In this month’s Bulletin we bring you disturbing news about the scare tactics used by U.S. government agencies to push the flu vaccine more than ever.
We also share with you an update on Big Pharma’s efforts to develop a new osteoporosis drug.
And last, we’ll take a closer look at the recent “celebration” of World Osteoporosis Day.
The Save Institute certainly supports awareness of osteoporosis, along with healthy lifestyle changes and natural treatment protocols. Unfortunately, the “official” celebration is nothing but a cleverly concealed effort, courtesy of Big Pharma, to promote osteoporosis drugs. A little history and examination will further confirm this.
Let’s begin with…
Unprecedented Push To Promote Flu Vaccination
As flu season has just begun in the Northern Hemisphere, health officials, including Health & Human Services Secretary Tom Price, have released statements urging people and health care providers to get vaccinated against influenza.
At a press conference hosted by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases on September 28th, Secretary Price was joined by a panel of experts including a professor of preventative medicine at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, the director of the Center for Vaccine Development at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and other professionals specializing in fighting infectious diseases.
They strongly urged that people get the flu shot this year, further reinforcing the Center for Disease Control’s recommendation that everyone aged six months or older receive the vaccine.
In Secretary Price’s own words:
“While we don’t know what this season has in store, the science on flu vaccination is clear… Vaccination can help prevent you or someone you love from becoming sick and missing school or work, or worse, becoming severely ill or being hospitalized … or even dying from the flu.”1
The overall vaccination rate in the United States rose from 45.6% in the 2015-2016 flu season to 46.8% in the 2016-2017 season. The rate for those below 17 years of age remained roughly the same, while the rates for those 18 and above rose from 41.7% to 43.3%.
The rate among people aged 50 to 64 years increased by 1.8%, to 45.4%. Among people aged 65 years and older, it increased by 1.9%, to 65.3%. Among both those age ranges, rates were consistent over 5 years.
Children aged younger than 2 years had the highest vaccination rate in the 2016-2017 season, at 76.3%. They were the only group to surpass U.S. public health goals of 70% coverage.
The panel members also emphasized that pregnant women and their infants are at an increased risk for influenza-related complications. According to an MMWR, 53.6% of pregnant women were vaccinated against influenza in the 2016-2017 season — a rate similar to that in the 2015-2016 season.1
A study that looked at laboratory-confirmed influenza-associated pediatric deaths between 2010 and 2014 found that of 358 deaths of children aged six months through 17 years, 26% received a vaccine before illness onset. Overall vaccine effectiveness against death was 65%.2
Experts have reported that the flu season this year could be particularly severe, based on monitoring of the virus in the Southern Hemisphere. Infections began increasing earlier than usual in Australia and hit record highs in some states.
Current vaccination rates in the US are considered low, calling into question the public’s faith in the flu vaccine, in spite of the Medical Establishment’s yearly push to increase the number of vaccinations administered. According to an internet panel survey of health care personnel, only 78.6% got the vaccine last season.1
Apparently, some health care providers themselves doubt the usefulness or wisdom of the vaccine. The Save Institute does not recommend getting a flu shot. Actively and consistently supporting your immune system is the best way to ward off the flu. The shot itself can temporarily weaken your immune system, ironically making you more susceptible to the virus you’re hoping to avoid. Additionally, the chemical cocktail that is injected into your body when you receive the vaccine is full of toxins.
The scare tactics that the HHS Secretary Tom Price and the CDC are resorting to might feel familiar if you’ve ever been talked into taking a drug by a health care professional. The often cited figures on influenza-related deaths don’t disclose that the actual cause of death and sometimes no testing was done to confirm whether those patients even had the virus.
Potential New Osteoporosis Drug
A new study published in the journal Nature Medicine focused on senescent cells, which are cells involved in the aging process and related diseases.3
The researchers used Sprycel (dasatinib), a senolytic drug used to treat certain forms of leukemia, combined with quercetin, a plant polyphenol found in fruits, vegetables, and grains. These two substances were administered once a month, and the scientists examined their impact on the bones of older mice (20-22 months, equivalent to over 70 years old in human years) with induced bone loss.
