Monday, November 02, 2009
By Tara Peyman, Naturopathic Physician
There is some controversy about whether the H1N1 flu vaccine is safe and necessary. It is always important to weigh the risks and benefits of any medical intervention, and decide what is best for yourself. As physicians, we encourage you to consider all of the facts before making a decision for yourself or your children.
The media has been telling us about all of the deaths associated with the H1N1 flu, but in fact, most of the deaths are from pneumonia contracted in the hospital after going in with flu symptoms. Most people who get the flu, whether it is seasonal flu or H1N1 flu, who rest and stay home, will recover without developing complications. The biggest problems come into play when people develop secondary infections, which are very common in a hospital setting.
One important aspect to understand when considering whether you really need an H1N1 flu vaccine is that your body has the ability to strengthen its defenses against infection. We can boost our immune system with specific natural protocols, as described below, to prevent the seasonal flu and the H1N1 flu.
We can treat flu symptoms once they begin as well, very effectively,
with homeopathic medicine, acupuncture, high dose vitamin injections or
supplements, or botanical medicine. Most people find relief within
24-48 hours of starting naturopathic treatments for acute illness such
as the flu.
Unfortunately, the standard flu vaccines still contain thimerosal
which is a source of mercury . Mercury is a toxic metal that has been associated with developmental neurological impairment , as well as many other symptoms, if it is in excessive amounts.
The CDC states that flu vaccines still contain
thimerosal. Of course, they tell you that this is safe, yet the amount
contained can be up to 25mcg. This may seem like a small amount, but it is actually 250 times the safe level
according to the EPA. Do we want that kind of exposure for our children?
At East Valley Naturopathic Doctors, we
have come to a consensus that because getting the vaccine is not 100%
effective, is it therefore less advantageous and carries greater risk
than providing yourself with good quality preventive measures.
The most important way to protect yourself is to wash your hands regularly, especially after coughing or sneezing, and before eating or touching your eyes.
Homeopathic Influenzinum is a medicine that can be used to protect your family against the flu, but it must be taken preventively, before symptoms develop. For treatment of flu symptoms after onset of the infection, other homeopathic medicines can be prescribed based on your individual symptoms.
Elderberry extract (Sambucus nigra) has been studies to show efficacy for H1N1 treatment and prevention . This can be taken as a liquid extract, or as a capsule to treat influenza.
There may always be controversy about the safety of thimerosal. Regardless, it is
clearly not supposed to be in our bodies, or in our children's bodies,
and there are many other very safe and equally -- if not more -- effective
ways to prevent and treat flu.
During the flu season, we are offering a discounted rate for new or established patients who are acutely ill and would like to come in for naturopathic advice. Please call (480) 985-0000 for more information.
 CDC Thimerosal Q&A, 2009 Oct. http://www.cdc.gov/FLU/ABOUT/QA/thimerosal.htm
 US EPA Integrated Risk Information System. http://www.epa.gov/iris/subst/0073.htm
 Elderberry Extract Prevents H1N1 Infection In Vitro. 2009 Sept. http://www.news-medical.net/news/20090911/Elderberry-extract-prevents-H1N1-infection-in-vitro.aspx
East Valley Naturopathic Doctors offers an integrative medical approach to treat disease and improve overall health. We have 6 licensed naturopathic doctors at our office, and also offer myopractic medicine and therapeutic counseling. Our office is located at Southern and Higley in Mesa, AZ. For more information, please visit www.EastValleyND.com, or call (480) 985-0000.