With Halloween and Thanksgiving comes the beginning of what’s been called “Sugar Season”, an onslaught of sugar-filled holidays running through Easter. Not coincidentally, this timeframe runs parallel to Cold and Flu Season – and with good reason as sugar, in all its many forms – cakes, pies, cookies, rolls, pasta, pastries, candies – and yes, alcohol is heavy in many holiday diets. Excess sugars don’t just lead to more pounds around the waist – they also have a debilitating effect on our immune system and feed the bad bacteria in our gut which can lead to infections. Combined with colder temperatures, less sunlight, drinking less water, holiday stress (!) and increased exposure to sick people all around you spreading infectious germs – this is a very challenging time of year to stay healthy and avoid sickness .
Always about this time, we are bombarded with ads and enticements to protect ourselves from “the flu” (as if there’s only one flu virus) by getting vaccinated with the flu shot. Whether its on TV or radio, at the drugstore, by our doctor, or at the office, we are told that if we want to stay well we must “get the shot”. In some cases we are encouraged, sometimes we’re bribed, and in some cases we are intimidated and coerced into “getting the shot” – this is especially true for healthcare workers.
The CDC has been caught repeatedly making false claims that hundreds of thousands of people end up in the hospital annually as a result of the flu, and that about 36,000 of them die from flu-related complications. Actually, only a few dozen people at most die every year as a direct result of flu infection — the rest of the deaths lumped into the “flu” category are actually attributable to pneumonia, which is often a result of a severely compromised immune system. And in some cases, weakened immunity caused by the flu shot itself is responsible for deaths blamed on flu infection.
So how effective is the flu shot? According to a 2012 a study out of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, at best, the flu shot has a measly 1.5 percent effectiveness rate – that is, for every 100 people vaccinated with a flu shot, only 1.5 of them will avoid getting the flu.
We are constantly told that those with weaker immune systems who are more susceptible to catching the flu, namely, seniors and children, are the ones who need flu shots most of all. However, A 2008 study conducted by the Group Health Center for Health Studies in Seattle and reported in The Lancet explained that the flu shot was largely ineffective for seniors due to their weakened immune systems being unable to respond. The study further questioned the purported efficacy of flu shots due to the fact that those more likely to vaccinate were also those who already took greater care of themselves! The authors of the study also specifically noted that “influenza vaccination was not associated with a reduced risk of community-acquired pneumonia.” – which is widely regarded as consisting of roughly 95% of those deaths annually attributed to the flu by the CDC!
In short – if you have a weakened immune system and need protection against the flu, the flu shot won’t help you because of your weakened immune system!
Dr. Edward Belongia of the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation in Wisconsin has reported that according to his research the more often children get flu shots on an annual basis, the more likely they are to get the flu.
Last year the CDC itself estimated that the flu shot was only 23% effective! Why? Well, every year when the CDC gathers its top experts to decide on the makeup of the annual flu vaccine, they have to choose which three particular strains they think will be prevalent for that year. Huh? Little did you know that the “scientific” CDC was also into making forecasting and predictions. So one problem with flu shots from the beginning is, you will never know if the vaccine contains the necessary strain of flu virus that you may be exposed to during flu season.
This leads to another problem – the feeling of overconfidence by someone who gets a flu shot that can make them feel like they are being fully protected against viruses. This may cause some people to be less careful about taking precautions with hygiene, their lifestyle choices, and with exposure to others they know are already sick.
Flu shots are known to be immune-suppressants. Several studies have also shown that those getting the flu shot on an annual basis are more likely to get the flu. This was proven again during the Swine Flu “epidemic” of 2010. Even though many people come down with the flu immediately after getting the shot, vaccine makers actually insist that these are just “flu-like symptoms” and not the flu itself!
There are additional concerns to flu vaccines. When the antibodies created by the flu shot come into contact with the flu virus, a new more dangerous form of virus can emerge. The result is a new strain of flu through mutation! This is called “antigenic drift”. So, now we are creating new strains of flu that the experts at the CDC could never even imagine (since mutations are random and unpredictable) – making it even more difficult for these vaccines to provide protection against flu strains. Many are concerned that the overuse of flu vaccines is causing unforeseen consequences, such as how the overuse of antibiotics has caused the rise of resistant superbugs such as MRSA. Scientists are now blaming last year’s flu shot failures on these mutations. And of course, their solution is always to have more people get vaccinated!
