Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Flu, Part 2

Last week we talked about the main cause of catching the flu. An immune system that is not working to the best of it's ability can almost guarantee an illness from germs and viruses. The main idea in preventing the flu is to build and improve immune system function. The following compilation lists practices that strengthen the immune system. First, make sure that you get enough sleep. The immune system repairs itself, regenerates and functions better when one has enough sleep. 8 hrs or more is best. Stress levels have a negative impact on immune system health, the more stressed you are the more worn out you are. Chronic stress is one of the biggest causes of illness in mankind. Manage stress with meditation, deep breathing and exercise. Speaking of exercise, exercise causes chemical reactions in the body that strengthen the immune system. Typically, people who exercise regularly get sick less often and recover faster. Avoid sugar. Sugar weakens the immune system. A high in sugar snack or drink can actually lower immune system function immediately. Drink plenty of water. Water hydrates all of the cells in the body, keeping them healthy. 8 glasses of 8 ounces of water a day. Eat right. Poor nutrition is the main contributor of low immune levels. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables. Limit or eliminate fried foods, trans-fats and high fructose corn syrup. Eat a diet high in fiber and low in refined carbohydrates. The immune system is controlled by the nervous system. When the nervous system is free of interference, the body is much healthier. Monthly chiropractic spinal adjustments improves nerve flow from the spinal joints and helps the body to work better. Lastly, wash your hands often. I know we said that germs by themselves do not cause the flu, but if your immune system is below par, washing hands often is a good form of protection.

Thought for the Week:
"My illness is due to my doctor's insistence that I drink milk, a whitish fluid they force down helpless babies."
---- W. C. Fields US actor (1880 - 1946)

Chiropractic Thought for the Week:
Dear Friends, I am glad to have this opportunity to again share my thoughts on the role doctors
of chiropractic play in the American health care system. As I have said before, doctors of chiropractic play an important role in our health care system, and my commitment to you and your patients remains strong. As I have said, I believe steps should be taken to acknowledge the important care provided by doctors of chiropractic. We need to knock down unreasonable barriers of access and discriminatory insurance coverage so Americans in need of quality chiropractic care can access it without difficulty." -------- President Elect, Barack OBama

The Flu, Part 1

Since November is National Flu Awareness month, let's take a look at what causes the flu. Naturally, the gut reaction is to answer germs, bacteria and viruses spread from one person to another. While the germs do contain flu viruses, this is not necessarily the cause of the flu in each individual. Germs in and by themselves do not actually cause illness. For example, why is it that on any given day a person can be surrounded by sick people with all of the coughing, sneezing, runny noses and vomiting and not get sick. Not even a sniffle. And then on another particular day, a person can sneeze a city block away from you and then you get the worst illness you ever had. It's not the germ, it's your immune system. Millions of germs and viruses exist in our world, surrounding our bodies on a daily basis, yet we do not always get sick. How well your immune system is functioning determines how your body adapts to a given germ or virus. If your immune system is at the top of it's game, your body's ability to fight germs, viruses and bacteria is much more effective then if it is not. An immune system compromised by stress, lack of sleep, poor nutrition, lack of exercise and a dysfunctional nervous system will be much more susceptible to a flu virus. Next week we look at how each of these health factors effects immune system competence.
Thought for the Week: "Refuse to be ill. Never tell people you are ill; never own it to yourself. Illness is one of those things which a man should resist on principle." ---- Edward Bulwer-Lytton , English dramatist, novelist, & politician (1803 - 1873)
Chiropractic Thought for the Week: Dr. Todd Clayton, Vice President of the New Brunswick Chiropractic Association also believes that whole body health has many benefits when it comes to surviving the winter. "Chiropractic care optimizes the function of the neuromusculoskeletal system, thereby enhancing the body's potential for overall health, well-being, and quality of life. Chiropractors also regularly answer questions and make suggestions regarding nutrition, exercise, and numerous other aspects concerning their patients' health and well-being," Todd says. ---- New Brunswick Times and Transcript

The Flu Shot

This may be the most important health tip I have ever written, at the very least it will be the most controversial. It is currently the time of year when the Pharmaceutical Industry is pushing the flu shot vaccine. Before you make your decision to get jabbed, as they say in the United Kingdom, here are some new interesting facts concerning the shot and the flu itself. As always, make any decision based on the facts of the matter. Weigh the pros and cons and then make the best decision for yourself. The flu shot contains mercury, aluminum and formaldehyde as additives. There is some evidence to link the aluminum in the vaccine to Alzheimer's disease. The mercury, whether right or wrong, (the debate still rages on) has been implicated in autism. Adverse reactions to the flu shot that have been reported include joint inflammation, arthritis and allergic reactions. Whether you feel the additives are not an issue or are of big concern, the actual effectiveness of the flu vaccine has also been brought into question. A Group Health Study found that the flu shot does not actually protect the elderly against the flu and definitely does not protect them from pneumonia which is a complication of the flu. Vaccine coverage in the elderly has increased from 15% in 1980 to 65% now and yet there has been no decrease in the amount of deaths from the flu or pneumonia in that time period. As far as children are concerned, the October issue of Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine states that vaccinating young children against the flu has had no impact on the amount of flu-related hospitalizations or doctor visits. They also concluded that vaccine effectiveness could not be demonstrated for any season, age, or setting. In addition, a systematic review of 51 studies involving 260,000 children age 6 to 23 months found no evidence that the flu vaccine is any more effective than a placebo. Since November is National Flu Awareness Month, the next few Health Tips will revolve around flu prevention and care.
Thought for the Week: "Sickness is the vengeance of nature for the violation of her laws." ~Charles Simmons
Chiropractic Thought for the Week: "Another common question is, if we have no pain, how can we know it's time to see a chiropractor? Says Dr. Gentempo: "In today's fast-paced environment it is normal that people have physical, chemical and emotional stresses beyond the individual's ability to remove or even adapt to. As a result, spinal misalignments and nerve disturbance are extremely common. There is abundance medical and scientific evidence that even a small amount of nerve disturbance or pressure can cause altered nerve function. Thus, I can't overemphasis the importance of regular trips to the chiropractor, even before symptoms appear, to check for spinal subluxations. This is preventive, so that an individual may optimize their potential for good health and at the same time prevent future health challenges before they become severe." -------- Dr. Patrick Gentempo, wiretap from the Prudent Press Agency