Flu and Immunity

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the W.T. Rawleigh. Assumptions made within the article are not reflective of the position of W.T. Rawleigh.

In the US, the severest flu outbreak of 2017-2018 has caused 42 deaths in North Carolina and 74 deaths in California. As of 3rd February 2018, 46 children have died because of the flu virus. This year’s mass flu outbreak is caused by the predominant H3N2 strain. It is aggressive and poses complications for the elderly and the younger generation, especially the ones with chronic health problems. The rapid deaths have been caused by co-infections or weak immunity due to existing health conditions.

Practicing preventative care and strengthening your immunity are two ways to ensure that you and your loved ones don't have to fight the flu. Preventative practice such as getting vaccinated, not smoking, and washing hands are foundational. It is imperative to stay at home and take ample amount of rest when you are feeling that you are about to contract cold, or showing signs of flu.

Immunity is a system and there is still a lot of research that needs to be carried out, especially with regard to influenza. However, recent studies showed that there is a high correlation between lack of vitamin D and contracting flu. Published in The BMJ*, a latest study suggested that taking vitamin D may help protect against acute respiratory infections. Another study by Queen Mary University of London* found that vitamin D supplementation was able to reduce the number of participant’s proportion who experienced acute respiratory tract infection by 12%. Although we know that having a strong immunity helps fight flu and its complications, uncovering the link between vitamin D and respiratory illnesses, especially flu, will hopefully improve in the reduction of the diseases.

In her book, Lifetime Encyclopaedia of Natural Remedies, Myra Cameron recommends 250-1000 mgs daily to help prevent colds and flu; 1000-24000mg in divided doses to hasten recovery.

References

Jolliffe D, Martineau A, Griffiths C: P19 Vitamin D in the Prevention of Acute Respiratory Infection: A Systematic Review of Clinical Studies Thorax 2012;67:A71-A72.

Martineau, AR: Vitamin D supplementation to prevent acute respiratory tract infections: systematic review and meta-analysis of individual participant data. The BMJ. British medical journal (Clinical research ed.) 2017; 356- i6583

*The claims and statements made in this blog posting have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The products or ingredients or diets or lifestyles are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. It is recommended that a physician be consulted before taking any supplements/ingredients/products. Results not typical and may vary.

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