THIS ARTICLE WAS BORROWED FROM "ALICE" AT "MY SISTER'S GARDEN" WEBSITE...
Whose Afraid of the Big Bad...Whatever?
Be Prepared and You Won't Be Afraid. A few years ago there were dire warnings and predictions about a new strain of Avian or “bird” flu that was threatening a flu epidemic like the one that occurred in 1918 and killed millions of people worldwide. After 9/11 there were scares about anthrax and biological warfare. It seems like there's always something we're being "warned" about in the news. We continually hear dire warnings about this or that, and very little of it actually materializes. Of course, I’m sure that dire warnings like this are helpful for the profits of the drug companies (which are now the primary advertisers on radio and TV). I also think there’s an even deeper reason for the constant fear and concern pumped out on the daily news—people who are afraid are more easily manipulated. They’ll buy or do just about anything to restore their sense of security, including gladly surrendering their freedom. I won’t be running out to get a flu vaccine; in fact, I’ve never had one. I’m also not losing any sleep over purported drug shortages. I prefer, as much as possible, to keep my mind focused on positive things. I like the quote from the Sci-fi novel Dune, “Fear is the mind killer.”
It’s not that bad things don’t happen and it’s not as if a plague couldn’t happen. It has happened before and we’re in a prime position for it to happen again. After all, people’s immune systems are so weakened from stress, poor nutrition and toxicity that they would be very susceptible to some new strain of microbe. It’s also obvious that with modern transportation, it would be very difficult to contain the spread of contagious disease. And problems with hurricanes, earthquakes and other natural disasters have amply demonstrated that Mother Nature can wreak havoc with even our “advanced” civilization.
For years medical researchers have struggled to find the answer to the common cold. Yet, in spite of the thousands of hours of research and the millions of dollars that have been put into this project, no one has yet discovered a cure for this common ailment. But continue on and you will find the answer to the problem of the common cold. In fact, you will gain an important key to understanding the nature of disease symptoms in general.
There are several reasons why I’m not worried about the Avian Flu, Anthrax, SARS or West Nile virus, etc. For starters, I was raised in a family that believed in preparedness. We had as much food as my father could bring home and my mother could preserve in the basement. I now include water and other emergency supplies in my preparedness supply. My religion taught/teaches, “If you are prepared, you will not fear,” and I have always sought to “be prepared.” (And yes, I went through 3 boys in Boy Scout, too—Eagle Scouts, in fact.) So, there’s never been a time in my adult life where I didn’t have some emergency supplies on hand, including emergency herbal remedies. At least have a 72-hour emergency kit. It takes that long for government to set up and help you if they can.
Should I be surprised at how many people are living in denial, thinking that our modern technological society means we’re not supposed to be susceptible to either man-made or natural disasters? Maybe that’s why everyone is rushing to point the finger of blame at somebody when disasters happen (think Katrina), as if it’s always somebody else’s responsibility to be prepared. Even worse, many people seem to think that if we just pass enough laws and set up enough bureaucracies that nothing bad will ever happen.
If anyone’s living in that bubble, then wake up! No amount of legislation, no amount of foresight, in fact, nothing we do is going to stop “bad” things from happening. It’s just part of this life. As the libertarians say, “utopia is not an option,” at least not in this world.
So let’s say you are now ready to want to prepare for winter flu’s or epidemics. Let’s take a middle-of-the-road approach and realize that confidence and positive thinking comes from being prepared. Then, we make some basic preparations, and hope and pray we never have to use them. "Be ye Prepared and ye shall not fear!"
YOUR FIRST-AID KIT
People don’t get sick at convenient times. You can’t always run to the health food store or herb shop when something happens. So, it’s wise to make up a home preparedness kit so that you have the tools on hand to be ready to take care of injuries and illnesses as they arise. Here are my recommendations:
You want to have at least one herb or formula which you can administer which stimulates the energy of the body. You use this at the first sign of colds, flu or other acute illness and administer it in small, frequently repeated doses until the body reaches the disease crisis.
Ginger - commonly used in Chinese cooking, ginger is a powerful digestive herb that can help with a variety of digestive disorders. By stimulating blood flow to your digestive organs, ginger aids in the digestive process.
Turmeric - a powerful herb used in curry dishes, turmeric aid in the protection of the liver, which is a major center of digestion and detoxification in the body. Turmeric can help with irritable bowel syndrome and gall bladder problems.
