Sunday Morning Musings

Sunday Morning Musing – November 29, 2009

Targeted for completion and release of a new report on Vitamin D and Calcium requirements the IOM will continue to have closed meetings.  A report is scheduled to be released May 2010.  I can imagine that the pressure is high for this independent organization that is to provide unbiased and authoritative information to the public and decision makers.  I found it interesting when this committee was formed about 12 months ago with no one that was to have bias but I am not sure if that is true.  No one was selected for the committee that has done a significant amount of vitamin D research which I find unusual.  I would hope that these persons after review of the data would come to the conclusion that vitamin D plays an extremely significant role in our health and taking anything less than or equal to 10,000 IU of D3 per day is perfectly safe.  There is no record of any toxicity at less than 30,000 IU per day so this is a safety factor of three.  By the way, have you ever heard of anyone dying from vitamin D toxicity?

There really seems to be more than an adequate sufficiency of data so that we will not read a report that says there is not enough research to support raising the safe upper limit from the current 2000 IU per day to 10,000 IU per day.  Considering the huge number of diseases that vitamin D affects to do less would be a total disregard for the science and empathy for the ill.  I just cannot imagine another 10 years of people suffering the severe consequences of vitamin D deficiency while we wait on research to determine mechanisms.  My own personal journey of 25 years of suffering pain brings their decisions close to home.  By the way, the 2000 IU per day upper limit was based on what is safe for a one year old child from research in the 1960’s.  I still do not understand how this could be translated to an adult that could weigh 5 times or more what the one year old would weigh.

There is a lot to be gained and a lot to be lost.  Imagine being a medical insurer or a healthcare provider and discover that the increased amount of vitamin D could cause a drop of 25 to 50 % in your business.  What would you do with all of those employees and facilities that you have invested?  On the other hand if you have cancer, heart disease, diabetes, a viral infection, degenerative disc disease, or just want to perform at your best at athletics then changing the guidelines on vitamin D would be hugely significant.  Also what could it mean if there was significant reduction in lost work days because of fewer colds and less back pains?  This shifting of the centers of commerce will have significant positive or significant negative effects depending on what is your view.

Suppose you are the CEO of a large health insurer and you have several chronic diseases.  What would your position be?      – Pandemic Survivor


Eliminate the Common Cold!

The common cold has long been one of the ailments of man that is most times more of a nuisance than anything else.  Of course the remedy manufacturers love it because ‘modern medicine’ has convinced us that there is no cure.  I am sure that many billions of dollars are spent every year in trying to obtain relief from the aches and stuffed-up noses and general lack of the feeling of well being.  It is also responsible for many lost days of work and in general can stop the person from performing normal task for days.  We take aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen for aches and pains and any of many different remedies to help clear the nasal passages.  And yet when winter comes we get a cold and most times two to four colds per year and children as many as six or more.

I would like to stop here with a note of warning for those of you that like to take acetaminophen for your aches.  It is generally recognized that over use of acetaminophen and in particular with alcohol is now responsible for about one third of liver failures.

Have you stopped to think about the name that we have given to the ‘cold’?  I would suppose we have given it this name because we get the ‘cold’ when it is cold.  We just believe that when cold weather comes we will get a cold.  What if this were not true?  How would it be if we could go for many decades without getting a cold?

It is generally reported in medical discussions of colds that there is really no correlation between cold temperatures in causing us to get colds.  It is more about us crowding together in the winter time to pass the viruses to each other.  I say that this is completely upside down thinking.  With modern air conditioning we crowd together just as much in the summer as we do in the winter.  There are two things that happen in the winter time that is different than summer.  First it gets cold and second we do not have as much exposure to the sun’s UVB.

First on the cold:  Airways temperatures do drop during the inhalation of cold air.  For ambient air temperature of 73 F (23 C) we find that the pharynx temperature to be about 96 .8 (35.8 C).  When we inhale cold air at 0 F (-17.5 C) we find the pharynx temperature to be about 93 F (33.5 C).  In general the lower bronchi temperatures stay in the 98.7 F (37 C) to 99.8 F (37.7 C) temperature range.  It is shown that the common cold replicates best at temperatures of 33 C (91.4 F) to 35 C (95 F).  So when the air is room temperature then our upper airway passage temperatures are above the best temperature for replication.  When we inhale cold air our upper airway passages fall to the range of temperature that is best for the cold virus to grow.  It only makes sense that colds will most likely happen when it gets cold outside and hence its name.  It is interesting that the lower airway passages typically stay above 98.6 which is a good thing as it is above the temperature that colds like.

