Tags: ebola | immunity | cytokine | vitamin D

Ebola: As Scary as They Say?

By Thursday, 09 October 2014 12:48 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Ebola, the hemorrhagic disease virus, has reared its ugly and deadly head once again. It all started along the Ebola River in the Congo in 1976 — where the disease killed several hundred people. Luckily, it was contained. But now it is spreading again, killing thousands more, including aid workers.
The impression given by the CDC and the media is that this is a terribly virulent disease that people cannot overcome with their natural immunity. However, the journal “Nature” reported that in a person with a normally functioning immune system, the Ebola virus is easily defeated, and he or she will make a full and rapid recovery. That’s why 30 to 50 percent of the infected people in Africa are recovering on their own.
Like many viruses, ebola infects one of the body’s main immune cells and shuts it down, thus leaving the person with a weakened defense. Once the cellular immune system is suppressed, the virus then begins to proliferate like crazy.
In an attempt to fight the virus, the weakened immune system pours out massive amounts of chemicals called cytokines and chemokines. This is called a cytokine storm. It is these chemicals that really do all the harm — not the virus.
Cytokine storms are also what kill people with the seasonal flu virus, bird flu virus, and many other viral illnesses.
Suppressing cytokine storms and improving the cellular immune system appears to be the best way to overcome this deadly reaction. We should also be aware that in Africa a high percentage of people are infected with parasites such as malaria and various intestinal worms. Numerous studies have shown that such parasitic infections powerfully suppress the immune system, especially the part of the immune system that fights viral infections.
This makes the African especially vulnerable to death from viral infections and highly susceptible to cytokine storm reactions.
Another important factor is the status of the person’s vitamin D3, which is an immune modulator. What that means is that vitamin D3 keeps the immune system in fighting shape and prevents cytokine storms.
The carrier protein for vitamin D3 in the blood is called an antimicrobial protein, meaning that it kills infectious organisms. A low vitamin D3 level raises the risk of cytokine storms during infections, and increases the risk of overwhelming viral and bacterial infections.
People with dark skin require twice as much sun exposure to produce adequate vitamin D3. But Africans often wear full coverings of clothing and even hats, thus lowering their vitamin D3 levels. In addition, many are malnourished, which greatly increases the risk of immune impairment and cytokine storms.
Studies have shown that deficiencies in zinc and vitamin C greatly increase mortality from even mild viral infections.
In many advanced countries, we also see lesser degrees of malnutrition, vitamin D3 deficiency, proinflammatory diets and a practice that suppresses the immune system very much like being infected with parasites. That process is vaccinations.
Studies have clearly shown that most vaccines shift the immune system to a state that suppresses cellular immunity, just like infection with the parasites. This also puts people in the Western nations at a higher risk from ebola.

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Ebola, the hemorrhagic disease virus, has reared its ugly and deadly head once again. It all started along the Ebola River in the Congo in 1976 — where the disease killed several hundred people.
ebola, immunity, cytokine, vitamin D
Thursday, 09 October 2014 12:48 PM
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