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Good evening here are the coronavirus updates you need to know tonight.

Have questions about the coronavirus? Email audience@globeandmail.com. The Globes paywall has been removed on coronavirus news stories.

"Let's get hope back": graffiti in Caracas, Venezuela. (If you use a protective face mask, please don't wear it the way this man is!)

Matias Delacroix/The Associated Press

The coronavirus outbreak could kill 100,000 to 200,000 Americans, the U.S. governments top infectious-disease expert warned on Sunday as smouldering hot spots in nursing homes and a growing list of stricken cities heightened the sense of dread across the country.

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Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, made the dire prediction of fatalities on CNN, adding that millions in the U.S. could become infected.

By mid-afternoon, the U.S. had over 135,000 infections and 2,300 deaths, according to the running tally kept by Johns Hopkins University.

6,243 cases in Canada reported; with 484 recoveries and 63 deaths.

From Ottawa:

716,101: cases confirmed around the world; with 149,071 recoveries and 33,854 deaths reported.

Question: What happens on day 15 of self-isolation?

Answer: If you have tested positive for coronavirus, after 14 days you must undergo testing to ensure you are now negative, and be cleared by public health. If you self-isolated because you were showing symptoms, or because you had travelled outside Canada before the legal order, you can resume normal living. Or, at least new normal living, where we are all expected to practise social distancing.

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The Globes health columnist Andr Picard answered other reader questions.

Need more answers? Email audience@globeandmail.com

What happened today?

Opinion: Ive fought epidemics around the world. Now its Canada that must prepare for the worst

S.R. Slobodian: Quality stocks to target, safety plays amid dividend cuts and is it time to buy? What you need to know in investing this week

Lia Grainger: Astrologers navigate the tricky waters of COVID-19

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Josh OKane: Fintech lenders say Ottawa should be using them to more effectively get relief funds to small businesses

Saira Peesker: Bars, nightclubs and cannabis growers dont qualify for BDC COVID-19 loans

Have you witnessed or performed acts of kindness in your neighbourhood? Share your stories, photos and videos and they might be included in the Globe and Mail. Email audience@globeandmail.com.

A montage of frame grabs of friends and relatives wishing a happy birthday to Cindy Stewart, who was stuck in Peru for her birthday. Courtesy of family

Courtesy of family

The birthday girl

Cindy Stewart had been expecting little more than a bag of Hawkins Cheezies for her birthday. For years, she and her husband, Charles, have opted to backpack the world during her big day, March 20. No matter their far-flung location, Charles would pull from his bag a beat-up card and that distinct red-and-white bag of Hawkins finest to celebrate. Its become our little ritual, she says.

On Mar. 20, while the couple remained stranded in Peru due to travel bans, the cheezies appeared. But a sense of unease remained. At around 7 p.m., an e-mail from Ms. Stewarts daughter, Megan, pinged. She knew her parents predicament and wanted to ease their anxiety. Mom, check your Facebook page," the e-mail read. Ms. Stewart followed the directions. There, she found a three-minute video featuring various friends and family from all over the world wishing her a happy 63rd birthday and swift return. Everyone who watched was overcome with emotion. At a time of extreme separation, Ms. Stewart had rarely felt so connected. It was honestly the best gift I could have imagined, she said. Global Affairs Canada got them home on Mar. 25.

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Coronavirus Update: Outbreak could kill up to 200,000 Americans, expert warns - The Globe and Mail

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Mar 29th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

The WHO initially recommended people with COVID-19 avoid taking ibuprofen to relieve symptoms. But it retracted that advice days later, so it seems reasonable to also consider using anti-inflammatory drugs.

You can treat nasal congestion with decongestants and nasal saline. Effective treatments for a sore throat include honey, salt water gargles, and sore throat sprays or gargles.

Cough is a more difficult symptom to control, but you may be able to improve it with honey, steam inhalations and saline nose sprays. Cough suppressants have only minimal benefit in reducing a dry cough.

It's also important to support your immune system, particularly with rest and a healthy diet.

There's some evidence zinc lozenges may shorten the duration of some colds and flus, including COVID-19. But this evidence is conflicting and not of high quality.

Meanwhile, there's no convincing evidence beyond the placebo effect for a range of other common treatments, such a vitamin C and echinacea. But these are unlikely to cause harm.

It's important not to take medicines that haven't been approved for the treatment of colds and flus.

Anecdotal reports and a small case series of patients in China have suggested a role for the antimalarial drug chloroquine in treating COVID-19.

Further clinical trials of this drug are currently underway, but at this stage it's recommended as treatment only in COVID-19 cases complicated by viral or bacterial pneumonia, and under the guidance of medical professionals.

One HIV antiviral combination drug, lopinavir-ritonavir, seemed promising. But it failed to make a significant difference in 199 patients with COVID-19 in China.

So there are no effective curative treatments as yet, but clinical trials of different antiviral agents are continuing.

While lots of information about prevention and treatments for coronavirus is circulating online, a good rule of thumb is if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you're unsure about anything, look to reliable sources like the Australian government or the WHO, or consult a doctor.

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Coronavirus: What to do if you start showing symptoms of COVID-19 - Newshub

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Mar 29th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 28, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Esperion (NASDAQ:ESPR) today announced that two pooled analyses from four Phase 3 clinical trials of NEXLETOL and results from the Phase 2 (1002-058) study of NEXLIZET were presented at the American College of Cardiologys 69th Scientific Session Together with World Congress of Cardiology (ACC.20/WCC).

A poster titled Bempedoic Acid 180 mg + Ezetimibe 10 mg Fixed Combination Drug Product vs Ezetimibe Alone or Placebo in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes and Hypercholesterolemia was presented by Harold E Bays, MD, FOMA, FTOS, FACC, FACE, FNLA. The poster highlighted that in the Phase 2 (1002-058) study, NEXLIZET significantly lowered LDL-Cholesterol (LDL-C) by a mean 40% compared to placebo, reduced high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) by 25% compared to baseline and resulted in no worsening of glycemic control. The incidence of adverse events rates were generally comparable to placebo.

