The cold weather brings about the worry of you or your loved ones getting ailments such as the common cold and the flu. With these concerns, and the media constantly talking about flu shots, I am sure it has crossed your mind on whether you should get a flu shot or not.

The Centers of Disease and Control and Prevention states the flu vaccine is the most effective way to prevent the flu, but this remains a controversial subject. Most flu vaccines still contain a mercury-based preservative called thimerosal, mercury has been linked to neurological disorders, including autism. Autism was first identified as a disorder in Children in 1943 and this was just a few years after a mercury-based preservative was added to vaccine. Coincidence??? There is a far greater cause for concern for autism and other neurological disorders then for the flu and common cold.

Flu strains are constantly changing to adapt and survive in your immune system. They change so the antibodies your body has already produced to fight your previous flu strains, won’t work against the new strain. Therefore, the flu vaccine often does not match the strain of flu that enters the population.

But, lets say that the vaccine actually matches the strain that hits the public this year, is the vaccine really that effective in keeping the flu from entering your immune system? A study found that the overall effectiveness of the flu vaccine entering the elderly, the most common population to get the flu, was 23 percent when the strain matched the vaccine. They found no significant difference when someone doesn’t receive a vaccine and when the matching of strains was poor.

Some say your best defense against the flu is getting the flu. This is because your body will naturally develop its own antibodies against that flu strain and those never leave your body. With this being the case, and the flu vaccine effectiveness unclear, many are turning to alternative methods to develop their immune system to fight the winter viruses. Here are some natural ways for you to develop your immune system and prepare for these upcoming chilly months.

Garlic: Has antibiotic properties and has good effects on allergies, cancer and general immunity. It has been used as a natural medicine for over 5,000 years.

Vitamin C: Can reduce susceptibility to colds, as well as the duration and severity of symptoms.

Echinacea: Has been widely used to prevent and treat colds. Studies on this herb have conflicting results, however.

Tea: Green and black tea has been shown to increase immune defense against bacteria, infection, viruses and fungi.

Stress Reduction: decreases the duration of flu and colds.

Acupuncture: May be effective in preventing and curing the common cold.

Chiropractic: Subluxations (misaligned vertebrae) in your spine are pinching nerves that are traveling to your organs. This subluxation hinders the organ that the nerve is traveling to. Therefore, with some of your internal organs not functioning properly and efficiently, your body’s defense against the common cold and flu is not at an optimal level. This allows viruses, bacteria and fungi to survive and thrive inside your body. So, give your body a chance to fight these unwanted guests this winter and get in to see your Chiropractor!

A strong immune system is the best defense against infectious illnesses. This winter give your immune system a boost the natural way! Use Chiropractic, proper nutrition, supplements, exercise and stress reduction to fight off these visitors and win the battle!

In Health,