natural supplements even more impressive as effectiveness of  Merck's COVID antiviral molnupiravir drops to 30%

In the UK, Merck’s antiviral pill became the first drug approved for the treatment of COVID. The media calls it a “game changer.” The pill is now nearing approval in the US. But new data shows that it is less effective than Merck originally claimed. Several safe, inexpensive natural supplements have shown results in published studies that are better than the drug. The new data suggests they are even better still.

When Merck first heralded the results of their new COVID antiviral pill, molnupiravir, we coauthored an article with leading natural health expert Michael Murray, showing that a number of natural supplements are as good or better at reducing hospitalization and death from COVID and that they may be more effective in people already hospitalized with severe disease.

But when we wrote that article, Merck’s unpublished data showed a 48% reduced risk of hospitalization in people with mild to moderate symptoms and at least one risk factor for poor disease outcome, like obesity, old age, diabetes or heart disease.

But now there is updated data showing that the claimed 48% effectiveness has plummeted. The New York Times has reported that the new data from a clinical trial found only 30% efficacy.  As The Hill reported, “The drug manufacturer filed for an emergency use authorization last month after its study suggested molnupiravir reduced the risk of hospitalization by 50 percent. But updated data from Friday showed a 30 percent reduction in hospitalizations among more participants.”

The new data makes the gap between molnupiravir and the natural supplements, including vitamin D, vitamin C, quercetin, black seed oil and melatonin, even wider and the results for the supplements even more impressive and exciting.

On December 1, molnupiravir passed its first approval hurdle when the FDA’s Antimicrobial Drugs Advisory Committee recommended its Emergency Use Authorization. But the margin of victory, as The New York Times reported, was “surprisingly narrow.” The COVID pill cleared the committee by a vote of only 13-10.

Why was it so close? Because as committee member Dr. David Hardy, who voted to approve the pill, said, “there is a need for something like this,” while conceding that “the efficacy of this product is not overwhelmingly good.”

The committee also expressed concern over the safety of molnupiravir, a problem that does not exist for the safe, natural supplements. Dr. Sankar Swaminathan, one of the ten votes against, said, “The risk of widespread effects on potential birth defects, especially delayed effects on the male, have not been adequately studied.”

Merck might quietly share that concern. During the meeting, according to reporting by The Hill, they recommended “that people who are pregnant or breastfeeding do not take the pills due to potential risks, including possible toxicity and birth defects.” They further suggested that “women of childbearing age use contraception while receiving molnupiravir.”

What will it take for someone to recommend vitamin D or one of the many other natural supplements that research suggests are safe and increasingly effective in comparison to Merck’s “game changing” antiviral?

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