COVID-19 and Vitamin D: Could We Be Missing Something Simple?

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , on April 13, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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[CHD note: With the United States largely shut down and the deaths from COVID-19 rising, we wanted to share the following information and questions with our readers.  Please share this widely on social media, particularly with health professionals on the front lines, government officials and anyone who might be interested in studying Vitamin D and coronaviruses.]

Introduction

Briefly, the literature on Vitamin D’s role in immune health has exploded in the past 10 years, particularly in relation to viral infections and autoimmune disorders.  Approximately 80% of the literature is new in the past decade and much of it has been published overseas.  There are studies showing that Vitamin D sufficiency is important to reduce mortality in ventilated patients.  There is a large and growing literature on Vitamin D’s role in preventing viral infections and reducing their severity.

The populations at highest risk of severe cases of COVID-19 (the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) and the timing of the outbreak (end of winter in the Northern Hemisphere when population Vitamin D levels are typically lowest) are consistent with deficient Vitamin D status being a risk factor for COVID-19.  The relatively small percentage of infections in children may reflect children’s higher milk consumption since milk is fortified with Vitamins A and D.  Vitamin D is both a vitamin and a steroid hormone with hundreds of roles in our bodies.

2018 study based on NHANES data from 2001-2010 found that 28.9% of American adults were Vitamin D deficient (serum  25(OH)D<20ng/ml)  and an additional 41.4% of American adults were Vitamin D insufficient (serum 25(OH)D between 20ng/ml and 30ng/ml).  Americans who were black, less-educated, poor, obese, current smokers, physically inactive or infrequently consumed milk had higher prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency.  Those with intestinal disorders (Crohn’s or celiac) that reduce dietary uptake of Vitamin D and those with liver or kidney diseases that may reduce the body’s conversion of Vitamin D to its active form may also be at increased risk of deficiency regardless of age.  Vitamin D is a fat-soluble steroid hormone that regulates over 200 genes in the human body.

Questions that need answers

Based on the breadth of the research on Vitamin D in acute respiratory disorders and the many viral infections in which Vitamin D status plays a role, the following questions need to be answered:

  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients Vitamin D deficient (serum 25(OH)D levels < 20ng/ml) or insufficient (levels between 20ng/ml and 30ng/ml)?
  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients more Vitamin D deficient than would be expected in matched controls?
  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients who need intensive care more Vitamin D deficient?
  • Does giving high-dose Vitamin D to COVID-19 patients reduce their need for mechanical ventilation and/or reduce the amount of time that they require mechanical ventilation?
  • Does giving high-dose Vitamin D to health-care workers reduce their risk of COVID-19?
  • If Vitamin D deficiency is found in severe COVID-19 patients, what recommendation should be made to the general public, particularly those who are quarantined and/or fighting infections at home?

While only time and studies will give us definitive answers to these questions, Vitamin D testing is widely available, supplements are inexpensive and in a COVID-19 critical care setting we should consider anything that might reduce the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths.  Even a 10% reduction in one of these metrics would have a major impact.

The literature supports the importance of Vitamin D sufficiency

There are studies suggesting that sufficient Vitamin D reduces the risk of acute respiratory infections.  Also, the literature supports the importance of Vitamin D sufficiency in reducing morbidity and mortality in critical care settings.  This is a sample of the literature.

2017 article in the BMJ states the following: “25 eligible randomized controlled trials (total 11 321 participants, aged 0 to 95 years) were identified… Vitamin D supplementation reduced the risk of acute respiratory tract infection among all participants (adjusted odds ratio 0.88, 95% confidence interval 0.81 to 0.96; P for heterogeneity <0.001).”  The protective effects were greatest in those who were deficient (serum levels <25 nmol/L = 10ng/ml) and in those who took Vitamin D regularly (on a daily or weekly basis) compared to large bolus doses.

Another 2018 review of the literature specifically in intensive care settings suggests that the non-significant results in some large trials of Vitamin D supplementation are likely the result of including subjects who are Vitamin D sufficient in the trials and not excluding Vitamin D supplements in the control groups.  The authors are clear that “three different meta-analyses confirm that patients with low vitamin D status have a longer ICU stay and increased morbidity and mortality” and that “this hormone plays an important pleiotropic (having more than one effect) role in the setting of critical illness and may support recovery from severe acute illness.”