“The researchers targeted these cells in a variety of ways. They “switched off” the genes for these cells, and they eradicated them using so-called senolytic drugs, which are meant to “kill off” senescent cells.
Finally, they used a drug that inhibits the activity of a type of enzyme called Janus kinase enzymes to block the production of a pro-inflammatory substance secreted by senescent cells.
Dr. Sundeep Khosla, director of the Aging Bone and Muscle program at Mayo Clinic's Robert and Arlene Kogod Center on Aging, explains the results of the study, saying, ‘The effects of all three approaches on aging bone were strikingly similar.’
‘They all enhanced bone mass and strength by reducing bone resorption but maintaining or increasing bone formation, which is fundamentally different from all current osteoporosis drugs.’”4
When the same tests were performed on younger mice, the senolytic drugs did not have a beneficial effect, suggesting that the senescent cells bear a relationship specifically with age-related osteoporosis.
A larger question unasked by the researchers is whether this new potential treatment has undesirable and dangerous side effects. To date, not a single osteoporosis drug has been shown to be safe or effective at preventing fractures and improving the quality of bone.
The combinatory use of a well-known polyphenol and a patentable drug suggests that this may be another case of Big Pharma seeking new uses for existing drugs. Because the patents on the current batch of osteoporosis drugs will eventually expire, they must get new drugs in the pipeline so that pharmaceutical companies can continue to profit off the market they have created.
The fact that quercetin, which as mentioned earlier is plentiful in certain fruits and vegetables, effectively reduces inflammation, doesn’t help Big Pharma to sell their products. In order to claim exclusivity to sell the drug, they must attach it to a patentable chemical.
And it seems that there will be an even greater demand for such drugs in the near future. The global osteoporosis drug market is expected to reach $16.3 billion by 2025, according to a recently released study.5 This large figure is seemingly the result of the general population’s deteriorating health habits (creating increased reliance on pharmaceutical health solutions) combined with patent expiries that may lead to an expansion in the generic osteoporosis drug market.4
Additionally, publicity campaigns waged by big osteoporosis awareness organizations (created by pharmaceutical companies) are chartered to continue their success in convincing people that osteoporosis is a disease (it’s not) and that basically everyone needs to be medicated to prevent fractures (they don’t.)
The benefits of quercetin have been scientifically confirmed, and the Save Institute has already published articles detailing its usefulness. You can get this powerful antioxidant and other bone-smart nutrients from a delicious 100% natural bone-healthy diet.
World Osteoporosis Day: Advocacy Or Advertising?
October 20th was World Osteoporosis Day, a designation that was first made in 1996 by the UK’s National Osteoporosis Society, and which since 1998 has been led by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF). It is part of an awareness campaign to educate the public and health professionals about osteoporosis and fracture prevention.
With a call to ‘Love Your Bones – Protect your future’, World Osteoporosis Day reminds us all that maintaining strong, healthy bones is the key to an active and independent future at older age.
The campaign, led by IOF (International Osteoporosis Foundation) and its 200 member societies worldwide, will spread awareness about the global burden of osteoporosis as well as the need for preventive action to maintain healthy mobility.
World Osteoporosis Day is observed annually on 20 October, and marks the beginning of a year-long campaign dedicated to raising global awareness of the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and related musculoskeletal diseases. Led by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), it generates worldwide media attention and supports public awareness campaigns organized by 240 national osteoporosis patient and medical societies from around the world.
World Osteoporosis Day 2017 Official Partners: Amgen, Lilly, Sunsweet, UCB.6
The year the IOF took over World Osteoporosis Day was the same year it was founded, in 1998. It was the combination of two older organizations, the European Foundation of Osteoporosis (created in 1987) and the International Federation of Societies on Skeletal Diseases (founded in 1995). All of these dates are worth noting because the official definition of osteoporosis radically changed in 1994.
Before that date, osteoporosis described a fracture risk, not a disease, and only those who suffered a fracture could be diagnosed as at-risk. Then, in 1994, the World Health Organization turned osteoporosis into a disease and changed the way it was diagnosed. In one fell swoop, it redefined millions of healthy people as having diseases and paved the way for pharmaceutical companies to reap the rewards.