In addition, a poster, titled Factors Influencing Bempedoic AcidMediated Reductions in High-sensitivity C-reactive Protein: Analysis of Pooled Patient-level Data from 4 Phase 3 Clinical Trials was presented by Eric S. G. Stroes, MD, PhD. The poster highlighted that in the pooled Phase 3 studies, NEXLETOL significantly lowered hsCRP in patients with hypercholesterolemia regardless of the presence or intensity of background statin therapy. In patients whose hsCRP levels were >2 mg/L at baseline, the analysis showed NEXLETOL significantly reduced this marker of inflammation by 42% at 12 weeks.

The third poster, titled Bempedoic Acid Efficacy and Safety in Patients at High Risk for CVD Treated with or Without Ezetimibe: Pooled Analysis of 4 Phase 3 Clinical Trials was presented by Maciej Banach, MD, PhD, FAHA, FESC. The pooled analysis showed that in the Phase 3 studies, NEXLETOL provided significant additional LDL-C lowering as well as significantly lowered other lipid (total cholesterol, non-HDL-C Apo B, HDL-C) endpoints, regardless of the presence of background ezetimibe. Importantly, the safety profile of NEXLETOL was similar with or without background ezetimibe therapy.

We are pleased with the final results of the Phase 2 study that highlight NEXLIZET achieved an impressive 40 percent LDL-C lowering, a significant 25 percent reduction in hsCRP and did not worsen glycemic control in patients with Type 2 diabetes. The additional pooled analyses from the Phase 3 LDL-C lowering development program demonstrate NEXLETOL can be safely added to multiple LDL-C medicines, which is important to help more patients reach their LDL-C goals, said Tim Mayleben, president and chief executive officer of Esperion. These additional analyses further affirm the efficacy and safety of our medicines for the millions of patients needing to lower their bad cholesterol.

NEXLETOLTM(bempedoic acid) Tablet

NEXLETOL is a first-in-class ATP Citrate Lyase (ACL) inhibitor that lowers LDL-C by reducing cholesterol biosynthesis and up-regulating LDL receptors. Phase 3 studies detailed in the label were conducted in more than 3,000 patients, with over 2,000 patients treated with NEXLETOL, demonstrated an average 18 percent placebo corrected LDL-C lowering when used in patients on moderate or high-intensity statins. NEXLETOL was approved by the FDA in February 2020.

Indication and Limitation of Use

NEXLETOL is indicated as an adjunct to diet and maximally tolerated statin therapy for the treatment of adults with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia or established atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease who require additional lowering of LDL-C. The effect of NEXLETOL on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality has not been determined.

Important Safety Information

Warnings and Precautions:

Adverse Reactions:

Drug Interactions:

Use in Specific Populations

Patients or their physicians are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visitwww.fda.gov/medwatchor call 1-800-FDA-1088 or report side effects to Esperion at 833-377-7633 (833 ESPRMED).

Click here to see thefull prescribing informationfor NEXLETOLTM(bempedoic acid) tablet.

NEXLIZETTM(bempedoic acid and ezetimibe) Tablet

NEXLIZET contains bempedoic acid and ezetimibe and lowers elevated LDL-C through complementary mechanisms of action by inhibiting cholesterol synthesis in the liver and absorption in the intestine. Phase 3 data demonstrated NEXLIZET lowered LDL-C by a mean of 38 percent compared to placebo when added on to maximally tolerated statins. NEXLIZET was approved by the FDA in February 2020.

Indication and Limitation of UseNEXLIZET is indicated as an adjunct to diet and maximally tolerated statin therapy for the treatment of adults with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia or established atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease who require additional lowering of LDL-C. The effect of NEXLIZET on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality has not been determined.

Important Safety Information

Contraindications:

Warnings and Precautions:

Adverse Reactions:

Drug Interactions:

Use in Specific Populations

Click here to see thefull prescribing information for NEXLIZET (bempedoic acid and ezetimibe) tablet. Patients or their physicians are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visitwww.fda.gov/medwatchor call 1-800-FDA-1088 or report side effects to Esperion at 833-377-7633 (833 ESPRMED).

CLEARCardiovascularOutcomes Trial

The effect of NEXLETOL on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality has not been determined. Esperion initiated a global cardiovascular outcomes trial (CVOT) to assess the effects of bempedoic acid on the occurrence of major cardiovascular events in patients with, or at high risk for, cardiovascular disease (CVD) who are only able to tolerate less than the lowest approved daily starting dose of a statin and are considered "statin averse." The CVOT known as CLEAR Cardiovascular Outcomes Trial is an event-driven, global, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study that completed enrollment in August 2019 of 14,032 patients with hypercholesterolemia and high CVD risk at over 1,400 sites in 32 countries.

Esperion Therapeutics

Through scientific and clinical excellence, and a deep understanding of cholesterol biology, the experienced Lipid Management Team at Esperion is committed to developing new LDL-C lowering medicines that will make a substantial impact on reducing global cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death around the world. For more information, please visitwww.esperion.comand follow us on Twitter atwww.twitter.com/EsperionInc.

Esperion Therapeutics Commitment to Patients with Hyperlipidemia

High levels of LDL-C can lead to a build-up of fat and cholesterol in and on artery walls (known as atherosclerosis), potentially leading to cardiovascular events, including heart attack and stroke. In the U.S., 96 million people, or more than 37 percent of the adult population, have elevated LDL-C. There are approximately 18 million people in the U.S. living with elevated levels of LDL-C despite taking maximally tolerated lipid-modifying therapy including individuals considered statin averse leaving them at high risk for cardiovascular events1. In the United States, more than 50 percent of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) patients and heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HeFH) patients who are not able to reach their guideline recommended LDL-C levels with statins alone need less than a 40 percent reduction to reach their LDL-C threshold goal2.