A small 2019 Iranian studyrecommended larger follow-up studies after randomizing 44 mechanically ventilated adult patients to 300,000 IU of Vitamin D vs. placebo.  The study found a significant reduction in mortality (61.1% vs. 36.3%) and a non-significant 10-day reduction in time on the ventilator.

In a 2018 follow-up pilot study they found that in critically ill, ventilated patients, with Vitamin D deficiency and anemia, high-dose Vitamin D increased hemoglobin.

Additionally, a research group at Emory published a 2016 pilot study showing that high-dose Vitamin D decreased hospital length of stay in ventilated ICU patients.  In a 2018 follow-up pilot study they found that in critically ill, ventilated patients, with Vitamin D deficiency and anemia, high-dose Vitamin D increased hemoglobin.

2017 study found that “Monthly high-dose vitamin D3supplementation reduced the incidence of ARI (acute respiratory infections) in older long-term care residents but was associated with a higher rate of falls without an increase in fractures.”

2015 study in Thorax found that Vitamin D deficiency was common in patients who developed acute respiratory distress syndrome after esophagectomy.

2018 study in the Indian Journal of Anesthesia reported no significant results in mechanically respirated patients based on Vitamin D deficiency vs. sufficiency at admission, but this was likely due to small sample size.  The trends for days in the ICU, days on mechanical ventilation, days to spontaneous breathing trial and 30-day mortality were all more favorable in the group with sufficient Vitamin D.

In another 2018 Iranian study of 46 patients with Vitamin D deficiency and Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia, a single dose of 300,000 IU of Vitamin D compared to placebo significantly reduced serum levels of IL-6 and significantly reduced mortality.  IL-6 is a cytokine that is typically elevated in acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Unlike the above studies, a large 2014 Austrian study of 492 critically ill patients with Vitamin D deficiency did not find significant results with Vitamin D supplementation for most of its outcome measures.  The only significant result was decreased hospital mortality in the severely Vitamin D deficient subgroup.  However, this study population included surgical, neurological and medical patients and it is possible that Vitamin D is only relevant for respiratory infections.  Also, this study reported no serious adverse events using very high doses of Vitamin D in a critically ill population.

2017 rat study showed that pretreatment with calcitriol (the active form of Vitamin D) reduced lipopolysaccharide-induced acute lung injury by modulating the renin-angiotensin system.  ACE and ACE2 are part of this system and ACE2 is the binding site of SARS-CoV2 on cells.  There is an unresolved ongoing debate on whether angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) used to treat blood pressure and heart conditions increase or decrease the risk of SARS-CoV2 infection.  How Vitamin D deficiency might fit into this discussion is an open question.

Interestingly, a 2018 case-control study of 532 Japanese workers found that in a subgroup of participants without vaccination, vitamin D sufficiency was associated with a significantly lower risk of influenza.

Research on Vitamin D in other viral infections

Vitamin D deficiency has been studied in many viruses and, generally, sufficient Vitamin D levels lead to lower rates of infection and less severe cases.  This research is a combination of in vitro and in vivo studies.  There is no specific literature on coronaviruses so we looked for research on Vitamin D in other viral infections including Influenza, HIV, Dengue, Epstein Barr, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C.  Some examples follow:

2018 Chinese trial of two different doses of Vitamin D in 400 infants showed significantly lower risk of influenza A, reduced viral load and reduced duration of symptoms in the group on the higher dose.  A similar 2010 studyin Japanese school children found that 1200 IU/day of Vitamin D reduced Influenza A infections from 18.6% in the placebo group to 10.8% in the supplemented group.  The supplemented children with asthma also had a reduced risk of asthma attacks.  Interestingly, a 2018 case-control study of 532 Japanese workers found that “In a subgroup of participants without vaccination, vitamin D sufficiency (≥30 ng/mL) was associated with a significantly lower risk of influenza (odds ratio 0.14; 95% confidence interval 0.03-0.74)”.

2018 study of youth with HIV showed that high-dose Vitamin D attenuated immune activation and exhaustion from anti-retroviral therapy.  A 2016 study of 466 South African infants (half HIV-infected) found that low Vitamin D and SNPs on certain genes increased the risk of tuberculosis and death. A 2018 review of Vitamin D in HIV infection states, “High levels of VitD and VDR expression are also associated with natural resistance to HIV-1 infection. Conversely, VitD deficiency is linked to more inflammation and immune activation, low peripheral blood CD4+ T-cells, faster progression of HIV disease, and shorter survival time in HIV-infected patients.”