Eleuthero (Siberian ginseng) - one of the most popular energy boost herbs for athletes and exercisers, eleuthero acts to increase your stamina and adapt to external stress. It also increases immunity and recovery time.
Gotu Kola - long used in Indian medicine, gotu kola improves brain function and strengthens tissues and blood vessels. Gotu kola acts as a rejuvenator and a tonic, with anti-inflammatory capabilities.
Vitamin B Family - the B family of vitamins is known for its energy boosting abilities, particularly B12, Biotin and Folic Acid. B vitamins help fight fatigue by helping our body use the sugar glucose (fuel) and aiding in the formation of red blood cells (energy transport).
MSM, DMAE, NADH - natural substances that have all been shown to increase energy levels and fight fatigue.
Bee Pollen - called a "super food", bee pollen contains every nutrient needed to sustain life. In addition to being a powerful energy booster, it can fight stress, regulate weight and aid in the digestive process. Bee pollen contains all 22 amino acids, along with vitamins, minerals and enzymes.
I like to use Eucalyptus globulus mixed with the essential oil peppermint and Eucalyptus Radiata Essential oil for deep chest congestion. The peppermint opens the air way to reduce swelling and the eucalyptus oil combination helps to move the mucus out.
Many cold and flu remedies like Vick's Vapor Rub include the power of camphor and eucalyptus. But these products also include petroleum based chemicals which can clog the brain cell receptor sites and cause brain fog or mental confusion. Natural essential oils help to clean the receptor sites and produce mental clarity. Essential Oils also help alleviate the problem of congestion without the addition of added chemicals, killing two birds with one stone.
Natural Flu Prevention and Remedies
Healthy lifestyle choices can keep your immune system in fighting shape. Sleep deprivation, stress, smoking, malnutrition and alcohol excess all undermine immunity. Conversely, a healthy diet, adequate sleep, regular exercise and relaxation improve immune health.
1. Vitamin D and the Flu
Vitamin D plays a role in many bodily processes, including immune function. Some scientists have pointed to a correlation between wintertime troughs in vitamin D intake and respiratory viral infections. New research published this year in the Archives of Internal Medicine linked low blood levels of vitamin D with a heightened risk of upper respiratory infections, particularly among people with chronic lung conditions. No studies have yet determined whether supplementing with vitamin D can prevent the common cold, much less influenza. Because few foods provide vitamin D, many experts recommend supplementation with at least 1,000 IU a day of vitamin D — several times the current guidelines for 200 to 600 IU.
While stress can cause illness, illness can also cause stress, with the physical pain, missed activities, feelings of isolation and other costs that come with it. So improving your overall health and longevity with exercise can also save you a great deal of stress in the short run (by strengthening your immunity to colds, the flu and other minor illnesses) and the long run (by helping you stay healthier longer, and enjoy life more because of it).
3. Mental and Spiritual Preparation
In addition to of all these physical preparations, there are two other forms of preparation that lend me even greater peace of mind. The first is the knowledge I possess. I’ve taken first aid classes. I’ve also studied outdoor survival, so I know how to find food and life saving plants in the wilds if I needed to.
It has long disturbed me that our society has become so far removed from nature that we cannot sustain ourselves without a huge infrastructure to support us. Most people don’t have the foggiest idea how to do the most basic things, such as start a fire (without matches or lighters), mend torn clothes, grow some fruits or vegetables in a garden, or perform other basic survival tasks. In native cultures, children mastered these skills by the time they were 12 or 13, so they knew how to sustain their own lives from Mother Nature’s Supermarket.
So, it’s no wonder people completely panic when cut off from civilization. They have no idea what to do to survive. If an epidemic arises, you could be put in a home lock down situation.
But knowledge or mental preparation isn’t the most important preparation either. I think it’s the sense of inner peace I’ve had through prayer, meditation and emotional healing work that has helped me the most. It’s enabled me to learn to feel my emotions, fear, pain, etc., but not react to them, so that I can retreat to the place of inner calm when there’s a crisis.
4.When to Get Medical Treatment for the Flu
Seek medical attention if you develop signs of severe illness: shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chest or abdominal pain, dizziness, confusion, or severe vomiting. Signs that a child needs immediate care include rapid breathing, poor fluid intake, extreme irritability and lethargy (the child is difficult to wake and won’t interact).
Anyone under the age of 18 should avoid aspirin, which, when taken during a viral illness, can lead to a serious condition called Reye’s syndrome, a rare disease characterized by neurological disorders, brain swelling and enlargement of the liver.
