Is it advisable to have seasonal flu shots?

Flu shots or no flu shots? This is the dilemma that many people face every winter season.

For the conventional medical world, there is no question. They deem it to be absolutely vital and necessary. Alternative medical practitioners are very mistrustful about this "precaution". Is their mistrust justified?

Possible justifications include:

1. Each winter's formula is reformulated, and is not necessarily successful in the alternating hemisphere.

2. So many specific substances are mixed into the shot, which could cause allergies, e.g. the egg proteins found in some of the formulae.

3. Some flu shots contain thimerosal, an organic form of mercury used as a preservative.

4. Local reactions at the injection site is a possibility.

5. You must be very cautious if you have a history of seizure disorders.

So, what is the verdict so far? Well, assess the possible risk in your individual case. To actually contract the flu, can lead to raised immunity in an otherwise healthy person. If you use natural remedies to help you to get over the flu, you will have a very good resistance to future attacks of the virus.

But if you are frail, elderly, have a high-risk, working-with-the-public job, you may think it wiser to go for the shot.

So far, so good......

But what are the alternatives?

* Custom homeopathic remedies prepared by your homeopathic doctor, to fight off the flu symptoms you already have.

* Some herbs to help in the process of healing:

1. Lime flower for nasal congestion

2. Yarrow - acts as an anti-inflammatory

3. Mint to open up the nasal passages

4. Lemon balm to help you sweat and break the fever

5. Elderberry for fever and muscle pain.

Brew a tea from these herbs, or look out for them in over-the-counter remedies.

* For the prevention of flu, visit your natural food store or pharmacy, they stock a range of natural preventative remedies.

* A nasal spray, containing the same substances as the vaccine shot can be obtained, if you don't want the shot.

* Wash your hands frequently!

* Eat lots of fruit and vegetables to build up your immunity.

* Sugar intake directly affects the ability of the immune system's white blood cells to fight off infection.

* Supplementation to keep the colds, flu and bronchitis at bay: For adults, 1 000 mg of vitamin C daily, 40 000 units of vitamin A, 50 mg of zinc and 2 mg of copper per day.

* Other botanical remedies to boost the immune system: goldenseal (500 mg twice a day) and garlic (2 pure garlic-oil capsules a day).

Now it is over to you to decide whether a flu shot is for you, or not...

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