A small 2020 study of healthy patients showed that higher dose Vitamin D supplementation reduced susceptibility to DENV-2 (dengue) infection in blood cells.  A 2017 study of human monocyte-derived macrophages found that “DENV bound less efficiently to vitamin D3-differentiated macrophages, leading to lower infection”.

The situation with Vitamin D deficiency and Epstein-Barr virus infection in Relapsing/Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS) is more nuanced.  While each is an independent risk factor for RRMS, recent studies have found that high-dose Vitamin D supplementation resulted in significantly lower antibody levels to EBNA-1.  In this case the lower antibody levels lead to lower risk of relapse and lower risk of new lesions on MRI.

2019 meta-analysis of studies of Vitamin D status in chronic Hepatitis B infections found that “Vitamin D levels were lower in CHB patients and inversely correlated with viral load”.  A 2018 Israeli study found that Hepatitis B transfected liver cancer cells actually downregulate Vitamin D receptors to allow the virus to replicate.

In a 2012 Israeli study, the addition of Vitamin D to standard anti-viral therapy in patients with chronic Hepatitis C infections improved viral response.  A 2015 study of Egyptian children with Hepatitis C found that cases treated with Vitamin D along with antivirals showed significantly higher “early and sustained virological response” compared to controls.

One additional factor should be considered.  Single nucleotide polymorphisms that affect Vitamin D Receptor function and metabolism of Vitamin D to its active form affect sufficiency, so identifying patients with those polymorphisms will help identify those at greater risk for Vitamin D deficiency.  There is a growing literature on these genetic factors as well.

Last week, former CDC Director, Dr. Tom Frieden, suggested that Vitamin D might decrease coronavirus infections.  We hope this article will convince doctors and researchers to take a closer look at Vitamin D as a potential preventative and therapeutic option.  As we stated in our recent video, we think that scarce resources should be focused on treatment versus a vaccine that may never materialize.

Last, a caveat

This is not medical advice and you should not take high doses of Vitamin D without checking with your doctor, particularly if you have any underlying health conditions.  Vitamin D does have potential toxicity at high levels including hypercalcemia and kidney stones.  A daily dose of 800 IU – 2000 IU of Vitamin D is generally regarded as safe and will produce sufficiency in most people, but more is not necessarily better.  NIH’s information on Vitamin D dosing and drug interactions can be found here.

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COVID-19 and Vitamin D: Could We Be Missing Something Simple?

An *intense* Arctic cold outbreak spreads across much of the US after the #Easter Weekend &dangerous situation Southeast US on Sunday – a widespread tornado

Posted in 2020, Extreme Weather with tags , on April 12, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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Bring back your winter clothes! Winter and very cold weather will soon be back across a large part of United States after this weekend. An establishing pattern will develop an intense Arctic cold outbreak from Canada far south into much of the CONUS after Sunday.

Temperatures will plunge down below 20 °F across the the northern half of the US, with extreme temperature anomaly – more than 30 degrees F colder than normal for mid April!

 

TO  READ FULL ARTICLE ON

An *intense* Arctic cold outbreak spreads across much of the United States after the #Easter Weekend

A tornado season is usually ramping up across the southern United States during early April. This Sunday – the Easter Day – it is becoming increasingly likely a severe weather and tornado outbreak across the lower Mississippi valley, Southeast US and Tennessee valley. A rather volatile setup could result in numerous tornadoes, potentially even significant long-tracked tornadoes, as well as widespread severe winds and very large hail. Some major cities are in the risk area, e.g. Jackson (MS), Birmingham (AL) and Tuscaloosa (AL).

What is shaping up on the forecast models is a pretty dangerous weather pattern with a very deep trough across the northern US, and a short-wave trough moving into the southeast US (Dixie Alley). A powerful southwesterly jet stream is rounding the base of the trough. At the surface, a relatively strong surface low is moving from the central Plains across the Mississippi valley into Tennessee valley while deepening into the mid 980s mbar by Sunday afternoon. This delivers a significant increase in the dynamics with very strong deep-layer shear and moisture advection across the Southeast US.