So, if the flu shot is not very effective – is it safe? Flu shots contain adjuvants such as aluminum, formaldehyde, mercury and other carcinogens. These adjuvants are primarily included to provoke the immune system to produce a strong reaction so that antibodies are generated in sufficient amounts. Some of these adjuvants also help preserve the vaccine to keep it active for longer time periods.
Many of these adjuvants are known to be toxic and carcinogenic. No studies have ever been done to measure the proper safe amount of any of these substances. Worse, these adjuvants all tend to bio-accumulate in the body, especially in brain tissue. Every year you get a flu shot, you are accumulating more aluminum and other chemicals to add to all the other vaccines and other lifetime exposures.
“After officials select the three strains of flu virus that they think are most likely to be circulating during the next winter season (they picked the wrong ones last year), vaccine makers grow the viruses in fertilized chicken eggs, with 500,000 eggs per day (each examined by hand) for up to eight months.
Formaldehyde is used to inactivate the virus. It is a known cancer-causing agent. Aluminum is added to promote an antibody response. It is a neurotoxin that may play a role in Alzheimer’s disease. Other additives and adjuvants in the flu vaccine include Triton X-100 (a detergent), Polysorbate 80, carbolic acid, ethylene glycol (antifreeze), gelatin, and various antibiotics — neomycin, streptomycin, and gentamicin — that can cause allergic reactions in some people.
Two-thirds of the vaccines made for the 2008—09 flu season, 100 million of them, contain full-dose thimerosal, an organomercury compound, which is 49% mercury by weight. (An unidentified number of the other 50 million vaccines contain either “no” or “trace” amounts of thimerosal.) It is used to disinfect the vaccine. Each one of these 100 million flu shots contain 25 micrograms of mercury, a mercury content that is 50,000 part per billion, 250 times more than the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety limit. Mercury is a neurotoxin, which has a toxicity level 1,000 times that of lead.
There is some evidence that flu shots cause Alzheimer’s disease. This most likely is a result of combining mercury with aluminum and formaldehyde, which renders them much more toxic together through a synergistic effect than each would be alone. One investigator has reported that people who received the flu vaccine each year for 3 to 5 years had a ten-fold greater chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease than people who did not have any flu shots (Int J Clin Invest 2005;1:1—4). (The brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease display three pathologic hallmarks: neurofibillary tangles, amyloid plaques, and phosphorylation of tau protein. Brain cells grown in test tubes develop these changes when exposed to nanomolar doses of mercury, doses similar to the amount of mercury a person gets from a flu shot.)
…Three serious, acknowledged adverse reactions to the flu vaccine are joint inflammation and arthritis, anaphylactic shock (and other life-threatening allergic reactions), and Guillain-Barré syndrome. Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is a paralytic autoimmune disease that fells people several weeks after their flu shot.”
If you somehow buy the argument that Thimerosol or ethyl mercury is non-toxic and not as bad a mercury, you need to read this article.
Now this year in an effort order to help improve the effectiveness of the flu shot, the FDA has fast-tracked Fluad, a new flu vaccine with the adjuvant Squalene – which has long been thought to be the main component in the Swine Flu Vaccine that caused horrible injuries to thousands. Its also thought to be the primary culprit behind Gulf War Syndrome – which many sources now attribute to the mandatory anthrax vaccines that were given to those U.S. soldiers.
One more recent popular flu vaccine is FluMist, which is an inhalant and does not need to be injected. However, it does contain live virus which can be transmitted to others.
We may never know all the effects over a lifetime from these annual flu shots, but we do know of many people who have immediately become very ill and have died as a result of specific flu shots. Some of these cases are reported but it is estimated that many are not. Some of these families can try to recover damages from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, but it is a long, uneasy process and compensation is not always guaranteed.
WHAT YOU CAN DO INSTEAD
So what can you do if you want to avoid the unsafe and ineffective flu shot, but you want to protect yourself against the flu?
The holistic approach to cold and flu defense is to reduce stress, limit exposure, and support the body’s immune system.
Vitamin D-3 – the most safe and effective flu shot ever discovered
Vitamin D plays an essential role in the immune system. Due to the lack of sunlight in winter, specifically UVB rays, the most effective thing you can do to prevent getting sick during this time is to supplement with Vitamin D, as Dr. Miller explains:
“A creditable hypothesis that explains the seasonal nature of flu is that influenza is a vitamin D deficiency disease. Cannell and colleagues offer this hypothesis in “Epidemic Influenza and Vitamin D” (Epidemiol Infect 2006;134:1129—40). They quote Hippocrates (circa 400 B.C.), who said, “Whoever wishes to investigate medicine properly should proceed thus: in the first place to consider the seasons of the year.” Vitamin D levels in the blood fall to their lowest point during flu seasons. Unable to be protected by the body’s own antibiotics (antimicrobial peptides) that this gene-expresser engineers, a person with a low vitamin D blood level is more vulnerable to contracting colds, influenza, and other respiratory infections (e.g., respiratory syncytial virus).