Esperion's mission as the Lipid Management Company is to deliver oral, once-daily medicines that complement existing oral drugs to provide the additional LDL-C lowering that these patients need.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding the regulatory approval pathway for bempedoic acid tablet and the bempedoic acid / ezetimibe fixed dose combination tablet, the therapeutic potential of, and the clinical development plan for bempedoic acid tablet and the bempedoic acid / ezetimibe fixed dose combination tablet, including Esperion's timing, designs, plans for announcement of results regarding its CLEAR Outcomes study and other ongoing clinical studies for bempedoic acid tablet and the bempedoic acid / ezetimibe combination fixed dose tablet, timing for the review and approval of the NDAs and the MAAs, and Esperion's expectations for the market for medicines to lower LDL-C, including the commercial launch and market adoption of bempedoic acid tablet and the bempedoic acid / ezetimibe fixed dose combination tablet, if approved. Any express or implied statements contained in this press release that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause Esperion's actual results to differ significantly from those projected, including, without limitation, delays or failures in Esperions studies, that positive results from a clinical study of bempedoic acid may not be sufficient for EMA approval or necessarily be predictive of the results of future or ongoing clinical studies, that notwithstanding the completion of Esperions Phase 3 clinical development program for LDL-C lowering, the FDA or EMA require additional development in connection with seeking regulatory approval, or approval of an expanded indication, that existing cash resources may be used more quickly than anticipated, and the risks detailed in Esperion's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Esperion disclaims any obligation or undertaking to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this press release, other than to the extent required by law.

References(1)Esperion market research on file: research project interviewing 350 physicians. Esperion Therapeutics, Inc. Sept-Oct 2018.(2)Data on file: analysis of NHANES database. Esperion Therapeutics, Inc. 2018.

Investor Contact:Alex SchwartzEsperion734-249-3386aschwartz@esperion.com

Media Contact:Ben ChurchEsperion734-864-6774bchurch@esperion.com

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Esperion Announces Three Data Presentations of the NEXLETOL (bempedoic acid) Tablet and the NEXLIZET (bempedoic acid and ezetimibe) Tablet at the...

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Mar 29th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Not another urinary tract infection! Anyone whos ever gotten a urinary tract infection (UTI) and thats most women know how irritating and perilous it can be. Some of us are also prone to recurrent UTIs, where infections keep coming.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to keep UTIs at bay.

One of them is aromatherapy, or using high-quality essential oils to aid your body and mind. If youre prone to UTIs or are actively battling an infection, it can be helpful to use oils in a supportive way, says Heidi Chesla, a medical aromatherapy specialist in and around Baltimore and an instructor to physicians at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

The all-too-common condition of a UTI happens when bacteria typically found around the anus migrates into the sterile urethra (the tube where pee flows out) or bladder and starts to multiply.

Symptoms include a burning sensation (especially while urinating), the need to pee frequently, the urge to go even if youve just emptied your bladder, cloudy or bloody urine, and pain or pressure in your lower abdomen.

RELATED: Urinary Tract Infections (UTI) Symptoms

UTIs are potentially dangerous, because if the bacteria migrate further upwards, they can enter your kidneys and cause a serious infection there. For this reason, Chesla recommends that when you have a UTI you see your physician to get it treated.

Treatment for UTIs typically involve a short course of oral antibiotics, such as trimethoprimand sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim, Septra).

Your doctor can also instruct you how to best prevent recurrent UTIs. For example, people should stay well hydrated, urinate before and after sex, and women should always wipe from front to back (and even use different sheets of toilet paper for each side).

RELATED: Herbal Remedies for Natural Pain Relief

Essential oils can be used to both support healing and make you feel better when you have a UTI. You dont want to use them in place of a drug, Chesla says. But essential oils are uniquely helpful because chemical constituents within the aromatic oils create physiological responses in the body, and because theres a direct connection with the sense of smell and the limbic system in the brain, where your emotions arise, she says.

Essential oils have not been scientifically studied for UTIs. However, some small studies have shown they can help battle other types of bacterial infections. For example, a review published in December 2019 in Complementary Therapies in Medicineon topical aromatherapy for the skin infection MRSA found significantly lower level of new MRSA emergence compared to routine care.

RELATED:All You Need to Know About Essential Oils and Cancer

Aromatherapy uses quality essential oils that are cold-pressed or steam-distilled from plants to support your mind and your body, according to the National Cancer Institute. The oils can come from a plants leaves, bark, or peel. Different plants have different oils that have varying effects on the mind and the body.

Essential oils can be inhaled, massaged into the body, rubbed onto the skin, or put in a bath. If you do rub them directly onto your skin, youll want to dilute them in a carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil (Cheslas favorite), almond oil, or avocado oil.

Using essential oils if you are prone to UTIs can support your body and help you feel better, Chesla says.

Using essential oils, ideally in conjunction with your physician, is very safe, Chesla says. Sometimes, an allergic reaction or skin irritation or rash can occur, especially if you put the oil directly on your skin. This is why experts advise that you dilute the oils with a carrier oil before massaging them into your skin.

You also don't want to swallow essential oils, because this increases the chances of an allergic or other negative reaction.

The safety of essential oils, not to mention their effectiveness, holds only when you use high-quality, pure and natural products, she says. Most of whats on the market as essential oil actually have synthetic ingredients, some of which can be irritating. People need to be aware of that and stay away from these, Chesla cautions.

Since essential oils are not considered to be drugs by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the products are not regulated by the FDA. Therefore, it is crucial that you buy oils from a manufacturer who is concerned about quality.