Here is the 3-hour sequence for Sunday from 1 pm through 7 pm across the Southeast US. Strong southerly moisture advection results in widespread elevated storms in the early-mid afternoon hours while the frontal boundary becomes the main focus for dangerous surface-based storms from the west – Arkansas, Louisiana into Mississippi and further east-northeast into Tennessee and Alabama through the late afternoon and evening hours. A strongly unstable airmass, coupled with increasing deep and low-level shear/helicity will develop a volatile environment with scattered to widespread severe storms (supercells) ahead of the moving front. These will support all kinds of severe weather, including severe winds, tornadoes, very large hail, and flash floods. The strengthening wind shear should also support long-lived supercells and tornadoes. An intense squall-line could potentially develop along the leading cold front, introducing destructive winds.

Sunday, 1pm

Sunday, 4pm

Sunday, 7pm

The deep-layer shear will be particularly strong in the evening hours as the low-level jet increases significantly. This will create an extremely dangerous situation across the Mississippi and northern Alabama where an overlap of very strong shear, helicity, and strongly unstable airmass will occur. There are higher probabilities for a widespread severe weather outbreak there, including numerous tornadoes. A volatile environment should support significant long-lived severe storms, moving into populated areas. Attached is the outlook by NOAA Storm Prediction Center (SPC)with a MODERATE risk issued. And the forecast sounding for northern Mississippi on Sunday late afternoon – a particularly dangerous situation, supporting of significant tornadoes with more than 90 knots of shear and 500+ m^2/s^2 storm-relative helicity. Such an environment could result in destructive and deadly tornadoes! Also widespread wind damage.

There is a potential of the outlook upgrade into HIGH RISK on the next updates.

Quite a high amount of rainfall is likely to accumulate with the widespread storm activity and training storm clusters as well, potentially reaching 5-7 inches (120-180 mm) in about 24 hours period. This should lead in dangerous flash floods threat in some areas, e.g. southern Arkansas, northern Mississippi, and Alabama into Tennessee.

Stay alert for this potentially life-threatening situation developing for Easter Day 2020 and follow the warnings from your local NWS office over the weekend! Stay safe!

Behind the severe weather outbreak, an intense Arctic cold outbreak spreads across the United States

Global weather

An *intense* Arctic outbreak spreads across much of the Unites States after the #Easter Weekend

Global weather

Global ocean analysis reveals three anomaly areas, which will have major impacts on weather in summer, hurricane season and even next winter!

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Week 05-2020 (Jan 27th – Feb 02nd) Contest Winners

Dangerous severe weather and tornado outbreak likely across Louisiana into the Tennessee Valley and most of the Southeast US on the Easter Day – Sunday, Apr 12th

Krakatoa volcano (Indonesia): violent eruption, ash to 47,000 ft altitude

Posted in 2020, Volcanoes with tags , on April 10, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame
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Friday Apr 10, 2020 21:45 PM | BY: T

Lava fountains from Anak Krakatau this evening (image: MAGMA Indonesia webcam)

Lava fountains from Anak Krakatau this evening (image: MAGMA Indonesia webcam)
Lava fountains seen from the observatory near Carita (image: MAGMA Indonesia)

Lava fountains seen from the observatory near Carita (image: MAGMA Indonesia)

A large magmatic eruption is taking place at the volcano right now. Based on satellite imagery, VAAC Darwin spotted a high-level ash and SO2 plume reaching 47,000 ft (15 km) altitude moving WNW.
A strong thermal hot spot is detected as well. Both the webcam on Anak Krakatau Island and from the coast (in 40 km distance) show strong lava fountaining from the volcano.
This seems to be the strongest eruptive phase since the violent phreatomagmatic activity following the partial collapse of the volcano in Dec 2018, which had triggered a deadly tsunami on 22 Dec 2018.

Source

https://www.volcanodiscovery.com/krakatau/news/101587/Krakatoa-volcano-Indonesia-violent-eruption-ash-to-47000-ft-altitude.html

Evidence of a new magma deposit in Reykjanes peninsula, more than 6 000 earthquakes in 3 months, Iceland !!!!

Posted in 2020, Earthquakes with tags , , , , on April 9, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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Considerable seismic activity continues at the Reykjanes peninsula, Iceland, with more than 6 000 earthquakes manually checked since the beginning of the year.

