity than take an incredibly safe deterrent. Nothing is perfect, and that includes vaccines. Yet when tossing the dice the odds of surviving the vaccine far outweigh surviving COVID. How could anyone in their right mind want to take the chance of being paralyzed with drugs, have a tube shoved down their throat, a catheter shoved into your bladder, turned every hour so you don’t get bed sores? Now this isn’t going to be a two hour or two day affair. This could go on for months, until you die, or improve. If you die, most likely your last moments will be alone.  If you are lucky there may be a nurse there to hold your hand as you pass. So unnecessary.

Please, stop the silly nonsense and get vaccinated. Do it for yourself, your community, and the country.

The Benefits Of Stretching

The Benefits Of Stretching

Stretching is very beneficial to overall health

The Benefits Of Stretching

By D. S. Mitchell

The benefits of regular stretching are numerous. Stretching is important in the battle to keep us flexible, an important factor to overall fitness. It can also improve your posture, reduce stress and body aches, end back pain, increase range of motion and more.

They Teach It In Schools

When we were kids our PE teachers always insisted we stretch before and after exercise.  I know, stretching, really? Boring!  While most younger folks are limber and flexible enough to jump straight into a game and  skip the cooldown, us older folks can do real damage if we opt to skip the stretching.

In My Case

I recently had a rotator cuff injury that required 12 weeks of Physical Therapy. When I started my visits I was miserable. I literally could only lift my left arm if I lifted it with my right arm. The pain was indescribable.  At the end of my 12 weeks of therapy, I felt great, no pain and had full range of motion. And how did the therapist accomplish that miracle?  She did it with a daily stretching program. That’s right, stretching. The benefits of stretching go way beyond feeling limber on the tennis court, or being able to pick up a penny and not throw your back out. There are both physical and mental benefits to stretching. Read on.

Take A Stretching Break

Frustrated, stymied, taking a break to stretch can help you clear your mind . Stretching releases endorphins and stabilizes hormones, which can improve attitude and mood making you more pleasant to be around and able to approach problems with clear eyes. Regular stretching has been linked to mental balance and  clarity. If you’re in chronic pain, regular stretching is an excellent way to address the issue. It is definitely safer and more effective than opioids.  Stretching helps ease discomfort, and costs nothing.

Little Space And No Equipment

Because of these benefits, I support stretching every morning, right after I get up, and every night just before bed.  However, you can do a few basic stretches any time of day. It requires very little room and no equipment. Instead of  a  cigarette break I take a stretching break.  I’ve even seen people who are trying to quit smoking, replace the cigarette with stretches. A great alternative, I must say.  There are very few things that can be done for free and at any time, but stretching is one of them.  I’m amazed, more people don’t do it.

The Physical Benefits  Of Stretching

Daily stretching can improve your blood flow and make your arteries healthier. Within a couple months of starting a stretching program you could lower your risk of heart attack, stroke, high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction and more. If you stay loose and limber, your muscles respond better to stressors-expected and unexpected-that might otherwise result in injury.  Stretching is not a magic elixir, but if you stretch regularly you will according to science feel better and be healthier.

Putting It All Together: Benefits Of Starting A Stretching Routine
  1. Improved Flexibility: Essential to overall health. Improved flexibility allows seniors to perform everyday activities with ease and naturally delays reduced mobility issues, common with aging.
  2. Improved Range Of Motion: The ability to move a joint through its full range gives freedom of movement. Essential for healthy aging.
  3. Improved Performance In Physical Activities: Doing dynamic stretches prior to activities is proven to prepare your muscles for the exercise.  It may also improve your performance in the activity.
  4. Increase Blood Flow To Muscles: Improves your circulation, increased blood flow to your muscles, which can shorten your recovery time and reduce muscle soreness or delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
  5. Improved Posture: Poor posture is often the result of muscle imbalances. A combination of strengthening and stretching specific muscle groups can reduce musculoskeletal pain and encourage proper alignment, thus improved posture.
  6. Helps Heal And Prevent Back Pain: Tight muscles can lead to a decrease in your ROM. When this happens you increase the likelihood of straining the muscles in your back. Stretching can help heal an existing back injury by stretching the injured muscles. A regular stretching routine can also prevent future back pain by strengthening your back muscles and reducing your risk of muscle strain.
  7. Stress Relief: Stress leads to tense muscles. Muscles tighten up in response to physical and emotional stress. Focus on areas of your body where you tend to hold your stress, primarily the neck, shoulders, and upper back.
  8. Calm The Mind: A regular stretching routine can calm the mind. While you stretch focus on mindfulness and meditation exercises. Give your mind a break.
  9. Reduce Tension Headaches: Tension and stress headaches can interfere with activities of daily living. Stretching reduces the tension and anxiety you feel from headaches.
Challenge 