Its up to each person to take care about where they get their oils from. This might mean paying a little more, since cheap oils are unlikely to be of high enough quality to give you the results you want, Chesla says.

Related:Vegetarian Diet Linked to Lowered Risk of Urinary Tract Infection

The best companies hire an independent third party to test each batch of oil as it is made. The tests they perform are called gas chromatographymass spectrometry (GC-MS) reports. They show how much of each bioactive compound is present in the oil.

Also, because oils can degrade over time, good manufacturers also print an expiration date on the label, Chesla says.

The results of these tests should be made available to you, either on the companys website or sent to you if you phone and ask. Chesla recommends that you take the report to your doctor, who should recognize the chemical components. That way if there are any concerns with interactions with other medicines you might be taking, your doctor will be informed.

If youre wondering how to use essential oils for UTIs, the best approach is to apply them to the areas of your body most affected, Chesla says.

People prone to recurrent UTIs can try to stave them off by applying a blend of oils to the skin of their lower abdomen and lower back, she says. Youll want to mix the oils into a carrier oil before you do this.

The blend Chesla recommends are a few drops, in equal parts, of the essential oils cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), juniper berry (Juniperus communis), and cedarwood (Juniperus virginiana). The cypress and juniper berry help to move fluid through your system, while the cedarwood helps kill germs. Rub a small amount of the blend onto your lower abdomen and lower back twice each day, in the morning when you wake up and two hours before bed. (You dont want fluid moving through you making you need to pee too close to bedtime.)

If you have an active infection and are working with your physician to combat it, aromatherapy can assist these medical efforts, Chesla says.

You can continue using the same blend as you use for prevention, but add a few extra drops of cedarwood. Tea tree oil (Melaleuca) can also battle bacteria, so you can substitute this for the cedarwood if you desire. Youll need to source this oil extremely carefully, though, because so much of what is sold as tea tree oil is actually synthetic, Chesla says.

Chesla also recommends supporting your painful abdomen by massing it with a blend of equal parts clary sage (Salvia sclarea), geranium (Pelargonium graveolens), and lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), again mixed into a carrier oil. Clary sage can have anti-spasmodic effects, while the others are said to induce calm.

Stress plays a role in so many of our bodily conditions, so its not surprising it may be involved with recurrent UTIs. Areview published in February 2017 in Current Opinion in Urology points to this potential link between emotional stress and bladder symptom.

Here, too, aromatherapy may help, because soothing scents can calm the stress response down, Clesla says. Good oils for de-stressing include lavender, sandalwood, and vetiver, alone or in combination.

You can locate a certified aromatherapist near you on the websites of two national organizations, the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapyand the Alliance of International Aromatherapists.

Or you can buy oils directly from an online company or from a store that sells quality brands. Be sure to buy only from companies that carefully source and test their products.

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Can Essential Oils Help To Safely Get Rid of UTIs? - Everyday Health

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Mar 27th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Sharing during a pandemic? Sharing probably isnt the first idea that comes to mind as it implies physical contact.

But there are innumerable ways to share that dont require physical contact. And heres why we should pursue them with extraordinary gusto during the pandemic.

In short, world leaders have failed to protect us from the coronavirus. They had a chance to contain it. But through delay, misinformation, denial, and unpreparedness, they have unleashed it on the world.

Now a growing number of us have been asked to cease our normal lives, shelter in place, and practice social distancing for who knows how long. And while its absolutely critical we do so to limit the spread of the coronavirus, weve been asked to bear the terrible costs of their incompetence in lost lives and livelihoods.

Leaders have also left us to figure out what stance to take in the crisis. From the official messages about social distancing and the like, its easy to assume that the only thing we should do is hunker down and wait the pandemic out.

Some messages offer no help. One world leader, when asked what he had to say to people who were scared, insulted the reporter. He had not a single comforting word or practical suggestion to offer.

In short, our supposed leaders have driven us to the edge of a public health and global economic abyss and left us there. Even worse, some are taking advantage of the crisis to grab more profit and power. We cant count on them to protect us.

So, we must protect ourselves.

We must do so by sharing, cooperating, and taking decisive action when leaders have failed to.

We must fill the leadership and systemic voids that the crisis has exposed. The stakes couldnt be higher every human on spaceship earth is at risk. This is a moment of decision for all of us.

Will we hunker down, hoard, heap blame on the blameless, stay mesmerized by the media, spread fear, devolve in our isolation, and turn away from others?

Or will we rise to the occasion, fill the leadership void, share solutions, develop as people, and find our purpose in helping each other?

While this choice may not have occurred to you, this really isnt a choice. Theres no one at the wheel of our collective bus. We must take the wheel or the immediate toll will be more horrific. The long-term damage to the social fabric might even be worse.

While you may not see it, countless thousands are rising to the occasion. A large and rapidly growing wave of prosocial behavior, resource sharing, and mutual aid is sweeping the globe. A growing number of people are defining this moment through their warmth, bravery, diligence, generosity, and creativity.

Need I mention front line medical workers who are risking their lives to stem the toll? Their sacrifice is a testament to the beauty, boldness, and boundlessness of the human spirit.

We need to follow them safely into the breach. If you havent already, its time to join this wave of grassroots action. If you already have, its time to ask your friends and family to join it with you.

Working together (and at a safe distance), we can flatten the curve in a humane way and come out more human for it.

Here are 10 ways to get started:

Follow the shelter in place, physical distancing, handwashing, and other safety measures that reputable health authorities recommend. Encourage everyone around you to do the same. Following these with discipline may be the single most important act of solidarity you can undertake. This is a shared responsibility. Youll protect yourself and many, many others. If in doubt, err on the side of caution.

Provide comfort, health guidelines, and whatever aid is needed to those closest to you. Stay in it with them. Depending on your situation, you might have your hands full with just this. If everybody does this, then everyone has access to at least a basic level of care and emotional support.

