As you may have heard, the world is overdue for a serious flu pandemic that is expected to kill millions of people. In an attempt to control such a situation, governments in many countries are stockpiling flu vaccines and antiviral drugs. The problem is, they don?t work as well as researchers originally thought. Especially in older folks.
It?s thought that this flu explosion will begin in China as a result of a strain of bird flu. What?s scary is that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that this strain has mutated many times. And to make matters worse, many of these mutations are now resistant to the antiviral drugs we?ve stockpiled.
Tamiflu is one antiviral that is effective, but it?s a patented drug and not widely available. Besides, the bird flu keeps mutating. What works today won?t necessarily work tomorrow. Antivirals won?t cure you of the flu. There is no cure for a virus. The best they can do is to reduce symptoms and keep it from spreading quickly.
But there?s plenty you can do now to prepare for the pandemic. Get ready now, and don?t depend on any vaccine to keep you healthy. Here are some of my suggestions as we head into flu season. You can find more details in past articles from my newsletter, available on my website, http://www.womenshealthletter.com, to all newsletter subscribers.
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* Wash your hands frequently, and keep them away from your face
* Start taking a medicinal mushroom supplement to boost your immune system. I like MycoPhyto Complex, a number of mushrooms grown on immune-strengthening herbs (800-728-2288). Take one capsule twice a day preventively, and six capsules two to three times a day at the first sign of illness.
* Get an extract of Usnea (HerbPharm, 800-348-HERB). It?s antibacterial and antiviral, and my favorite herb to stop a cold or flu in its tracks. Add one dropperful to a little water three times a day. Boost to a dropperful each hour at the first sign of a cold or flu.
For more information on natural remedies against the flu, search the archives on my website with the word "antiviral." It takes a few months to strengthen your immune system, so start today. This is no time to be complacent and believe that doctors will have all the answers to a worldwide flu pandemic, or that the flu vaccine will work for you. The vaccine is effective in only 28% of seniors. So take action today.
Your voice of reason in Women's Health,
Dr. Janet Zand
Rosenthal, E., "Studies find flu treatments fall far short," NY Times, September 21, 2005.