According to the Icelandic Met Office (IMO), this is the most intense activity ever recorded in the region since the beginning of digital monitoring in 1991.

Data indicates the activity is affecting all volcanic systems in the Reykjanes peninsula and Reykjanes ridge. In addition, GPS measurements, as well as detailed analysis and model calculations of the available data, now give evidence of a new magma deposit west of the Reykjanes peninsula under Rauðhólar and Sýrfell.

Recent data show that uplift has started again, with the center just west of Mt. Thorbjorn, IMO reported on April 2, 2020. Uplift was measured from January 22, 2020, until the beginning of February and has started up again during the first half of March.

During the first sequence in January-February, the deformation rate was about 3 – 4 mm (0.11 – 0.15 inches) per day with a total of 6 cm (2.3 inches) uplift during the whole period.

In the sequence that is ongoing now, the deformation rate looks to be only half of what it was (or even slower). In total, the uplift is about 7 – 8 cm (2.7 – 3.1 inches) since the end of January.

The Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) who met on March 28 still believes that the most likely explanation of the uplift is a magma intrusion where the magma is ‘forcing’ its way horizontally between the stratum in the crust and forming a thin sill at about 3 to 4 km (1.8 – 2.5 miles) depth. The magma intrusion causes a considerable amount of earthquakes in the area north of Grindavík. Their next meeting is scheduled for April 8.

A model of the ongoing magma intrusion shows that fissures can open in the uppermost layer of the crust, at 1 – 2 km (0.62 – 1.24 miles), because of the tensional stress induced by the uplift itself. This change in the crustal stress might lead to more earthquakes related to injection at boreholes, which was not common before in the area, IMO said.

The work procedure for the injections will be reviewed in collaboration with HS-Orka and discussion will be taken on how is the best way to monitor the earthquakes likely due to these changes, it added.

On Saturday, March 28, an earthquake swarm occurred in Eldey, indicating that the activity is affecting all volcanic systems in the peninsula and the ridge, eg. from Eldey all the way to Krýsuvík.

The interpretation of these events is still uncertain, but there are indications that a common underlying process is the cause of the activation of such a widespread area in such a short timeframe.

However, the Reykjanes peninsula and the Reykjanes ridge are composed of plate boundaries. Also, the Eldey, Reykjanes, Svartsengi and Krýsuvík volcanic systems lie right across the boundaries.

Because of the activity ongoing in the area, the SAB believes that it is extremely important to monitor and investigate the ongoing activity in the Reykjanes peninsula as a whole, and compare this activity with older events in the area to try to decipher the reasons and identify possible developments.

In addition, GPS measurements, as well as detailed analysis and model calculations of the available data, now give evidence of a new magma deposit west of the Reykjanes peninsula under Rauðhólar and Sýrfell.

“The data we have processed indicates that the magma insertion has taken place from mid-February until the first week of March. This picture was better explained when we got data from the University’s GPS measurements, which are not directly related to our monitoring system — meaning that we did not detect this until now,” says Kristín Jónsdóttir, Group Director of Nature Conservation at the Icelandic Meteorological Office.

A model places the magma insert at a depth of about 8 – 13 km (5 – 8 miles), which is probably at the bottom of the Earth’s crust at considerably more depth than the two magma deposits at Thorbjörn.

“This magma deposit under Sýrfell is the third magma deposit we report on the Reykjanes peninsula since the turn of the year. The presence of this magma insert supports the Resolution of the Swedish Civil Defense Council that it is necessary to look at the activity in the Reykjanes peninsula comprehensively, and not only from the local activity around Svartsengi and Reykjanes,” Kristín said.

Featured image credit: IMO

Author: Teo Blašković

https://watchers.news/2020/04/07/evidence-new-magma-deposit-reykjanes-more-than-6-000-earthquakes-3-months-iceland/

Freaky Weather ! Norway, Iceland buried in Heavy Snow. Strong Volcano Eruption Russia, Slow Moving Storm California, Severe Tropical Cyclone Cat 5 South Pacific

Posted in 2020, Extreme Weather with tags , , , on April 9, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama confirmed Harold caused extensive damage in Fiji. According to the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO), many parts of Ba Town were inundated and the Nasivi River in Tauva had become swollen.

https://watchers.news/2020/04/09/tropical-cyclone-harold-aftermath-widespread-destruction-across-solomon-islands-vanuatu-fiji-and-tonga/

Anumber of snowfall records tumbled across Norway, particularly its northern region, over the weekend. According to state meteorologist Eirik Samuelsen, Northern Norway has been practically buried by snow all throughout the season. With more heavy snow expected later in the week, this season is likely to become Tromso’s snowiest.​

While people in the south enjoyed the cool weather in the past week, the residents in the north shivered through the cold and struggled with the heavy snow.