Theyre the dam keeping back the floodwaters of infection. We cant afford for this dam to break. Check in with your local hospitals to see what they need. People and organizations are already donating protective medical gear, medical equipment, meals, and more. You can even volunteer remotely or join an open source team designing medical gear. Start here to see where to jump in.

Grassroots, volunteer-run mutual aid networks provide community-scale aid, often with a focus on mutual support for the most vulnerable. If you want to increase your impact locally, this is a great way to go. These have gone virtual during the pandemic using spreadsheets to match needs with resources. Heres an inside look at one of the thousands of COVID-19 mutual aid networks started recently. Directories of them have popped up in the U.S., UK, and elsewhere. Search the web for one in your area. If there are none, start one. Sometimes all it takes are two friends and a spreadsheet.

This can include the elderly, those most vulnerable to the coronavirus healthwise, those previously or newly on the economic margins, those facing eviction, those experiencing racism or discrimination, people who are undocumented, victims of domestic abuse, people experiencing houselessness, people with disabilities, those with mental health conditions, and more. The pandemic poses unique challenges for people in these groups. Support can be direct, mutual, or through the many local service organizations. Search your area for your preferred channel.

As Shareable has reported, loneliness was a huge health challenge before the pandemic. Social distancing could make it worse. We already have an economic recession on our hands due to the pandemic, we dont need a social recession to compound the misery. A more constructive approach is physical distancing with social solidarity, not social distancing. This is a time to be warm, friendly, and kind to those you know and strangers alike virtually and when youre six feet apart IRL. This is also a time to exercise your social creativity. People are holding virtual happy hours, dance parties, birthday parties, book clubs, religious services, and more. Use this moment to reweave the social fabric.

Its important to keep your friends, family, and community informed. However, the web is awash in misleading and even panic-inducing information about the coronavirus. Make sure what you share is from reputable sources. Cross-reference news reports with reports from other reputable sources. Equally important, make sure what and how you share doesnt unintentionally induce panic. Balance sharing truthful, alarming news with relevant how-to, safety, and solutions information. To help you stay sane, consider a media diet that responsibly limits your news intake. Its easy to get overwhelmed in the 24/7 coronavirus news cycle. Panic kills, lets stay calm.

Governments around the world are deciding how to respond to the immediate threat of the coronavirus and the second-order impacts. These decisions could reshape life in a dramatically different and potentially worse way unless the publics voice is heard. As always, the rich and powerful are at the bargaining table. Make sure you are too. Check-in with your local and national representation about their coronavirus plans and make your voice heard. Only together can we beat coronavirus capitalism and rebuild on a more just and sustainable basis.

Schedule time each day for checking in, supporting front line medical workers, mutual aid, or preventing a social recession whatever mix of activities make sense to you. Make it part of your daily pandemic routine. Share your contributions with others. Invite them to join in. Its natural to feel a tad powerless in this situation, this is a way to take back some control.

Last but definitely not least, take care of yourself. You cant do the above if youre not healthy yourself. As airlines advise in emergencies, put your oxygen mask on first before helping others. Depending on your situation, this might even be an opportunity to spend more time exercising, eating right, and finding ways to stay calm like yoga, meditation, and long walks.

There are many more ways to help. The number and variety of grassroots efforts is truly stunning. And now that youre in charge, Im betting you have your own ideas for mutual aid. Please share the actions youve taken or witnessed with us by email info@shareable.net or on Facebook.

And just as important spread the word that its time to help each other, share resources, and share leadership.

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10 ways to share during the coronavirus pandemic - Shareable

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Mar 27th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Emily Potter had an unnerving task earlier this month. Like thousands of other Canadians overseas, she had to find a way home in the wake of the growing COVID-19 threat.

There was a hitch, though.

SUPPLIED

Winnipegger Emily Potter is currently self-isolating at her dads house after returning from the Czech Republic.

The 24-year-old Winnipegger would be stuck in the Czech Republic,self-isolating for another week while waiting for a flight out after KP Brno's season inthe country'spro women's basketball league was cancelled.

Her team had played on March 11andwas to play one more regular-season game before starting the playoffs.

On her appointed travel day, a two-hour drive from Brno to the airport in Prague went smoothy. Then, momentary panic.

Potter's scheduled flight to Frankfurt had been cancelled, requiring her to book another trip, this one to London's Heathrow later that day. While she waited in Prague, she madejoking plea via Twitter forPrime Minister Justin Trudeau to send a plane.

EMBED TWITTER LINK HERE:https://twitter.com/empotter10/status/1240234657133854722

With hersense of humour intact, Potter boarded the jet with only 10 passengers (Czech nationals had been banned from travelling) bound for England, spent the night in London before a connecting flights to Toronto and Winnipeg, arriving on Thursday.

Coming home never felt so good. Most importantly, she felt healthy, too.

The two-week quarantine,prescribed for all Canadians returning from overseas, will be spent mostly in the basement of her dad Robert's house.

"It hasn't been bad," said Potter Tuesday. "I've been getting out for daily walks, at-home workouts and just trying to find stuff to do. Crafts, cleaning, projects, stuff like that.

"We've got a countdown on the whiteboard by the kitchen, it's Day 5 of self-isolation. I'm feeling good. It's kinda weird, though. Every time I feel a tickle in my throat or I cough I'm, 'Oh my gosh, am I getting sick?' I just wouldn't want to spread it to anyone else if I got sick."

Potter is determined to keep fresh and focused, avoidingthe constant diet of television that is often the first resort of someone who's being cooped up. As a crafty person, she already owns a sewing machine and plans use the time to start making cloths.

She misses basketball but knows she will have to do without, at least for a while. Robert Potter, who operates a local construction company, is still working out of the house and so Emily has a lot of time to herself.

