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An Untenable Status Quo—Conflicts of Interest Must Go

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

As the Children’s Health Defense eBookConflicts of Interest Undermine Children’s Health, tries to make clear, the passage of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) in 1986 was a watershed event that emboldened vaccine manufacturers and their public- and private-sector accomplices—notably the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—to systematically hide the serious damage caused by vaccines. In addition to making a mockery of pre-licensing safety testing and post-marketing surveillance, these entities have regularly manipulated (or destroyed) data to exaggerate both the benefits and effectiveness of vaccination. Manufacturers have also used their money and power to subordinate the mainstream mediamedical journalsand front groups, making it possible to publish and broadcast deceptive studies that whitewash questions inconvenient to the financial bottom line.

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From multiple standpoints—not least of which is children’s dismal state of health—the status quo is untenable. Three of the most urgent steps to be taken include repealing the NCVIA, eliminating vaccine mandates (making both childhood and adult vaccination voluntary) and addressing conflicts of interest by establishing a fully transparent and independent vaccine safety commission.

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Repeal the NCVIA

The NCVIA has been an unmitigated disaster. As New York University law professor Mary Holland has written, the Act’s passage has allowed the government and vaccine manufacturers to ride roughshod over three important legal protections:

  • Free and informed consent to an invasive medical procedure
  • Accurate and complete information about vaccine ingredients and possible side effects
  • The right to sue manufacturers and medical practitioners directly in the event of injury.

According to Holland, the absence of these legal protections for vaccination is “striking” compared to “almost all other medical interventions.”

The legal protections are interrelated. For example, an individual cannot exercise truly informed consent unless he or she has access to full and unbiased information. Recognizing this, one provision of the NCVIA was a mandate for the CDC to develop (and health care providers to distribute) patient education materials about vaccine risks and benefits. However, not only has the CDC repeatedly dumbed down the materials in a variety of ways, but research suggests that many doctors do not comply with the legal requirement to hand out (much less discuss) them. Instead, providers and the media continue to blandly assure the public that vaccine injuries are a “one in a million” event, never mentioning that 99% of vaccine injuries go unreported. Under the circumstances, no meaningful assessment of vaccine risks is possible.

Research shows that by eliminating consumers’ ability to sue, the NCVIA has had a tangibly negative effect on vaccine safety. After an extensive analysis of nationwide and state-level U.S. data, a researcher reported in 2017 that vaccines licensed after NCVIA’s passage were associated with “a significantly higher incidence of adverse events” compared to vaccines licensed prior to the law’s passage. The researcher concluded that “product safety deteriorates when consumers are no longer able to sue manufacturers.” Repealing the NCVIA and reinstating product liability would not solve all of the ethical problems that permeate the pharmaceutical industry’s business culture, but it could curtail the “free-for-all” environment that has prevailed since 1986 and might incentivize manufacturers to treat vaccines in the same way as drugs and put safety on somewhat of a more even footing with profits.

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NCVIA repeal would also draw greater attention to the exorbitant financial stress experienced by vaccine-injured individuals and families. The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) not only has “failed to compensate generously” but, far more often than not, does not compensate at all. Holland and others have identified many factors contributing to the low levels of vaccine injury compensation, including:

  • Public and medical ignorance about vaccine injury
  • Ignorance about the NVICP
  • The NVICP’s three-year statute of limitations
  • An adversarial litigation context
  • Inconsistent judgments by the vaccine court
  • Delayed and below-market compensation for attorneys and medical experts
  • Medical expert fear of “anti-vaccine” stigma
  • Unavailability of medical documentation
  • An impossibly high burden of proof for most types of injuries

Despite the NCVIA legislation’s focus on childhood vaccines, 71% of compensated claims have been for vaccine injuries in adults, leaving many vaccine-injured children and their families out in the financial cold. In the only study ever to explore petitioners’ experiences with the NVICP, petitioners described the vaccine injury claims process as “confusing, time-consuming, too lengthy, and traumatic,” and about half rated the award amount as “inadequate to cover past and future medical care.” In short, whereas Congress marketed the NVICP as a speedy, non-adversarial, no-fault compensation mechanism that would free the injured of the need to prove vaccine-related causation, it has turned out to be slow and litigious, requiring proof of causation for more than 90% of claims filed. As one individual familiar with the system has stated, “even when cases are fairly simple, ‘the government will fight.’”

