Publisher’s Words January – April 2021

Vaccines against COVID-19 are out, and every county is trying hard to get everyone who wants it vaccinated. Just when we think that the situation is getting better, here comes the UK, South Africa, Denmark, and Brazil variants. The concerns are that the current vaccines and the ones in the pipeline may not be as effective against the new variants, and there is certainly some data to suggest that. It is in the nature of viruses to mutate, and mutations are bound to happen. The big question then is, how do we plan to deal with the variants? At this point it looks like most governments around the world continue to  resort to a strategy of  “lock down and wait for vaccination to reach herd immunity level”. Their overall goals continue to center on reducing viral transmission thereby reducing the burden on the hospital systems (e.g., ER, ICU, etc.). Unfortunately, there continues to be a big gap between contracting the virus and hospitalization. Not too many governments have devoted resources and money into treating patients at the earliest stage (with little or no symptoms), thus preventing them from ever entering the hospital care system. 

As I had pointed out in the past, I believe that medical systems that focus on “treating the patient” instead of “treating the virus” have much to offer to early stage COVID-19 patients. Medical systems like Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda Medicine, Homeopathic Medicine, Naturopathic Medicine, etc. have largely been ignored by most authorities. By correcting the body’s deranged reactions/systems and supporting the innate immune function, that’s how these medical treatments may be able to get patients on the path of recovery earlier, prevent hospitalization, and reduce mortality. Unfortunately, patients with mild COVID-19 symptoms are still being told to self-isolate instead of actively seeking medical treatment (from health disciplines mentioned above). These medical disciplines have survived and evolved with mankind over hundreds of years, yet most authorities continue to ignore these time-tested wisdoms passed down from our forefathers. 

We used to think that the olfactory bulbs are necessary for the sense of smell; apparently this is not completely true.  Israeli researchers serendipitously discovered that some people without olfactory bulbs can still have normal and full functions of smell1. They estimate that about 0.6% of those females without olfactory bulbs can still have an intact sense of smell; they did not look into data in males.  Every time when we think we know everything about the human body, nature comes along with another dose of humility. 

Martin Kwok, ND. DrTCM

1. Weiss T, et al. Human Olfaction without Apparent Olfactory Bulbs. Neuron. 2020 Jan 8;105(1):35-45.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2019.10.006.