Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Really Bad Virus Strains

Okay, so this was the week that most kids had off from school for winter break and I've heard case after case from my friends about how their whole family has been coming down with this HORRIBLE flu. And it's not just the achy, feverish, coughing flu......this one has the stomach bug attached to it and it's BRUTAL.

I had a moment of clarity this week and it was just a flash that made so much sense, that I haven't been able to ignore it. I may have been dreaming when it occurred or was just on the brink of sleep, but it was so vivid, so here goes.

Ever since there has been a significant increase in global warming, it seems like everything in our environment has been thrown out of whack. Everything from the weather, to the seasons, to the bug infestations, etc. If you haven't watched "An Inconvenient Truth", watch it and your eyes will be forever opened.

I guess as I'm considering the impact global warming has had on the environment, I had the flash of clarity that perhaps it's also affecting the virus strains that have been going around as well, encouraging mutations of the usual strains. Perhaps instead of dying off after the holiday rush (when it seems everyone gets the stomach flu), perhaps the strain goes dormant for a while and mutates into something more brutal than when it hit during the holidays. Maybe it has something to do with the more mild winter weather we've been having. I know the flu virus thrives in the cold, but maybe this strain is different and mutated so it does well or better in the milder weather. How horrible would it be to be getting a stomach flu (especially this stomach flu)year round that usually strikes when it's cold??? Normal occurrence for the stomach flu is November through May when people spend most of their time indoors and the virus spreads easily on hard surfaces from person to person.

What happens if global warming is helping this an other infectious diseases mutate into something we can no longer contain or control??? What then?

Global warming is more than sea levels rising, hurricanes getting stronger, glaciers melting and seasons being thrown out of whack. It's increasing the prevalence of infectious diseases and making them worse than we've ever seen. And what do diseases have the potential to do........wipe out species of living organisms.....that can easily include the human species as well.

Not only are infectious diseases a problem because of global warming, but also consider the number of food allergies and environmental allergies that have cropped up in the past 15 to 20 years or so. I have my own theories on food allergies in terms of how our food industry is run in the U.S., but I'm sure global warming has it's hand in on that as well since pollution levels have gone up.

It may be too late to reverse all the damage that's been done, but it doesn't hurt to get into the habit of recycling, composting, using renewable materials and being all around more conscious of the impact we have on the earth. If everyone took the time and made the effort to do their part to cut back on the wasteful consumption that seems to have become the American way of life, the earth would thank us.

Until next time....

Thanks for reading!


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