...and it can be extremely delibilitating.
Get Ready Now, just in case.
Even if you have had a vaccination!
Four years ago, at Easter, I was hit by a flu virus. One minute I was in my office preparing to start teaching a class and the next I was shivering uncontrollably and felt absolutely dreadful. I barely made it back to my room. The text that went to my colleague was gibberish but he got the basic message, fortunately..
So, when flu hits, it can be sudden, unexpected and show no previous symptoms. In my sections about colds and coughs I always suggest you take Aconite as soon as you feel any of the tell tale scratchyness in the throat, a few sneezes or painful cough - and then a series of actions to take over the next few hours which can minimize the severity.
But with this flu.. no warning. I recently contacted six emminent Homoeopathic practitioners around the UK to see what symptoms of flu their cleints have been experiencing. It seemed to come down to a basic choice of remedies between the ones which start with severe chills, as in my case, or with a fever. Whichever it is, best be prepared.
My two remedies of choice for flu would be Eupertorium Perfoliatum and Gelsemium. Nothing unusual there - as those of you who read my website sections will know all too well. Eupertorium has to go to bed. Can't get up. Can't move. Feels awful. Aches everywhere. PLUS all those fluey symptoms, swollen sore throat etc.
Gelsemium is more achey, they can just about move around, you will find them sitting on the sofa under a bunny rug, sniffing, groaning a bit, eyes look red and bleary. They doze off. But they will eat. They will drink.
But I thought I would scour the internet for some ideas about flu treatment from other therapists and modalities. What else can help? What could we be taking now to build up our resistance? What new, unusual ideas have been tested lately.
1. Oil of Oregano
Oregano oil, also known as P73, has been shown in small lab studies to have antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
To use oil of oregano, simply drop three to 20 drops of it into a glass of water four times a day, swish the concoction around in your mouth, and then swallow.
2. Olive leaf capsules
In a 2010 study published in the medical journal Scientia Pharmaceutica, this extract was described as having antiviral properties to the respiratory viruses R.S.V. and parainfluenza, although it has not yet been proven to be effective against influenza.
Studies about its effect on treating influenza, however, are currently being conducted, mainly looking at olive leaf's major ingredient, oleuropein.
3. Black elderberry extract
Black elderberry extract, which is available in tea, liquid and capsule form, is thought to work by blocking the flu proteins called hemagglutinin, according to Ashton.
Commentary: I started taking Olive leaf extract after I had the flu, to build up my immunity and strength again. I also have tried Oregano oil but found that it repeated on me all day and made my mouth taste unpleasant.
Yes, those little lozenges full of this specific vitamin may indeed be helpful in shortening stuffy noses, as long as you start taking them within 24 hours of the onset of the cold symptoms. Zinc doesn’t necessarily reduce the severity of a cold, but a shorter cold is a definite comfort when you’re feeling under the weather. As for helping your kids get over a cold faster, there haven’t been enough conclusive studies to prove that zinc is helpful. For this remedy, it’s best to stick to giving it to the grown-ups.
Your local natural grocery store most likely has an entire cooler devoted to a multitude of probiotics for sale. But are these pricey pills chock-full of “good” bacteria worth the money? Studies say that yes, probiotics do contribute to immune function, and regular dosing can indeed reduce the number of colds and the length of the illnesses caught. It’s worth noting that of the many studies performed, the effects of probiotics were positive yet marginal, but since probiotics are considered safe and low-risk, there’s no harm in trying them! There are many safe probiotics available for children, and you can always eat lots of probiotic-rich foods such as yogurt, kombucha, and sauerkraut.
Commentary: If you can find keffir at your supermarket and incorpaorate it into a smoothy or lassi, I find that the most palatable way to drink it. Super good for all the family. Loads of studies.
There’s a reason that a hot cup of tea with a splash of lemon and a dollop of honey sounds so good when you’re sick; the lemon has an extra pump of vitamin C and the honey has some antiviral properties that may inhibit viral activity in colds. Honey has also been shown to be an excellent cough suppressant and sleep aid during a cold—especially in children who may be too young for over-the-counter cough medications (though honey should never be given to infants under age one). It’s safe and tasty, so next time you or your little ones get a cold, stock up on some honey to help get you through!
4. Chicken soup
Along the same lines as the hot tea with honey, chicken soup usually sounds like the perfect dinner to someone who’s feeling under the weather. New research suggests why: it may contain of number of substances with beneficial medicinal activity. A mild anti-inflammatory effect may be one way that soup helps with symptoms of colds and other respiratory infections. The hot broth in the soup has also been found to clear out sinuses even better than drinking or sipping hot water. Turns out mom was right, chicken soup really is (some of!) the best medicine when you’re feeling sick.
Commentary: Of course this presupposes that you have someone kind who will bring you lemon and honey or chicken soup. With so many of us living alone these days , its probably worth keeping small tins of chicken soup in the cupboard and using a thermos mug for your lemon and honey. But whatever - you will need to drink water. That is an absolute must!
I found this interesting article and include a snippet for you, along with the link. I will certainly buy a little bottle to have in the cupboard and give it a try.
"He would grab a dropper full of over-the-counter (OTC) hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and place a few drops into his slightly aching left ear, (where he receives his first early warning). He would let it “fizz” until it stopped and then be free from the worry of being bedridden for a few days, all the while avoiding a potentially greater threat than the flu, the flu-shot.
At first I questioned the efficacy of this method, but when I investigated further using the link he had provided–the Cancer Tutor–the information I found there satisfied my need for further corroboration.
“To cure the flu you’ll need to repeat this process two or more times at one or two hours intervals until there is no more bubbling when putting H.P. [hydrogen