What's particularly impressive is that decades later, when people who were inoculated as babies are retested, they still show a strong protective antibody response against smallpox (the record so far is that of a person who was inoculated more than 90 years ago)

DR MICHAEL MOSLEY: How a stroke you had as a child could save you from monkeypox

Forget the moon landing or the invention of the computer, I think the smallpox vaccination campaign, which wiped out a hideous disease that in the 20th century alone killed over 300 million people, is one of the greatest achievements of mankind.

And it’s a gift that keeps on giving because it could protect you from monkeypoxeven if you were vaccinated decades ago.

There have been nearly 200 cases of monkeypox in the UK since the outbreak began four weeks ago.

Although rarely fatal, it can cause a nasty rash that first appears on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, then on the rest of the body.

How Worried Should We Be About Monkeypox? The World Health Organization says “at the moment we are not affected by a pandemic”, but it is monitoring events.

What’s particularly impressive is that decades later, when people who were inoculated as babies are retested, they still show a strong protective antibody response against smallpox (the record so far is that of a person who was inoculated more than 90 years ago)

One concern is that as monkeypox spreads it may mutate into something much more contagious, as Covid has.

Good news, at least if you are over 51, is that you may already be protected against monkeypox by the smallpox vaccine which, until 1971, was routinely given to young children (vaccines have been stopped when smallpox was no longer considered a risk in the UK).

Smallpox is linked to monkeypox and studies suggest that smallpox vaccines also provide 85% protection against monkeypox.

What’s particularly impressive is that decades later, when people who were inoculated as babies are retested, they still show a strong protective antibody response against smallpox (the record so far is that of a person who was inoculated more than 90 years ago).

This could help explain why the majority of cases of monkeypox have occurred in people under the age of 50. So, a big thank you to my parents for having me vaccinated.

But the smallpox vaccine isn’t the only one with unexpected benefits.

Flu shots protect against dementia

It may seem unlikely, but getting a flu — or pneumonia — vaccination not only protects you against these illnesses, but also lowers your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

This is the conclusion of a study by the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in the United States, based on the medical records of more than 9,000 people. ‘t; with the pneumonia vaccine, they were up to 40% less likely to develop the disease.

One theory is that vaccines prevent inflammation that can spread to your brain.

It may seem unlikely, but getting a flu — or pneumonia — vaccination not only protects you against these illnesses, but also lowers your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

It may seem unlikely, but getting a flu — or pneumonia — vaccination not only protects you against these illnesses, but also lowers your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Yellow fever and breast cancer

Yellow fever is a slightly more exotic vaccine, which you tend to have for traveling to parts of Africa and South America.

Surprisingly enough, the vaccine could also protect women against breast cancer.

In a ten-year study conducted by the University of Padua in Italy, researchers followed more than 12,000 women who had been vaccinated against yellow fever and found that those who received the vaccine between the ages of 40 and 54 had nearly half the chance of developing breast cancer within two years of vaccination compared to unvaccinated women.

Strangely, the jab did not offer the same protection to women before 40 or after 54.

The yellow fever vaccine contains live, but weakened virus (also found in varicella and polio vaccines) – the live virus is thought to stimulate the immune system, which then also destroys cancer cells in the breast at a very early stage of the disease, before they become aggressive, which they are more likely to do in young women.

Shingles and Stroke Risk

Having a vaccine to prevent shingles can also reduce your risk of having a stroke.

Shingles is caused by the reactivation of the varicella virus that lies dormant in the nerves after the initial infection and can cause a rash with lasting nerve pain. It’s common in people over 50, although you have to be over 70 to be offered a free vaccine on the NHS.

In addition to preventing shingles, the vaccine can reduce your risk of stroke by nearly 20%, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States, based on the medical records of one million people. aged 66 or over. Like flu and pneumonia vaccines, the benefit may be due to reduced inflammation.

Tuberculosis and bladder cancer

In the UK, more than 10,300 people are diagnosed with bladder cancer each year.

Surprisingly, one of the first-line treatments, which helps prevent it from spreading or reappearing, is an injection of BCG, a vaccine made up of weakened bacteria that you are given in childhood to protect you against tuberculosis (TB) .

As with the yellow fever vaccine, it appears to encourage your immune system to become active and kill cancer cells that may be recurring or are left behind.

It’s part of an exciting approach to cancer prevention and treatment, known as immunotherapy, that holds great promise for the future.

So this is it. At a time when the anti-vax movement is stronger than ever, these are more reasons to celebrate the remarkable things vaccines can protect us from — and a reminder of why you really want to track your shots.

Dance to boost your brain

Recently, I did a podcast on the health benefits of dancing, as part of a series I host called Just One Thing.

As I discovered in an interview with Dr. Julia Christensen, a dancer turned neuroscientist from the Max Planck Institute in Germany, dancing not only strengthens your muscles and your balance, but it can even increase the size of your brain. .

But is it just because dancing is a great form of exercise?

In a recent study in Japan, brain scans of people before and after listening to the type of music that makes you want to strut showed that it has a beneficial impact on our brains, especially on “executive function”. – that is, skills such as concentration. and planning.

Although researchers haven’t suggested why, one theory is that it’s because music has a complex neurological and multisensory effect on us.

So the next time your boss catches you dancing by the water cooler, you can always say “I’m working on my personal development” and quote me.

As I discovered in an interview with Dr. Julia Christensen, a dancer turned neuroscientist from the Max Planck Institute in Germany, dancing not only strengthens your muscles and your balance, but it can even increase the size of your brain. .  But is it just because dancing is a great form of exercise?

As I discovered in an interview with Dr. Julia Christensen, a dancer turned neuroscientist from the Max Planck Institute in Germany, dancing not only strengthens your muscles and your balance, but it can even increase the size of your brain. . But is it just because dancing is a great form of exercise?

Go work on an egg – the queen does!

I don’t have much in common with the queen, but like her, I love scrambled eggs for breakfast. They are an excellent source of protein and nutrients.

My knowledge of Her Majesty’s eating habits is not based on time spent at the Palace, but on a ‘cook and tell’ book published years ago by one of her former chefs.

I was delighted to see that the Queen is a fan of eggs (apparently she prefers brown eggs) as until recently they were demonized due to fears that as they contain quite high levels of cholesterol , they must be bad for you. Yet study after study, including one in 2018, involving nearly half a million adults in China, have shown that people who eat eggs have significantly lower rates of heart disease and stroke than those who do not eat it.

Now a new study, from Peking University in China, has revealed why.

Based on blood samples from nearly 5,000 people – some of whom had heart disease and some of whom did not – researchers found that those who ate an average of one egg a day not only had higher rates of heart disease low, but also higher levels of HDL (the “good” cholesterol).

HDL helps remove “bad” cholesterol from blood vessels and protects against blockages that can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

In addition to eggs or kippers for breakfast, the queen apparently likes fairly simple foods, such as meat or fish with vegetables, and tends to avoid starchy potatoes and rice.

But like me, she also has a sweet tooth and a passion for chocolate. Whatever she does, it certainly works.

I don't have much in common with the queen, but like her, I love scrambled eggs for breakfast.  They are an excellent source of protein and nutrients

I don’t have much in common with the queen, but like her, I love scrambled eggs for breakfast. They are an excellent source of protein and nutrients

#MICHAEL #MOSLEY #stroke #child #save #monkeypox

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