LET'S UNDERSTAND THE COMMON COLD FIRST before we rush off to get the shot or to the emergency room. This understanding of the common cold came from an analogy used in New Guide to Health by Samuel Thomson. Thomson compared the body to a furnace. A furnace takes in air and fuel and then with the assistance of air, burns the fuel to create heat or energy. It must also eliminate the smoke and ash that are created in this process.
A similar process takes place in our bodies. We eat food and breath in air to create the energy our bodies need to function. We must also eliminate the waste from this process.
When thinking about the body as a furnace, if we use high-quality fuel such as high-grade coal or hardwoods to stoke the fire, then we will get a hot fire with very little smoke and ash. On the other hand, if we burn cheaper fuels such as softwoods, then the fire will not burn as hot or as clean. If we throw green wood or other poor quality fuel into the fire the flame will smolder and produce a great deal of smoke and ash.
This also is true of our bodies. The body is a high performance engine made to run on quality fuel. When quality fuel is used, the body furnace burns clean and hot, as is suggested by the following diagram.
In Thomson's words.
"Our life depends on heat; food is the fuel that kindles and continues to heat. The digestive powers being correct, causes the food to consume; this continues the warmth of the body, by continually supporting the fire. The stomach is the depository from which the whole body is supported. The heat is maintained in the stomach by consuming the food; and all the body and limbs receive their proportion of nourishment and heat from that source; as the whole room is warmed by the fuel that is consumed in the fire place. The greater the quantity of wood consumed in the fireplace, the greater the heat in the room. So in the body; the more food, well digested, the more heat and support through the whole man."
However, when poor quality fuel (i.e., 'junk" food) is used, the internal fire may begin to smolder and smoke. It no longer produces the heat or energy we need and we begin to feel tired and worn out. As smoke and ash begin to build up in the fireplace, the chimney may become clogged and the fire begins to smother. I call this condition "toxic overload."
Thomson described this condition in the following words.
"By constantly receiving food into the stomach, [food] which is...not suitable for the best nourishment, the stomach becomes foul, so that the food is not well digested. This causes the body to lose its heat; then the appetite fails; the bones ache, and the man is sick in every part of the whole frame."
If you've had any experience in making campfires, you probably realize that if the fire is hot enough, you can throw in a green branch or two and they will burn. However, if you continue to feed the fire with green wood, eventually in will smolder and die. Hence, we could get away with consuming this poor quality fuel if we only did it occasionally, but when we use inferior fuel constantly, our internal fire is going to diminish and our body will begin to accumulate an excess of smoke and ash (toxic waste). We will feel this first as a loss of energy.
According to Thomson's theories, disease occurs when the body energy or fire is diminished and the perspiration or elimination is obstructed. He felt that fever was not a disease, but rather an attempt on the part of the body to burn up the excess toxic material in the system.
Hippocrates, the acknowledged father of physicians, maintained that nature is heat; and he is correct. Is nature a disease? Surely it is not. What is commonly called fever, is the effect and not the cause of disease. It is the struggle of nature to throw off the disease. The cold causes an obstruction, and fever arises in consequence of that obstruction to throw it off. This is universally the case. Remove the cause and the effect will cease."
As I thought about what Thomson had to say of fevers, I began to wonder if this was not true of symptoms in general. I began to understand that unlike a furnace, the body has intelligence. Hence, if one or more of the body's chimneys becomes partially blocked, the body will seek to remove the excess waste through one of the other channels of elimination. The body, you see, does not have one chimney, it has four (five in women). These chimneys are the bowel, the kidneys, the skin, the mucus membranes (lungs & sinuses) and, in women, the female reproductive system.
When one channel cannot handle all the waste in the body, then another, stronger, channel of elimination will take up the slack. I call this process emergency evacuation. It has also been called vicarious elimination. This process is illustrated by the following.
This emergency evacuation of toxins produces most of the symptoms of acute ailments. When this elimination of excess waste occurs through the bowel we call it diarrhea. When it occurs through the kidneys it may produce frequent or burning urination or other signs of kidney or bladder distress. When it occurs through the skin we have body odor, pimples, acne, rashes, hives and pox. When it occurs through the sinuses and lungs we have bad breath, sinus drainage, runny noses, coughs and other forms of respiratory congestion.
I am not alone in this line of thinking. Thomas Sydenham, known as the English Hippocrates stated "Disease is nothing else but an attempt on the part of the body to rid itself of morbific matter."
