None of us enjoys getting the flu. The virus is often symptomatic for a week or even longer. However, before rushing out to get the flu shot, unless you are at high risk, consider that there are natural and homeopathic preventatives and treatments for the flu, just as with other illnesses. These treatments have been used effectively for decades, and in some cases even longer.
Why Alternative Prevention
Every year, there is great media attention given to the flu. Every year, a huge push is made to persuade everyone to get vaccinated against the flu virus (or more correctly, viruses). What you don’t hear in the media hype, but likely hear later from family and friends just as I do, is that many people end up sick as a result of the vaccination itself.
The flu vaccine has its purpose. High-risk patients, elderly persons and young children run a much greater risk of death from certain strains of the flu virus. For these patients, the risks of the vaccine are minimal compared to the risks of not being vaccinated.
For everyone else, however, there are other ways to prevent the flu without risking illness from the vaccine. These methods include nutrition, lifestyle habits, vitamins and supplements, and homeopathic medicines.
For each strain of influenza virus that surfaces, a specific remedy is assigned in classical homeopathy. However, as a general preventative, the homeopathic medication Influenzinum has been used effectively for over 150 years. This preventive medication is taken weekly or monthly, or in a combination of weekly then monthly doses as recommended by your doctor.
Influenzinum is made each year from the flu vaccine itself, so it is designed to work against all the same strains as the vaccine. Given that homeopathics are extreme dilutions, however, the risk of falling ill as a result of using Influenzinum is virtually nonexistent.
How effective is Influenzinum? A French survey conducted in 1998 examined 31 doctors’ prescribed use of Influenzinum over the preceeding 10-year period. Despite variations in recommended dosage, the survey found that approximately 90 percent of patients using Influenzinum had not reported a single case of the flu.
If You Are Exposed
If you feel you have been exposed to the flu, the homeopathic flu medication oscillococcinum, which can be found at any health food store and many common grocery stores, works as an excellent preventative as well. Debra MacInture, ND, Director of Natural Health Solutions in Roswell, Georgia, recommends that for 2 days after exposure, whether you feel sick or not, take a quarter of a tube every 3 hours to keep from catching the illness.
Used in treatment of the flu since 1925, oscillococcinum is one of few homeopathics which has been examined in rigorous double-blind controlled clinical trials. The results of these trials were statistically significant, demonstrating that oscillococcinum was effective in eliminating or reducing symptoms of the flu.