"Sometimes it's not too good to look too far ahead," said Potter. "I'm just trying to fill my days with as much as possible, not just sitting around watching Netflix. Home workouts, talking to other friends in the States or friends who have come home from overseas, because they're self-isolating as well. Cooking, baking, arts and crafts that kind of thing.

"After these two weeks is over, there aren't too many places to go. I'm excited to go to the grocery store that's pretty much all there is. I think I might try to get a job, helping out in some way."

Delivering groceries to those who are unable to shop for themselves seems like a worthy idea."There are people higher risk that me that are going to be concerned about going out," she said.

Public service has become an important part of Potter's life.

Three years ago,she went very public with her own struggles with depressionwhile a student at the University of Utah by writing a personal account of her battle with mental illness for her school newspaper. In her essay, Potter admitted she took medication and required counselling.

Potter remains a commited mental health advocate.

"I think for people who struggle with mental illness, this could be a hard time for them," said Potter. "But even people who don't struggle with mental illness may see a dip in their mental health just because of the change in routine and a lot of uncertainty and unknowns.

"I think we definitely need to lean on each other not physically," she added with a laugh.

Basketball remains a big part ofPotter'slife. She suited up for Canada's national team last year and hopes to play in the Olympics one day. Keeping sharp and fit in these perilous times will take some doing.

Outdoor courts are not an option yet and running outside in the icy conditions can be tricky but Potter has a plan.

"Any time I've had a break from playing, it's been because I was injured," she said. "Even though I'm not injured right now, that past perspective is going to help me. I'll do what I can to stay in shape and try some things I normally don't. Right now I'm doing yoga every day and that's something I don't normally do during the season."

mike.sawatzky@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @sawa14

Mike SawatzkySports Reporter

Mike has been working on the Free Press sports desk since 2003.

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Mar 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Gavin Newsom, governor of California, announced he would deploy the National Guard to help protect the food security of California residents most in need.

The guard will help stabilize food banks and other crucial services to the most vulnerable during the coronavirus crisis. The National Guard will help set up systems to get food banks operating and stabilized, setting up the next wave of volunteers and non-profits to continue the food bank work during the crisis.

Its in these times of crisis that Californians are at their best, coming to the aid of those in their community who are most in need. Food banks provide a critical lifeline for families and are needed now more than ever. Families across our state are suddenly losing work, and millions of Californians most vulnerable to COVID-19 are staying home to protect their health and the health of others. I ask all Californians who are able to join our Neighbor-to-Neighbor campaign to safely assist those in need in your community, said Governor Newsom.

Food banks are facing a reduction in volunteers due to the coronavirus crisis, a resource that will be replaced by the California National Guard.Newsom urges California residents to lookat serve.ca.gov for ways they can assist their neighbors and communities during this time. This is part of the Neighbor-to-Neighbor campaign, where neighbors act to help those most vulnerable that have been asked to stay home.

Read more about protecting yourself from coronavirus. Check the CDC website for more information on how to protect yourself and check our latest article to learn how COVID-19 differs from the flu.

Scientists believe that the spread of COVID-19, or coronavirus, started at an exotic animal market in Wuhan, China. You can help stop the incidence of viruses like these by signing this petition to ban the wildlife trade.

Eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammation, heart health, mental wellbeing, fitness goals, nutritional needs, allergies, gut health and more! Dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, prostate cancer and has many side effects.

Interested in joining the dairy-free and meatless train? We highly recommend downloading the Food Monster App with over 15,000 delicious recipes it is the largest plant-based recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy! And, while you are at it, we encourage you to also learn about the environmental and health benefits of a plant-based diet.

Catch up on our coronavirus coverage in One Green Planet, check out these articles:

For more Animal, Earth, Life, Vegan Food, Health, and Recipe content published daily, subscribe to the One Green Planet Newsletter! Lastly, being publicly-funded gives us a greater chance to continue providing you with high-quality content. Please consider supporting us by donating!

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Mar 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Preparing for a period of home quarantine means making a household plan of action as well as stocking supplies for the duration of the isolation period, Dr. Lisa Ide, chief medical officer of the national virtual health platform Zipnosis, told Healthline.

Make sure that you have a list of emergency contacts, a plan to communicate with family, friends, and co-workers, and know-how to get food delivered if possible, she said.

Organize a 2- to 4-week supply of food, cleaning materials such as sanitizing wipes and soap, and basic household staples such as toilet paper and facial tissue, suggested Ide.

When you are planning your food supplies, think of food that will store well and be nutritious such as rice, pasta, canned or dried beans, dried fruit, soups, and frozen vegetables as well as pet food, she said.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are also important for health and healing.

Fruit and vegetables provide loads of essential nutrients and there are ways to extend their shelf-life and make them more convenient, notes the website Huel, which markets nutritionally complete food with a 12-month shelf life. For example, soups and sauces can be made straight away and then frozen. You can make a concentrated stock which you can then freeze in ice cube trays and, voila, homemade, low-salt stock cubes.

Other critical supplies to have on hand as you recover from COVID-19 include the following:

Water should be at the top of the list of supplies youll need in the event you contract COVID-19.

COVID-19 is a viral infection and like most viral infections, treatment is all about comfort and keeping well enough while your body heals, Dr. Roy Benaroch, a clinical assistant professor of pediatrics at Emory University and a pediatrician with a private practice in Roswell, Georgia, told Healthline.

Its crucial to stay hydrated, so plenty of fluids, especially if the fever is high, Benaroch said.

Williams said that COVID-19 symptoms such as fever, coughing, diarrhea, and vomiting can easily impact individuals fluid intake and contribute to dehydration, and rob the body of key nutrients if healthy foods and fluids are not consumed while recovering.

Healthy hydration levels can help your nose by maintaining that the mucous membrane is intact, she added. This could help decrease nasal irritation when coughing, sneezing, and even just breathing. Moisture also helps heal broken membranes so additional bacteria dont get into the body.