Eliminate Vaccine Mandates

Medical informed consent—“the primary paradigm for protecting the legal rights of patients and guiding the ethical practice of medicine”—is meaningless if an individual does not have the option of “determin[ing] what shall be done with his body” and declining a given medical intervention. Vaccination in the U.S. makes a mockery of this ethical principle because vaccines are increasingly compulsory—for school attendancehealth care employmentparticipation in the militaryimmigration and more.

Vaccine proponents and medical ethicists have proven themselves willing to blur the lines of informed consent in multiple ways, arguing, for example, that “adolescent autonomy” and improved vaccine uptake justify eliminating parental consent requirements for HPV vaccination in preteens and adolescents. This argument prevailed in California in 2011 when then-Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill allowing minors as young as 12 to consent on their own to the HPV and hepatitis B vaccines.

Compulsory vaccination policies in the U.S. have not had positive results. Instead, they have given rise to a wide variety of unintended and undesirable consequences, including unnecessary vaccinations that have wreaked havoc with children’s normal immune system development; unsafe vaccines; inadequate warnings about vaccine risks; conflicts of interest in national vaccine policy; insufficient compensation for the vaccine-injured; and an alarming decline in children’s health and well-being.

Research shows that there is no relationship “between mandatory vaccination and rates of childhood immunization.” Rather than trying to corral the small percentage of individuals who are currently eligible for medical, religious or philosophical vaccine exemptions into a “vaccinate-at-all-costs” police-state dragnet, the U.S. should recommit to international principles of informed consent and make all vaccines voluntary. Unfortunately, there is an accelerating trend toward greater use of mandates and “other legal instruments” not only in the U.S. but also in Europe. There, some experts have cautioned that legal sanctions are being applied by “those who want to punish a country—or, in the case of vaccinations, a citizen—that deviates from the norm.” These experts warn that mandates often have a high cost in the court of public opinion.

Address Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of interest—far from being occasional aberrations—are part and parcel of the U.S. vaccination program, and they have had a decisive and negative impact on children’s health. Over the years since the passage of the NCVIA, a handful of courageous legislators—troubled by the “cozy corporate alliances” that exist between industry and captured federal regulators—have put forth pleas for an objective and non-conflicted vaccine safety commission to investigate and resolve safety problems. Some researchers, likewise, have called for an independent National Vaccine Safety Board—separate from the CDC or any branch of government—to “ensure optimal vaccine safety.” A 2006 editorial in Nature concurred that in light of waning public confidence in vaccine safety, a strong case could be made for establishing a “well-resourced independent national agency that commands the trust of both the government and the public in matters of health protection.”

In early 2017, Children’s Health Defense Chairman Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. discussed the creation of a vaccine safety commission with then-president-elect Trump and also met with high-level National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials. The Trump administration chose not to pursue the idea, despite the glaring need to introduce transparency to the U.S. vaccination program.

In March, 2018, Children’s Health Defense took to the halls of Congress and shared its multi-pronged Vaccine Safety Project with every member, arguing (among other actions) for the need to:

  • subject vaccines to a scientifically rigorous approval process,
  • require reporting of vaccine adverse events,
  • ensure that all parties involved with federal vaccine approvals and recommendations are free from conflicts of interest and
  • support fully informed consent and individual rights to refuse vaccination.

Hopefully, concerned parents, health care professionals, legislators and others will lend their voices to these reasonable requests so that conflicts of interest can be abolished once and for all, and sound science—rather than deep pockets—can form the basis of vaccine policy-making.

Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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3 Powerful Tools to Help Overcome the Emotional Toll of the Pandemic

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The pandemic has had a significant effect on our lives. Possibly without realizing it, many are suffering from a form of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

  • Reflect On:

    If you feel stressed or feel that you have PTSD resulting from this pandemic, try these suggestions before resorting to medication or maladaptive coping strategies.

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The pandemic has had a significant effect on our lives. Possibly without realizing it, many are suffering from a form of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Every news cycle paralyzes us with fear of a new variant. Some feel grief over who or what they have lost or continue to have feelings of social disconnectedness. Despite what we have all been through, we need to start moving forward with our lives and truly live again. We must recognize that we have more control over our physical and mental health than advertised. The truth is that there are many helpful things that we can do.

PTSD is a stress-related disorder that may develop after exposure to a traumatic event or ordeal in which death or severe physical harm was a threat or occurred. Those with PTSD may experience agitation, irritability, hostility, hypervigilance, self-destructive behavior, social isolation, flashbacks, fear, anxiety, depression, attention difficulty, loneliness, insomnia, or nightmares.

Trauma can lead to feelings of powerlessness, but powerlessness can also keep us trapped in a PTSD cycle. The psychological imprint of trauma rewires the brain. There’s an old saying in neuroscience: “neurons that fire together wire together.” Our brain neurons begin firing in the amygdala, the emotional part of our brains, during a traumatic event. People can get stuck in an emotional loop, and the rational voice in their heads does not weigh in. This looping can cause a person to respond disproportionately to stress – freezing, panicking, or acting out in anger. Some dissociate or enter a trance-like state. Maladaptive coping skills can sometimes develop. Cutting, burning, overeating, drinking, drugs, overspending, etc., is all an attempt to dampen our painful emotional feelings. So, to avoid getting stuck in a PTSD cycle, we must act and take our power back.

Time to seek out the most effective help so that we can feel calm and in control again. What can we do?

1. Boost Your Immune System

If you fear getting sick, it’s time to live a healthier lifestyle and boost your immune system. Sadly, we are taught (with the help of pharmaceutical dollars) that health comes from a needle or a pill. Our “experts” recommend masks, hand-washing, social distancing, and mRNA vaccines. Still, they seldom suggest a healthy diet, supplements, and other natural remedies to help improve our health and support the body to fight off illness and disease. Click here for my article that includes 16 Tips on Boosting Immunity.

2. Embrace Spirituality

Over the last 20 years, I have been honored to have worked with many great therapists, healers, spiritual leaders, and trauma survivors to witness the power of Spirituality in healing. Spirituality is an inner belief system providing an individual with meaning and purpose in life. Whether it involves a higher power, nature, religious rituals, meditation, mindfulness, or prayer, the premise is to stay connected to the core of who we are. That place of stillness within us holding the memory of wholeness, peace, inner strength, and balance – despite what has happened. A spiritual philosophy or practice can provide us with a bigger context for our experiences and clarify our purpose. Spiritual methods also connect us with a sense of community and support. Finding our tribe is essential in the face of trauma and loss. The spiritual journey often allows us to go inside ourselves and listen to our inner guidance and “knowingness.” The inner voice may know, for instance, that the virus will not hurt us, or what we are being told by the media is untrue. Spirituality also helps us shift our perspective from “why me” to “what can I do about it. It brings us a sense of power and control.

3. Guided Imagery & Bilateral Stimulation

Both tools are essential for the trauma therapy toolbox. They are noninvasive and helpful for overcoming the effects of trauma. Guided imagery can help us alter the negative or stressful pictures and thoughts in our minds and help us create new, more peaceful ones—a form of instilling positive affirmations. Before you read on, I thought you might like to download my 10-minute exercise. This science-based, comprehensive video will help you to cultivate a sense of inner peace and give you a way to help overcome the effects of this pandemic – GET IT HERE

Is There Science Behind This?

Science, yes. Magic, no. This method requires regular practice if you want to make lasting, long-term changes to the ways that you think and feel. The good news is that both guided imagery and bilateral stimulation are widely practiced and well-established practices. However, I recommend that if you are still struggling after repeated listening, you find a qualified trauma therapist to continue the work you have already started.

