Even though it may not feel much like Fall in your neck of the woods, cold and flu season is underway and vaccine stations are popping up in pharmacies all over the place. The CDC already reports one death from influenza this year and the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) medical director William Schaffner, MD, makes note that every flu season is a unique experience. And while strains are tracked all year long to prepare the best vaccine for the upcoming season, influenza remains unpredictable.
Last year saw the highest-ever rate of flu-related hospitalization documented among seniors and with mutated strains leaving the vaccine less than 50% effective.
So what is different, when it comes to the flu this year? For one thing, there is a new flu vaccine. Flu strains are tracked all year long in order to prepare for the coming season and the CDC reports that there is a greater probability that this year’s flu vaccines will protect against the circulating strains more effectively than previous years.
Another thing to know about the new flu vaccine is that it will only be available in an injectable form. The nasal flu spray that was available last year was apparently not effective enough so it is not being offered for flu prevention this year.
Of course, the choice to get the flu vaccine is what most doctors recommend, especially when reports show that flu causes millions of cases of illness, hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations, and thousands of deaths each year.
But what if you and your family don’t want the flu shot? Are there other ways to prevent the flu from wrecking havoc on you and those you care about?
The answer is a resounding YES!
- Wash your hands ALL THE TIME.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes.
- Stay home if you’re sick.
- Take an antiviral if your doctor recommends it for an oncoming virus.
- Eat healthy food.
- Get plenty of sleep.
- Drink lots of fluids.
- Take a multivitamin.
It goes without saying, anyone can get the flu from someone else. So our team at Total Health Sciences recommends the Defend and Resist Complex which helps your body respond to environmental challenges by giving your immune system what it needs to stay strong and fight those nasty viruses that come your way during cold and flu season.
Scientists and medical communities have also identified interferon as being crucial to healthy immune function. Immune support at the cellular level is also extremely important here at Total Health Sciences so we recommend our NutriFeron Supplement which provides a proprietary blend of four plant extracts and is designed to naturally increase levels of interferon and provide immune support.
While seasonal influenza (flu) viruses can be detected year-round in the United States, flu viruses are most common during the fall and winter. The exact timing and duration of flu seasons can vary, but influenza activity often begins to increase in October. Most of the time flu activity peaks between December and March, although activity can last as late as May. Suffice it to say, now is as good a time as any to get started on prevention and protection from viruses.