Over the past decade or so, many people have begun to rely on vaccines to protect them from the flu. Unfortunately, there’s a number of problems with this. We’ll fill you in…
First is the fact that the effectiveness of flu shots has yet to be proven. In fact, many studies show that getting vaccinated has no impact on the likelihood of catching the flu for babies, adults, or the elderly.
Then there’s the question of the toxic ingredients used to manufacture flu vaccines and it’s not mandatory to disclose such ingredients to recipients of the vaccines. It’s definitely worth considering whether you’re willing to inject substances like mercury and formaldehyde into your body, especially for a practice with unproven results.
So now you may be wondering how such a highly recommended ‘solution’ could be so ineffective. The answer lies in the biology of the flu virus. Vaccines are made from inactivated strains of the flu from past seasons, which trick the body into producing antibodies to fight against them.
Ideally, the body should then be better able to defend against the virus if, or when, it encounters the same strain again. However, the reality is that flu viruses mutate very quickly, so the strain you encounter mid-season may be unrecognised as the strain you were vaccinated against, or worse it may have adapted into a strain that is more resistant than the version you were vaccinated against.
Either way, the result of the vaccine is rendered useless, and your body is likely to succumb to the virus. Luckily, there are several ways to protect yourself from the flu without relying on a flu shot. Here are our top recommendations:
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that keeps the body functioning optimally and especially supports the immune system. Some studies have shown it to be a flu fighter. Interestingly, flu season corresponds with winter – the time of year when we are least able to take in adequate levels of Vitamin D from the primary source — sunshine. We recommend having your Vitamin D checked and ideally, you want your level between 50 and 80ng/ml. Your best bet is probably to take a Vitamin D3 supplement daily.
A strong immune system relies heavily on having a healthy, well-functioning gut (as 70% of your immune system is in the gut), and probiotics help keep your gut engine humming. Look for a probiotic with at least 10-20 billion organisms and take it daily.
These foods dramatically decrease your immune function. Instead, load up on nutrient-rich whole foods. Start your day with a smoothie full of goodness in the form of healthy fats (almond or coconut milk, avocado, almond butter), some frozen berries, chia seeds and a good protein powder. Lunches and dinners should consist of nourishing soups, colourful salads, and dark greens and veggies which are packed with flu-fighting phytonutrients.
Antiviral herbs boost your immunity and help protect you without creating resistant viral strains. Four top antivirals are andrographis, olive leaf extract, grapefruit seed extract and elderberry extract. And remember the humble garlic, which too has antiviral properties, and is a known immunity booster.
Getting enough sleep is a key component to a flu-free winter! There’s no better time for the body to restore and repair itself than while you rest. Shoot for at least seven hours a night and try taking a 20-minute power nap during the day if you’re falling short.
Reducing stress is particularly important during flu season. Exercise helps to keep your immune system healthy, but don’t overdo it – your workout shouldn’t be a stress on your body! Light strength training, breathing exercises, yoga, or simply taking the time to do things you enjoy will relieve tension and enhance physical and mental resilience.
Do you have any additional tips on how to prevent the flu without relying on a shot? Share them in the comments below.
By Candice May