Official measurements in the northern municipality of Tromso said 30 cm (12 inches) settled in the area on Sunday alone, April 5, 2020.

There were huge local differences, however, saidSamuelsen. “Here where I live, on Kvaloya, it came in more than that.”

In Breivikeidet, Tromso, almost 1.2 m (4 feet) of snow had accumulated from Sunday to Monday, April 5 to 6. “I have never experienced so much snow in one day,” he added.

In Tromso, 6.5 m (21.3 feet) of snow has accumulated this season so far, the highest since the 1999-2000 winter season.

https://watchers.news/2020/04/08/record-breaking-snowfall-engulfs-parts-of-norway/

 

Blizzard conditions were felt across much of Iceland over the weekend. Up to 1.5 m (5 feet) of snow fell in one day, engulfing residential areas and vehicles, while very strong winds up to 111 km/h (69 mph) and near-zero visibility were reported on the coast.

In Hveragerdi, Southwest Iceland, many residents had to dig themselves out of their homes after ‘the largest snow they had ever seen in their town.’

Nearly 1.5 m (5 feet) of snow fell in one day, resulting in total whiteout conditions. In Sigluforder, North Iceland, cars were also buried in snow.

According to meteorologist Einar Sveinbjornsson at the Weather Watch, this was the most widespread severe weather event of the season.

“This is perhaps the worst weather, given how extensive it was and given how many territories it affected,” Sveinbjornsson said.

https://watchers.news/2020/04/07/bilzzard-iceland-april-2020/

A powerful, slow-moving storm continues affecting parts of California on Monday, April 6, 2020, with significant mountain snow, heavy rain, and gusty winds. Up to 127 mm (5 inches) of rain fell in Santa Barbara County, causing localized flooding. A record rainfall of 28.4 mm (1.12 inches) was recorded in the Santa Barbara City, while Monterey saw 30.7 mm (1.21 inches) — which above its average monthly rainfall. Showers and thunderstorms are also forecast for the Midwest in the following days.

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), an exceptionally deep upper-level low is predicted to linger near Southern California during the first half of the week, with the worst impacts to be felt on Monday.

Almost 60 cm (2 feet) of snow has fallen in the Sierra Nevada, with more expected through the week. Heavy snow continues to impact the San Gabriel and San Bernardo ranges as well.

“In addition, heavy rain is falling along the coastal range and in the valleys. The risk for flooding and flash flooding in some areas, particularly over burn scars, and runoff is possible in urbanized areas as well,” said NSW.

NOAA Satellites

@NOAASatellites

This , take a look at these beautiful clouds that captured swirling off the coast of northern yesterday. This will keep bringing and to the area through Wednesday.
Explore: http://go.usa.gov/xv27D 

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NWS Los Angeles

@NWSLosAngeles

Moderate to heavy rain impacting County right now. RSeveral areas seeing 0.50 to 0.75 inches per hour, which can crate roadway and small creek flooding. Be prepared for sudden slow downs on the roads.

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NWS Los Angeles

@NWSLosAngeles

Very heavy rain just fell in the The heavy rainfall has shifted south of the area, but expect plenty of roadway and canyon flooding in the area. Flood Advisory in effect.

View image on Twitter
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NWS Los Angeles

@NWSLosAngeles

Winter Storm on tap for today thru Tue.

Widespread rain totals 1-3″ with local 4+” totals.

WINTER STORM WARNING for & mountains.

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

If you see square waves form on the water surface – keep away and warn others immediately

Posted in 2020, Extreme Weather with tags , , , , on April 9, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

waves

Of all potential hazards in the ocean there is one that we do not talk so much about: square waves.

This natural phenomenon is called a “cross sea” and while it’s mesmerizing to watch it can be extremely dangerous for anyone caught in it, including boats, surfers and especially swimmers.