References for the above info: American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine – 2006  ‘Rhinovirus Infections More Than a Common Cold’,  Marc B. Hershenson, M.D. , University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan and Sebastian L. Johnston, M.D., Ph.D. , National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom

November 1988 Farley and Patel  Journal Medical and Biological Engineering and Computing ‘Rhinoviruses replicate effectively at lower airway temperatures.’  Papadopolous, et. Al. J. Med. Virol. May 1999

So from the above discussion you can see that one of our main defenses against the cold is body temperature or more important temperature of the airways.  You know when I was growing up one of my brothers used to call it ‘sweating out a cold’ when he would put on about four quilts and spend enough time there until his cold left.  I do not suggest this but it does seem to help the common cold when I spend time in a dry sauna which is at a temperature of about 120 F.  It is also apparent that when we start to ‘run a fever’ this is our body trying to fight off the infection.  It really makes you wonder about the wisdom of trying so hard to keep the body temperature down using aspirin or acetaminophen. We certainly do not want it to get above 105 F as our brains start to ‘fry’ but there is nothing wrong with 101 F as our body is just trying to fight off the infection and is certainly a signal that we are infected.

So from this discussion it is best to stay warm during the winter to help fight off the common cold.  Of course in the summer we are not exposed to cold air temperatures that are conducive for the cold virus to flourish.  Also do not be so quick with remedies to reduce body temperature when you have a cold.  Of course if it starts to get too high then act quickly to get it down.

Now here is the exciting part the SUN!  This is the second method of our body’s natural response to fight off the common cold.  First the temperatures that prevent the cold from forming and second our innate immunity that is significantly improved when we have enough vitamin D3 in our bodies are our body’s major defenses.  Isn’t it interesting how over the last fifty years we have gotten so good about getting our body’s temperature down and scared out of the sun so that we do not get enough vitamin D.  These things are just wrong for good health.

When I first started taking vitamin D for my back pain I had no idea that there were all of these other benefits.  My thought was that since I had degenerative disc disease and that was so close to rickets then maybe the vitamin D would help to heal my back.  Boy did I hit the jackpot in health.  My back healed but so did the rest of my body.  I have not had a viral infection since 2004 when I started to take vitamin D3.  Before I started taking vitamin C on a regular basis I typically had two to five colds per year.  After vitamin C I would have one to two colds a year and really dreaded it as these colds would be really hard to shake.  And since I have added vitamin D at 10,000 IU per day I have not had a cold or any other viral infection including the flu.

Another ‘survivor story’ is that of a 20 year old college student that had a severe cold that had hung around from Thanksgiving until the week of Christmas.  After being advised that she might be able to help the cold with vitamin D she decided to supplement.  She took a 50,000 IU D3 for three days in a row and the cold just simply went away.  She has not had a cold since and that was three years ago as she has kept her vitamin D level up by supplementing.

I had another friend whose twenty something son had a cold that had been around for three months.  After reading about the vitamin D he decided to supplement and his cold just went away.  My friend also started to supplement and now she tells me it is the first time that she has gone for more than a year without a cold.

Is there science to support this understanding that vitamin D3 formed in our bodies from the sun is a super viral infection fighter.  Yes consider this story released last year in February about how vitamin D reduced the common cold CNN.  Also this article from Dr. Mercola – ‘Can Vitamin D Cure the Common Cold’.

Also these items from Dr. John Cannell at the Vitamin D Council:

Epidemic Influenza and Vitamin D Newsletter.

Research on Vitamin D and Influenza

Research on Tuberculosis and Vitamin D

You know we try so hard to show how vitamin D helps to rid our bodies of the real killers like tuberculosis and the flu that sometimes we just forget about a nuisance like the common cold.  However, when you add things like asthma and COPD in combination with a cold then it becomes a killer also.

