Natural Flu Remedies and Prevention

It has been a bad year for the flu so far in Canada, particularly for Influenza A (H3N2). Even those who received the flu shot are coming up short on defenses with a mix of outdated strains. Any natural defense we can use to boost our immune system will go a long way in preventing many days of misery, or even a life-threatening condition.

Prevention and treatment of viral infections may be the same or different. A flu strain may be immune to some cytokines produced by our bodies in abundance when we ingest certain anti-viral foods and herbs. This can be detrimental if we are fighting one of these immune viruses because the body will over-produce those cytokines. In effect, the body will attack itself. This is why we should never take Echinacea, algae, and some other anti-virals when we are sick with an unidentified virus. These details and contradictions are what makes it so important to consult a doctor if we have symptoms of the flu. Otherwise, we can use antivirals freely as a preventative measure.

Naturally-derived nutrients that are proven to help fight viral infections include Vitamins A, C and E, Selenium and Zinc. Look for foods high in antioxidants, carotene and lysine to boost immunity. Science has proven time and time again that the digestive system is also closely connected to the immune system, which makes probiotics and prebiotics a valuable partner in the fight against the flu.

Fresh is best!  Sometimes powdered or extract forms of herbs are easier to mix in with other foods or to take as supplements.  The key is to find a supplier that uses fresh herbs and low-heat processing for a full range of benefits.  We rely on Starwest Botanicals for many of our bulk herbs.

Some of the most powerful antiviral foods and herbs are:

Berries
Citrus fruit
Apples
Broccoli
Natural Remedies Prevent FluReishi or Shitake mushooms
Cauliflower
Spinach
Brussels sprouts
Kale
Tomatoes
Quinoa
Yogurt with active cultures
Raw honey
Dandelion leaves
Japanese knotwood root (or resveratrol supplements)
Astragalus
Curcumin/Tumeric
Ginger
Chicory
Cinnamon
Cats Claw
Garlic
Echinacea
Lemon Balm
Seaweed & Algae
Calcium Montmorillonite Clay
Unrefined, virgin coconut oil
Green Tea
Aloe Vera

Chicken or turkey soup may be an old remedy but science has since proven it to be beneficial, especially for respiratory illness. It allows us to combine many of the above vegetables and herbs. Avoid over-cooking to retain as many of the beneficial components as possible.

??? What do you do to prevent the flu? Please add your comments below.

Sources:
Healthy Canadians (Government of Canada)
Cruse, Julius, M.. Lewis, Robert E. Atlas of Immunology, Third Edition. 2010.
Balch, Phyllis. Prescription for Nutritional Healing, Fifth Edition: A Practical A-to-Z Reference to Drug-Free Remedies Using Vitamins, Minerals, Herbs & Food Supplements. 2010.
Prescription for Herbal Healing, 2nd Edition: An Easy-to-Use A-to-Z Reference to Hundreds of Common Disorders and Their Herbal Remedies. 2012.

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4 Responses to "Natural Flu Remedies and Prevention"

  1. Niccola  August 21, 2016

    It’s been a bad flu season around here so I’m preparing for the worse this fall. Thanks for the advice.

    Reply
  2. Bailey  May 20, 2016

    You made my last bug disappear in record time so I’ll be employing these tactics next flu season and hopefully won’t get sick.

    Reply
  3. LEENA3  May 5, 2015

    I’VE HAD A MISERABLE WINTER BEING SICK ALL THE TIME SO I’LL TAKE YOUR ADVICE NEXT WINTER FOR SURE!!!! SO FRUSTRATING!!!!

    Reply
  4. lydia c  March 24, 2015

    personally I think big pharm has had a cure for the flu & colds for decades and they probably found it in herbs. thanks for the inside info………dont tell big pharma 😛

    Reply

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