Fear Around Influenza, the Flu Shot and Other Influenza Medications Overstated; British Journal of Medicine
Volumes have been written about peer pressure. But what about the pressure people are under to get the flu shot. Every year the media and pharmacies are out in full force trying to pressure people into getting another injection.
But the researchers themselves have finally had enough.
Peter Doshi and Tom Jefferson published a research review in the British Journal of Medicine revealing the truth behind the numbers. 1
The article was titled “Multisystem failure: the story of anti-influenza drugs”.
It chronicles the hype, exaggeration, and down right manipulation of the actual numbers surrounding influenza and the flu shot by the pharmaceutical industry and flu medication supporters.
Their research review reads like a bad tabloid BUT, in this instance, these are not trumped up and sensationalized headlines. The truth is the pharmaceutical industry actually did manipulate the numbers to make their products seem more effective and the disease more serious.
As in part 1 and part 2 I promised to not make this a drug company bash. If you want those details, then look up the article in the BMJ: I’ve included the reference below.
What this series really is about.
My intention with this series is to give you strategies for you and your family to boost immunity naturally so you never have to feel the need for chemical interventions.
As I’ve mentioned in my previous 2 posts, for my family and I, the science is just not there to justify exposure to what is in these shots. And that goes for my elderly parents too. 2
Now, if you like to check references, I want to warn you: If you read the link to the vaxtruth.org article you are going to be really mad.
This is not my intention, my goal is to have you focus on solutions.
So let’s get to some solutions.
Dealing with inflammation is one of the most powerful health strategies out there.
I spend most of my time researching neurology and how to increase our neurological function and health.
The interesting thing about spending so much time researching neurological health, when common patterns emerge with other organ systems (heart, digestion, immune system) it sticks out like a sore thumb.
So it is with inflammation in the body.
What diseases are linked to inflammation?
Possibly a better question is “What disease don’t have an inflammatory component?”
The answer: very few!
The list I have personally compiled is around 50.
50 separate and distinct conditions have inflammation at there core.
Here’s just a few. . . . Arthritis, Alzheimer’s, Heart Disease, Diabetes, Chronic Pain, Obesity, ADD/ADHD, Depression, Peripheral Neuropathy, Stroke, Migraines, Thyroid Issues, Dental Issues, and Cancer. 3 4 5 6
What’s the connection to the flu shot?
It’s got very little to do with the flu shot BUT how strong your immune system is.
That’s what matters.
The reason inflammation comes into the discussion around influenza and the flu shot is that chronic inflammation is devastating to your immune system. To beat influenza and avoid the flu season all together, the key is a rock solid immune response.
Where do we start?
Where I start with my clients is to begin to have them understand that inflammation is a normal and healthy response in their body. There are many things that inflammation helps with: healing a cut, fighting a bacterial infection and building muscle after a work out.
All these processes are healthy and necessary for a long and successful life.
Chronic and never ending inflammation is the problem. In my opinion, chronic inflammation from our standard North American lifestyle is the number one contributor to something Hans Selye termed the stress response back in 1936 (AKA the General Adaptation Syndrome).
Rather than cite thousands of studies on stress, let’s get to some practical action steps to reduce chronic inflammation and the subsequent stress response your body get’s caught in when you have chronic inflammation in your body.
Avoid the acid addictions: Sugar (this includes alcohol), Whites (flour, rice, pasta. . . .), Caffeine.
Avoid casein as much as you can. It’s the main protein present in milk and (in coagulated form) in cheese. It is used in processed foods, adhesives, paints, and other industrial products. And you may be thinking (like I am), of course I should avoid something that is in adhesives, paints and industrial products but milk — I’ve been told that milk does the body good.
Yes you have, but 50 years ago doctors were telling us that smoking was good for our lungs.
For more on why we should be limiting our milk product consumption check out my blog post HERE.
As I’m a drugless practitioner, I’m not supposed to know anything about medications.
So all I will say is please read the side effects of every medication you have in your home.
Not what’s on the bottle. Read whats written in the “small print manual” that comes with the medications.
Educate yourself as much as possible and do everything in your power to get to the root cause of why your doctor has prescribed that medication.
Look for natural alternatives to your medications so you can limit your exposure to unnecessary chemicals.
We’d all do well if we followed every popular sports star that says “Don’t do drugs.”
Low Grade Chronic Infections
A simple test that most holistic doctors can perform is to measure your white blood cell count or a bit more specific test for infection is your levels of c-reactive protein.