The WHO made this decision under the influence of corporate pharmaceutical giants, and non-profit organizations like the IOF. Big Pharma typically provides funding for those organizations and often operates as “corporate advisory.” If any doubts linger that health advocacy is being undermined by pharmaceutical advertising, you need to look no further than the official partners for this year’s World Osteoporosis Day.
They include Amgen, the manufacturer of the osteoporosis drug Prolia and the recently rejected drug romosozumab; drug developer and Amgen partner, UCB; and Lilly, which you might know as Eli Lilly, the pharmaceutical giant that produces the drug Forteo.
These companies are engineering “awareness” campaigns that hide their true intention: to make a profit. World Osteoporosis Day wouldn’t exist without the money and energy of these huge corporations, and even the name of the day reveals their goals.
Think about this: a day that was truly focused on improving bone health world-wide wouldn’t have the world osteoporosis in its name, it would be called “World Bone Health Day” or “World Fracture-Prevention Day.” The name “World Osteoporosis Day” places the focus on the negative, emphasizing the disease aspect of the event.
But you can bring out the positive aspect of bone health every day, knowing that you can build your bones and defeat osteoporosis by consuming a pH-balanced diet, following a regular schedule of bone-building exercise, and living a bone-healthy lifestyle. Your “official partners” are bone-smart vegetables, fruits, sunshine, and a brisk walk in the park.
The scientific evidence for the efficacy of these natural solutions has been compiled from mainstream sources by the Save Institute and explained in greater depth and specificity in the Osteoporosis Reversal Program. If you haven't tried it yet and would like to build your bones without taking osteoporosis drugs, you can read more about the Program here.
Stop Worrying About Your Bone Loss
Join thousands of Savers from around the world who have reversed or prevented their bone loss naturally and scientifically with the Osteoporosis Reversal Program.
Till next time,
1 “Officials urge influenza vaccination as coverage rates lag in some groups.” Infectious Disease News. September 2017. Web: https://www.healio.com/infectious-disease/influenza/news/online/%7Bc619c61a-e424-47c8-983f-04d2a3c92402%7D/officials-urge-influenza-vaccination-as-coverage-rates-lag
2 Brendan Flannery. Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Against Pediatric Deaths: 2010–2014. Pediatrics. April 2017. Web: https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2017/03/30/peds.2016-4244
3 Farr JN et al. Nature Medicine 23 – 1072-1079 (2017). doi:10.1038/nm.4385 Web: https://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v23/n9/full/nm.4385.html
4 Ana Sandoiu. “Osteoporosis: Potential new drug target uncovered.” Medical News Today. August 2017. Web: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319064.php
5 Osteoporosis Drugs Market Size To Reach $16.3 Billion By 2025. Grand View Research. January 2017. Web: https://www.grandviewresearch.com/press-release/global-osteoporosis-drugs-market
6 “World Osteoporosis Day 2017 campaign launched.” August 30, 2017. Web: launchedhttps://www.iofbonehealth.org/news/world-osteoporosis-day-2017-campaign-launched-0
Comments on this article are closed.
While I support most of your dietary and exercise suggestions for osteoporosis, your advice to not get a flu shot is actually dangerous and irresponsible.As a retired RN, I have seen countless patients unnecessarily die from complications from the flu. Flu shot prevention programs have been proven to save lives..You have provided no hard evidence to support your opposition to vaccination.
Your advice has always been useful for those of us with osteoporosis. I exercise and eat a healthy diet as you recommend. I recently had the flu shot with no side effects, no signs of infections, but I know that I am fortunate in this. Also I recently completed a half marathon in torrential rain, again with no side effects and I had a course of Ibandronate infusions several years ago, despite my misgivings. Recent DEXA scans show I no longer have osteoporosis, now I have a diagnosis of osteopenia. As I dance, do boxing for fitness classes, pilates and a body power classes as well as walking and running regularly I know that I am extremely lucky and that not everyone else is so fortunate.