A Look At The Research

Guided imagery is a behavioral technique using a series of verbal suggestions to guide oneself or others in visualizing an image in the mind to bring a desired response in the way of a reduction in stress, anxiety, or pain. A growing list of empirical literature supports the use of these techniques in various physical and emotional conditions. Guided imagery resulted in a clinically significant reduction in PTSD and related symptoms in a returning, combat-exposed active-duty military population. Positive affirmations can positively affect the brain’s circuitry. There is MRI evidence suggesting that specific neural pathways are increased when people practice self-affirmation tasks.

Numerous research articles have established that bilateral stimulation is one of the most effective treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Some therapists practice Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), a combination of psychotherapy and bilateral stimulation. EMDR is very effective for treating a wide range of mental health issues due to emotional and physical trauma. During bilateral stimulation, patients tend to “process” the memory in a way that leads to a peaceful resolution. And, often results in increased insight regarding both previously disturbing events and long-held negative thoughts about the self.

“Bilateral Stimulation induces a fundamental change in brain circuitry, similar to what happens in REM sleep. It allows the person undergoing treatment to process and incorporate traumatic memories into general association networks in the brain. This therapy helps the individual integrate and understand the memories within the larger context of their life experience.” – Robert Stickgold, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School

Takeaway

If you feel stressed or feel that you have PTSD resulting from this pandemic, try the above suggestions and download my helpful video before resorting to medication or maladaptive coping strategies. Also, you can discover the many mind-body practices you can do at home to help manage stress more successfully and so much more. SIGN UP HERE to receive your free download today. To purchase my book Healing Without Hurting, click here.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

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Awareness

Boosting Your Mood and Improving Your Health With Vitamin D

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? When is the last time you checked your Vitamin D levels?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? It appears vitamin D deficiency may be to blame.

Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation. The beneficial effects of vitamin D on protective immunity are due in part to its impact on the innate immune system and has numerous effects on cells within the immune system. Vitamin D is also involved in maintaining the proper balance of several minerals in the body. And, it helps to ward off the flu and many viruses and treat them. The latest research links vitamin D deficiency to many disease states. These disease states include cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease, depression, arthritis, and just about every other degenerative disease.

 “Vitamin D reduces depression. In a randomized, double-blind study, People with depression who received vitamin D supplements noticed a marked improvement in their symptoms.” – Journal of Internal Medicine

According to the Nutrition Research Journal, as many as 80% of people are deficient in vitamin D. Inadequate exposure to sunshine, poor eating habits, malabsorption, the VDR genetic mutation, and accelerated catabolism due to certain medications, dark skin pigment color, and too much sunscreen can be to blame. 

A doctor can check vitamin D levels with a simple blood test. Many mainstream doctors will suggest that you are within normal limits if your levels are 20-30ng/mL. However, for optimal health, the Endocrine Society and many functional medicine M.D.s and naturopaths will recommend levels of between 40-70 ng/mL for both children and adults. These doctors will also recommend a more aggressive replenishment program. For example, at age five, my son’s level was 24. The pediatrician recommended 500iu daily of supplementation, while our naturopath recommended 5,000iu daily for six months before retesting. Six months later, his levels were almost normal. 

“Through several mechanisms, vitamin D can reduce risk of infections. Those mechanisms include inducing cathelicidins and defensins that can lower viral replication rates and reducing concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines that produce the inflammation that injures the lining of the lungs, leading to pneumonia, as well as increasing concentrations of anti-inflammatory cytokines” – PubMed

How to Increase Your Vitamin D Levels

Get enough sun. Vitamin D3, “the sunshine vitamin,” is the only vitamin your body that is made, with the help of the sun. So be sure to get enough sun exposure to help the body make this essential nutrient. Hold off trying to protect ourselves from the rays of the sun at every turn by slathering sunscreen. Allow yourself to play outside, garden, and enjoy the rays in moderation.