Square waves
Wikipedia / Michel Griffon

This beautiful ocean phenomenon happens when the waves collide from different angles and form squares in the water. The image above is from Île de Ré, an island off the west coast of France where “cross seas” is a common occurrence.

It happens when waves from one weather system continue even though a change in the wind has created different waves.

The waves then run at an angle from each other causing this amazing sight.

Imgur

When this ocean scene occurs  it can attract many curious spectators…

But what lies under this amazing sight are currents that can throw anything in its path up in the air, including something as large as a ship.

Experts warn to stay away

It’s hard to determine what has caused ships to wreck but researchers believe many vessels have capsized as a result of these cross seas.

Boats and ships are supposed to hit waves head on but if a vessel has waves coming at it from all angles it’s very dangerous.

You must always stay out of the ocean and warn others if you see criss cross waves. But please enjoy them from afar, or by watching them in the clip below.

The ocean is a powerful force that we must be wary of at all times, but especially when we see this mesmerizing view.

Please share this warning so that your loved ones can keep an eye on this too!

Source

If you see square waves form on the water surface – keep away and warn others immediately

 

A solar superstorm can make your lights go out. New maps released by the USGS show where the power is most likely to fail in the US

Posted in 2020, astronomy, science with tags , , , , , , , on April 9, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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A solar superstorm can make your lights go out. New maps released by the USGS show where the power is most likely to fail: The Denver metropolitan area, the Pacific northwest, the Atlantic seaboard, and a cluster of Midwestern states near the US-Canadian Border.

Bright yellow and orange trace the trouble spots across the contiguous USA

Power companies have long been wary of the sun. Solar storms can cause strong electric currents to flow through commercial power lines–so strong that the lines can’t handle it.

Fuses blow, transformers melt, and circuit breakers trip. The most famous geomagnetic power outage happened during a space storm in March 1989 when six million people in Quebec lost power for 9 hours.

Whether or not *your* power goes out during a solar storm depends on two things: (1) The configuration of power lines in your area and (2) the electrical properties of the ground beneath your feet.

In areas of more electrically resistive rock, currents struggle to flow through the ground. Instead, they leap up into overhead power lines – a scenario that played out in Quebec in 1989.

The new maps are possible thanks to Earthscope–a National Science Foundation magnetotelluric survey of the upper 2/3rds of the contiguous USA. Earthscope mapped the electrical properties of deep rock and soil on a continent-spanning grid with points about 70 km apart. USGS researchers led by Greg Lucas and Jeffrey Love combined this information with the layout of modern power lines to estimate peak voltages during a century-class storm.


Sprawling power lines act like antennas, picking up currents and spreading the problem over a wide area.

They found a huge variation in hazard across the USA. “The largest estimated once-per-century geoelectric field is 27.2 V/km at a site located in Maine, while the lowest estimated once-per-century geoelectric field is 0.02 V/km at a site located in Idaho.

That is more than 3 orders of magnitude difference,” they wrote in their research paper “A 100‐year Geoelectric Hazard Analysis for the U.S. High‐Voltage Power Grid.” Notably, some of the most vulnerable regions are near big cities: Denver, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, DC.

To complete the hazard map, the researchers are waiting for a new magnetotelluric survey to cover the rest of the USA. It can’t come soon enough. The last “century-class” geomagnetic storm hit in May 1921 … 99 years ago.

Sources:

https://spaceweather.com

And

https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1029/2019SW002329

7 stages of grief: shock, denial, anger, bargaining, guilt, depression & acceptance in Death or Break Up can get U stuck in Anger

Posted in 2020, Health, Mind with tags , , , , , on April 8, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

 

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In many ways, there is no “understanding” the loss of a loved one, but in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross introduced a model aimed to demystify the grieving process with the 5, now sometimes 7 stages of grief: shock, denial, anger, bargaining, guilt, depression, and acceptance.

The big myth, though, is these steps build up to a staircase that leads to acceptance. Anyone can get stuck in or regress to any stage of grieving, and, anecdotally, I’ve seen a lot of friends boomerang back to the third stage: anger.

One of my friends passed several months ago, and in my social circle, anger seems to be the home-base grief emotion. I now field a lot of out-of-the-blue all-caps texts about how “SOMEONE SHOULD’VE DONE SOMETHING” and wondering “HOW COULD HER HUSBAND POST THAT ON FACEBOOK?” I’m not immune, either: I recently found myself in a shout-y “IT’S NOT FAIR” breakdown. My friends and I are all screaming, always.

