March 22, 2018

Medicinal Mushrooms Are The New Superfood Staple

Mushrooms have long been a staple in the culinary (and psychedelic) community, but this past year, they've burst onto the superfood scene. No longer relegated to stir-fries and stroganoffs, mushrooms are being lauded by functional medicine experts everywhere for their abilities to fight cancer, quell inflammation, balance blood sugar, and more.

"Mushroom extracts are unique because they contain polysaccharides and beta-glucans, compounds that activate the immune system by increasing white blood cell count," says Dr. Mark Stengler, author of The Health Benefits of Medicinal Mushrooms. "They're also one of the few natural sources of vitamin D, with anywhere from 140 to 2,000 IU per 100 grams of mushrooms.”

The healing power of mushrooms is nothing new, though. Used medicinally in Russia, China, and Japan for centuries, mushrooms are at the base of many modern pharmaceuticals, from penicillin to anticancer drugs and the first statin treatments. So if they've been around forever, why here, why now? "The main driver of this 'new' excitement around mushrooms is mostly based on their possible health benefits to many of the biggest modern-day health issues," says Foursigmatic founder Tero Isokauppila. "Mushrooms have shown great promise to be able to protect and detox our bodies from pathogens and toxins that we all unfortunately face every day. Several varieties are also adaptogenic, meaning that they help our bodies to adapt to the various stressors of modern life."

New processes have also made it easier to extract the benefits of mushrooms into easily consumed, therapeutically effective powdered extracts. You'll find some combination of reishi, chaga, cordyceps, lion's mane, himematsutake, turkey tail, and in Erewhon Market's Golden Milk Latte, Cafe Gratitude's longevity and adrenal tonics, and Moon Juice's Vanilla Protein Mushroom Shake (a perpetual favorite around the mbg office). Amanda Chantal Bacon, the woman behind the beloved-by-celebs shop and cookbook, has relied on mushrooms in her own healing journey. "The immune-balancing properties of mushrooms have been a critical part of healing from my auto-immune condition," she says. While she loves their scientifically backed healing properties, she uses them in her shop's products because they "taste good in smoothies and tea or coffee."

Ah yes—what about the flavor? With a relatively neutral, mildly earthy taste, mushroom powders blend best with strong flavors. Here at mbg, we love to make a superfood hot chocolate using chaga, reishi, and cordyceps with a generous dose of raw cacao powder and a healthy sweetener. A mushroom latte is another favorite, simply blending a powder, coffee, and milk of choice until thick and creamy. In 2017, we see mushrooms becoming a staple on cafe menus and the powdered jars taking a prominent place on any superfood-loving foodie's shelf.

The Ketogenic Diet Becomes The Diet Everyone's need

The trendiest diet since paleo, Keto is one of the most-searched wellness trends and dozens of keto Instagram accounts, cookbooks, and podcasts are now starting to emerge. While plant-based diets are still beloved and going strong, people are intrigued by the potential neurological benefits of this high-fat, low-sugar diet that has been used as an effective treatment for epilepsy since the 1920s and is now being studied as a therapy option for conditions like Alzheimer's and autism.

The main goal of the ketogenic diet is to train your body to rely on fat (instead of glucose) for fuel. When you restrict your intake of carbohydrates you enter a metabolic state called ketosis in which the body produces ketone bodies from fat to use as energy. Ketosis is a totally normal evolutionary adaptation for times when food was not quite as plentiful and available as it is now.

The ketogenic diet has been endorsed by leading integrative medicine doctors like Dr. Mark Hyman, who praises high-fat diets in his book Eat Fat, Get Thin, saying that when you don't get enough fat, you are starving your brain, which is nearly 60 percent fat. Others, like Dr. David Perlmutter—author of Grain Brain—say that ketones bodies are "profoundly neuroprotective" and can increase levels of brain-protective antioxidants and stimulate the mitochondria, which can affect energy levels. Many keto enthusiasts praise the diet for its anti-inflammatory effects on the GI system and ability to increase energy levels and muscle mass while decreasing hunger pangs and total caloric intake.

The diet is also gaining popularity among athletes, LeBron James as just one example, who embrace this new way of eating to maximize athletic performance. It is also rumored that Kim Kardashian used a version of the diet to lose her baby weight, which has added to its popularity and momentum. The ketogenic diet is only recommended under a doctor's supervision but definitely expresses potential not just for an alternative treatment for neurological diseases but for athletes and anyone looking to nourish their brain. While we definitely expect to see more research on the long-term benefits and effectiveness of the ketogenic diet popping up in 2017, we hope to see plant-based versions of this diet and less extreme ways to reap similar benefits.

The Sobriety Movement Will Evolve From Fringe Interest

In the past, if someone said they were "sober," it usually meant they were a recovering alcoholic. But over the past few years, a shift has started to occur. We've seen Americans put more focus on health, and the next frontier is our drinking habits.

In the last year especially, helmed by wellness influencers like Light Watkins and Biet Simkin (both mbg class instructors) the sobriety movement has presented itself as one solution for the growing dissatisfaction we have with our lack of real, genuine connection and/or careers that don't challenge and energize us.