If you must use some sunscreen, avoid chemical sunscreens made with toxic chemicals that cause thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption, allergies, organ toxicity, reproductive toxicity, skin cancer, development, brain, and metabolism problems. Shop for natural mineral-zinc-based certified products instead. When exposed to scorching climates or in the sun for extended periods, we use sunscreens by Babyganics, Badger, Babo Botanicals, and Goddess Garden products.

Eat a well-balanced diet, with foods higher in vitamin D. Although it is believed that we only get twenty percent from the foods we eat. Some foods higher in D include cod liver oil, fish, oysters, eggs, and mushrooms. 

Get checked for the VDR mutation. A blood test will determine if you have mutations in the vitamin D receptor. The consequence can be lower vitamin D levels and the inability to absorb vitamin calcium and many other minerals properly. According to a 2020 scientific report, supplementation of vitamin D can help improve VDR gene expression, so more supplementation may be necessary if you have this mutation.

“Something so simple. Vitamin D supplementation could improve the health status of millions and so becomes an elegant solution to many of our health problems today.” – Carol L. Wagner, MD – Medical University of South Carolina

Supplementation 101. Supplementation is often critical if you cannot properly metabolize or absorb enough vitamin D or not get enough sunshine. In areas with long winters and specific populations of people with darker skin color, supplementation may be even more critical. There are many supplements on the market. However, many tablet forms are not as bioavailable and harder to absorb. Therefore, it has been recommended that liquid forms are better. In addition, liquid D is often suspended in olive oil, which helps the vitamins to absorb more easily since it is fat soluble. One of my favorite brands is by Seeking Health. It does not contain any impurities or allergy-inducing ingredients. 

Final Thoughts

Boosting the immune system naturally works on your body’s innate wisdom. It supports the body to operate like a well-oiled machine, protects it from unwanted pathogens and disease, and helps ensure a healthy body and mind.

To receive more info on how you and your family can overcome ADHD, apraxia, anxiety, and more without medication SIGN UP HERE or purchase my book Healing without Hurting.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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General

Are Lockdowns Affecting Children?

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CE Staff Writer 2 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We spoke to activist and mother Stephanie Sibbio about her co-creation of an organization called 100 Million Moms which seeks to empower women to stand up against injustices.

  • Reflect On:

    Are we choosing virus mitigation methods that are short sighted and harmful over the long term? Are they more harmful than the virus itself?

Before you begin...

Coherent icon

Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The potential downsides of lockdowns during pandemics have been explored quite a bit – and the truth is the scientific community is quite divided on whether it’s the right move. On one hand a case can be made for effectiveness of lockdowns, but at quite a cost, while on the other hand many have shown lockdowns to be ineffective in slowing spread. How a study is organized and conducted can also dramatically change results.

Interestingly a study in Nature showed that “less disruptive and costly NPIs can be as effective as more intrusive, drastic, ones (for example, a national lockdown).” This essentially states that governments could choose effective ways to mitigate virus spread effectively without inducing unwanted and long term side effects on society as a whole via lockdowns – regardless, lockdowns are still widely being used.

One question we might have is, what about factors that are not so easy to measure right away? Things like long term psychological damage of being constantly stressed, out of touch with community and friends, and confined to our homes. What affects are children experiencing in their development and learning? We may not know exactly for quite some time.

I felt inspired to speak to a mother who has not only be asking this question with regards to her child, but who has decided to do something to push back against government measures, like lockdowns, that many citizens and scientist don’t agree with.

Along with another activist, Stephanie Sibbio created a movement called 100 Million Moms who, as their Instagram states, are a rights-based movement empowering moms all over the world to stand up against injustice. We advocate for natural health & medical freedom.

I spoke to Stephanie about how she has seen lockdowns affecting children, and her story in co-creating 100 Million Moms. In this discussion you will learn how you can get involved as well.

Further Discussion

A large meta analysis on mask wearing has shown that children are having physiological issues and learning challenges with prolonged mask wearing.

A group of doctors did a panel worth considering that discusses the potential harms of lockdowns and the science that supports the idea.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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