Protect Yourself Naturally From Influenza
- Friday, 15 May 2009
When it comes to the H1NI virus—sometimes called swine flu—there seems to be two types of people: those who are terrified of it, and those who are tired of hearing about it.
As the global pandemic alert levels continue to climb, the media jumps to find the most shocking pieces to report, and governments protect themselves by taking strong action. There have been only two reported deaths in the United States: a toddler originally from Mexico City, and a woman who lived in Texas near the Mexico border and had underlying health problems. Yet governments around the world are declaring states of public emergency.
Countries are cutting flights to Mexico. President Obama is requesting billions of dollars to be spent on monitoring the disease, stocking up on medications and to help other countries. Countries are banning pork products. Stores are running out of surgical masks. The World Health Organization is warning countries not to lower their guard.
However, people should keep things in perspective. According to the World Health Organization, influenza kills 250,000 to 500,000 people around the world each year, but fewer than 50 people have died from the influenza A (H1N1) virus.
Traditional Chinese Medicine Offers Protection
The best way to protect yourself from influenza A (H1N1) virus is prevention and maintaining good health.
Written 2,000 years ago, traditional Chinese medicine tome Su Wen (Plain Questions) states that if the functioning of the body remains strong, viruses, bacteria, parasites, etc. cannot invade the body.
Herbs to Stimulate Your Immune System
Antibacterial or Antiviral Herbs
balloon flower rhizome
It is best to talk with a qualified herbalist or doctor who practices traditional Chinese medicine to determine what will work for you if you come down with flu, because each virus and bacteria can have very different properties and each herb affects the body differently.
Acupuncture can also be used to build your defences and to balance your whole body, not to mention the major reason why people come to see me—to relieve stress.
Your body’s systems are interconnected, so you should make sure your digestive, cardiovascular, reproductive, respiratory and nervous systems are also in good health. And don’t forget your metal health—depression can make you more susceptible to illness.
Simple Things You Can Do
Get plenty of sleep—eight hours each night if at all possible.
Wash your hands. Just use regular soap—there's no need to overdose on antibacterial products. Savvy Tip: Wash your hands while singing “Happy Birthday” in your head so you know you are washing long enough.
De-stress: meditate, breathe deeply or find a relaxing hobby.
Eat healthy. This means more veggies and whole foods, and less sugar and processed foods.
Listen to your body. If you feel the beginning of a cold or flu, slow down, take immune boosting supplements, get more sleep and try to avoid infecting others (stay home and maybe follow the Japanese in wearing a mask when you’re sick).
Take immune boosting vitamin C, essential fatty acids (fish oils, flax oil, hemp oil, etc.) and probiotics.
If you start to feel ill take a good herbal immune product. My favorites include FluStop, manuka honey, oregano oil and customized TCM herbal formulas.
Above all, don’t stress over illness. Panic and stress stimulate your adrenal glands, and the adrenaline will draw blood away from non-vital systems, including your immune system.Chronic stress also causes your body to release cortisol, which further weakens your immune system.