Biet, a musician and meditation expert, believes substances actually disconnect us from our true selves, making sobriety not just beneficial but actually a prerequisite to finding and fulfilling our purpose. "Having explored alcohol and drugs in some depth myself, I know that they don't propagate intentional living. When substances get involved, the experience you have tends to get farther and farther from the experience you intended to have." So, what does she say to people who think they need "liquid courage" to be honest—for whom alcohol is a means of facilitating intimacy? "Vulnerability requires authenticity, and authenticity requires vulnerability. Neither of these outcomes is encouraged by the crutch of substances."

We've already seen that spark of insight catch on, as evidenced by the popularity of events like DAYBREAKER (a prework dance party that made mbg's 2015 trend watch) and mindfulness/music/meditation event The Shine (the brainchild of meditation leader Light Watkins).
The popularity of these alcohol-free shindigs is only growing, and in 2017, we'll see even more of a shift toward mindful interactions and refreshing alternatives to booze. Bellwether cities like LA and NYC are already gaining momentum, propelled by trendsetting watering holes and restaurants eager to catch the wave. In New York alone, high-end bar and eatery Gabriel Kreuther has added a selection of nonalcoholic drinks to their cocktail menu, and farm-to-table resto Riverpark is offering Temperance Coolers, inspired by and composed of local, seasonal ingredients—just like everything else on the menu. But this isn't just an East Coast thing.

At the opposite end of the country in San Francisco and Oakland, breweries like Copenhagen-based Mikkeller are beginning to cater to the connoisseur who wants to enjoy the experience of a well-crafted beer without the buzz. Mikkeller's Drink'in The Sun 13 rates at just 0.26 ABV, but features flavors as rich and diverse as lemon, grapefruit, peach, and apricot. At the same alcohol level, Drink'in The Snow gives you a holiday flavor profile complete with clove, coriander, and orange.

This year, we'll see the availability and variety of nonalcoholic options expand even further. Along with that, we can expect our choices to become more intentional and better integrated with our long-term dreams and goals. Founder of alcohol-free movement One Year No Beer, Ruari Fairbairns has experienced this change personally and has seen it in other converts of the program as well: "I'd always dreamed of achieving so much, and part of me suspected the booze was holding me back. Now I can say with absolute authority, 'The booze was holding you back, mate.'"

LThe Age Of Fashion Minimalism

Post Marie Kondo's decluttering bible, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (which we talked about last year as a wellness trend to watch) and helped introduce the philosophy to the mainstream in 2014, nowadays, minimalism is part of the cultural zeitgeist. The fashion minimalism movement gained massive traction on social this year as a reaction against excessive consumption. What started as a very basic concept (clean lines, few prints, and no excesses), has morphed into a personalized, curated kind of minimalism (themes include sensuality, simplicity, androgyny). The nearly 5 million images tagged #minimalism on Instagram include monochromatic apparel, white sneakers, clouds, and grassy fields. So long as it's stylishly austere, it seems, it's minimalist.

America's tradition of fashion minimalism can be traced back to Calvin Klein's runway launch in 1968, defined by its simplicity and purity, although his was not a clinical minimalism. On the contrary, his designs aimed to reveal or enhance a sense of the body. In the decades that followed with fashion, minimalism started leaving room for personality in a way that garments that were too constructed or too embellished didn't allow. This idea of streamlining your wardrobe and spending less time fussing over an outfit certainly resonates with the modern woman and extends beyond the look—it's about consumers becoming completely aware of the whole process, from design through production, through use, and through the potential to reuse.

The result is that it's the small details that speak the loudest. A growing number of homespun labels are currently at the forefront of the trend, proving that minimalism is anything but boring, and signals that the fashion industry is evolving toward greener practices and products. Many of the latest wave of sustainably minded designers have shifted their focus away from strictly organic materials (which tend to be basic) in favor of a more holistic approach that takes into account the entire life cycle of a piece of clothing, from its carbon footprint to the livelihood of who made it.

Launched this fall, Khaite is a balance of masculine and feminine that encapsulates the capsule wardrobe concept completely. Then there's designer Alnea Farahbella of Toit Volant, who's causing major fashion waves with her USA-made label committed to sustainable sourcing and manufacturing practices. LA-based label Saul shows that minimalism and pattern aren't mutually exclusive—everything is crafted from dead-stock vintage fabrics, giving the clothes a nostalgic feel. For Siizu, sustainability is the driving force behind every decision, and it all begins with the fabric. Dedicated to exclusively using textiles that are 100 percent organic and eco-friendly (even the packaging is completely recyclable), this is an online eco site for no-fuss pieces.

The take-away: There's no time like now to be you. Repeat pieces in creative ways, and only buy new things you can't live without. When we help set the standard, we enact change. Here's to a year of #noregrets.

