The flu, fear and reality

My teleseminar series, “Profound Paths to Health, Healing and Happiness” is dedicated to empowering you to create your own path to health. To this end, I am writing to you today to empower you with some information about taking care of yourself and your family’s health this winter, and to dis-empower some of the myths and lies that are flying around in this climate of fear about the swine flu and seasonal flu.

As a Clinical Nutritionist and Chiropractor, I have a lot of clients with concerns about the flu, and even more about the flu vaccines. Here is what I share with my clients. You are welcome to pass this along to your friends and family.

The flu is certainly an unpleasant illness, but it is largely preventable and rarely fatal. The truth of the popular statistic that 36,000 people die from influenza each year is actually that around 35,000 of those deaths are from pneumonia, usually secondary bacterial pneumonia, in people with underlying immune or respiratory problems. Hardly an epidemic that warrants using un-proven vaccines on the whole population!

PREVENTION IS BEST. People with healthy immune systems rarely have problems dealing with seasonal viruses. If your immune system is compromised, there are still things you can do to protect yourself.

1- REMEMBER THAT FEAR IS MORE CONTAGIOUS AND DEADLY THAN ANY VIRUS. Listen to your body and bathe it in love, safety and happiness. Visualize health and balance in your immune system and your entire body. Be fearless. Listen to our speakers and other wise teachers for inspiration and guidance and above all, honor your intuition and your inner wisdom.

2- MINIMIZE EXPOSURE TO VIRUSES. Stay away from people who are visibly sick. Don’t use other people’s pens, phones, and don’t shake hands! Wash your hands with soap and water after handling money (very germy stuff!) shopping carts, doorknobs, public bathrooms, etc.

3- DO NOT TOUCH YOUR EYES, NOSE OR MOUTH if your hands are not clean! These viruses get into your system through eyes, nose and mouth.

4- DON’T LET THE VIRUS TAKE HOLD IN YOUR SYSTEM. It takes 2-3 days for the viruse to propagate in your system. Daily cleansing of your nose with a Neti pot, Lavage or other nasal douche system cleans viruses out of your nasal passages before they can dig in and multiply. Gargling daily with warm salt water and drinking lots of hot teas clears them out of your throat. Tears contain immune cells that help prevent viral infections.

5- SUPPORT YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM -eat a healthy, whole foods diet; eat plenty of protein, get lots of antioxidants from colorful vegetables and fruits, avoid sugar and excessive caffeine

-drink at least 8 glasses of water a day -take a good multivitamin and extra Vitamin C, Zinc, A, D and fish oils

-get plenty of sleep; your immune system restores itself during deep sleep (for help, try my mp3 “Restful Sleep, Healing Sleep”)

-take immune supporting supplements such as olive leaf, echinacea, garlic, cordyceps, astragulus, colostrum, probiotics and monolaurin.

6- OPTIMIZE YOUR VITAMIN D LEVELS. Have your 25-OH Vit. D levels tested, optimal levels are now recommended to be 60-80ng/ml. Many doctors will tell you you are fine if your level is above 30. This is not high enough according to the most up to date research. Most people need a minimum of 2000-4000 I.U. of Vitamin D3 per day just to maintain their levels. To raise your Vitamin D levels, if you cannot get it from regular sun exposure without sunscreen, (which those of us far from the equator cannot during winter months) you may need a much higher intake.

7- MANAGE YOUR STRESS. Breathing exercises, meditation, relaxation, imagery, fun and love support your immune function. Listen to your body!

ACT QUICKLY AT THE FIRST SIGN OF ILLNESS

-Consider homeopathic Oscillococcinum. If you feel like you are coming down with the flu, or if you are exposed to someone with the flu directly, you can take one dose 3 times a day for two-three days or until your symptoms are improved. You can also consider one half to one vial once or twice a week throughout the winter as a preventative measure.

-Consider natural antimicrobial and immune supporting supplements (olive leaf, garlic, oregano oil, grapefruit seed extract, colostrum, monolaurin, probiotics)

-Increase your Vitamin C, A, Zinc and water

-Explore herbal or homeopathic cold and flu remedies. Homeopathic remedies work best when taken at the first sign of illness, and taken frequently in the beginning.

-Fever is the body’s way of increasing immune system activity. Unless you have a high fever, let your body work naturally whenever possible, rather than suppressing it. The exception to this is for young children who’s fevers must be monitored closely as they can rise to dangerous levels.

-Colds and flus are caused by viruses, not bacteria. Antibiotics only kill bacteria and therefore do nothing for a viral infection. Avoid antibiotics unless your doctor has determined that you have developed a secondary bacterial infection. The unnecessary use of antibiotics weakens your system and makes you more susceptible to further illnesses.

THERE IS A GREAT DEAL OF CONTROVERSY ABOUT THE VALUE OF FLU VACCINES. Each year’s vaccine is developed based on a projection of what virus will be circulating that year. Viruses mutate very rapidly, so many years, the virus has changed by the time the vaccine is made, and the vaccine is useless. There are potential dangers in being repeatedly injected with the mercury and aluminum compounds that may be used in the vaccines, and some studies have looked at possible links between repeated vaccinations and increased incidence of Alzheimer’s. A recent review of studies showed that the flu vaccines are NOT effective in preventing the flu or “influenza-like illness” or pneumonia in the elderly population. (Efficacy and Effectiveness of Influenza Vaccines in Elderly People: A Systematic Review. The Lancet, October 1, 2005.)

The recommendation that everyone get a yearly flu shot definitely benefits the drug companies that make the vaccines, not necessarily the people who get them. Do your own research and make your own choices.

Yours in health and peace,

Carol

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