Flu season. Almost all natural remedies or support measures for Influenza stimulate the immune system, which is counterproductive if you have autoimmune disease. One walk down the supplement aisle at your health food store and you know how many products are marketed for the sick season. Most of them however, stimulate the immune system. That for most people is for good reason; our immune system needs to fight off viruses. But, taking immune boosting and stimulating supplements can aggravate an already over-active immune system for those with autoimmune disease and figuring out what to take can be tricky.
Here I am compiling a list of nutritionals to keep on hand in case you come down with a nasty virus that won’t stimulate your immune system but can help.
Probiotics: Different strains of probiotic bacteria have show effects of lessening and preventing the flu. In one study, Lactobacillus brevis alleviated clinical symptoms of influenza in mice. In another study with preschool children, the administration of Lactobacillus rhamnosus had fewer days of respiratory illness than those not treated. And a third study that shows the prevention of swine flu with the treatment of Enterococcus faecium in vitro.
Homeopathy. A treasure trove for those with autoimmune disease because it does not over stimulate the immune system. Homeopathic history shows that during the 1918 flu epidemic, the death rate of those who took homeopathy . There are a few ways to use homeopathy for flu and colds:
Prevention: Influenzium which is nosode (Nosodes are homeopathy immunizations and are administered either therapeutically (in order to treat a disease) or prophylactically in order to prevent a disease. Homeopathic Influenzium is made yearly from the official WHO influenza vaccine. If you are not familiar with homeopathy, think of this analogy that explains how diluted it is. If you took a drop of a sulfur and put it in a gallon of water and then took one drop of water out of that gallon and put in another gallon of water and then took a drop of water out of that gallon and so on and so on…eventually it would be so diluted that no real sulfur would be detectable in the last gallon of water. But, the energetic footprint would still be there. The body recognizes energy, so in theory it would cause the body to react. What I love about homeopathy and its energetic basis, is that the body only uses a remedy if it needs it. If not, nothing happens. Occasionally a healing crisis happens when a remedy is administered and that can be adjusted by altering the dose or the remedy or letting the body adjust naturally.
Treatment: There are classic influenza remedies, as well as the influenzium vaccine which can help decrease symptoms, move a person quicker through the illness by increase vitality and prevent secondary illness that occur like pneumonia. The bottom line with homeopathy is that it is a non-invasive, gentle way to increase vitality, naturally support normal immune system function and help the body heal. One of the things I love most about homepathy is how inexpensive it is relative to pharmacy medicine. A vial of influenzium (enough for your whole family) is less than $10.
A few years ago I was struck down with a horrible influenza. I was able to shorten the duration of it in half and was able to manage all my symptoms without using any other medicines. I will include a disclaimer here that I have a homeopathic doctor who I consult with. I do a lot of home treating with homeopathy as it is a passion of mine, but I always consult with my homeopath for the big illnesses. If you want to find a homeopath near you, try this site.
You can buy Influenzium and other remedies here.
According to www.abchomeopathy.com here is how you take influenzium:
As a preventative: Take 3 tablets under the tongue** at the beginning of each month throughout the flu season (November to March). In our families, we routinely make the 1st of each month our ìnfluenzinum day. The great thing about this is that 1 bottle is enough to treat the entire family, and some of the neighbors too! As a treatment for flu symptoms: Take 3 tablets under the tongue** every 4 hours while the symptoms persist. Starting this at the very first sign of getting the flu will give the best results. **You should not eat or drink anything, chew gum, eat mints, or brush your teeth 15 minutes either way of using any homeopathic remedy under the tongue. Also, try not to touch the pills with your hands; pour them into the bottle cap and then dump them under your tongue! ”
Extra Supplements to keep on hand:
Manuka Honey: although not scientifically proven to help with influenza, it has shown to be very anti-microbial. That could mean that while helping to soothe a sore throat, it may also help prevent secondary infections. Manuka honey is from New Zealand and made when bees pollinate Tea Trees (Manuka Trees). I keep this in my house for burns, cuts and general first aid.
L-glutatamine: a power house amino acid that helps feed and repair enterocytes in the intestinal mucosa. Not scientifically proven to specifically help the flu, it may perhaps help with secondary gut inflammation associated with influenza. l-glutamine is also found in bone broth but not in the amounts available from supplementation.