In most instances, tap or bottled water is fine. If youre relying on bottled water, experts recommend keeping at least a 15-day supply on hand.

If you cannot drink your tap water at home safely or if you have a sink that is shared communally by any other people in your home, its best to have bottled water that you could keep by your bedside and drink when needed, Dr. Shirin Peters, medical director of the Bethany Medical Clinic in New York, told Healthline.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine defines adequate daily fluid intake as 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men and 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women, although sick people likely should drink more. (About 20 percent of this fluid intake comes from foods).

In the minority of cases where COVID-19 symptoms include acute gastroenteritis, solutions such as Pedialyte can help prevent dehydration. Sports drinks like Gatorade are another option.

The most useful medicine is something to decrease headaches, body aches, and fever, like acetaminophen (Tylenol), said Benaroch.

Many people also use ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin), but there has been some concern especially from Europe that ibuprofen is less safe, though theres no direct evidence that this is true. Still, if you want to be extra careful, use acetaminophen instead, he said.

Dr. Larry Burchett, a California emergency physician, recommends 650 milligrams (mg) of acetaminophen every 4 to 6 hours as a safe dosage for most adults.

Some of the methods of treatment in the case of a high or low fever that is causing discomfort include cooling blankets, ice packs, and over-the-counter medications [taken according to package directions], Dr. Joshua Mansour, a clinical oncologist with the Southern California Permanente Medical Group, told Healthline.

Rest and recovery, as well as staying cool, are very important, he added.

Viral droplets spread by coughing, sneezing, or spitting is one of the primary ways that COVID-19 spreads from person to person.

Have plenty of tissues on hand to help prevent transmitting it to other people in your family.

Many people with COVID-19 have a strong cough, said Benaroch. If you have asthma or any other respiratory condition, its essential that you continue to take your routine respiratory medicines, and follow your asthma action plan or any similar instructions from your doctor for the use of rescue medications.

Over-the-counter cough medicines arent effective, said Benaroch, but can be tried. Honey or cough drops containing honey may also help to soothe coughs.

If you have asthma or another respiratory illness, be sure to have extra inhalers and other medications on hand.

The same is true of any other chronic illnesses you may have, since having conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and immune system disorders place you at higher risk of serious complications from COVID-19.

Ensure that you have a four-week supply of prescription and over-the-counter medicine, said Peters. And while you are stocking up and preparing, please check in with neighbors who are elderly or need extra help.

Zinc has become one of the most popular suggestions for reducing symptoms of coronavirus, Dr. Morton Tavel, clinical professor emeritus of medicine at the Indiana University School of Medicine, told Healthline.

Although there is no direct evidence at this time to suggest that using zinc lozenges can prevent or treat COVID-19 in people, zinc does have antiviral properties and was shown in a laboratory study to inhibit the replication of coronaviruses in cells, he said.

Tavel recommends taking Cold-Eeze lozenges, an over-the-counter drug containing zinc gluconate, several times a day for upper-respiratory symptoms.

Since there is little harm in such a strategy, it may be worth a try, he said.

It supports the activity of our immune cells, especially when they work more than they should during outbreaks, said Asli Elif Tanugur Samanci, a food scientist and chief executive officer of Bee & You. I would recommend 1 to 3 grams a day, on top of a healthy diet thats rich in fresh vegetables and fruit.

They both have incredible anti-inflammatory properties and also very high in antioxidants, said Samanci.

Further, ginger is full of chemicals that fight off cold and relieves stomach-related problems. Turmeric also has hundreds of active chemicals and is a great pain reliever, Samanci said. You can either add them fresh or juice them to get the full spectrum of benefits.

If you suspect you have a mild case of COVID-19, youll need a thermometer to check your temperature twice a day.

The New York Department of Health recommends that you isolate yourself at home for at least 7 days from the onset of symptoms until symptom-free and fever-free for 72 hours without the use of fever lowering medications.

If your symptoms get worse, call your healthcare provider.

Gloves, soap, hand sanitizer, surface-cleaning products, mops, and sponges will help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in your household.

When you are sick, you can contaminate all the surfaces you come into contact with, said Peters. Hard surfaces can be disinfected, but clothing, sheets, and towels will need to be stored safely and laundered on a hot wash cycle before using them again.

If youre sick, you need to stay in a single, separate room away from other people as much as possible. Ideally, choose a room with a separate bathroom.

With COVID-19 straining healthcare resources, its important to have supplies on hand to treat minor injuries at home.

Its important that you also take care of your mental health during self-isolation, said Dr. Jonas Nilsen, co-founder of Practio, a travel vaccination and infectious disease consulting company.

It is important to remember that if a fever remains very high, or if a patients symptoms are causing discomfort, that they should contact a healthcare professional for further advice on the next step, said Mansour.

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Mar 25th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

Ordering food offers welcome relief from cooking and cleaning, so heres how to protect yourself and your family against coronavirus if you do get takeout.

Right now, many Americans are proving themselves to be model citizens by staying home and social distancing, as encouraged by both federal and state officials, to help slow the rate of COVID-19 transmission. While these practices are meant for everyones health and safety, no one said it was going to be easy.

Besides the obvious health concerns, financial impact, and lack of social interaction, one of the largest obstacles for people in voluntary quarantine has been figuring out how to feed themselves safely. With many confined to their homes for weeks, the mere idea of eating canned beans again is enough to cause distresslet alone the larger anxieties and uncertainties of the moment.

For folks who need a break from cooking and cleaning, restaurant takeout and delivery (as well as grocery drop-offs) are still available in many places. In fact, these food options are great ways to help keep your favorite independent restaurants and businesses afloat while bringing a little variety to your daily quarantine diet.