A modern medical doctor, Dr. Henry Bieler, came to these same conclusions after years of treating patients with changes in diet. In his book, Food is Your Best Medicine, he states:
The body's "terrific attempt" to burn up these waste products results in fever. And it is the changes (usually destructive) in the organs being used as avenues of emergency vicarious elimination which constitute the pathology, or conditions and processes of a disease.
Following this line of thinking the name of a disease is based upon a description...of the changes in the organs being used as emergency avenues of elimination.
This furnace analogy helps us to understand the truth about the common cold. Modern science will never discover a cure for the common cold, because the cold IS the cure. That is to say, the symptoms we associate with colds: fever, sinus drainage, coughs, sneezing, etc. are not the disease. They are not the enemy. They are the efforts of the body to heal itself. In fact, as we have suggested, this is true not only of colds, but also of all acute ailments. Symptoms like rashes, hives, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, itching, body odor, inflammation and even pain are all manifestations of the life process. They are all efforts of the body to cure itself. Hence, anything we do to try to block or suppress these symptoms will only prolong the illness.
Going back to our furnace analogy, suppose we have a person whose body is in a disease state. The fire of life is burning low and the system is clogged with ash and smoke. To preserve the fire of life, the body is using what energy it does have to force an elimination of toxins through the respiratory passages. Because the person believes that this eliminative process is the enemy he takes a drug which poisons the respiratory system so that it is no longer strong enough to act as a channel for eliminating these toxins. This might be compared to putting a cork into that chimney. Now, the symptoms have been relieved, but at what price?
By this analogy, we can see that poisons destroy the vital power of the body, which suppresses the symptoms and therefore interferes with the healing processes of the body. This helps us understand why poisons may give the appearance of a cure, but in the long run, they destroy our health and vitality. Unfortunately, most modern drugs are poisons. In fact, Eli Lily, the founder of one of our largest pharmaceutical houses said that all drugs are poisons. He maintained that by definition drugs are poisons and if a drug was not a poison it was not a good drug. This is why drugs suppress symptoms, but they do not remove the underlying cause of disease.
The great secret of healing is that the body heals itself. All we can do is assist the body's own healing process and this can only be done by providing the body with those things which would have helped to keep it healthy in the first place. Thus, the true art of healing involves things like: adequate rest, proper nourishment, pure water, fresh air, proper elimination, exercise, touch, positive mental attitudes and all other processes which would tend to keep a healthy person healthy. All of these things are natural to the body. Hence, healing by means of these processes can rightfully be called: natural healing, because all of these therapies are therapies that are natural to the body, whether it is healthy or sick. Thomson put it this way, "The same thing will prevent disease that will cure it."
But wait a minute. We taught in school that germs cause disease. Cold symptoms don't arise from blocked elimination, they are caused by infection. We catch colds don't we?
The truth is, germs are not the primary cause of disease. They are a secondary effect and many herbalists and natural healers since Thomson's day have realized this.
Just prior to Pasteur's day Rudolf Virchow, in his pioneer work on cellular pathology, maintained that the health of body cells depended on their chemical make-up and this chemical make-up depended in turn upon the kind of food eaten by the individual. "If I could live my life over again," stated Virchow, "I would devote it to proving that germs seek their natural habitat--diseased tissue--rather than being the cause of diseased tissue: e.g. mosquitoes seek stagnant water, but do not cause the pool to become stagnant."
As with any disease, the germ can only take hold if the immune system is weak - This was an argument between Bechamp and Pasteur over a hundred years ago and we are only starting to recognize the correctness of Bechamp. So to protect yourselves from any disease, be sure you are well hydrated, eat less acid causing foods (ie sugar, white flour, meats), get your exercise, relax, and be sure your body has a good supply of nutritional supplementation including minerals and Probiotics.
The famous herbalist, Dr. Edward E. Shook explains this eloquently in his Advanced Treatise in Herbology. Speaking of orthodox medical tests he says:
"They will show you illustrations of minute living organisms (so-called pathological germs) which are found in sputum, or pus taken from diseased tissues or secretions. Probably, at first sight, you are astonished; then you wonder "Can this be true?" Yes, it must be true. There they are! Right in the pus, plain as can be. How awful that such creatures can live and destroy our bodies without our knowledge until too late. Surely these doctors have discovered the truth. They are right. The germs must be killed." But wait a minute before you jump to such a conclusion. We find the fly on garbage which is composed of decaying organic matter. Is he, the fly, the cause of the garbage, or does the garbage breed the fly? We find the white maggot in decaying flesh. Was he (the maggot) the cause of death? And what are these creatures doing there? They are eating, consuming, doing away with decaying matter...."
