Sunday, September 6, 2009

Are you ready for the flu season?

The following is a part of my day, taken at breakfast. For some randomness reason today, I thought I would line up the participants and share.

Every time you turn on the TV, the H1N1 is making its way into the U.S. and I suspect this Fall and Winter we will see a tremendous increase in the flu. They predict 90,000 deaths from H1 N1 in the U.S this year as compared to the regular seasonal flu which usually causes 30,000 deaths. Most of these are from complications.

There are no total guarentees from the Flu; however, along with good nutritional care and exercise, I plan to get both Flu vaccines, the seasonal Flu and then the H1N1 vaccine.

I saw a good show yesterday about some myths about the flu vaccine and I'm so glad they are publicizing and making people aware of risks/benefits of the vaccines. For example, both vaccines are not live viruses so they cannot make you sick. This is probably the most common myth and reason why people don't get flu shots.
In my profession, of course, I have to take precaution as exposure will be a given.

I find that good handwashing and taking my vitamins daily really helps ward infections.
I kinda got slack on taking vitamins the past Spring and could really tell a difference in energy level. I've gotten back regularly on my vitamins for the past month and hopefully, will stay healthier.

Vitamin C and Zinc are 2 very important characters for the immune system. You probably have seen packets of the product "EmergenC" you can buy which helps prevent colds. Its a whopping dose of Vitamin C basically. My hubbie swears by those packets during cold season.

Vitamin D, is actually, showing alot of promising health benefits in the past recent year of studies, especially in Women's Health. Most of us are deficient simply because we don't get as much sunshine during the Winter months. Vitamin D is also excellent for bone health and the immune system. This website actually has some good information on Vitamin D and women's health. A nurse practitioner explains this well.

Omega 3 Fish Oil, I can't say enough about. Its great for the skin, cardio, and immune system.
Two years ago there was a study that divided participants with Chrohn's disease into 2 groups, one with fish oils and the other with popular Chrohn's medication and the group who took the Fish Oils fared just as well as the group on prescription meds which have alot of side effects.
This is promising for Chrohn's and hopefully applies to other immune system dysfunctions. There have also been studies to show that Fish Oils are essential in regulating moods and preventing depression. I will digress on the mood subject..........

Vitamin B complex, high dose, is important for the nervous system and stress. Who is not under alot of stress in this day and time? This group of vitamins are excreted quickly because they are water soluble so make sure you get the Time Release version. You will see B complex 50, 100, and 150 at the store, even Walmart. Too many B vitamins can cause peripheral nerve issues so I take 100 but everybody is different.

There are many, many supplements you can get at specialty stores but alot is marketing. These are the basics for immune system functioning. This post is not intended to be a substitute for your own personal provider's recommendations but my own personal and professional experiences.


  1. Thanks for the information.
    I am really concentrating on making sure my children (and self and husband) are really getting enough sleep as prevention. It is easier for me to take my vitamins than to put down the stitching and get in bed at a reasonable hour!! ;)

  2. I'm a firm believer in nutritional supplements assisting our immune system.

    I might also suggest everyone have Ocillococinum which is a homeopathic remedy for the common flu. We also use Zicam swabs for the common cold which shortens the cold symptoms by days. If taken on the first sign of a cold, I usually feel human again after 48 hours!

  3. You have an excellent point about sleep. It's so important to keep that immune system strong.

  4. Fish oil is a natural remedy for inflammation, thus its benefits to Chron's patients. I take 2000mg 3 times a day for plantar fascitis...I swear by it. We're big on supplements too. We take cinnamon for its work against sugar metabolism - my husband swears by it :)


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