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Boosting You & and your Child’s Immunity

Every fall parents have to worry about the myriad of germs their child will encounter as they head off to school. In recent years there has been a special fervor of paranoia with the various swine flu, bird flu or SARS viruses: new and never-before-seen viruses that our immune systems will undoubtedly fail to overcome. Along with many other health practitioners, I beg to differ.

First, we must remember that this is exactly our immune systems’ job:

To morph, evolve and react to my environment so that I become more and more effective at seeking out what is not “me” in order to destroy & eliminate it.

When a healthy immune system comes into contact with a new strain of virus, it will adapt in order to combat the new foreign ‘bug’. Only the unhealthy immune system is at risk of failure in this task. Therefore, our work is to keep our immune systems healthy, not to bog them down with an ever-increasing battalion of vaccines. Read more on Dr. Erin’s perspective on Immune function and development for a detailed explanation of this idea.

So what can we do? How do we boost immune function? Almost every person has heard or read about the ability of basic vitamins and minerals to support the body’s capacity to fight disease. We agree with these notions, but take them one step further. We look at the other factors that contribute to the tendency of a child to get sick, or get sick too frequently. The particular causes may vary, but the usual suspects are common.

Let’s take a look at the typical causes, the typical mainstream recommendations, the often-overlooked reasons they become ill and the atypical immune boosters. **Note: All of these suggestions will help reduce the risk of and prevent swine flu.**

Common Causes of Illness

Germs-bacteria, viruses

    SOLUTIONS

  • Basic hygiene, cleanliness, hand-washing

Poor lifestyle habits

  • Lack of sleep, sleeping at odd hours
  • Poor nutrition, eating excessive fast food or other nutrient-deficient, high calorie foods

“Stress” - See Dr. Erin’s article on Stress.

    SOLUTIONS

  • Go to bed at the same time every night. Sleep a minimum of 8 hours (9-12, or even more, for children under 11)
  • Avoid fast food. Eat organic foods. Increase vegetable intake. Stop sodas and juices.

Typical Supplement Recommendations

*The traditional use of Echinacea by herbalists is for acute, pus-filled, hot, red infections, such as a very active cellulitis. The common usage of Echinacea as is often done in mainstream America today can do some immune boosting, but research shows that it is only for a limited time. Echinacea should be reserved for specific types of infections and not taken daily as a way to prevent illness.

**While Vitamin C is important in immune function, the Vitamin C provided by orange juice is NOT ideal-it is too sweet and too acidic, rendering another stress onto the system with each glass. Broccoli and red peppers have more than twice the vitamin C-without the sugar and the acidity.

Doing all this and still getting sick?

Perhaps you and your family have overlooked these or other possibilities discussed here on www.optionsnaturopathic.com.

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Uncommon Causes of Illness

Often people don’t realize that every time you take antibiotics, you are essentially creating a vacuum for new and unwanted pathogenic bacteria to come in and inhabit your terrain.

Frequent*** antibiotic dosing

    SOLUTIONS for CHILDREN AND ADULTS

  • Use alternatives to antibiotics to get well (Unda numbers and homeopathics!)
  • Take Probiotics, such as HMF

Other uncommon causes for frequent illness include:

Toxicity

  • digestive difficulties, allergies and sensitivities
  • excess dairy in the diet
  • environmental toxins /chemicals

Diathesis / hereditary tendencies

An upsetting event, a disappointment

Not speaking one’s voice (may lead to a sore throat and upper respiratory infection in those whose dispositions create the susceptibility)

Other conflicts or unresolved emotions

SOLUTIONS for CHILDREN AND ADULTS

  • Avoid dairy, sugar or other dietary indiscretions
  • Intermittent detoxification / Liver supports
  • Ongoing work to strengthen immune function, balance diathesis and temperament
  • Homeopathic treatments to help reconcile unresolved feelings or traumas
  • See our ideal Immune Boosters Below

There are a multitude of other items I often recommend for children going off to school in the fall where the family has reason to expect a horde of coughs and runny noses. A selection of two or three items from the list can often make a big difference.

***Frequent should be considered more than once in a TWO-YEAR period. It takes a minimum of 18 months to rebuild the intestinal saprophytic bacteria that form a fundamental part of natural immunity. Supplementation is critical.

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Ideal Immune Boosters for Children

We specifically suggest things here that are

1) Not in pill form &/or

2) have a reasonably acceptable taste! For children’s increased compliance!

  • Hydrotherapy -Fabulous results from time-proven techniques you can do at home for free
  • Berry Well Immune Support - 1 tsp. mixed with water, juice or applesauce, twice a day
  • Elderberry Syrup - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)
  • Very Berry - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)
  • Winter Berry - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)
  • Gammadyn Cu - ½ amp* for children under 5, 1 amp for kids 6 & up, twice a day.
  • Gammadyn Se - ½ amp* for children under 5, 1 amp for kids 6 & up, twice a day.
  • Gammadyn Zn - ½ amp* for children under 5, 1 amp for kids 6 & up, twice a day.
  • HMF Replete, HMF Super Powder, HMF Powder
  • Any and all HMF is beneficial, the strength decreases in the above order, so the more antibiotics or the more recent the antibiotics, the stronger the HMF should be. Dosing varies from ¼ tsp. twice a day for a maintenance dose in young children (5 & under) up to ½ packet of HMF Replete, twice a day.
  • Specific Flu Prevention: Mucococcinum 1 tab every 10 days. More info.

  • *The second ½ of each amp can be used later in the same day, but should not be kept longer than this
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Immune Boosters for Adults

Perhaps you’ve been told you have a need for higher minerals, or perhaps you have venous problems or capillary problems, or maybe, you know you have amalgam fillings or heavy metal toxicity. All of these items below can address immune function and one or more of these other problems and thus can serve as away for you to decide what to use to boost your basic immune function as a protection against the swine flu.

Most natural remedies touch on more than one area-as we like to call them: side benefits!

  • Hydrotherapy - Fabulous results from time-proven techniques you can do at home for free!

Immune help from Berries
Also good for circulation, venous congestion and the cardiovascular system

  • Elderberry Syrup - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)
  • Very Berry - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)
  • Winter Berry - 1 tsp., per a day (& 1 tsp. three times a day if you develop the flu)

Herbal Supports

Mineral Supports
Also great for those with mineral assimilation problems and or heavy metal toxicity

Vitamin Supports

Probiotics

  • HMF Replete, HMF Super Powder, HMF Powder
  • Any and all HMF is beneficial, the strength decreases in the above order, so the more antibiotics or the more recent the antibiotics, the stronger the HMF should be. Dosing varies from ¼ tsp. twice a day for a maintenance dose in young children (5 & under) up to ½ packet of HMF Replete, twice a day.

Swine Flu Prevention

Sometimes, the body knows best and chooses to use the opportunity of an acute cold or flu to purge a load of toxins. These and other circumstances are sometimes outside of our control and we DO get sick! See the various sections on Acute Illness-if you or your children come down with a nasty bug! F or any ongoing problems or illnesses that will not cease, a naturopathic consultation is highly recommended.

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