Nutrition Gets Personal health

The year 2016 saw one-size-fits-all eating prescriptions take a back seat to individualized nutrition products. In this new year, we expect that trend to continue, with emerging brands taking personalization further than ever. Take a look at Habit, a company that uses clients' DNA to suggest optimized meals. Founder Neil Grimmer spoke at mbg's annual revitalize event about the need for differentiated approaches to diet, asking "Do we all need the exact same food, at the exact same time, in the same way? Intuitively you'd say 'no.' Some of you were out hiking, some of you were meditating. There are all different sizes, shapes, ages in this room." Habit gathers the results of at-home health kit and analyzes 60 biomarkers to craft optimized meal plans, which a team of chefs then whips up and delivers to your door. Their business plan was convincing enough to earn a $32 million investment from Campbell Soups.

DNAFit takes a similar approach, using genetic insights to recommend tailored nutrition and fitness advice. DayTwo is using clients’ intestinal microbiome to better ascertain their needs. Care/of, a vitamin startup, uses a broad-reaching questionnaire to curate users' selections of supplements. "Our mission is to help folks achieve their goals, and those goals are unique, so our packets are, too," says Care/of CEO Craig Elbert. "We have folks looking for healthier hearts or bones, or improved digestion, greater energy, or lessened stress, and we guide them to make decisions based on their values."

Not convinced you need your own bespoke plan? A study published this August adds scientific cred to the trend. It found that "personalized nutrition advice helped people to make bigger and more appropriate changes to their diets than the conventional healthy eating advice which was followed by our control group." That's enough to make us embrace our individuality.

Apple’s 2018 iPhone X Model Will Cost less

We all know very well that there is still half a year ahead so that in September when it is usual for the tech giant Apple, the new generation of iPhone will be released. Now according to the latest reports, the tech giant Apple’s 2018 iPhone X model will cost cheaper.

Apple’s 2018 iPhone X Model Will Cost Cheaper
There is still half a year ahead so that in September when it is usual for the tech giant Apple, the new generation of iPhone will be released. But we have been receiving rumours and leaks for several weeks, and the latest information points to one of the critical points: the price of these new smartphones. We know that there will be a second generation of the iPhone X, with the OLED panel and the same 5.8-inches diagonal screen, and with a cheaper price.

Luke Lin says in Digitimes that the Cupertino company, of course, the tech giant Apple has managed to reduce the cost of the components of its next smartphone by approximately 10%. That is, the unit cost for Apple will be significantly lower and, therefore, have the ability to reduce prices in the range of next year without affecting their profits.

However, the analyst speaks only about one of the models that will debut the Cupertino company that is expected to be three in total. And the model referred to is this second generation of the iPhone X, with a 5.8-inch OLED screen.

They assure that the successor of the iPhone X for 2018, with OLED screen of 5.8 inches, will be cheaper than the current model.

By 2018 the tech giant Apple is expected to put three models on the market, as we mentioned earlier. One of them would have 6.1-inch screen, but with LCD panel, and another of them would have a 5.8-inch OLED as successor to the current iPhone X. On the other hand, the third model of the Cupertino company would be an iPhone X Plus, also with OLED screen, but 6.5 inches diagonal to position itself at the top of the range of their smartphones. And in addition to this screen difference, also some more RAM, although it seems that no differences in the camera.

At this point, there is more and more information about the tech giant Apple’s new smartphones for 2018, but obviously, you have to take everything with some doubt. Until the official presentation which will take place in September 2018, we will not be able to know what the final prices of the new devices are and, obviously, neither their official technical characteristics.

So, what do you think about this? Simply share all your views and thoughts in the comment section below.

Nokia 5233 Explodes – Kills a Girl

The phones that exploded became almost a joke because of the large number of defective units and the investigation of the Korean company determined that, indeed, the battery was the defective element of the Note 7. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 was one of the most notorious cases, but not the only one. According to the latest reports, the recently, a Nokia 5233 explode and killed a teenage girl brutally.

OMG! Nokia 5233 Explodes – Kills Teenage Girl
The mobiles that exploit staged isolated news every so often until, in 2016, Samsung launched the first batch of Note 7. It was a high-end mobile that, however, had a failure in the design of the battery that caused the terminal to end up exploding or burning for no apparent reason.

The phones that exploded became almost a joke because of the large number of defective units and the investigation of the Korean company determined that, indeed, the battery was the defective element of the Note 7. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 was one of the most notorious cases, but not the only one.

The last episode of a mobile that explodes is not a joke since it has cost the life of a young woman.

A Nokia 5233 explodes and killed a teenage girl

Although it is already a few years behind (it was launched in January 2010), the Nokia 5233 is a very popular mobile in some countries such as India, where it is one of the most sold phones in Amazon. There you can buy for less than 50 dollars, hence its popularity, but eight years do not pass in the bucket for a phone and, above all, for its battery.

As we can read in Phonearena, an 18-year-old girl named Uma Oram was died due to the explosion of a terminal of this model. Oram was talking on the phone when she connected to the current and suddenly exploded causing serious injuries to her chest and hand, which caused her to be unconscious.

She was quickly taken to hospital, where she failed to survive the wounds that the explosion of Nokia 5233 had caused. The police authorities have opened an investigation into the incident and HMD Global, the company that now owns the Nokia brand, has been unmarked of the event claiming that they were not responsible for the construction of the device, as they took possession of Nokia in 2017.