I seen tremendous results from Vitamin D3 supplementation for people who “suspect” they are “always fighting something”. Some recent reports put close to 70% of the northern hemisphere population as Vitamin D deficient.
It’s worth a try.
Supplementing with 5000-6000 IU/day is becoming standard practice. The fears around overdosing from Vitamin D were from studies where people were super dosing at levels ranging from 10 to 100 times that amount.
Something a rational person doesn’t need to worry about.
Lack of Exercise
A study in the journal Epidemiology showed that moderate exercise reduced the level of c-reactive protein and reduced whole body inflammation. 7
There are many more causes of inflammation, but I want to move away from the negative, and into the positive. What you can do about solving the inflammation issue.
We’ve covered the things you need to avoid but what should you do?
This I’m going to keep really short and clear. . . .
- Move away from the grains and towards healthy fats and quality proteins.
- Exercise every single day of your life — there are no days off. Moderate exercise, not ultra distance.
- Take a quality fish oil supplement every day. (5000mg) In our house everyone has a teaspoon of Carlson’s Finest every day.
- As mentioned earlier, 5000-6000 IU/day Vitamin D3. We use the Pure Encapsulations liquid D3 as it’s a high quality pharmaceutical grade supplement.
- If you have a history of inflammation or a family history of Heart Disease or early onset Alzheimer’s then you should look at supplementing with Pycnogenol (200mg a day in 2 doses — start with a small 30 mg dose and work up from there)
- Find yourself a great chiropractor who can focus on postural and neurological correction. I know this may sound self-serving but the science shows that your best punch at beating the stress response and backing off chronic inflammation is through your brain. A chiropractor who is current in their understanding of neurology will explain to you exactly how specific spinal adjustments to correct your posture and neurology do that. Recently one of my clients told our receptionist that she hasn’t had the flu even once starting her care almost 4 years ago! And no flu shot!
Just because someone can press on your back and make noises doesn’t mean you are getting the specificity and accuracy you need. There is a HUGE difference between spinal manipulation and specific chiropractic adjustments.
God loves me and so do I
And finally, my last comment is to learn to accept and love who you are.
There are some really interesting and compelling studies in the psychology world where chronic inflammation has been connected to self loathing and self hatred. Your brain is powerful and what you believe will manifest in your physical being.
It can be as simple as a daily mantra of saying to yourself “God loves me and so do I”.
Not always easy to believe, but absolutely necessary to get in your neurology.
Our short cut society.
As much as our society wants to short cut the necessary work to build a healthy immune system (with things like the flu shot), it is clear that the only way to get the kind of health that will create 100+Living is if we do the work.
If you are having trouble finding a chiropractor in your area that specializes in postural correction then connect with us.
Leave a comment below or contact us at our office (250-870-9136) and we’ll try our best to connect you with a chiropractor in your area that does corrective work.
I really believe that your best health and lifestyle mentor is a great chiropractor.
For 120 years our profession has lead the way in common sense health solutions. And because we’re educated as a doctor we see the landscape very differently than just a therapist.
A more complete picture.
Not to say there are not great therapists out there AND not so great chiropractors BUT as a general rule because of a chiropractors extensive education and knowledge of pathology, neurology, and whole body physiology you’re likely to get a more complete picture of what you can do to take control of your health.
Again, I’d love to hear your stories and your experience with what we’ve talked about with this series, your comments are what make this a dialogue and a learning experience for all.
- Tom Jefferson, Peter Doshi, Multisystem failure: the story of anti-influenza drugs. BMJ 2014; 348 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g2263 (Published 10 April 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2263 ↩
- http://vaxtruth.org/2011/09/the-flu-vaccine-what-your-doctor-wont-tell-you-or-probably-doesnt-even-know/ ↩
- Immune response to dietary proteins, gliadin and cerebellar peptides in children with autism. Nutritional Neuroscience 7(3):151-161, June 2004. ↩
- A gut feeling for immune dysregulation and neuroinflammation in autism. The Autism File; 2009. ↩
- Does cryptic gluten sensitivity play a part in neurological illness? The Lancet, Volume 347, Issue 8998, Pages 369 – 371, 10 February 1996 ↩
- Range of Neurologic Disorders in Patients with Celiac Disease: PEDIATRICS Vol. 113 No. 6 June 1, 2004 ↩
- Ford ES, Does exercise reduce inflammation? Physical activity and C-reactive protein among U.S. adults. Epidemiology. 2002 Sep;13(5):561-8. ↩