Can the common cold be eliminated?  Based on the ‘survivor stories’ from myself and people that I know then absolutely yes.  It appears that vitamin D3’s major gift to us is its ability fight virus infections in addition to other pathogens.  However, it particularly seems to really destroy viruses in the human body.  In fact a near future post will be about how vitamin D can fight the virus hepatitis C from a new study that was just released.

Eliminate the common cold by:

  1. Keeping your serum 25(OH)D3 above 60 ng/ml by UVB exposure or by supplementing.
  2. Stay warm!

Don’t you know the cold remedy manufacturers really hate to hear this!

Ah, warm and in the sun what could better!!!!     – Pandemic Survivor

You may want to check out this comment by John at a recent post.

Happy Thanksgiving

It is always good to be with family and fiends and enjoy a life wrap in the abundance of joy.

Gratitude of the Moment

Children and their games always bring hope
As they play at who they are as they are
For it is not play to children as it is life
And this should be a lesson to us

As small children we perceive life
In what is happening in the moment
And do not let the future or the past
Destroy the always shinning sun

Only in the present do we know that we are
And that other people are there for us
To share their love and life freely with intent
And in this moment gratitude resolves me

Original Verse by – Mark Pegram

May blessings come to as you bask in the sun.  – Pandemic Survivor

Super Duper Vitamin D3!!

Can leap tall buildings with a single bound, stronger than a locomotive, faster than a speeding bullet, look up in the sky, it’s chemo, it’s surgery, it’s prescription drugs–no-it’s the sun!  It is difficult to set aside what ‘doctors’ are telling us about the sun and how dangerous it is and that it causes skin cancer when it is so beneficial to life.  It provides the energy cycles for life and for people it is – well let’s see it allows the body to make vitamin D and this is our super hormone precursor to eliminate disease.

Everybody loves a good superhero and the above jingle when superman used to come on TV sent chills of excitement through my being.  Now VITAMIN D sends chills of excitement through my body.  It is difficult to imagine that one single thing can give us so much.  It can bring our health to very close to eliminating all chronic disease.  That is really a grandiose statement and you ask does it even have a bit of truth.  THE ANSWER IS YES!  YES I AM SHOUTING AT YOU SO THAT YOU WILL WAKE UP!

Institutions that derive their existence from treating people for illness have an ‘adverse reaction’ every time they hear the words ‘VITAMIN D’ because they know that their industry could just disappear.  Chills race eerily down their spine in fear of our super protagonist.  The medical profession would not disappear because there will always be need for treatment but all of those industries like insurance and special interest nonprofit (yeah right!) groups like American Pick a Disease Institute will fail miserably.   If they do not completely disappear then their size will significantly decrease and all that means for society.  What happens when you have a well population that is not bombarded by another commercial with two people sitting in bath tubs enjoying the view of an alpine forest?  You can bet your bottom dollar that these institutions will fight hard to keep the understanding of vitamin D3 from becoming common practice as if it was always self-evident.

So here is our plot line.  The SUPER DUPER VITAMIN D, our most loved of super heroes, comes to the rescue of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and a host of others including infectious disease like the flu and tuberculosis.  These diseases are not the antagonist but are only a part of the evil that has been allowed to flourish in the population as the villains have kept us from the science of healing with their greatest weapon ‘THE LIE’.  Who are these villains?  These dastardly villains are none other than Phat Pharmer and its pretty promoter Weeping Willomeana Insurance and their sidekick Adverse Tising.  With great fear they stalk you as they prowl on your TV in bath tubs to sell you the latest snake oil for your health.  They have great cloaking systems designed around the lie to keep you from seeing the real light of the sun and your super hero that is waiting to rescue you, VITAMIN D.  And all in this plot is the corrupt government that is trying to maintain a really large medical economy because all of our manufacturing jobs have been sent elsewhere because of the high cost of health insurance.  What a twisted plot!  It is the stuff of comic books and our everyday existence.

AWWWHH my excited friends with your help we can send a signal and the mild mannered UVB rays will step into a phone booth and out will come our super hero VITAMIN D3 to the rescue.

Coming soon:  HOW TO ELIMINATE THE COMMON COLD and its dastardly promoter COLD REMEDIES!