It seems like a truism, but the best thing to take care of our terminal is to comply with the manufacturer’s recommendations. Normally, each mobile comes with some instructions (in physical format or that can be consulted in the network) that updates us about the care of our device. One that must be read is the section of the battery, since there it will tell us the maximum and minimum temperature that the terminal can support without failing.

There are failures, such as those that produce extreme cold, which can be fatal for our mobile phone, but the heat is more dangerous since the mobile phone can catch fire or explode directly. The heat is one of the determining factors when a mobile explodes. If we go to the Sahara, maybe we should not take it too much out of pocket if there is no shadow, but there are other situations in which our mobile can explode.

How to prevent this? Very easy. Have you read that detail “use official chargers in good condition”? It is not on a whim, since an official charger in an optimal state will generate (and filter) the energy our device needs. Protect the phone with a case also does a lot since, if we will drop the device constantly, the ducts that isolate the different components of the battery can be damaged and can cause explosion.

Another issue to keep in mind, especially with old mobiles that have interchangeable batteries, is whether the battery is official or not. An official battery, as a general rule, passes more exhaustive quality controls that ensure the correct operation of it. Yes, there may be a case like in Note 7, where a manufacturing fault was the culprit of the situation, but it is not what usually happens.

With the passage of time the battery loses its properties and, especially in the case of old mobiles, such as the Nokia 5233, we may be tempted to buy another non-original battery. It is not yet known if this has been the reason for the explosion of Nokia 5233 that has killed the young Uma Oram, but it is clear that time does not pass in vain and an old mobile has more ballots to exploit than a more recent one.

So, what do you think about this? Simply share all your views and thoughts in the comment section below.

Google Goes Big On ARCore With Over 60 New Apps

We all know very well that from time to time, the tech giant Google surprises us with experiments created by its engineers, which in some cases end up becoming applications that any Android user can enjoy. Now according to the latest reports, the tech giant Google goes big on ARCore with over 60 new apps in Play Store.

Google Goes Big On ARCore With Over 60 New Apps In Play Store
From time to time, the tech giant Google surprises us with experiments created by its engineers, which in some cases end up becoming applications that any Android user can enjoy.

Today, the company announced through its page of experiments the release of more than 60 ARCore apps on Play Store this week, however, among them, the new creation is the ‘Just a Line’. It is an Android application based on ARCore, the augmented reality platform of the tech giant Google, which allows us to draw on the air using only the smartphone camera.

Just a Line, the latest Google experiment based on augmented reality

The operation of Just a Line is very simple: open the application, start drawing on the screen, the drawing will remain floating in the air exactly where we have placed it, regardless of whether the device moves.

The tech giant Google indicates that this application is based on previous open source experiments created with ARCore. The difference, however, is that Just a Line lets you record short video clips, and then share them with other users through messaging apps or social networks. The developers can also use the source code of the project and take it as a reference to create other apps based on ARCore.

The application is available on Google Play Store and is completely free. However, to be able to use it, it will be essential to have a phone compatible with the ARCore platform. Currently, the supported devices are the following:-

Asus Zenfone AR
LG V30 and V30+ with Android Oreo
Google Pixel 2
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel
Google Pixel XL
OnePlus 5
Samsung Galaxy Note8
Samsung Galaxy S8+
Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S7
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
In case of having one of the devices mentioned in the list, it is enough to download the ARCore application first, and then the Just a Line app.

Click here to download the Just a Line App from Google Play Store.

So, what do you think about this? Simply share all your views and thoughts in the comment section below.

Amazon Surpassed Google To Become The World’s 2nd in the world

We all know very well that the world’s biggest shopping or e-commerce site Amazon is one of the best e-commerce sites for shopping. In February, Jeff Bezos, the founder of the giant e-commerce site, of course, Amazon has surpassed the tech giant Microsoft by market value and became the third most valuable company in the world. On the night of Tuesday (20), it was the turn to leave the Google (Alphabet) behind.

Amazon Surpassed Google To Become The World’s 2nd Most Valuable Company
The most used and the world’s biggest shopping or e-commerce site Amazon is one of the best e-commerce sites for shopping. In February, Jeff Bezos, the founder of the giant e-commerce site, of course, Amazon has surpassed the tech giant Microsoft by market value and became the third most valuable company in the world. On the night of Tuesday (20), it was the turn to leave the Google (Alphabet) behind.

The store that sells everything finished the day with a 2.7% rise on the Nasdaq stock exchange and a market value of $768 billion, while the owner of the tech giant Google was $761.4 billion and remained stable. Both companies fall behind the tech giant Apple, which is valued at $889.2 billion.

Last year has been very strong for Amazon: the company saw its stock rise 85% in the last 12 months, and 35% only in the early months of 2018. The good results made CEO Jeff Bezos overtake Bill Gates as the richest man of the world: it has a fortune estimated at $131.1 billion, ahead of the $91 billion of the founder of the tech giant Microsoft.

