The human biome is in the news quite a bit lately, and deservedly so. But here is some new information: we also have a virome, and it is just as quirky, complex, fascinating, and necessary to human health. Here is an excellent technical description that is well worth reading even if it challenges our ability to fully understand the science:
I woke up this morning thinking about gratitude. As I lay in bed ruminating, I realized that over the years I had changed from seeing the glass half empty to seeing it half full. This metaphor for how our over-all frame of mind affects not only what we see, but how we feel about what we perceive, is also germane to how our immune system works. Our minds, emotions, thoughts are not discreet entities with only a passing acquaintance with our physical bodies. What we believe really does affect our health and the strength of our immune system.
There is a story about the placebo effect that I read years ago: a doctor was telling a patient who had a large number of warts that he, the doctor, had a brand new treatment to offer. The doctor then placed the patient in a room with a big piece of equipment, turned on a switch, and said, there we go, no more warts. A few days later the warts were gone. That miracle of belief is precious. So are all the blessings each one of us is surrounded by. May you and all your loved ones enjoy a happy, safe, and healthy Thanksgiving.