Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Flu shot or not?

It is the time of the year where some of us have to decide, flu shot or no flu shot.  There are those that know without a doubt, “yes” while others opt out.  There are still those, however, that try to weigh the pros and cons of receiving the flu shot.  I am not writing this blog to decide that option for you, but instead, give you some of the reasons I use in making my decision.
Last year our family (4 out of 6) did get the actual flu, not the intestinal kind, but high fever and body aches.  We were all out for 24 hours and then took another 24 hours to regain our energy.  We did survive and were “no worse for wear” after the episode.  I know the fact that we keep our health as a priority; exercise, diet, and vitamins, got us through the illness without complications.
Originally, the flu vaccine was intended for the elderly, infants, immune compromised and healthcare professionals.  As the popularity grew, so did the demand for the vaccine and soon “everybody” was doing it.  Getting the flu vaccine does not guarantee you will not get the flu.  The vaccine is designed for the most popular flu virus the year before, plus 2 other strains, but it does not mean that will be the “bug” for this year.  I have a family member that gets the flu vaccine every year and happens to get the flu “every year”.  Now she does believe her symptoms are reduced by having the vaccine.
One of the biggest reasons we choose not to receive the flu vaccine is because of the ingredients.  If you go to the CDC website you can see the list of ingredients for yourself. 
There are some natural supplements and remedies on the market that are supposed to decrease your chances in getting the flu.  I have not tried them myself, so I do not know how effective they are.  One thing I do know is that I am going to be a lot more diligent on washing my hands and purifying the air in our office (we use essential oil purification) this year.  Like I discussed in two previous blogs, “Boosting the immune system can fend off back-to-school viruses” and “Vitamins and Supplements I recommend”, can help your body’s defense system.

In the end, I think it is important for you to make the decision you are comfortable with.  Whether you get the vaccine or not, nothing is 100% guaranteed.  The internet can be a great resource of information but be discerning with the information you are reading.   Always consider your current health status and don’t be afraid to do a little investigating on your own!

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