Good results from Amazon, according to CNBC, have been impacted by the cloud computing division. In 2017, Amazon Web Services revenue rose 43 percent, making Amazon the fifth largest enterprise software company in the world, behind the tech giant Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and SAP – the latter should be exceeded in 2019 if grow as they are.

So, what do you think about this? Simply share all your views and thoughts in the comment section below.

World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site (123movies) Is Officially

World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site (123movies) Is Officially Shutting Down: We all know very well that the web pages that allow downloading files (especially torrents) come and go frequently. Many of them are often forced to close for various reasons, however now according to the latest reports, world’s biggest pirate site is officially shutting down.

World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site ( Is Officially Shutting Down
Web pages that allow downloading files (especially torrents) come and go frequently. Many of them are often forced to close for various reasons, one of the most common that the audiovisual industry has focused on you, and I warn you with very serious legal repercussions if you do not close. This is what happened to 123movies.

123movies is forced to close due to industry pressures

As recently a few days ago we told you about 123movies, which had become the new king of piracy portals. The web had dethroned The Pirate Bay, which until now was the most popular after the closure of KickassTorrents. It had about 3.3 million daily visitors and operated with other names such as 123movieshub or Gomovies. The website announced a few hours ago that it will close later this week as they have published on their own website, under the following message:-

“We have been offering links to movies and series for years. Now is the time to say goodbye. Thank you for being our friends and thank you for being with us all that time. Postscript: please pay for movies and series. That is what we should do to show our respect to those who work by creating them.”

World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site ( Is Officially Shutting Down
World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site ( Is Officially Shutting Down
As we can see, this last sentence allows us to better understand the reason for closing this website. It is very likely that the industry had its eye on the web for some time, and in fact, the MPAA referred to it last week as “the most popular illegal website in the world”.

Along with this, they claimed that the website operated from Vietnam and that it has 98 million monthly visits. Last year, the US ambassador to Vietnam called on the country’s government to initiate a case against the web operator in his country of residence. The website was also on the “Notorious Markets” list, which includes the most popular pirate websites.

123movies allowed, basically, to see a great variety of movies and series streaming stored in Open-load or other similar servers. The web had been operating for three years, and in its short history had changed several times in name and domain to try to avoid the authorities. Now, there are only a few days left until it closes definitively.

Luckily, if you are one of those who value quality in the movies and series you watch, you probably avoided the web from the beginning, since the quality of the content they linked to was quite low. Also, when viewing videos the load is slow and full of ads (many of which link to malware). So what do you think about this? Simply share all your views and thoughts in the comment section below.

March 21, 2018

Device Tracks Your UV Exposure

The trickiest aspects of sun protection are realizing when you've had too much ultraviolet (UV) exposure and remembering when it's time to reapply sunscreen or go inside - before it's too late.

With this in mind, the experts at L'Oréal aimed to create a wearable sensor that could not only track the user's UVA and UVB exposure levels, but also go a step further and sync to an app in real time to keep the wearer informed. What they developed is called "UV Sense," a tiny adhesive electronic sensor that's pretty freaking cool.

"We set out to create something that blends problem-solving technology with human-centered design to reach even more consumers who require additional information about their UV exposure," Guive Balooch, Global Vice President of L’Oréal’s Technology Incubator, said in a press release.

a screenshot of a cell phone: This Tiny Device Tracks Your UV Exposure© L'Oréal This Tiny Device Tracks Your UV Exposure
To make it wearable and easy to incorporate into everyday life, the device is created with adhesive backing slips that can we worn for up to two weeks each. It's only 9 millimeters in diameter and easily fits on the user's thumbnail (like nail art), which is the best place for tracking exposure according to the brand. The sensor is battery-free, activated by UV light, and powered by the wearer's phone (compatible with iOS and Android). Basically, you're running out of excuses for not being safe in the sun.

Pricing is still being finalized, but the UV Sense will launch in the U.S. this summer and around the world in 2019. Visit for updates and more info and watch the video above to see it in action.

How to Know When It's Time to See a Doctor about flu

The flu may be a common (and generally harmless) illness, but in rare cases it can be deadly. So it's crucial to know how to listen to your body and seek medical attention if you're experiencing certain symptoms.

That's the message that Kyler Baughman's family wants to share after the 21-year-old died recently from flu-related complications.
Kyler Baughman was in great shape and was studying to become a personal trainer, his mom, Beverly Baughman, told WPIX. But when he came home to visit over the holidays, he didn’t look well. "We saw him the 23rd for our family Christmas get-together and we noticed he wasn't feeling well,” she said. “He looked run-down and had a bit of a snotty nose."

Kyler returned to work after Christmas but came home early because he wasn’t feeling well. "He kinda just laid down and went about his day and that was the day he was coughing and said his chest hurt, he had a mild cough," said his fiancée, Olivia Marcanio. "I think he thought, I just got the flu, I'll be all right. I'll go rest a little bit,'" Beverly Baughman said.

But Kyler began running a fever on and off, and within two days, he went to the emergency room. He died less than a day later from organ failure due to septic shock caused by the flu, Beverly Baughman told WPIX, adding that her son didn’t get a flu shot. “It doesn't seem real," she said.