Hi Vivian – I have followed you for many years….have your books, etc. And I truly believe your thoughts and research on Osteoporosis. I am 73 years old. Five foot two and weigh 130. Have taken Shaklee Vitamins for 40 years and I’m on no medications. But the thorn in my side is my Bone Density T scores. My doctors have been pushing the drugs for years and I was on some for a short time. Now my spine is my biggest worry. my latest scores is Lumbar Spine -4.3, Hip score -2.5, Femoral Neck -3.0. Don’t want to end up an invalid cause otherwise in great health. Any suggestions for the least invasive drug if I decide to take for a short time. I do have problems with Acid Reflux because I don’t always eat right….my problem I love everything! I know you will probably suggest no drugs….but would really like your take on my situation. Thank you!
What do you think of other inoculations as pneumococcal pneumonia and tetanus shots? I was told, by a doctor, the tetanus vaccine was actually a protection against dirt, not rusty metal as was previously thought. I’d appreciate your opinion.
We got a flu shot the year that it matched the virus with 90% accuracy, about 4 years ago. It worked so well the CDC decided to go with it the following year, and it was a terrible match. Husband has to get the shot since he works for the government as a healthcare worker, and never gets sick despite multiple patient contacts.
Last year the rest of us skipped the shot, and our kids came down with it. 2 of the 3 were down for a day and a half with just a fever, while the third little guy ended up with vomiting, diarrhea, sweats/chills, etc. for a week. He is also the one with the allergies, asthma, and heart condition. He actually wished he could go to school, rather than sleep all day and night between vomit episodes. As it turned out, the “human” element of the shot was only about a 75% match to the predominant influenza virus at the time, while the “avian” element was only about a 60% match. So it’s possible we could have caught it anyway, it’s not like the doctor investigated our strain. He just said “flu” and prescribed Zofram after our kid threw up all over his exam room floor.
This year we went with it since it is a quad strain. However, I would like to know what nasty place these birds migrate to (for the avian strain), that they bring back such disease, and why hasn’t anyone cleaned up the place?
I know several people in Australia who got a flu shot for the first time this year, & they then came down with doses of flu worse than they have ever experienced before.. My doctor told me that the flu shot is only any good for 2-3 months, then you need another one, it does not give you supposed immunity for very long. So now they want to give you 2 a year.
THANK YOU for the information about quercetin. Which foods contain quercetin?
Should a person with emphysema get a flu shot?
Thank you very much for sharing these timely and
Have a wonderful afternoon,
Twenty-seven years ago I got the flu for the first time and I remember saying to myself”I wonder if you can die from the flu”, because that is how bad I felt. Every year since then I have gotten the flu shot and thankfully never got the flu. So, on this I do not agree with you.
With all due respect for the many beneficial recommendations made by the SAVE Institute, in my mind it is a disservice to recommend NOT receiving a flu shot. Speaking for myself, I am among those who have learned to be sure to get the flu shot as soon as the new vaccine is available. One year, I waited until mid-October but by then I had already caught it and was so seriously ill, I had to cancel work for several weeks! My husband also caught it and was so sick he said for the first time in his life, he thought he might die. In my family, we make every effort to avoid antibiotics and other strong medicines. However, based on my experience as well as the experience of many others, the flu vaccine does what it says it will do< that is:
Vaccination can help prevent you or someone you love from becoming sick and missing school or work, or worse, becoming severely ill or being hospitalized … or even dying from the flu.”1
I invite Vivian and the SAVE INSTITUTE to reconsider the one-sided recommendation against the flu vaccine, in light of the larger picture.
When it comes to one-sided recommendations without a balanced discussion of the pros and cons, it could be said (with all due respect) that the one who accuses the other of "scare tactics" uses the same scare tactics to advocate against the "Other."
In this instance, how would it be to change an "either/or" argument to include "both/and"?
For Vivian: Thank you for the large amount of good information and excellent advice that clearly makes the world a better place to live.
I'd like to think you're the kind of person who is capable of recognizing a mistake and correcting it. Thanks!
Thank you for this update!
I also disagree with the savers recommendation against the flu vaccine. Although some people do report having side effects from the vaccine, most do not. The good outweighs the bad, & the flu vaccine has saved many lives. I am an R.N., & have seen many people become deathly ill with influenza, especially those in our high risk population. I have never had the flu since I have received the vaccine, which I have received diligently ever year, for over 20 years. I implore people to heed their physician’s advice, & receive the vaccine. It can literally save your life, or that of a close contact!