Covid antibodies


Roundup: Nearly Everyone in U.S. Over Age 16 has COVID Antibodies; Serious Eye Condition Among Diabetics is Prevalent; and More News

CDC: 1-in-4 in U.S. Still Not Infected by COVID by end of 2022, But Virtually Everyone has Antibodies

Nearly 1 in 4 U.S. adults and older teens had still not been infected with COVID-19 by the end of 2022, according to new data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). However, virtually every person aged 16 and older — 96.7 percent — carried antibodies from either a COVID vaccination, surviving the virus itself, or a combination of infection and vaccine, the CDC said.

The estimates from the CDC are based on the final calculation stemming from the agency's studies of antibodies in U.S. individuals, aged 16 and older.

Looking at specific age groups, the CDC found a wide gap in those with prior infections. Older adults saw the smallest share of those with at least one prior COVID infection, or 56.5 percent of people ages 65 and older. Young adults and teens had the highest rates of those with a previous infection: 87.1 percent of those aged 16 to 29.

Carrying antibodies from a prior COVID infection does not completely protect people from being re-infected with COVID, the CDC emphasizes. While "hybrid" immunity from both an infection and vaccination offers the best protection from serious illness, the effect of immunity from antibodies diminishes over time.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in April authorized an additional COVID-19 booster shot for older Americans and those with weakened immune systems. Adults 65 years and older can get their second updated booster shot four months after their initial booster shot.

Diabetic Retinopathy, a Leading Cause of Blindness, is More Prevalent Than Previously Thought, Research Finds

Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is an eye condition that can cause vision loss and blindness in people who have diabetes. It affects blood vessels in the retina (the light-sensitive layer of tissue in the back of your eye)

Nearly 10 million people with diabetes in the U.S. have diabetic retinopathy, or eye damage as a result from the disease, new research shows. This prevalence is much higher than the previous estimate in 2004, which found 4.1 million people were diagnosed with the eye disease, according to a new study published in JAMA Ophthalmology.

DR is a growing problem In the U.S. and worldwide as the number of people living with diabetes increases.  In early stages, DR may not have any symptoms or changes to eyesight. If not detected and treated in a timely manner, a diabetic's vision may be damaged permanently.

The new study concludes: "These updated estimates on the burden and geographic distribution of diabetes-related eye disease can be used to inform the allocation of public health resources and interventions to communities and populations at highest risk."

Researchers reviewed data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vision and Eye Health Surveillance System and data from the U.S. Census Bureau. They estimated that in 2021, about 9.6 million individuals (or 26 percent of people with diabetes) had DR. The researchers found that 1.84 million people, or about 5 percent of people with diabetes, had vision-threatening forms of diabetic retinopathy. This compares to the previous estimate— from 2004 — that found 4.1 million diabetics were living with DR and 899,000 people had a vision-threatening form of the eye disease.

Study: Intermittent Fasting can be as Effective as Calorie-Counting for Up to a Year

Time-restricted eating, more commonly known as intermittent fasting, produced comparable weight loss and improved insulin sensitivity among obese individuals, compared to a more traditional calorie-counting diet, according to a University of Illinois at Chicago study published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine.

Time-restricted eating refers to a specific window of time, often about six to eight hours. Some research has indicated that this practice can be successful for weight loss in the short term, but it's unclear how well it works over a longer period of time.

Over the course of a year, participants in the time-restricted eating group in the new study consumed fewer calories and lost more pounds than those who did not alter their eating habits.

"We really wanted to see if people can lose weight with this over a year. Can they maintain the weight loss?" says Krista Varady, a professor of nutrition at the University of Illinois Chicago, who led the new study, in a statement to "The key take-away is that you can basically achieve the same amount of energy restriction by counting time instead of counting calories."

The amount of weight loss was not significant— about 5 percent of body weight — but researchers said the results indicate that time-restricted eating can help some lose weight over a longer period of time than previously thought.

The study found that intermittent fasting can help some lose weight and keep it off over the course of a year, with similar effects to traditional diets that track calories without any periods of fasting.

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