Flu deaths aren’t common, but they happen more often than you’d think.
It’s hard to know exactly how many people die from the flu each year. That's partly because these deaths are often attributed to flu-related complications, such as pneumonia, sepsis, or heart failure, which means the flu may not actually be listed as the cause of death, the CDC says on its website.

But, according to recent CDC estimates, 7 percent of all deaths in the U.S. during the week of December 23, 2017, were related to pneumonia or the flu.

While anyone can get the flu, it’s rare for a young, otherwise healthy person to actually die from it. “Typically those that are most vulnerable to serious flu complications are older adults, very young children, pregnant women, and people with underlying health conditions,” Sherif Mossad, M.D., an infectious disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic, tells SELF. “It is very unlikely that a young, healthy person would die from the flu.”

Still, it can happen, and Kyler Baughman's story isn't the only one to make national news lately. In late November, Alani “Joie” Murrieta, a 20-year-old mother of two, died from complications of the flu, according to a GoFundMe page set up by her family to help pay for funeral expenses.

It’s hard to know why some young people end up with severe complications of the flu, infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, M.D., senior scholar at the John's Hopkins Center for Health Security, tells SELF. Some cases may be due to an overactive immune response to the virus—it can cause an extreme inflammatory response in the body and lead to sepsis, which is a life-threatening response to infection, Richard Watkins, M.D., an infectious disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General Hospital in Ohio, tells SELF. And it's possible that someone with a severe case of the flu or flu-related complications could interpret their symptoms as something they can recover from at home, delaying crucial medical attention.

The majority of flu cases will get better with rest and time, but it’s important to be aware that things can also get very serious.
Most people who come down with a mild case of the flu will be just fine after staying in bed for a while, Dr. Watkins says. But people with more severe symptoms and those who are at a higher risk for complications (because they have asthma or diabetes, for instance) should check in with their doctor. They may be prescribed an anti-viral medication, like Tamiflu, which can reduce your symptoms by one to two days and help prevent complications.

Tamiflu can also help with mild cases of the flu and it doesn’t hurt to call your doctor and ask for it, even if you suspect that your case of the flu isn’t overly serious. “I use it quite liberally,” Dr. Adalja says. “Even for mild cases, it can decrease symptoms and prevent complications.” Your doctor might even prescribe it over the phone, saving you a trip to their office and lowering the odds you’ll infect others, Dr. Adalja says.

The flu generally causes fever, chills, muscle aches, a cough, congestion, runny nose, and fatigue. But if you find that your symptoms are getting worse, you’re experiencing shortness of breath, or you have a fever that’s not responding to over-the-counter medications, it’s time to go to the ER, Dr. Adalja says.

While stories like these are tragic and terrifying, they're an important reminder to listen to your body.
“You’re going to hear about the severe cases of the flu,” Dr. Adalja says. “But it’s nothing to panic about.” What you should do is get your flu shot, if you haven’t already.

You may have heard that this year’s shot isn’t very effective at preventing cases of H3N2, the predominant strain of the flu circulating, but that doesn’t mean it can’t help at all. “The vaccine is not 100 percent effective, but those who get it and then get the flu generally have a less severe illness than those who did not get vaccinated,” Dr. Watkins says.

Slideshow: 15 simple ways to fend off colds and flu (Provided by Cheapism)

Flu deaths prompt warnings from victims'

It doesn't matter if you run marathons or play sports, when it comes to the flu, no one is completely immune.
That's the warning families of flu victims and health officials are hoping to spread throughout this year's flu season as the epidemic continues to plague the U.S.

The flu is now widespread in every state except Hawaii and it has claimed the lives of at least 20 children, according to the CDC's latest report. California is being hit particularly hard, with reports of at least 27 deaths of people under the age of 65 in the state since October.

The virus that's predominating this year is Influenza A (H3N2), and that tends to be more severe. It affects the elderly and the very young, epidemiologist Lynnette Brammer, who leads the CDC's Domestic Influenza Surveillance Team, told Fox News.

But the flu can hit anyone.

"Sadly, we hear every year of people that were previously healthy and active and they get influenza and die and for reasons we don’t understand," Brammer said. "[But] if you get sick and you're not getting your doctor."

Brammer says we're getting "pretty close" to the peak of flu season, but flu activity is likely to continue for several more weeks.

As the nation continues to fight the illness, some families are sharing their stories in hopes of preventing others from facing similar tragedies.

“We want to...make a change in some way,” Keila Lino, the mother of 12-year-old flu victim Alyssa Alcaraz, told Fox News. “It’s not fair. We know it’s not fair. We don’t want revenge. We want changes."

Read Lino's story and those of other victims lost this year because of the flu.

a couple of people posing for the camera: The flu claimed the lives of Alyssa Alcaraz, 12, (left) Nico Mallozzi, 10, (center) and Alani Murrieta, 20, (right), who were hospitalized and pronounced dead shortly after they were hospitalized.© Provided by Fox News The flu claimed the lives of Alyssa Alcaraz, 12, (left) Nico Mallozzi, 10, (center) and Alani Murrieta, 20, (right), who were hospitalized and pronounced dead shortly after they were hospitalized.
Nico Mallozzi, 10
Nico Mallozzi started feeling sick before participating in The Cup North American Championship hockey tournament in Buffalo, New York.