The increased number of deaths that occur in winter, largely from pneumonia and cardiovascular diseases, are much more likely due to vitamin D deficiency than to an increased prevalence of serologically-positive influenza virus (which also results from vitamin D deficiency)…
…Something that can explain why flu epidemics also occur both in warm and cold climates is this: During a flu epidemic, wherever it may be, the atmosphere blocks ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation from the Sun. In the temperate zones above latitude 35 degrees North and South, the sun is at a low enough angle in the winter that the ozone layer in the atmosphere absorbs and blocks the short-wavelength (280—315 nanometers) UVB rays. In the tropics during the wet season, thick rain clouds block UVB rays.
Skin contains a cholesterol derivative, 7-dehydrocholesterol. UVB radiation on skin breaks open one of the carbon rings in this molecule to form vitamin D. The activated form of vitamin D (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D) attaches to receptors on genes that control their expression, which turn protein production on or off. Vitamin D regulates the expression of more than 1,000 genes throughout the body. They include ones in macrophages, cells in the immune system that, among other things, attack and destroy viruses. Vitamin D switches on genes in macrophages that make antimicrobial peptides, antibiotics the body produces. Like antibiotics, these peptides attack and destroy bacteria; but unlike antibiotics, they also attack and destroy viruses.”
Some people may wish to seek out special tanning beds with UVB rays for Vitamin D, but most people will choose to supplement with Vitamin D-3, which is the preferred form (Vitamin D-2 is not recommended). I offer an emulsified Vitamin D-3 liquid supplement from Biotics Research – just a few drops each day is all you need and its highly affordable and very absorbable. I can also provide you with a test kit to measure your Vitamin D-3 levels. I recommend at least 2,000 IU per day normally to 5,000 IU per day (or more) if needed in winter.
Having a good nutritional base is a very important start. For example, without sufficient zinc and selenium, your white blood cells which are responsible for fighting off infections won’t be able to function at their most optimal level when you need them most. Vitamins A and C are also critical to immune health. Bio-Immunize Forte is designed just for this – its a broad-spectrum multi-vitamin that works as a preventative and can also be used to help lessen the duration of cold and flu infections.
An essential must-have supplement includes a potent anti-bacterial, anti-viral product such as ADP, an emulsified, time-released oregano oil tablet supplement without the harsh taste of other oregano oil supplements. Oregano oil has been proven to kill pathogens that can cause cold and flu infections and ADP is one of the most effective supplements of this type.
Since Oregano can also suppress some of the good bacteria in your gut that helps your immune system, one good protocol during winter is to take several tablets of ADP several times a day for ten days and then stop and take a probiotic supplement daily for five days to rebuild your good protective bacteria. Biodoph-7 is a quality probiotic supplement from Biotics Research that I recommend. Good food sources for probiotics include raw cultured yogurt and kefir, and raw sauerkraut.
Another outstanding product is Ultra Vir-X, which provides key vitamins and specific minerals, combined with a proprietary complement of botanical compounds possessing immuno-modulating properties, including Red-Rooted Sage, Boneset, Wheat Grass, Bupleurum, Astragalus, Bee Propolis, Maitake Mushroom, Black Walnut, among others. Here’s why they are so effective together.
Elderberry has been known for thousands of years to be highly effective in preventing and attacking flu viruses. A great way to use elderberry tincture is in a tea with yarrow and peppermint. Olive Leaf Extract, Ginger, Astragalus, and Echinacea have also been very effective when used to help to both prevent and lessen the duration of colds and flu infections.
Doing a safe and effective detox cleanse can also be a good way to start and end Cold and Flu Season. It will also help you lose some of that extra added weight from all the partying!
Make sure you wash your hands on a regular basis, and keep your hands and fingers away from your mouth, nose, and ears!
Also make sure you are drinking lots of quality water – this helps your body create mucus and move it out. Mucus is part of the body’s immune defense to clean up and move out pathogens. Sleep is also essential to help your body fight off the pathogens and restore health. I offer several products that can help you achieve quality sleep.
All of these remedies and practices will help you avoid getting the flu and keeping the flu far better than a flu shot – and without the lasting toxicity!