Shook recognized that germs, like flies and mosquitoes, live where there is stagnation and decay. Using Thomson's furnace analogy, germs live in the smoke and ash that accumulates where the fire is burning low. When the fire is burning hot and clean, germs cannot live.
In modern terms we call that clean, hot burning state immunity. Even in orthodox medical circles, it is recognized that immunity is an important factor in whether or not we "catch" a disease. Here are two statements which discuss this concept.
Microbes and viruses are to be found everywhere, in the air,in water, in our food. They are always present at the surface of the skin, and of the digestive and respiratory mucosas. Nevertheless, in many people they remain inoffensive. Among human beings, some are subject to diseases, and others are immune. Such a state of resistance is due to the individual constitution of the tissues and the humors, which oppose the penetration of pathogenic agents or destroy them when they have invaded our body. This is natural immunity. This form of immunity may preserve certain individuals from almost any disease. It is one of the most precious qualities for which a man could wish. We are still ignorant of nature. It appears to depend on some properties of ancestral origin, as well as on others acquired in the course of development...But natural immunity does not exclusively derive from ancestral constitution. It may come from our mode of life and alimentation, as Reid Hunt showed long ago. Some diets were found to increase the susceptibility of mice to experimental typhoid fever. The frequency of pneumonia may also be modified by food. The mice belonging to one of the strains kept in the mousery of the Rockefeller Institute died of pneumonia in the proportion of fifty-two percent while subjected to the standard diet. Several groups of these animals were given different diets. Themortality from pneumonia fell to thirty-two percent, fourteen percent, and even zero, according to the food.
The individual doing everything in his power to keep in the best physical condition can prevent disease. Disease is a common enemy of all of us, waiting to destroy, but Nature is in league with us if we obey her laws. With a normal body and pure blood, should the invader arrive, the fight is on our side. But once the body is weakened by heredity as a result of our parents' or forefathers' neglect of the body, through the abuse of alcohol, tobacco or immoral living, lack of exercise, overeating and loss of sleep, overwork or lack of work, or improper food, then will the soil be fertile for the planting of the germs of disease? When exposed and once planted, the fight will be in their favor, as the rundown body will not have sufficient vitality to overcome the invader and sickness and death result.
These quotes all suggest that our health is not dependent on the whim of germs, but rather that germs take advantage of our body when it is weakened by abuse. Our thesis is that germs invade the body only because of the weakened energy of the tissues and the accompanying accumulation of toxic waste. Hence, using antibiotics and drug medicines may be likened to spraying our garbage piles and swamps with insecticides. It may temporarily relieve the symptoms, but as soon as the poison wears off, the scavengers will return.
Thompson's analogy that the body is like a furnace is still useful and valid. So, what about the fuel we are "burning" in our modern stomachs? Is it high quality fuel, poor quality fuel or kitchen garbage? It's something to think about. Go to my blog on The Gut.
About Essential Oils
Plants contain complex and powerful substances known as essential oils. These are aromatic liquids derived from shrubs, flowers, trees, roots, bushes, and seeds. These distinctive components defend plants from insects, harsh environmental conditions, and disease. They are also vital for a plant to grow, live, evolve, and adapt to its surroundings. Referred to as the essence of the plant, pure essential oils not only protect the plant but also determine its aroma. Essential oils have been used throughout time dating back to 4500 BC. From perfumes and aromatherapy to cooking and medicinal purposes, essential oils have been used in everyday life for centuries. In modern days, research shows that pure essential oils can provide similar benefits to humans and animals that they give to plants. IF interested in knowing more about Young Living's Pure essential oils and how to get them, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of these remedies are able to treat the symptoms associated with seasonal flu as well as the difficult symptoms of pandemic influenza. These remedies are being entirely ignored largely because modern medicine, and society as a whole, has decided that effective treatment of disease did not exist before the discovery of drugs. The economics and politics of modern medicine has in many ways blinded us to viable solutions for treating influenza.
H1N1 Flu and Seasonal Flu: Symptoms, Prevention and Treatment
By Dr. Linda B. White
As winter approaches each year we brace for flu season. This year brings an extra complication: the H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu. In June, the World Health Organization declared H1N1 a pandemic. Since then, the media has brimmed with H1N1 stories, governments have stockpiled Tamiflu, flu vaccines have been developed, temperature sensors have been installed in Asian airports, and gallons of hand sanitizer have been dispensed.