In the mean time my excited friends – go into the sun!   – Pandemic Survivor

Seizures and Electrolytes

From the Epilepsy Foundation we find that a seizure is: “A seizure is a massive disruption of electrical communication between neurons in the brain—.“  You can find this at their web site and this page defines a seizure and a seizure threshold.

As someone that is not trained in biology or medicine it seems that a seizure occurs when the ‘break-over voltage’ exceeds the resistance of the circuit.  This is how a semiconductor works as well which starts conduction when the ‘saturation voltage’ is reached.  So let’s think about how signals travel down neural pathways.  It would seem that they travel through a series of gates that control the ‘saturation’ levels of sodium and potassium along the pathway.  The ‘action potential’ varies along the axon causing the sodium gates to open and allow sodium into the axon and then the potassium gate opens and allows potassium to rush out so that through this mechanism the ‘signal’ travels along the axon.  When the signal reaches the synapse then neural transmitters are released to carry the signal to the next neuron through its dendrites.

The cell and axon returns to a stable voltage ‘without’ transmitting when the sodium potassium pumps through its action causes the sodium to be forced outside the axon and potassium to be brought into the axon thus reversing the signal or action potential.  The cell body is somewhat more complicated but know that calcium gates are somewhat controlled by the concentration of magnesium.

It is interesting that the article immediately goes to neural transmitters like GABA and ACH and how too much of these will cause the cells to be over stimulated and continue to fire.  This is somewhat different in how engineers would look at a semiconductor and what causes it to fire.  Yes we look at the voltage of the base to control whether the semiconductor is on or off.  However, we control what voltage causes the semiconductor to turn on/off by the amount of ‘doping’ or mineral/metal that is placed in the semiconductor during manufacture.  The equivalent of this in the body of the cell and the axon is how the gates of the cell are working to allow conductive ions in and out and if there is adequate amounts of these electrolytes available.

Ions that are associated with this conduction are calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium.  So it would just seem that a proper diet is extremely critical for a stable environment of electrical conduction in the cell.  That is you need to eat and absorb enough of these minerals so that proper electrical potentials are maintain.

Before you consider changing your diet and taking supplements be sure that you consult with your physician to get him to approve your changes.  If he is resistant please suggest that he read the articles that I am suggesting for you.

Also as vitamin D is extremely important to maintain a healthy endocrine system, proper levels of this vital nutrient should be maintained.  The newer understanding is each cell makes its own steroid form of vitamin D from the storage form of vitamin D.  The cell does not have to get it through the serum level of the steroid as converted in the kidneys.  So does vitamin D affect the threshold levels for seizures?  Here is a study that was done in 1974 that says that there is an association:  “Anticonvulsant Action” of Vitamin D in Epileptic Patients? A Controlled Pilot Study  – 1974 Claus Christiansen, Paul Rødbro, and Ole Sjö

Also Dr. John Cannell talks extensively about seizures that are associated with autism and how that autism may be a result of vitamin D deficiency: “Vitamin D Deficiency’s Role in Autism”

Also Dr. Cannell has located many research articles that can be linked from PubMed through his research page on epilepsy.

ADP/ATP or your energy cycle in the mitochondrial bodies is important as this is where the energy for the sodium/potassium pump comes from.  Magnesium/calcium balance in the mitochondria is extremely critical in proper operation of this ‘energy engine’.  Some researchers claim that as much as 30 percent of the energy that is processed through these engines is used to maintain this balance.  It should also be noted that ADP and ATP are ions and the cation that this reaction works best with is magnesium.

We typically get enough calcium from our diets but whether we properly absorb the calcium is dependent on whether we are replete in vitamin D.  Magnesium however is another story.  I particularly like Krispin’s page on magnesium on how much is enough.  She is a life long nutritionist puts together a very clear way to get to proper magnesium levels.  Krispin’s webpage on magnesium.

Vitamin D levels that are replete tend to cause magnesium to be reduced in your body.  It typically takes about three months or longer for magnesium levels in the cells to reach a healthy value.  There are many research papers that you may access at

Potassium is also not properly understood as you can see that we need a minimum of 4.7 grams per day from this report from the Institute of Medicine from February, 2004.  This article also tells you the proper  balance of sodium and chloride.  “Dietary Reference Intakes: Water, Potassium, Sodium, Chloride, and Sulfate”

Krispin does a great job on how to determine how much potassium we should get in a day based on weight and what foods to get if from.  Krispin’s webpage on magnesium.