The 10-year-old from New Canaan, Conn., reportedly left the tournament early, and was later rushed to a hospital, where he died on Jan. 13.

The fourth-grader's death was a result of “Flu type B that was complicated by pneumonia,” a medical examiner confirmed to Fox 61 two days after the boy's death.

Dr. Bryan Luizzi, superintendent of New Canaan Public Schools, sent a letter home to parents memoralizing Mallozzi and urging students to get the flu vaccine recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC).

“Nico was a wonderful, enthusiastic, outgoing boy who was known school-wide for his high spirits, limitless energy and quick smile,” Luizzi wrote in the letter, which was posted on the school’s website Monday. “We will miss Nico terribly, and will always cherish our memories of him as a vibrant, fun-loving boy.”

Alyssa Alcaraz, 12
Four days before her death, Alyssa Alcaraz was diagnosed with the flu and sent home from a local urgent care with some nausea medicine and cough syrup.

But the 12-year-old girl's health continued to deteriorate over the next four days. She became lethargic and had trouble breathing.

Her mom, Keila Lino, took her back to urgent care, where she was told her oxygen levels were low and was transported to a nearby hospital.

Hours after arriving at the hospital, Alcaraz went into cardiac arrest and died on Dec. 17.

It wasn't until days later, that Lino learned her daughter's death was a result of septic shock from a strep infection in her blood – an infection she had no idea her daughter was suffering from.

“I know right now with the flu season clinics, hospitals, everyone is just busy and assuming that’s what everyone has,” Lino said. “But it’s more than that. In order for us to know, with simple blood work, it could have been caught. Something so simple.”

Alani Murrieta, 20
Alani Murrieta, a 20-year-old mother of two, died just one day after being diagnosed with the flu, family members told Fox 10.

The Arizona mom, who had a 2-year-old and 6-month-old, left work early after feeling sick.

“Monday she was still feeling sick, so her sister took her to urgent care, her and her kids,” Stephanie Gonzales, the woman’s aunt, told Fox 10. “They diagnosed them with the flu, sent her home with flu meds.”

The next day, Murietta took a turn for the worse. Her mom rushed her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with pneumonia, placed on a ventilator and pronounced dead within hours on Nov. 28.

“Never in a million years would we have thought we would have lost her that day like this,” Gonzales told the news outlet.

Kyler Baughman, 21
As an avid bodybuilder, a chiseled Kyler Baughman was the picture of health.

So, when the 21-year-old from Pittsburgh said he felt too sick to exercise, his family knew something was wrong.

Baughman came home early from work one night with a mild cough.

“He kinda just laid down and went about his day, and that was the day he was coughing and said his chest hurt,” his fiancée, Olivia Marcanio, told WXPI.

Nearly 48 hours later, Baughman was taken to the emergency room and airlifted to a nearby hospital, where he died of organ failure caused by septic shock from the flu, Baughman's family said.

Katie Denise Oxley Thomas, 40
With three kids, Katie Oxley Thomas was always running around. And on top of that, somehow the San Jose mother also squeezed in marathons and the occasional yoga session.

Her family never expected she would die from the flu.

"It was very shocking for us. We just thought she was going to leave the hospital in a couple of days and come home," Thomas' stepmother, Adrienne Oxley, told KTVU.

But on Jan. 4, just four days after she was diagnosed, Thomas died. Doctors said the flu lead to pneumonia, and Thomas' death was a result of septic shock.

"The one doctor said I've never seen anything progress like this. He said this is just incredible," Thomas' father, Walt, told the news station. "Most of us get the flu and recover from it and a handful of people every year don't. And you just don't think it's going to be your daughter. But you really want to take it serious."

Repeated hits, not concussions, behind neurodegenerative disease

The neurodegenerative disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy can start early and without any signs of concussion, according a study released Thursday.

cte explainer sanjay gupta orig mg_00005826.jpg© Provided by CNN cte explainer sanjay gupta orig mg_00005826.jpg
The Alzheimer's-like disease has been most commonly associated with former professional football players, but has also been detected in military veterans, including many who have been exposed to roadside bombs and other types of military blasts.

Previous studies have shown that repetitive hits to the head -- even without concussion -- can result in CTE, but scientists said this is the most definitive study to date to find this connection.

"Now we have both the scientific proof, the pathologies to support it, and all the evidence to show that concussion is not linked to long-term neurological disease," said Dr. Lee Goldstein, one of the authors on the study, published in the journal Brain.

Goldstein and his colleagues from Boston University evaluated the brains of four deceased athletes, ages 17 and 18 years old. All four had died within a day to four months of receiving some sort of sport-related head injury and had a history of playing football.