While the concerns are justified, we have always been vulnerable to various forms of the flu (influenza) virus. Flu viruses continually undergo genetic modification, presenting our immune systems with new challenges each season. To help you make sense of what’s in the news and plan your own best course of action, here’s a quick look at what you need to know about H1N1 and seasonal flu, and how to stay healthy.
H1N1 and Factory Farms
Big changes can happen when influenza viruses jump species. Birds, humans and pigs each have their own viruses that circulate among their populations. Pigs, however, can become infected with avian, swine and human viruses. Viruses can trade genes, potentially creating a novel virus capable of infecting humans, such as H1N1. Some authorities have tied industrial-scale hog farms — where animals are crowded together — with the origin and spread of the H1N1 virus.
How Flu Viruses Spread
Influenza viruses are very contagious. Sneezes and coughs propel the viral droplets into the air, and an infected person begins shedding viruses a day before symptoms strike, thus thwarting quarantines from being a completely effective tactic. These viruses can survive on inanimate objects for two to eight hours. You touch that object (a borrowed pen, a shopping cart), then rub your eye, nose or lips — and presto, inoculation.
Recognizing Flu Symptoms
One to three days after exposure, flu symptoms develop: fatigue, fever, body aches, headache, sore throat, cough, and even vomiting or diarrhea. Children may also develop middle ear infections. People with respiratory ailments, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, are especially vulnerable to complications such as pneumonia.
Who Gets the Flu?
Whereas the seasonal flu or influenza viruses take a greater toll on the very young and the very old, the H1N1 virus (swine flu) has so far proved most dangerous to children and young adults. So far, most of the deaths have been of people with other significant health problems, and the vast majority of the million or so H1N1 flu cases have been mild, on par with seasonal influenza.
Vaccines for Seasonal Flu and H1N1
The vaccine for this season’s expected influenza viruses, though recommended to protect against these viruses, doesn’t work against the H1N1 virus. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) anticipates a vaccine against the novel H1N1 will be available this fall. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has prioritized the H1N1 vaccine for groups at higher risk of complications: people who work in the health care industry, live with or care for babies younger than 6 months old, are pregnant, are between the age of 6 months to 24 years old, or are 25 through 64 years old with chronic illnesses or immune dysfunction.
Seasonal and H1N1 Flu Prevention Tips
PLEASE NOTE: The information in this blog is based solely on the use of 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils due to their high quality and tested purity. The use of a brand of uncertain quality and/or purity will provide you with potentially dangerous, if not lethal, results. The author assumes no responsibility for your improper use of this information.
The statements about these oils are for educational purposes only and have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These oils are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. If you are ill, and especially if you have come in contact with the Swine Virus, seek immediate medical intervention.
This blog would be just a ranting and raving if I didn’t supply you with an action plan. I really encourage all of you to put together an emergency first aid and preparedness kit. It should contain basic herbs and first aid supplies and items you’d need in an emergency, like matches, a flashlight, etc. Everyone should also have at least a 72-hour supply of food and water on hand for emergencies. It’s not that hard to put something like this together and it comes in handy for day-to-day “emergencies,” too.
More importantly, get some knowledge about how to use this stuff. Take a first aid class if you haven’t done so. That way you know how to do mouth-to-mouth, CPR, apply pressure for bleeding and other basic first aid skills. Go on an herb walk and learn to identify your local herbs. You’re an herbalist, and people should be able to rely on you for help even if the time comes when you can’t order commercially prepared remedies.
Now, to address the specific issue of the flu, let’s remember that even in the Dark Ages, not everyone died when there was a plague. Some people were immune. The flu, like any other disease, is most likely to strike those who are susceptible, which means those whose immune systems are compromised.
So, taking care of your general health is one of the best ways to be prepared. Eat healthy, exercise, get enough sleep, learn how to manage stress, and take some basic supplements when colds or flu or whatever are going around to help ward them off. I’ve posted my suggestions for an emergency preparedness kit in a separate article.
Forget the vaccines. Flu strains mutate all the time, and they can’t vaccinate you against all of them. Furthermore, all the flu vaccine does is challenge your immune system so it will build up its own defenses. If you’re immune compromised to begin with, then the vaccine can actually backfire and damage your body.
Opponents of vaccines claim that more people die from the vaccines than actually die from the flu, but scare tactics are really useful in selling flu vaccines, aren’t they? The vaccines that are being created now cannot keep up with the mutations.
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