Were you aware that May is National  Physical Fitness and Sports Month?  National Physical Fitness and Sports Month is a time to highlight the importance of staying active through sports and other fitness activities. Every day this month, I challenge you to spend time stretching in the morning and then again before bedtime. I guarantee that if you do, you will feel better. And who wouldn’t want that?

*Static Stretches: involve holding a stretch in a comfortable position for a period of time, typically 10 to 30 seconds. This form of stretching is most beneficial after you exercise.

*Dynamic Stretches: are active movements that cause your muscles to stretch, but the stretch is not held in the end position. These stretches are usually done before exercise to get your muscles ready for movement.

Watch Your Technique

If you are new to a regular stretching routine, take it slow. Your body needs time to get used to the stretches. Check your form and technique regularly, poor technique can lead to injury. You can stretch almost any place at any time. I suggest a program that lasts at least 15 minutes first thing in the morning and 15 minutes just before bedtime.

Focus

When stretching focus on he major areas of your body that help with mobility, such as calves, hamstrings, hip flexors, quadriceps. For upper-body relief, try stretches of the shoulder, next and lower back.  I suggest you research the best stretches for what you want to accomplish, or better yet consult your physician or physical therapist. There will be recommendations for length of hold and number of repetitions, etc for each stretch.

Here are a few standard safety tips before stretching: 

  1. Do Not Bounce: Experts suggest you avoid bouncing.
  2. Point Of Discomfort: While it is common to feel tension when stretching a muscle you should never feel pain. If an area you are stretching starts to hurt, back off on the stretch until you don’t feel pain.
  3. Do Not Overdo: Stretching puts stress on your body. If you’re stretching the same muscle groups multiple times a day, you risk over-stretching and causing damage.
  4. Don’t Start Stretches Cold: Cold muscles are not as pliable, which makes stretching a lot more difficult. The best time to stretch is after warming up 5-10 minutes with some light cardio or walking.

As with anything, you should check with your primary care physician before you start any exercise program.

https://www.calamitypolitics.com/2018/01/21/10-sneaky-fitness-tricks-time-challenged/

 

Neanderthal’s Gone, But Not Forgotten

Neanderthal’s Gone, But Not Forgotten

Homo Sapiens and Neanderthals interbred and we still carry the genes of those ancient ancestors

A 60,000-year-old Neanderthal gene once made us resistant to viruses, but now it may make us vulnerable to it.

 

Neanderthal’s Gone But Not Forgotten

Sonnet Gomes

Half of Neanderthal Genome Survives

Neanderthals died out around 40,000 years ago, but traces of them still remain. In the past decade it has become clear that Neanderthals mated with the ancestors of modern humans, producing viable offspring. Studies indicate that almost half of the Neanderthal genome still survives, scattered in small quantities among most modern people’s DNA. (The exception is those with mostly African ancestors, for Neanderthals seem never to have lived in Africa.)

Two Long Chains

Such genes have been associated with everything from hairiness to fat metabolism. Many seem to be related to the immune system, and to affect the risk of developing diseases including lupus, Crohn’s and diabetes. A pair of recent papers suggest covid-19 belongs on that list as well. Two long sections of DNA, both inherited from Neanderthals, appear to confer resistance or susceptibility to severe covid-19, depending on which is present.

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David Shadrick “Let’s Get Vaccinated”

David Shadrick “Let’s Get Vaccinated”

David Shadrick “Let’s Get Vaccinated”

Since Joe Biden’s inauguration the federal government has put 100,000,000 COVID-19 vaccines in arms of Americans.  Some people don’t want to get it because Trump has been publicly “anti-vaccer.” But now even this last week the fat orange one told his people to go get the vaccine, after it came out that Melania and Donald got their vaccines, a couple months ago in secret. Well as usual Donald is a day late and a dollar short. Let’s stay focused folks, let’s don’t break ranks now, we are so close to having this Pandemic behind us. Do the patriot thing, wear a mask and get vaccinated, it’s the American thing to do!

https://www.calamitypolitics.com/2019/01/02/value-of-vaccinations/