Brain changes detected by 24 hours
In all four brains, there were already changes to the brain that could be indicators of CTE, including leaky blood vessels and abnormal buildups of the protein tau.

Some of these changes in the brain occurred as early as 24 hours after injury. Goldstein said one of the cases could be diagnosed as early-stage CTE.

What researchers found under the microscope was striking, said Goldstein. "We're seeing the earliest pathology soon after one of these injuries," he said.

The four specimens were compared to brains from four other athletes of similar age who had not experienced any recent head trauma before death. The brains in this group had no changes in their pathology.

Concussion 'not telling you anything about the brain'
While it seems likely that the recent head injuries could be the source of the brain changes, Goldstein said, "we can infer it, but we can't prove it."

To try and understand the source of the changes, Goldstein and his colleagues mimicked the experiences of the human brains in mouse models, by exposing mice to repeated head trauma, like that in football, and single blast head trauma, similar to military combat.

The researchers found similar pathologies in both the mouse and human brains, regardless of the type of blast exposure they had experienced. Goldstein and his colleagues also measured the mice for concussion-like symptoms by testing their arousal and balance. They found that even without concussion, the mice exposed to the head trauma still exhibited changes in the brain.

Concussion is "not only not correlated, we can decouple it," said Goldstein. He said that concussion itself is not the injury, but rather the symptoms experienced from injury, such as memory impairment or loss of balance.

But not everyone experiences these symptoms, and so "by looking at concussion, it's not telling you anything about the brain or CTE," he added.

Using animal models and computer modeling, Goldstein and his partners were able to see progression of the disease, finding that as tau built up, it began to work its way through the brain.

Currently, the only way to diagnose CTE is with an autopsy after death. Researchers are working on finding biomarkers and other indicators to help detect it in the living, with further hope that such findings can help lead to potential treatments.

Goldstein said that while the new work advanced understanding of the mechanisms underlying CTE, it's not clear how frequently people experience these types of changes in the brain. "We don't know how to weight the information," he said.

'It starts early. It persists'
"I think [this research] really reinforces, as we have suspected, [the idea] that it's not concussion per se, it's the exposure to multiple head impacts," said Dr. Julian Bailes, the director of neurosurgery and co-director of NorthShore University HealthSystem Neurological Institute, who was not involved in the study. Bailes was one of the first researchers to connect repeated head trauma to neurological damage in football players.

A recent evaluation from Boston University's CTE Center, of which Goldstein is a part of, found that 110 of 111 former NFL players had been diagnosed with the disease. However, there is a potential bias, as many of the studied brains came from players who experienced clinical CTE symptoms when living, such as memory loss, rage and mood swings.

In addition, scientists are also trying to unravel the role other factors play in the disease -- factors such as genetics, how early someone is exposed to head trauma, and how long they've been exposed to trauma.

While it's not clear how common CTE is, Goldstein said the brains examined in the new study are a warning.

"CTE develops early, soon after injury. It doesn't take years, or decades. It starts early. It persists. And all of our evidence to date shows it's progressive."

Goldstein hopes policy makers, professional players and parents heed the warning that CTE can develop early -- and that focus on concussions doesn't reduce the risk. Instead he said it was important to focus on ways about how to reduce total overall exposure to repeated hits, such as limiting head-to-head contact.

"Most hits to the head are not concussive ... but no one is paying any attention to them," said Goldstein.

But, he remains optimistic for the future of football.

"You can play football differently. There are all sorts of ways to do it more safely," he said.

Related video: What is CTE?

Loneliness is deadlier than obesity or smoking

Britain has appointed a minister for loneliness to take forward the work of murdered lawmaker Jo Cox and tackle the isolation felt by more than one in 10 people in the UK.

Sports minister Tracey Crouch will take on the new role, in addition to her existing job, and develop a strategy to address the problem, which research has linked with dementia, early mortality and high blood pressure.

Past studies have found chronic loneliness to be more life-threatening than obesity and smoking. Psychologists have come to call the global trend of isolationism a "loneliness epidemic."

"We should all do everything we can to see that, in Jo's memory, we bring an end to the acceptance of loneliness for good," British Prime Minister Theresa May said in a statement. "For far too many people, loneliness is the sad reality of modern life."

Cox was murdered by a right-wing extremist in 2016, after being in parliament for little more than a year.

The majority of people over 75 live alone, and about 200,000 older people in the UK have not had a conversation with a friend or relative in more than a month, according to government data.

Most doctors in Britain see between one and five patients a day who have come in mainly because they are lonely, according to the Campaign to End Loneliness, a network tackling the health threat that isolation poses to the elderly.

The Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness, which the 41-year-old lawmaker set up shortly before her death, had called for a minister to be appointed to lead action on the issue.

"Jo would be over the moon," her husband, Brendan Cox tweeted.

Crouch's appointment follows other steps Britain has taken toward combatting loneliness. Five years ago, the first Silver Line center opened, giving lonely senior citizens a hotline to call when they want to socialize. Collectively, the centers receive more than 10,000 calls a week.

More than 3,000 volunteers work at the Silver Line, and many make follow-up calls to people battling the most extreme cases of loneliness.