February 18, 2010
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ON THE PERSONAL SIDE

Sherri Lewis Let Thy Food Be Thy Medicine: An '80s Pop Diva Talks About Living Healthy With HIV
"Conscious, healthy eating ... empowered me during a period where I felt powerless due to the lack of effective drug therapies," says Sherri Lewis of her early years living with HIV. Now, more than two decades after her HIV diagnosis, the '80s pop star is still singing to her veggies. In her debut blog for TheBody.com, Sherri celebrates an organization in her area that delivers healthy food to HIVers who need it. (Blog from TheBody.com)


Dr. Bob Dr. Bob on HIV: Chronic, Yes; Manageable, Not So Much
"While I freely admit that many of us who are virally enhanced no longer feel we have one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel, I wonder: Do we really have a 'chronic, manageable condition?'" asks HIV-positive physician Bob Frascino, M.D., aka "Dr. Bob" from TheBody.com's "Ask the Experts" forums. In his newest blog entry, Dr. Bob looks at the problems that some HIVers deal with every day: debilitating body shape changes, stigma, "sonic blast" gas and diarrhea -- things that can make HIV much harder to manage than many might like to believe. (Blog from TheBody.com)


Philip D. Someone Saved My Life Tonight: Philip D. Recounts the Hours Before His HIV Diagnosis
As he waited for his final HIV test results two years ago, Philip D. was drawn to, of all places, the public library. "I wanted to pass that time with the brother I never met," he says. So, in the three hours before he learned he was definitely HIV positive, Philip read the works of his favorite columnist, who had died of AIDS-related complications in 1995 -- and whose memory inspired Philip to begin blogging on TheBody.com. (Blog from TheBody.com)


The Latest Posts at TheBody.com's Blog Central
Blog Central at TheBody.com is hopping! In addition to the blog entries we've highlighted above, be sure to give these recent posts a read:

Marc KolmanMarc Kolman: Stigma Struggles in the Rural Southern U.S. (posted Feb. 16)
"The rural South is in the Bible Belt ... You don't talk much about things you're 'not supposed' to be doing."

Scott SimpsonScott Simpson: My First Triathlon: Passion Stomps Ego (posted Feb. 16)
"As a former fat bastard, pack-a-day-plus smoker and party animal extraordinaire, my initial foray into the world of competitive athletics was inauspicious, to say the least."

Magnetic MamaMagnetic Mama: Ready or Not, Here I Go! (posted Feb. 4)
"A few weeks ago I departed from South Africa and with it left behind ... my job, my husband and the life I'd been accustomed to over the last five years."

Gary BellGary Bell: Don't Believe the Hype (posted Jan. 19)
"The troubling thing about [HIV/AIDS conspiracy] theories is ... that many of us are so willing to believe in theories and claims with so little basis in fact."


HIV TREATMENT & HEALTH ISSUES

Myles Helfand Will the Latest Major HIV/AIDS Conference Provide More Questions Than Answers?
This week, 4,000 of the top minds in HIV/AIDS have gathered in San Francisco to share the latest breaking research on how to treat HIV and address the health problems associated with HIV and HIV meds. But will this hot new research provide solutions to some of today's most vexing problems, or will it just raise more questions? Our editorial director, Myles Helfand, offers some opening thoughts as the conference gets underway. (Blog from TheBodyPRO.com)

Throughout this week and the rest of this month, we'll bring you wide-ranging coverage of this major HIV/AIDS research meeting, which is commonly called CROI. Visit our CROI 2010 home page frequently for the latest blogs, study summaries and highlights from this important conference!


Tiger The Culture Gap: An HIV-Positive Immigrant to the U.S. Tells Her Tale
When HIV-positive immigrant Awilde told her new U.S. doctor that she heard "tigers" outside her window, she was put in a psychiatric hospital. Eventually she found out the reason: Her provider had no clue that "tigers" was a local term for young men in her hometown, and thought she was hallucinating. Her story highlights how easy it is for HIV doctors in the U.S. to mistreat immigrants due to simple gaps in communication. (Article from ACRIA and GMHC)


 What Do I Need to Know About Immunizations?
The flu shot may be the most talked-about immunization that's recommended for people with HIV, but it's not the only type of vaccine that should be on the radar. This quick fact sheet runs through a few of those important immunizations that are recommended for people with HIV and discusses when you should get them, what their side effects may be, and what vaccines you should avoid. (Article from AIDSInfo)


More Treatment/Health Headlines:


Connect With Others
My CD4 Count Is 5, but I'm a Lucky Man
(A recent post from the "I Just Tested Positive" board)

"On January 25 I was diagnosed HIV positive and classified an AIDS patient. They told me my CD4 count was 5. I was floored. It felt like my mind was trying to escape from my body to run away from this. Even worse, I had to tell my wife she needed to get tested. I begged her to forgive me for killing us both and I begged her not to leave me. She stayed strong for me and said she wouldn't. The next morning, by some miracle, she tested negative, which allowed us to breathe a little bit.

"Now, almost a month after, I am still anxious. However, I am fortunate. My wife, my parents, her family, our friends -- they all have been extremely supportive. ... It's hard now, but I know with them behind me, I can take this thing head on and live. After all, I'll be damned if my mother has to bury me." -- thespoonybard

Click here to join this discussion, or to start your own!

To do this, you'll need to register with TheBody.com's bulletin boards if you're a new user. Registration is quick and anonymous (all you need is an e-mail address) -- click here to get started!



HIV IN THE NEWS

Anthony Fauci, M.D. HIV/AIDS Research Should Focus More Heavily on Ending the Pandemic, NIAID Director Says
"Treatment alone in a vacuum is not the paradigm that's going to get our arms around HIV," said Anthony Fauci, M.D., at a major HIV/AIDS research conference this week. Fauci's not just any old speaker: He's the top dog at NIAID, the driving force behind U.S. government-supported HIV/AIDS research. And he's proposing that, nearly 30 years into the pandemic, it's time for federally funded research to renew its focus on the end game: finding a way to beat HIV once and for all. (Article from TheBodyPRO.com)


More News Headlines:



HIV TRANSMISSION

 Study Finds That Abstinence-Only Programs Might Actually Work -- but With Some Big "Ifs"
For years now, there has been virtually no sign that abstinence-only programs can help reduce unprotected sex among U.S. teens. A recent study finally gave fans of the approach a reason to cheer, but there are some major caveats to the findings. For instance, the successful program didn't disparage condoms, and it argued for abstinence using logic, not moral or religious arguments. (Article from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)


 HIV Floats Freely in Semen, Study of HIV-Positive Gay Men Finds
U.S. researchers have made a discovery about HIV in semen that may help shed more light on how HIV is transmitted -- and, in turn, how to block it from spreading from person to person during unprotected sex. (Article from kaisernetwork.org)






Activist Central

 HIV Research Catalyst Forum: Apply for a Scholarship by Feb. 19!


 Tell Congress to Finish U.S. Health Care Reform


 Learn About the Earthquake in Haiti and HIV/AIDS -- and How You Can Help


 Help Stop Dangerous Ugandan Parliament Legislation


 Play in a Bid Whist Tournament in Your Area; Raise HIV/AIDS Awareness and Funds!