Healthier Solutions by Marie
Holistic Nutritional Counseling

          Flu Vaccine
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Trying to decide whether or not to get flu vaccines this year? We are really being pushed this month to get vaccinated, and many are wondering what’s going on. Quite a few of you have asked me my opinion, so here it is. 
You should know that I feel most vaccines do more harm than good. I realize that this is a very controversial viewpoint that goes against everything you hear from the media and from most physicians, but it is growing rapidly in acceptance.  I believe vaccination should be a personal choice based on full disclosure of benefit vs. risk, but also feel that you are rarely fully informed of either one.  Please hear me out, then, decide for yourself.
      I just returned from an intense four day international conference on vaccines in Washington, DC called “Show Us the Science & Give Us the Choice” hosted by the National Vaccine Information Center. Vaccines for everything from polio to anthrax to HPV and flu were covered.
      I had the opportunity to listen to 44 world class, highly credentialed, PhD’s, MD’s, scientists, researchers, and other experts in fields related to vaccine development, research, use, and side effects. Some of the speakers work or have worked with the CDC, Health & Human Services, and other government agencies and pharmaceutical companies. This was not a rag tag group of alternative minded nuts. Many were dismayed at how their research was being disregarded or misrepresented. All were at odds with media scare tactics, and with the fast-track speed at which this vaccine was developed and put on the market.
      Here are just a few of the many things I think you must know.
      Swine flu is potentially serious, and some people will die of it, just as they do from complications from the common cold and regular flu each year, but so far, the swine flu has been very mild compared to regular flu. Pneumonia continues to be the most serious complication.  
     The 2006 Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act, (PREPA) allowed DHHS Secretary Sibelius to release flu vaccine manufacturers from virtually all liability for any harmful side effects or deaths that result from the use of any flu vaccine or drug. All adjuvents (enhancers) used in the vaccines are covered, and restrictions on unproven adjuvants may be lifted. This means you cannot sue the manufacturers unless the DHHS first grants you express permission to do so, and you must prove they knew the exact harm it would cause. As long as the manufacturers do not actually know of a problem, they cannot be held liable. Not much incentive to do studies, is it?
      The release from liability has also been extended to Tamiflu and Relenza, two medications that already carry black box warnings, due to serious and potentially fatal side effects (including suicidal behavior). In practice, these medications have only been found to reduce severity of flu symptoms by 1.5 days. Sound worth it to you?
      Nasal flu mist vaccines contain live virus. Vaccine recipients can shed and spread the virus through saliva or feces, so that changing a child’s diaper could be a risk, for example, and mutation of the virus becomes more easily possible, rendering the vaccine totally useless, and potentially creating a more deadly flu. Flu mists also contain MSG, for your information.
        GlaxoSmithKline’s European flu vaccine, Pandemrix, is still banned here because it contains squalene, which is good for skin but extremely harmful when injected into the body.
Our soldiers received squalene in the anthrax vaccine in the 1990’s, and many scientists believe that squalene is the true cause of “Gulf War Syndrome”, as the same problems, like lupus, skin lesions, and neurological disorders are seen in lab animals when injected with squalene.. 
        According to the CDC, swine flu vaccine is only for “non pregnant individuals aged 2-49.”  The vaccine inserts clearly state that the effect on pregnant women, their fetuses, or nursing mothers is unknown. Go to  Swine Flu Facts to see vaccine product inserts.  
      Vaccine safety for individuals with existing health issues, or who take prescription medications, is unknown. 
Most vaccines contain 25 mcg of mercury (thimerosol) per dose, which is considered dangerous for anyone weighing less than 550 pounds. Some have reduced thimerosol to 1 mcg per dose--still a toxic amount for infants and children. Thimerosol-free presentations are available.
      Flu shots have never been shown to impact mortality in any age group, including the elderlyPreliminary studies show that about a third of Americans over the age of 58 carry antibodies to a swine-like flu from past exposure.
There are serious potential side effects of any vaccination; the “it couldn’t hurt” mentality is erroneous. As I said at the beginning, the benefits must outweigh the risks for each individual.  Why not focus on prevention and strengthening the immune system?  Please consider ordering my Holistic Guide to the 2009 Cold & Flu Season for more information and tips on how to stay healthy.  There’s more to it than just washing your hands and getting enough rest. 
      Two of the supplements I recommend are vitamin D3, which at least 80% of us are deficient in, and zinc, also commonly deficient.  Both nutrients are crucial for the immune system in general, and healthy lung function in particular. A recent Johns Hopkins review found that zinc alone was far more effective at reducing the risk of pneumonia than the pneumonia vaccine.  
      I would like to close with this study conclusion:
“Influenza Vaccine: Review of Effectiveness of the U.S. Immunization Program, and Policy Considerations... Vaccine recipients need to be informed of the limitations and risks of the vaccine and of the alternatives to vaccination. In particular, they need to know of the possibility that repeated vaccinations may increase the risk of adverse effects.”  Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons Vol. 11, No. 3, Fall 2006.

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