How to turn on your immunity against Swine Flu

Swine Flu - The Good Life Letter

18th October 2009

  • Swine Flu fear is back - but here's what the media is NOT telling you
  • The vitamin that turns on your immune system protection

Here we go again...

Summer's over. It's autumn. So now we're well and truly back on the Swine Flu trail...

As the mainstream press reports growing concerns about the second wave of the epidemic, the advice
for healthy people goes along these lines....

Sneeze or cough into your arms if you've no hanky... wash your hands... and if you get the flu, hang on in there and watch 'Cash in the Attic' until you feel better or keel over.

Hmmm... it's a bit like those old 'duck and cover' leaflets from the cold war days. "If there's a nuclear war, hide under your desk".

Meanwhile, we're told that clever scientists will take care of all the vulnerable people - the over-70s, children, asthma suffers and pregnant women - with a nice big jab of flu vaccine.

So is that the whole story?

Well, in today's Good Life letter I want to explain why the media don't mention that one of the biggest protections against flu is easily available to EVERYONE right now. I'll show how it can help switch on your immune system protection NOW.

This remedy has NONE of the alleged side-effects of the flu jab (mercury poisoning, brain disorders and allergic reactions anyone?) and offers you serious, lasting protection.

The key factor in your body's defence system

My view on how to protect my family from flu and other nasties was totally transformed by a press release I read on August 18th.

It was by Adrian Gombart of Oregan State University. You can read it here: Vitamin D Press Release

He explains how vitamin D is so important for our survival, it's been conserved in the genome for over 60 million years of evolution.

Gombart says:

"The fact that this vitamin-D mediated immune response has been retained through millions of years of evolutionary selection, and is still found in species ranging from squirrel monkeys to baboons and humans, suggests that it must be critical to their survival."

He claims that this "makes it clear that humans and other primates need to maintain sufficient levels of vitamin D".

The team at Oregon University looked at how vitamin D boosts your immune system by 'turning on' an anti-icrobial protein. 

Gombart writes:

"...This action of "turning on" an optimal response to microbial attack only works properly in the presence of adequate vitamin D, which is actually a type of hormone that circulates in the blood and signals to cells through a receptor."

Or let me put it in other words...

Without enough vitamin D, your immune system doesn't get 'switched on' properly. This leaves you vulnerable to flu - especially in the coming months.

Why flu is worse in winter

It's a well known fact that flu epidemics get worse in winter. This isn't surprising. Because the main source of vitamin D is sunlight. 

Back in the 1960s a British researcher called Dr. R. Edgar Hope-Simpson studied influenza. He was the first to spot that something was making humans less immune in the winter, and more immune in the summer.

He predicted that if we could work out why this should be, we could understand, and deal with, serious flu epidemics.

Well, it's now quite clear that this "something" is vitamin D.

Vitamin D doesn't just switch on your immune system... it stops your immune system from over-reacting when under attack. It does this by stopping your immune system from releasing too many inflammatory cells, called chemokines and cytokines, into infected lung tissue.

This kind of inflammation was the main cause of death in the 1918 flu pandemic. Usually it manifests itself as bacterial pneumonia. A real killer for the the most vulnerable people.

So how can we get enough vitamin D?

Inspired by the Oregon University announcement, my research took me to an article called Epidemic Influenza and Vitamin D by J.J Cannell. This appeared in 'Medical News Today' back in September 2006.

Cannell believes that many countries in the West at experiencing a critical vitamin D deficiency.

In the first instance, there's simply not enough vitamin D in modern human diets. To get enough you'd have to dopt an Innuit-style diet. That is..."sardines for breakfast, herring for lunch and salmon for dinner."

However, it's not really food that's the issue. The principle way we get our vitamin D is to absorb it through our skin. And modern humans lose out there, too. Cannell says:

"In the last three hundred years, we began to work indoors; in the last one hundred years, we began to travel inside cars; in the last several decades, we began to lather on sunblock and consciously avoid sunlight. All of these things lower vitamin D blood levels. The inescapable conclusion is that vitamin D levels in modern humans are not just low - they are aberrantly low." 

So if you can't get adequate amounts of vitamin D from the diet Cannell concludes that "we must get vitamin D from dietary supplements." 

And here's he poses another problem...

In his view, the amount of vitamin D in nearly all multivitamins is too inconsequential and has no serious effect on immunity.

Most supplements you'll see on sale have 200 to 600iu. This is the usual recommended daily amount.

But Cannell says that the best daily dose of vitamin D for adults is 5000 iu per day.

So why not just opt for the flu jab?

Of course, if you're concerned about your vulnerability to swine flu there's always the flu jab. But some reports suggest that this may not be the lifeline it's made out to be.

There was an article in The New York Times last year that said the following:

"A growing number of immunologists and epidemiologists say the [flu] vaccine probably does not work very well for people over 70, the group that accounts for three-fourths of all flu deaths."

And there's a groundswell of concern about the vaccine's safety too.

Donald W. Miller, MD is a cardiac surgeon and Professor of Surgery at the University of Washington in Seattle. He's also a member of 'Doctors for Disaster Preparedness'.

In a very frank article, he goes says that taking vitamin D is better and safer than a flu shot.

He explains what's in many flu jabs...:

"Formaldehyde is used to inactivate the virus. It is a known cancer-causing agent. Aluminium is added to promote an antibody response. It is a neurotoxin that may play a role in Alzheimer's disease. Other additives and adjuvants in the flu vaccine... can cause allergic reactions in some people."

And here in the UK, some shocking information came to light during the summer...

In August 2009 a letter from the Health Protection Agency was leaked to the Mail on Sunday. It told neurologists to be on the lookout for an increase in a brain disorder called Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). It attacks the nerves and can be fatal.

They suspect the vaccine could be a trigger for this disease.

A similar swine flu vaccination in the US in the 1970s saw more lives lost because of the jab than through the flu itself. Twenty five people died as a direct result. The US government had to pay out millions in compensation.

So how well has this current flu vaccination been tested?

After all this is being rushed out in the panic, and hasn't gone through the kind of screening process a regular drug would be put through.

I won't add to the scare mongering. But I'd certainly not pin all your hopes on a vaccine. I'd also look into the vitamin D issue.

Make sure you get plenty of sunshine onto your skin whenever you can. And look for high dosage supplements online or ask at your local health food store.

Yours, as ever


Ray Collins
The Good Life Letter

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