News Sept 2013 Vaccines Zpse49b9070.jpg

Is a flu vaccine right for your family?

In preparation for flu season, conventional methods of dealing with the virus are beginning to hit the market. We hope you’ll find this article helpful in sorting through the facts and controversies surrounding the flu vaccine. Every year, a new vaccine is formulated with 3 strains of flu viruses that researchers have determined are to be the most prevalent. The Center for Disease Control recommends that everyone over the age of 6 receive a flu shot, and especially the elderly and those with chronic illnesses or a weakened immune system.

The CDC says the vaccine doesn’t work in every case

Two factors that determine its effectiveness”
1. A person’s state of health | healthy immune systems respond better to the vaccine.
2. The strains of the virus included in the formulation | The flu vaccine targets only the three most prevalent strains of flu but there are actually many other types of viruses that circulate during flu season, so “it’s possible no benefit from flu vaccination may be observed.” Few studies have been conducted on new vaccine formulas, resulting in reports of adverse effects, especially for pregnant women. Also, very few longitudinal studies have been conducted to determine the long-term effect of vaccine use.

Essentially, our public health policy embraces a form of flu prevention they cannot guarantee is safe or effective

It is why Naturopathic Medicine focuses on strengthening the body’s immune system as a standard flu prevention method. It is the single most effective method to prevent infection from ALL the viruses (not just the three most common), to be safe and effective for all family members, and to avoid negative side effects.

Whatever you decide to do for your family, everyone benefits from fighting the flu naturally:

1. Basic Hygiene. Wash hands frequently, especially after visiting public places. Cover your mouth when coughing and sneezing.

2. Get More Sleep. Improper rest puts unnecessary stress on the body and lowers immunity. Sleep is when your body repairs itself.

3. Increase Vitamin C. Foods such as kiwi, grapes, strawberries, and oranges are rich antioxidants which boost immunity.

4. Increase Vitamin A. The health and integrity of the mucous membranes,benefit from foods such as carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach and kale.

5. Drink Herbal Tea. Red clover, echinacea, lemon and honey, or other commercially available cold/flu formulas help fortify the immune system. Green tea, high in antioxidants, strengthens T-cells (the body’s primary defense against infections).

6. Increase Vitamin E. It boosts immunity and enables T-cells to fight infection. E rich foods include almonds, sunflower seeds, butter and egg yolks.

7. Supplement Vitamin D. Japanese researchers found that school aged children taking 1200 IU of Vitamin D per day had a 42% lower risk of contracting the flu than children taking a placebo. Vitamin D has increasingly been shown to be one of the most effective ways to prevent illness.

8. Homeopathic Remedies. Homeopathic Remedies, such as Oscillococcinum, can be helpful in relieving flu-like symptoms, such as fever, chills, body aches and pains.