Are the risks of the flu shot worth it?

by Amy on January 31, 2013

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Is the Flu Shot Worth The Risk?

From the Vaccination Information Network:

“Relative flu numbers or real flu numbers? The CDC is claiming about a 60% relative effectiveness rate for the flu shot this year. Sounds like a fair number, but what if the real number was a lousy 1.5%? How many people would vaccinate then? Here’s the scoop on the 60%. Only about 2.7 out of 100 adults on average will get the flu in any given year. If you vaccinate 100 people, the rate of adults contracting the flu drops by 60%. So, instead of 2.7 out of 100 adults getting the flu, only 1.2 of the 100 adults gets the flu. This means that you vaccinate 100 people and a negligible 1.5 people are spared the flu – according to a recent meta-analysis in the Lancet. BUT, 30% of the 100 people vaccinated have an adverse reaction to the vaccine and 6% have life-changing, severe reactions – according to the CDC website. ~ Craig Stellpflug”

I’d prefer to keep building my immune system. So far (knock on wood) I’ve been able to stay healthy this season, despite sick people around me. (Please note that I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice, it’s just what I do to stay healthy.) Here’s what I do:

1. Try and get 8 hours of sleep per night.

2. Wash hands thoroughly with vegetable based (not antibacterial) soap and warm water. Okay, truth be told I probably do this less than I should, but…

3. Cough/sneeze into your elbow (or “wing” as they say in the elementary schools here)

4. Change hand towels frequently in the bathroom (give a sick person their own hand towel to use).

5. Stay hydrated. Some days I’m better than others. I really like young coconut water. The best brands for this are: Amy & Brian’s Coconut Juice and one I haven’t found in the stores yet: Nature Factor Organic Young Coconut water. (I’ll be selling these on my site soon).

6. Drink a raw organic juice every day. I got the Breville Juice Fountain Plus and it works great. We’ve been juicing for about 9 months.

7. Get 15 minutes of sunshine on your skin per day ideally, and/or take Vitamin D3. I prefer the vitamin brand, Garden of Life. (Will be available soon here)

8. Take an organic, raw, food based multivitamin like Garden of Life. They have different choices depending on your age, etc.

9. Stay active, get moderate exercise with fresh air.

10. Get regular massage. (Once per month at least). I need to be better about this. You can also do self massage with organic sesame oil. I’ll do a blog post on this soon.

11. Take/eat probiotics. The ones in the refrigerator at the natural food store are better than the ones sitting on the shelves, I believe. You don’t really get much from yogurt but you can from organic fermented veggies, like sauerkraut and kimchi.

12. Avoid OTC cold/flu remedies. They just suppress your symptoms, they don’t heal you.

13. Avoid alcohol and caffeine when you are fighting off germs/viruses. Challenges your liver, which is already working hard to deal with the germs/viruses.

14. Drink 1 tsp. per day of “Fire Cider” for cold/flu prevention. Just discovered this wonderful liquid at the Vermont Farm Show yesterday. Now I’m going to have to make my own once I run through the bottle I bought from Cate Hill Orchards.

15. Get an essential oil diffuser and diffuse tea tree, eucalyptus, peppermint, rosemary and thyme into your indoor air.

How to Make Fire Cider

(Information is courtesy of Cate Hill Orchard in Greensboro, Vermont & Healing Spirits Herb Farm and Education Center in Avoca, NY.)


1 quart Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 cup Horseradish root grated

1/8 cup of organic Garlic chopped

1/2 cup of organic Onion chopped

1/2 cup of organic Ginger grated

1 tsp Cayenne

1 tsp Turmeric (Cate Hill Orchard added this ingredient to their blend)

Directions: Place all ingredients in a quart jar and cover with Apple Cider Vinegar. Cover tightly. Steep for 8 weeks. Strain into clean jar.

How to Use Your Fire Cider? 

~ Rub into sore muscles and aching joints.

~ Soak a clean cloth in Fire Cider to place on a congested chest.

~ Drink it straight or diluted in a bit of water or tomato juice. Start out with 1 tsp. per day (1/2 tsp. twice per day) to test your tolerance level.

~ Mix with a bit of honey to ease a cough.

Individual tolerance to the heat will vary so you and your family will want to experiment with quantity.


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