In 2015, the CDC recorded more than 1.5 million new cases of chlamydia, nearly 400,000 cases of gonorrhea and nearly 24,000 cases of syphilis, the three most common STDs. In California, there were nearly 200,000 new cases of chlamydia, nearly 54,000 cases of gonorrhea and nearly 5,000 cases of syphilis. The syphilis rate of infection was nearly twice that of the national average, according to the new data.

The 2015 data show:

  • Americans ages 15 to 24 years old accounted for nearly two-thirds of chlamydia diagnoses and half of gonorrhea diagnoses.
  • Men who have sex with men (MSM) accounted for the majority of new gonorrhea and P&S syphilis cases (82 percent of male cases with known gender of sex partner). Antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea may be higher among MSM.
  • Women’s rate of syphilis diagnosis increased by more than 27 percent from 2014 to 2015. Reported congenital syphilis (which occurs when the infection is transmitted from a pregnant woman to her baby) increased by 6 percent. Women still account for less than 10 percent of new P&S syphilis infections.

Teens and young adults ages 15 to 24 account for nearly two-thirds of diagnosed cases of chlamydia and half of gonorrhea cases.

Chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis are curable with antibiotics. Widespread access to screening and treatment would reduce their spread. Most STD cases continue to go undiagnosed and untreated, putting individuals at risk for severe and often irreversible health consequences, including infertility, chronic pain and increased risk for HIV. STDs also impose a substantial economic burden: CDC estimates STD cases cost the U.S. healthcare system nearly $16 billion each year.

State and local data from the STD survey, according to the CDC:

Chlamydia Cases Rate per 100K
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 68,285 514.9
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 20,778 467.8
Sacramento-Roseville-Arden-Arcade, CA 10,621 473.2
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 17,378 532.5
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 23,519 511.9
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA 6,898 353.2
California (State ranked 17th) 189,170 487.5
U.S. Total 1,526,658 478.8
Gonorrhea Cases Rate per 100K
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 19,867 149.8
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 4,904 110.4
Sacramento-Roseville-Arden-Arcade, CA 3,317 147.8
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 3,691 113.1
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 9,330 203.1
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA 1,857 95.1
California (State ranked 14th) 54,135 139.5
U.S. Total 395,216 123.9
Primary and Secondary Syphilis Cases Rate per 100K
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 1,832 13.8
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 341 7.7
Sacramento-Roseville-Arden-Arcade, CA 265 11.8
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 493 15.1
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 830 18.1
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA 134 6.9
California (State ranked third) 4,908 12.6
U.S. Total 23,872 7.5


  • New research suggests shaving your pubic hair may increase your risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease (STD) known as molluscum contagiosum
  • The number of cases of molluscum contagiosum have risen along with rates of pubic hair removal; among 30 patients observed at a private skin care clinic, nearly all of them had removed their pubic hair, the vast majority by shaving
  • Shaving or waxing can cause irritation and micro-trauma to your skin that increases your risk of contracting a viral infection
  • The virus may also spread through self-infection caused by scratching skin irritated by shaving

The finding supports the researchers theory that hairless genitals may provide an opportunity for sexually transmitted diseases like molluscum to take hold, with shaving showing the strongest association.

Molluscum contagiosum is spread easily, and the researchers suggested the virus may have spread primarily through self-infection caused by scratching skin irritated by shaving. Other skin issues were also noted among the study participants, which may also have been related to the pubic hair removal. These included:

  • Warts (the researchers suggested shaving your pubic hair may also increase the risk of genital warts caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV))
  • Bacterial skin infections
  • Scars
  • Ingrown hairs

Micronutrients and Multivitamins Delay HIV Progression

One study found, for instance, that whey protein supplementation raises CD4 cell counts in people with HIV.10 Neem leaf has also been found to increase CD4 levels in HIV and AIDS patients,11 and so has selenium.12 Natural substances work against HIV via other mechanisms as well. Epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, is a component of green tea that inhibits the progression of HIV by binding itself to the exact spot HIV needs to infect a healthy T-cell, a kind of white blood cell crucial to fighting infections.13

Fruit and vegetable concentrates containing polyphenols have also been shown to benefit HIV patients,14 as has curcumin, which may help treat HIV-associated diarrhea, weight loss and abdominal pain.15 Other natural compounds that have shown promise against HIV include:16

HIV infection is known to cause damage to your gastrointestinal tract, where about 80 percent of your immune system resides. Research suggests that consuming beneficial bacteria known as probiotics may help to lower risks of infection and inflammation in HIV patients and even enhanced gastrointestinal immune function.

Cinnamon Elderberry Sumac
Licorice Spirulina American ginseng
Korean ginseng Lemon juice and lemongrass Tea tree
Olive leaf extract Pomegranate Carnosic acid in rosemary

Similarly, the new study found that HIV-positive people who took multivitamins (B vitamins and vitamins C and E) and selenium fared much better than those who did not.

Compared to the placebo group, those taking both a daily multivitamin and selenium were half as likely to have drops in CD4 immune cells to levels that would typically be treated with anti-HIV drugs.6 Further, those taking the supplement combination were also half as likely to develop or die from AIDS.

The researchers concluded that the multivitamin-selenium combination, when taken for 24 months, was safe and significantly reduced the risk of immune decline and morbidity, noting that it “may be effective when started in the early stages of HIV disease.” As reported in the study:

Micronutrient deficiencies, known to influence immune function, are prevalent even before the development of symptoms of HIV disease and are associated with accelerated HIV disease progression. Micronutrient supplementation has improved markers of HIV disease progression (CD4 cell count, HIV viral load) and mortality in clinical trials…

The B vitamins, vitamins C and E, and the trace element selenium are essential nutrients necessary for maintaining a responsive immune system. Selenium may also have an important role in preventing HIV replication.”

Bolster a positive immune response, which will help to ward off infections and chronic disease.

  • Focus on eating more immune-boosting foods, including mushrooms, leafy greens, fermented foods, whey protein, and coconut oil, Vitamin C.
  • Get proper sleep.
  • Minimize stress using the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or other stress-management tools.
  • Optimize your vitamin D levels (vitamin D deficiency is common among those with HIV18).
  • Exercise.

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