Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Wisdom Wednesday: Cold and Flu Season

So it dawns upon you upon awakening one morning that you might be “coming down” with something. Your first response is “it’s just allergies” – big mistake. The sooner you attack this infection, the quicker you will recover.

My first recommendation is colloidal silver. Please read one of my early blogs “The Blue Man Group” posted October 18, 2013. I keep colloidal silver in the bathroom medicine cabinet. If I wake up in the middle of the night with a sore throat, I gargle with colloidal silver for 30 seconds and then swallow it. By morning the sore throat is gone. However, if I have forgotten about that sore throat and don’t follow up with a few more doses of colloidal silver, the infection may rise again.

My second recommendation is the herb andrographis. It has excellent infection fighting benefits. I used it with good success against the H1N1 virus a couple of years ago when the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) had physicians confirming suspected cases of H1N1.

I am also a big fan of the Netti pot for irrigating the sinuses. You can purchase a Netti pot at any drug store. I prefer to use a little colloidal silver in lieu of the kosher salt. You must use distilled water with this device. Tap water contains nematodes that can breed in your sinus cavities then migrate into the brain causing death. (I keep telling you not to drink that tap water)

Winter colds and flues peak in my office about this time every year. The event is not as pronounced in South Florida with its warmer climate, but the snowbirds bring us our share of infections. Please review my blog “The Flu Can Infect many Without Causing Symptoms” posted on March 31, 2014.

The best preventative is echinacea. Although it is the most popular herb in America, it is seldom used properly. Many people start taking echinacea at the first sign of a cold. That’s really too late. Echinacea takes two weeks of daily supplementation to reach peak levels in your body. I recommend taking a daily dose all through the flu season as a preventative.

There is an urban legend that echinacea can only be taken for two weeks. This comes from the German monographs or E-commission studies conduced over 30 years ago. The study looked at the immune response of college freshman. They supplemented echinacea for the first two weeks of the school year to half of the participants and a placebo to the other half. Then they monitored their immune function for the remainder of the semester. What they found is that the benefit of echinacea peaked at two weeks, but slowly diminished after stopping the supplement. Unfortunately, when the study was reviewed in America, they looked at the graph of declining benefit without translating from German to English. They never understood that the echinacea was discontinued after two weeks. Twenty-five years ago I was taught that echinacea should “only be taken for two weeks”. Most of us who study herbs long ago rejected this myth, but it continues to have favor with the American public.

Eighty percent of the echinacea sold in this country is worthless – most of it is not echinacea at all. Some products use the wrong species of echinacea or the wrong parts of the plant. You need echinacea angustifolia root. Good quality echinacea will make you tongue tingle when you suck on it for a minute. If it doesn’t tingle, it contains no alkamides and is of little benefit.

Vitamin C is also a good preventative. I recommend varying the dose or better yet, get your vitamin C from a food source rather than a supplement. I have a Barbados cherry tree in my front yard. It produces the acerola cherry, the highest natural source of the vitamin C complex on the planet. My tree bears fruit from early April through November each year. I just pick a cherry off the tree and eat it as I pass by a couple of times each day. In the spring I have to compete with the young birds that are just getting their wings under control. They can strip the tree clean. Fortunately, they quickly migrate north and the tree blooms continually.

The Bottom Line:
Take proactive, preventative measures to support your immune system. If and when a cold or flu strikes, take action at the first symptom. You can shorten that infection dramatically and maybe weather it symptom free.

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