When the going gets tough, there are those who get knocked over, and then there are folks who figure out how to profit from a bad situation. Looks like the beauty industry is looking to the latter by facing the swine flu epidemic with expensive, fancy treatments. High-end spas have started offering healthy-sounding preventative care treatments like “immune boosting” facials and detoxes. Many of these offerings feature antibacterial ingredients meant to ward off sickness—a few examples include bee propolis (bee goo, basically) and high-pH, Japanese water.
So does this stuff work? One doctor tells New York magazine’s The Cut: “There is no question that these treatments will protect against winter illnesses, even the flu and swine flu.” [Interesting. Doesn't sound like any doctors we've ever interviewed. -- Editor]
The cynics in us are intrigued yet doubtful that a facial could replace a flu shot. Either way, pretty clever business-wise, no? [The Cut] Keep reading »
The above documentary by CBS’s “60 Minutes” discusses the swine flu epidemic of 1976 and the federal government-sponsored inoculations that possibly caused 500 people to get Guillain-Barré syndrome, a neurological disorder that causes the body’s immune system to attack the peripheral nervous system. At first, sufferers feel a tingling sensation in the legs, but weakness and the sensations can spread to the arms and upper body. These symptoms can increase in intensity until certain muscles or the whole body is paralyzed. In extreme cases, the disorder is life-threatening, because the paralysis affects breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure. The patient is often put on a respirator to help with breathing and is watched closely for other problems. The government cut short its vaccination program after 10 weeks because of the public backlash that resulted after 25 people died from Guillain-Barré. Keep reading »
Hey, kids! Washing your hands is cool
. Especially with this mad lame swine flu
or whatever going around.
That’s what electropop duo Chromeo wants the youth of America to know, so they did this PSA for the show “Yo Gabba Gabba.” (Which, we might add, is the most alarmingly bizarre program we’ve ever seen, and could only be explained by guessing that its writers are on a continual LSD trip.) The song “Nice N Clean” is both cute and catchy, and kind of makes us want to marry David Macklovitch, the scruffy, singing hipster. Something tells us that when you take a hip band, put them on a wacky children’s show, and make them compose a snappy “wash your hands” PSA, it’s more for the grown-ups. Yes, we’re looking at you. [YouTube] Keep reading »
Swine flu is now officially the enemy of everything that is good. First it infected Rupert Grint and The Backstreet Boys. Now, there’s been an outbreak of H1N1 on the set of (gasp in horror) “Dancing with the Stars.” First, dancer Derek Hough got it. “I was sicker than a dog,” he said, divulging that his fever reached 105 degrees. “My whole bed was drenched because I sweated so much. I had to sleep in the bathtub. I’ve been sick a thousand times but something was different about this—I literally couldn’t walk or move.” Next, he passed it on to fellow dancer Mark Ballas, who wore a mask to keep from spreading his germs to partner Melissa Joan Hart. Others in the cast are trying their best not to pick it up. “I’m living off of Emergen-C right now,” said Lacey Schwimmer. Ditto for Aaron Carter. “I’m a hypochondriac—I hate, hate getting sick. I use hand sanitizer every five seconds,” he said. Please, swine flu, leave our dancing reality television alone and go pick on someone your own size. [CNN] Keep reading »
You need some anti-bacterial mouthwash. And don’t just use it once a day. That’s half-assing it; you should be gargling thrice daily. It’s not that you have a problem with your breath; we just want you to be healthy! According to the Center for Disease Control, frequent daily use of mouthwash containing chlorhexidine (check the back label) and similar compounds could stave off swine flu. The bacteria, after all, frequently enters through and grows inside the mouth. So shut that s**t down where it lives and get unprecedentedly fresh breath as an added bonus. Keep reading »
Just when my longtime dream of attending a Backstreet Boys concert was about to finally come true, the reviled swine flu had to come and ruin everything. Poor BBoy Brian Litrell (he’s the dragony looking one, second from the right) can show you the meaning of being lonely—from his quarantine room, he is lamenting the cancellation of all the band’s New York City tour dates after being diagnosed with the dreaded flu. Brian, the New York fans are just as devastated as you are. As a precautionary measure, the other three members of the group—Nick Carter, Howie Dorough and AJ McLean—and the entire touring crew have been prescribed Tamiflu to prevent the spread of the virus. Here’s to a quick recovery, Brian. We can’t wait to hear your new album (dropping today by the way!), This is Us. Yes, it is! [Popeater]
After the jump, other celebs who’ve survived the swine flu, from Marilyn Manson to Rachel Maddow. Keep reading »
A Japanese company says it has designed a suit that will fight the H1N1 virus. Haruyama Trading Co. has produced 50,000 suits that are coated with the chemical titanium dioxide, which reacts with light and destroys the virus, according to a company spokesperson. Titanium dioxide is a common ingredient in toothpaste and cosmetics. The suit costs $600 and looks like any other business suit. [Impact Lab]
Wow, who knew swine flu could be stopped with toothpaste and some lipstick? But seriously, after the H1N1 scare swept across the globe, we all learned that germs are spread primarily by hand-to-face contact. So I’m curious how this suit will stop the spread of swine flu since the hands and face are still exposed. I’m no chemist or doctor, but I think a better and cheaper investment than this $600 suit would be a simple flu vaccination. Keep reading »
France is so paranoid about swine flu that French health officials have been asking citizens to forgo “la bise,” the country’s traditional double-cheeked kiss greeting. Especially in schools, children have been forbidden to use the kissing salutation to their friends, which is a common courtesy even among youngsters. Instead, schools have come up with what seems more like a ridiculous American solution: “In schools, teachers are telling their young charges to forgo the bise, and instead capture their displays of affection in heart-shaped greetings to slip into ‘bise boxes.’” (This is almost reminiscent of the teenage hugging epidemic.)
How do the French feel about these measures? “La bise” is such a cultural standard that they’d sooner kiss off the prohibition. Bring on the swine flu! [CNN] Keep reading »
We’ve heard of chicken pox parties, where parents get their healthy kids together with ones who have the pox hoping that they’ll pick up the germies. The idea is, since you can only get chicken pox once, to get it over with so that kids can build up their immune systems and avoid getting chicken pox vaccines. Yeah, we don’t think it’s a good idea, but at least it makes slight logical sense.
However, we just don’t get why some mothers are thinking about throwing swine flu parties. Same idea, different disease—they want to strengthen their children’s immune systems in case a stronger swine flu strain comes around in the fall. But a swine flu party is just outrageous! Doctors are firmly warning against the idea as several people have died from H1N1 in the months it’s been around. So mothers, if you know what’s best, skip the Swine Par-tay. Throw a Dora, Dora, the Explorer shindig instead. [CNN] Keep reading »