If you get a chance you may want to read her page on forgiveness:  this is great piece of work in how we our bodies relate to our environment and memory.

Iodine properly works for energy balance as well and I would suggest these two articles on iodine:

Donald W. Miller, Jr. MD  “Iodine for Health”

This recent article by Dr William Davis of the Heart Scan Blog written for life extension magazine:  “Halt on Salt Sparks Iodine Deficiency”

I know this is a lot but taking only neurotransmitter stabilizers without being sure that you have proper minerals for electrical balance is just a road toward bad health.  Remember the health of the brain activity is related to neural transmitter balance and electrolyte balance.  This is true of the heart as well as a majority of the cells in the heart are neural cells.

Remember that electrolytes are really inexpensive and cannot be prescribed so that is not much of a profit motive to actively treat using proper diet to achieve mineral balance.  Yet minerals may be more critical than neurotransmitters.  I have always suspected this was the case in depression.  Not enough potassium and magnesium to drive the signaling pathways.

EAT YOUR BUCKET OF DIRT!  Just kidding   – Pandemic Survivor

Sunday Morning Musings

“And it’s easy, –  like Sunday morning.”  Everyday should be easy like Sunday morning with time for reflection.  What a wet week it has been and that turned into glorious sunshine yesterday and today.  I understand most rain gauges showed 6 inches of water ( that’s 15.7 cm for you metrics) for this week.  Now that is wet!

And the swine flew or I should say that the swine sxxx flew .  The numbers reported on deaths for the swine flu or H1N1 went from less than 700 confirmed deaths through the end of October to 4000 as reported in the NY Times and AP.  So what does this mean that we had 3000+ new deaths in less than two weeks.  Lets take a couple of minutes and see what the numbers show from CDC.  Here you can go look for yourself: CDC Update for H1N1 and the total deaths: So the deaths from August through November 7 is 877 for all confirmed influenza cases.  That’s right that is all flu deaths with some portion of that being from the H1N1.  You know the CDC claims that 30 to 40 thousand people die each year in the US from flu related illness.  The numbers do not make sense.  The data also showed that for the second week in a row that hospitalizations for influenza like illness has decreased.  Does this mean that we have already reached a peak for the flu or is this just statistical variation and we can expect another peak around week 10 for 2010 or mid-March when the peak normally occurs.  In checking the update from WHO it looks like worldwide there have been 6250 deaths as of November 8. So WHO knows, maybe the AP was just trying to sell vaccine or maybe justify their scare headlines from August which claimed there would be 100,000 deaths from the swine flu in the US.

I just can’t wait until everyone gets replete in vitamin D and see what happens to the illness numbers and deaths in the winter.  Will it be like it is summer all year?  It will be startling to those that make a business in treating disease.  I know that this just really sends fear into the ‘powers of money’.  The seasonal variation in disease is due to change in control of body temperature which is a large pathogen fighter and variation in serum levels of vitamin D from change in UVB variation.  These are the two prime factors – temperature and innate immunity.

I stumbled across an interview with Christopher Buckley, political satirist, (or maybe you know him as William F. Buckley’s son and speech writer for H W Bush, Vice President) this past week at UCSD tv online and that man is hilarious.  He says that his main competition is the USA Today headlines.  You know he is right.  I thought that the headline about Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize was the start of a satire until I read it in a second paper.  What we need is someone to write satire on the medical industry or maybe we already do and we just have not recognized the medical reporting as satire.

I also found a quotation from the great philosopher Woody Allen and it sent chills into my understanding: “We are at a crossroad, one road leads to hopelessness and despair and the other annihilation – choose wisely.”  Ah come on it can’t be that bad Woody.  Boy, that fear can be used to sell some products or worse ideologies.

Headlines of the future:

Annual Deaths Drop by 400,000 in the US

Medical Economy Shrinks by 600 Billion in 2012

Five Million Medical Insurers Looking for Work

Breast Cancer Incidence Down 90%

Multinational Manufacturers Have no Sales for Cold Remedies

Stay warm and go into the sun as you know I love you and God loves you.  You truly are a beautiful person!  -Pandemic Survivor