It turns out there’s a psychological reason we’re all marooned in anger: It’s an easier mask to wear than other, more vulnerable-leaning feelings.

Like grief as a whole, anger is complicated to explain and easy to feel.

“Really, anger is just a shallow way of expressing grief,” says bereavement-care specialist Virginia A. Simpson. “It’s because it’s too hard to touch those softer emotions. We’ve all been taught…that strength is shown through being very rigid or angry. Anger is okay, because we see it every day. But if somebody cries, they’ll go, ‘Oh, I’m sorry,’ and they’ll apologize for their tears.”

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Why it’s so easy and common to get stuck in the third stage of grief

51-Sad-Breakup-Quotes-That-Make-You-Cry

Breaking Up Is Hard to Do: These 9 Tips Can Help

Try not to isolate yourself during this delicate time.

Those closest to you can help you vent but also show you that you’re loved and supported — always.

Focusing on your social relationships now can also help strengthen your romantic relationship skills in the future. Experts believe that staying social is linked to decreased depression and a longer life.

Rearrange your living situation

Sometimes, a breakup means one or both individuals moving out of a previously shared living space.

On top of the stress of moving, the emotional toll can raise even more if you and your partner shared pets or children in your relationship…

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https://www.healthline.com/health/coping-with-break-up

 

 

 

The Remarkable Health Benefits of Liposomal Vitamin C

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , , on April 6, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

 

vitaminC (Bear in mind if you smoke you need even more vitamin C…)

Vitamin C plays an important role in the health and function of the immune cells.

White blood cells depend upon vitamin C in order to survive and withstand the attack of pathogens and free radicals.  Vitamin C also plays an important role as an anti-histamine and reduces inflammatory conditions associated with colds, fevers, flu’s and allergies (123).

Vitamin C also plays an important role in the production of collagen which is the major constituent in ligaments, bones, discs, tendons and skin (45).

High dose vitamin C has been shown to improve the healing process of burns, cuts, wounds, sprains/strains and broken bones (678).

It is also extremely important for the health of the eyes and many experts believe that as little as 1,000 mg of liposomal vitamin C daily may stop cataracts all together.

Vitamin C is one of the most widely recognized and used anti-oxidants in the world.   This anti-oxidant plays a critical role in helping the immune system, joints and arteries heal and function properly.

Liposomal vitamin C is a technological breakthrough in nutrient assimilation and offers incredible health benefits.

Much of our physiology is based on the movement of electrons from one compound to another.

Unstable molecules that are missing an electron are called free radicals and they are catabolic to the body.  These free radicals are formed in a cycle called oxidative stress that creates damage and instability in cells, tissues and organs in the body.

Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant that acts to donate an electron to neutralize free radicals and restore peace and harmony to the body.

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The Remarkable Health Benefits of Liposomal Vitamin C

 

Irish scientists at Akara Robotics have developed a robotic technology to help keep hospitals clean of coronavirus!

Posted in 2020, Health, science with tags , , , on April 6, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

 

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A robot emitting ultraviolet light (UVC) with the ability to disinfect hospitals and get rid of the Covid-19 virus has been developed by a start-up attached to Trinity College Dublin.

Being able to clean healthcare facilities thoroughly and quickly is hugely demanding as coronavirus cases escalate.

Created by Akara Robotics, it is clinically proven to kill viruses, bacteria and harmful germs, and does so in a much shorter time compared to usual cleaning methods, according to its inventor Dr Conor McGinn.

 

Robot Violet was tested in an acute hospital in the Dublin area last week after Dr McGinn contacted the HSE indicating it would be effective in tackling the Covid-19 pandemic in healthcare settings. They are awaiting microbiological test results to confirm its effectiveness.

 

“This system could reduce dependency on the use of chemical-based solutions, which may be effective but requires rooms to be vacated for several hours during sterilisation, making them impractical for many parts of the hospital,” said Dr McGinn.

 

In addition, many pieces of high-tech equipment cannot be disinfected using “deep chemicals”, so manual cleaning is needed. Robot Violet is also effective in such circumstances, he said.

SOURCE ON

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/covid-19-virus-killing-robot-developed-by-tcd-start-up-1.4211037

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