By Donald Yance
Vaccines against COVID-19 hold out the promise of a return to normal, pre-pandemic life. But with the race to create and distribute the vaccines, we need to consider that the mRNA vaccines, which consist of a new and revolutionary technology, have not been previously tested widely on humans.
Most of the vaccines that have been developed for COVID and other candidates in the portfolio of the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX) are based on next-generation technologies that can be developed more quickly than previous conventional vaccines. The speedy development and distribution of the COVID vaccines is helping to stem the pandemic. But it’s important to recognize that all vaccines come with the risk of side effects, and there is much we have to learn about COVID vaccines and potential side effects.
Continue reading “Understanding COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines and the Risk of Autoimmune Diseases”
Spring has arrived, the light has returned, and the trees and flowers bless us with their sweet aromas. But even in this season of hope, many people seem to be caught between joy and suffering. They describe feeling both hopeful and hopeless, or they describe an emotional numbness. Perhaps you’ve been feeling something similar.
I am sure you can think of a dozen circumstances in your life right now where it feels justifiable and natural to complain. But I challenge you to not go there. Instead, “Rejoice in the Lord always” (Philippians 4:4) and turn your attention to cultivating peace, joy and doing or giving to others.
Continue reading “The Joy of Spring, Easter and Passover”
Vaccines, masking, and social distancing appear to be slowing the spread of COVID-19. But the devastation wrought by the pandemic goes far beyond the physical illness caused by the disease. For many people, the psychological effects of the pandemic have been equally debilitating.
A Kaiser Health Tracking Poll from July 2020 found that many adults report difficulty sleeping (36%), problems eating (32%), increases in alcohol consumption or substance use (12%), and worsening chronic conditions (12%), including a weakened immune system caused by worry and stress over the coronavirus.
Continue reading “Psychosocial Vulnerabilities and COVID-19”
There is substantial evidence that spiritual well-being is an important determinant of overall health, longevity and quality of life, especially in patients with severe illness. But while most physicians would agree that spiritual well-being is an important factor in their patients’ health, the spiritual needs and well-being of patients are largely ignored and rarely addressed by healthcare providers.
I believe this is a significant oversight in patient care. Spirituality is perhaps the single most important source of strength and direction in life. When we incorporate spiritual well-being into healing, we recognize that people are not simply physical bodies requiring only mechanical fixing.
Continue reading “The Role of Spirituality in Health Management”
The Anti-Infectious Medicinal Properties of Propolis
If I had to choose a favorite natural medicine for healing, it would be propolis. I was first introduced to propolis and other bee products like honey, royal jelly, and bee pollen in 1976 while working at my first job at a natural food store in Connecticut. There, I was fortunate to meet Ed Weiss, a wonderful beekeeper and producer of bee products who was known as the “Bee Man.” Ed began his love affair with bees in 1974, and devoted more than four decades to educating people about bees, protecting them, and producing Wilton Gold, an excellent honey. Ed wrote a beekeeper’s handbook called “The Queen and I,” a comprehensive and charming classic now in its third printing. The book describes his love for the bees, opening with “I have been having an affair,” and provides practical information for building a hive and caring for these unique and beneficial creatures. In my four decades of clinical practice, I’ve witnessed the beneficial healing effects of propolis for a wide variety of health conditions—including viral respiratory illnesses.
Continue reading “The Anti-Infectious Medicinal Properties of Propolis”
In the aggressive response to the global health emergency, many are having a hard time trying to find reliable data to effectively address a host of concerns about the virus itself, as well as the short and long-term risks associated with the new vaccines (currently Moderna and Pfizer), especially due to their origins (mRNA), potential adverse effects, and whether or not they will be effective against the new variants. There are many questions and concerns, and not a lot of data, given the short time the pandemic and the vaccines have been in existence. Many are also wondering whether or not they are protected from the virus if they have already gotten it and have built antibodies. The media has led us to believe that natural immunity is not effective at preventing a second infection however, according to the scientific data, natural immunity is highly protective, at least in the first six months to a year (the time frame for which we have data)., COVID-19 continues to be an evolving disease that requires a sophisticated and myriad approach. A wholistic framework employing traditional herbal medicines and key nutrients to support the immune system and mitigate side effects is an important and under-recognized strategy in this complex environment. Several Asian countries are studying herbal medicines in COVID-19 as part of a multifaceted approach to control the severity and morbidity of the disease.
Continue reading “COVID-19 Vaccines, Variants, Immune Health and Traditional Medicine Use Across the Globe”