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Wednesday, May 5

What is hip music?

It's associated with jazz, but it's indescribable. You know it when you hear it, that's all. Here, soaring across the decades, "Pounding at my heart" from Ryuichi Sakamoto's 1994 Sweet Revenge tour, the essence of hip:


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Monday, May 3

Is Naomi Campbell's urine the best Covid-19 vaccine?

April 11, 2020:

The remark in the title of this post harks to a comment from viewer Tress Braga at supermodel Naomi Campbell's YouTube video My Personal Vitamin & Supplement Routine. The video, posted on March 20, has already garnered close to 500,00 views and 3,184 comments, several of those quite critical. But Naomi, who is 49 years old and clearly in great health despite a high-stress globetrotting job, is intent on persuading that it's possible to strengthen the immune system with natural supplements to better defend against the Covid-19 virus. In this quest she can't be faulted. However, while her urine may not be the best Covid vaccine, I think without question it would be the most expensive.    

You'll appreciate the humor in Braga's remark when you get a load of what Naomi takes for breakfast. Another viewer, Natalie P (who at some point replaced her name with a screen name) undertook the task of listing for YouTube viewers the ingredients Naomi reels off as she plugs stuff into a blender. (Natalie might have missed one, if the powder shown in the video and labeled "insulin" was used.)  She also copied down the supplements Naomi said she takes in addition to the breakfast shake.

I'd never heard of three of the supplements on the list (EHB, NAC, Humacel). Same for some of the food powders. 

I have a few cautions and questions about Naomi's choices, which might have been compiled with the help of a nutritional consultant, but first here are the lists:
Morning shake recipe:
1 cup almond milk 1 tbsp cacao powder 1 tbsp matcha powder 1 tbsp baobab powder 1 tbsp collagen powder 1 tbsp artichoke powder 1 tbsp moringa powder 1 tbsp greens protein powder 1 tbsp vitamin C 2 tbsp pomegranate liquid 1/2 banana Ice Then blend!
Vitamins and supplements: Goldenseal drops into smoothie Elderberry syrup Zinc EHB (2 a day) [Pundita Note: EHB stands for Echinacosides, Hydrastine, Berberine; here's one formula.from Integrative Therapeutics, available at Amazon] Vitamin C liquid Papaya seeds NAC (N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine) Vitamin D (50,000 IU a week) Vitamin B12 chewable Black seed Probiotics Multivitamin Humacel Pine Bark Extract Oregano Oil (carry it always) Turmeric Lavender Oil Pills (calming effect) Only natural supplements!

April 12, 2021

All right. Here we are a year later; Naomi is now 50 years old, doesn't seem to have contracted Covid, and when last I checked was on a grueling photo shoot in Kenya. Like the great football player Tom Brady, staying at the top of her profession demands almost superhuman stamina, which doesn't leave room for being incapacitated by illness. So Naomi Campbell's nutritional regimen makes sense for her. Does it make sense for the rest of us?

That was my question last year. So I decided to wait and see how the Covid pandemic unfolded before discussing Naomi's recommendations.  Given the severity of the pandemic during the past year, the expense of Naomi's nutritional regimen starts to look like a bargain if it can indeed greatly strengthen the immune system.  The bottom line, however, is that many people would not be able to afford the regimen.  

Just one of the supplements on the list, Humacel, costs $49.95 for a bottle of 60. But if the manufacturer isn't blowing smoke or simply wrong, Humacel (and I suppose similar preparations) could be a powerful aid for the immune system. Go to the Humacel website and read the product description.

I wouldn't attempt to add up the cost of just the breakfast ingredients, and I note that the list doesn't say what type of vitamin supplement Naomi takes, but the 'natural' brands can run into serious money.

It's all a judgment call; deciding which ingredients and supplements are best for you, and pruning ones that you think you can do without. 

Another concern:  While I've never used it, I do have a caution about pine bark extract. Years ago I'd heard such great things about it that I was on the verge of purchasing it when I decided to redouble my research into the extract, given its expense. I found one source, which unfortunately I've misplaced, that claimed pine bark extract blocks the body's ability to absorb Vitamin C.  

It's possible the source is wrong, or that the blocking effect is temporary, so that if one takes Vitamin C a few hours after the extract, it's no problem. But until I come across more scientific research about the extract and its effect on C, I wouldn't take it.  

I also raise an eyebrow about lavender oil pills. As herbalists always caution, essential oils are very powerful, and so they can have powerful negative effects if used in excess or in the wrong way. Naomi uses the pills against anxiety. There are plenty of supplements that can calm without fooling around blindfolded in territory that only professional herbalists should trod. 

From all I have learned over the years, my belief is that essential oils should not be used on a routine basis unless under the supervision of a licensed herbalist, and preferably one with a medical degree and/or degree in biochemistry. 

As to taking a 50,000 IU pill of Vitamin D once a week -- I wouldn't do it. Maybe Naomi knows more than I do in this regard. All I know is that the daily recommended dose for D was increased to 5,000/day a few years ago, and you'd have to factor in all daily nutritional sources (e.g., multivitamin) to be sure you're not taking too much. 
    
I think that even with 'natural' supplements, it's wise to look carefully before leaping. I take several supplements, and I am willing to play guinea pig. But I try to learn as much as I can, as a layperson, about a supplement before I take it.

Another point is reactions to ingredients. I'll assume that Naomi's regimen was worked out over a period of years, during which she added ingredients one or a few at a time. But the large number of combined ingredients in the morning shake would make it impossible for a person new to the ingredients to know which one could be causing a bad reaction.  So the best course would be to proceed slowly with the ingredients, gradually building the shake.

All right. I may have a few more comments later but right now I invite you to watch the video and ponder the list.

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