RELATED: Stuck Inside? These Five Simple Pantry Staples Can Be the Foundation of Some Very Vibrant Dishes

In short, yes, if restaurants and grocers are offering curb-side pickup or home delivery, its OK to do so. However, ordering from outside your own kitchen comes with a few caveats. Your go-to chicken parm order from the family-owned restaurant down the street is only worth itfor you and for themif you take extra measures to protect against the spread of coronavirus.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) FAQ section reassures that it cannot be passed through food: Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. That said, we do know the virus can still live temporarily on commonly touched surfaces. According to a recent study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, this is how long the virus appears to be able to survive on respective surfaces:

With these findings in mind, follow extra safe and sanitary precautions when ordering in.

1. Avoid ordering in altogether if you or any family/housemates are sick, exhibiting symptoms, elderly, or more at risk for contracting COVID-19 (heres what to make instead).

2. Avoid touching public surfaces (like door handles) by choosing curb-side pickup only. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60 percent alcohol content) immediately following a pickup exchange, and avoid touching your face before sanitizing hands.

3. When possible, choose contact-free delivery options when ordering in. Many food delivery services, including Postmates, DoorDash, Caviar, Grubhub, and Seamless, are giving members a no-contact drop-off option, where couriers will leave orders on the doorstep and let customers know theyve done so. If you're ordering in directly from a restaurant, give the courier special instructions to leave your order at the door.

4. Leave cardboard boxes and packaging outside for 24 hoursor, even better, immediately take them out to the recycling.

5. Transfer food to your own clean dishes and cutlery to serve and eat, and immediately throw out/recycle all containers and packaging.

6. Wash your hands thoroughly before and after eating.

7. Disinfect the surfaces in your home that come in contact with any delivery bags, containers, etc.

All of this is not to scare you (the idea of germs capability to survive on surfaces shouldnt be new), but simply to reiterate how important it remains to follow responsible hygiene habits when getting food products delivered to you right now. Restaurants and delivery services are being as careful and hygienic as possible to make sure you stay fed (and they stay in business), so dont undo all their efforts once the food arrives at your door.

RELATED: 7 Ways You Can Help Others During the Coronavirus Crisis

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Mar 24th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely

The coronavirus pandemic is changing all our lives including the way we shop as the Governments new social distancing measures strike home.

In the past week Ocado, the online grocery retailer that delivers Waitrose and own-brand products, was forced to suspend its website as it struggled to cope with demand, while some other well-known delivery services such as Abel & Cole and Oddbox announced they would be temporarily unable to take new orders.

Abel & Cole and Ocado relaunched their sites over the weekend, with queues for the latter into the thousands.

Yet there are many more small, independent companies worth knowing about that deliver sensible quantities of high-quality food to our doorsteps and were not just talking fruit and veg.

Fresh pasta, meat and nutritious pre-prepared meals can also be safely and easily delivered straight to your home or to the homes of those you can't spend time with at the moment.

These contact-free delivery companies are already well positioned to offer their services to self-isolators, while safeguarding their own staff.

Healthy meal delivery company, Fresh Fitness Food promises daily delivery of everything you need to eat that day: three main meals and a snack.

Chief executive Caspar Rose says the brands customers tend to be busy London professionals with body composition goals but, in the last week or so, new orders have come from those wanting to boost immunity with a balanced diet that will best prepare them for combating the virus, should they contract it.

The companys free delivery radius takes in areas within the M25, always between 11pm and 6am, to doorsteps or an apartment concierge.

People can wake up in the morning, their cooler bags are there, each labelled and air-sealed, says Rose. Our deliveries are already no contact.

Restaurant closures have seen the brands suppliers receiving far fewer orders than they were even a few days ago, with one usually taking 100,000 in nightly orders taking only 10 per cent of that last night, says Rose.

Our suppliers are fully stocked and, as an essential service, we plan to deliver through any lockdown.

Fresh Fitness Food plans cost from 23 a day. NHS workers can get 50 per cent off, while anyone working remotely during the coronavirus outbreak can use the code WFH10 for 10 per cent off.

Contact-free:sealed, chilled bags from Fresh Fitness Foods are dropped off between the hours of 11pm and 6am. Free delivery within the M25.

London-based homemade pasta specialist Pasta Evangelists has next-day delivery to anywhere in Great Britain and Northern Ireland at a cost of 3.50, or free for orders of 25-plus.

"We are experiencing a very large uplift, with order numbers up 600-700 per cent, says founder and managing director Alessandro Savelli. We are fully equipped to fulfil every order.

Pasta and sauces are made in London every day, then delivered in thin recyclable boxes through letterboxes, or to designated safe places.

The brand has committed to full pay for staff throughout the coronavirus crisis, including for those who need to self-isolate.

Prices per dish start from around 6. A new launch is the pasta care package which, at 25, includes a 5 donation to Age UK. Its the perfect pick-me-up for the NHS worker or self-isolating relative in your life.

Scottish online butchers Donald Russell is open as usual with its next available delivery date currently this Saturday, March 28.

Based in Aberdeen, the brand uses national couriers and delivers across the UK.

Many customers are placing larger orders than usual. However, we have plenty of product and our butchers are still working hard to be able to meet the current demand, says marketing director Sue Stephenson.

Chilled boxes are left on doorsteps or another safe place. Prices vary, one package on offer at the moment is 10 microwaveable dishes for 50.25.

Well stocked:Scottish online butchers Donald Russell has a next available delivery date of Saturday 28 March

HIIT Kitchen, a meal delivery service, started as a healthy eatery in St Albans just over two years ago.

The brand delivers three days worth of meals to your doorsteps on Mondays and Thursdays, at 10 per delivery.

Co-founder Kris Tyrell says: We previously got investment, around two months ago, so sales have gone up since then. But in the past week theyve doubled.

Using their own temperature-controlled van, plus DPDs services, the brand plans to continue deliveries nationwide. Prices are from 7 for main meals.

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Mar 24th, 2020 | Filed under Diet Safely
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