Major factors for Covid-19. By Marc Sorenson, EdD
Major factors in Covid-19 and death go far beyond age, lung disease, obesity and heart disease. Two newer studies show that diabetes and Parkinson’s disease are also associated with death among Covid-19 patients. Although scientists commonly accept diabetes as a risk factor for death from Covid, the Parkinson’s information is new and surprising. The Parkinson’s study involved 80,000 patients and the University of Iowa Health Care Center. It showed that Parkinson’s patients with Covid-19 had a 30% greater risk of mortality (death) due to Covid. Of course, that was when compared to patients who did not have Parkinson’s disease. Thus, the researchers found 5.5% (4,290 of 78,355) of Covid-19 patients without Parkinson’s disease died compared to 21.3% patients with Parkinson’s disease.
What is the answer to preventing Parkinson’s disease and therefore reducing the risk of death from Covid-19?
First, the answer is not a drug. Rather, the answer is sun exposure. Parkinson’s is a neurologic disease caused by brain cell deterioration, which decreases dopamine and other major factors. Thus, it results in tremors, (especially of the hands) muscle rigidity, shuffling gait and slow speech. It also closely associates with depression, bipolar disorder and chronic fatigue, and that is not surprising, considering the physical and mental difficulty involved. Sufficient dopamine is essential to proper brain function.
Parkinson’s patients do not have sufficient dopamine. In addition, they have far too little BDNF.
That chemical is brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF). It is another major factor, because it helps to promote the survival of dopamine neurons. It is especially relevant that exercise tends to increase BDNF. Another major factor in Parkinson’s is serotonin, the body’s major natural “upper” and a major factor in depression. Finally, depression itself is a major factor in Parkinson’s.
So how does sun deprivation become one of the major factors in the link between Parkinson’s and Covid-19?
Greater amounts of dopamine, serotonin, endorphin and brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) associate with regular sun exposure. Depression also inversely associates with sun exposure. In addition, the onset of bipolar disorder associates with increased hours of daylight at the birth location. If these things were true, we would expect a lower risk of Parkinson’s disease to accompany regular sun exposure. Thus it is. A meta-analysis from Medical Science Monitor showed that people with high sun exposure levels had only 1/50 the risk of contracting Parkinson’s!
An incredible association between sun exposure and Parkinson’s
High sun exposure associates so closely with low risk of Parkinson’s disease that it practically eliminates it. It also associates very closely to the aforementioned major factors for Parkinson’s disease listed above. In addition, we have established that having Parkinson’s increases the death risk from Covid -19 by 30%. It seems like common sense that sunlight would also have a protective effect on Covid-19.
The bottom line regarding major factors for reducing Parkinson’s and Covid-19.
Sun exposure, therefore, is one of the major factors in reducing risk of Parkinson’s, and Parkinson’s is a major factor in death from Covid-19. Do not neglect regular, non-burning sun exposure.
For more information on Covid 19, Parkinson’s disease and related causes, visit https://sunlightinstitute.org/ and read the book, Embrace the Sun.