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H1N1 Success Story

November 13, 2009 Written by JP       [Font too small?]

There are two primary forms of evidence that are generally accepted in modern medical research. One variety is known as anecdotal or empirical evidence which is basically first-hand accounts of medical failures and successes as interpreted by individuals and those treating them. These types of observations were the primary basis for selecting healing techniques in the “old world”. Simply put, healers experimented on their patients using their best educated guesses. They continued using what seemed to work and stopped using what didn’t. Therefore, most of the data collected was subjective in nature. The current state of medicine tends to strongly favor scientific evidence that can be applied to many people at once in a controlled manner. The results of scientific studies are considered more objective and reliable because the risk of influence by individual variables is largely excluded from the mix.

Having said all that, I have an anecdotal account to share with you today. Why? Because I believe there’s still value in sharing personal experiences, provided that they’re presented in an appropriate context. Everything I’m writing about today has a foundation in both science and traditional healing. Most clinical studies on natural remedies (and many synthetic medications) begin with historical documentation that instigates the scientific research. This is why researchers travel to all ends of the Earth to forage in the wild and meet with tribal people. They hope to learn the scientific reasons why ancient practices and medicinal plants “work”. Once that data is collected, the goal is to refine and replicate those natural substances into patentable medications that will ultimately cure/treat disease and make lots of money. But that’s another story.

My wife, let’s call her Mrs. Healthy Fellow, works in a small office in which two people recently contracted the H1N1 flu. The nature of her job is such that she couldn’t take time off of work to avoid contact with the germs that were likely present in their shared workspace. In addition, the past few weeks were very busy and stressful during and after work hours. There wasn’t much “down time” and she was sleeping fewer hours than normal. If you combine all these factors, the sum is a recipe for disaster. But there’s one more element that I need point out – around this time, we also had a family gathering that we needed to attend in another state. An airplane flight was unavoidable.

In the week leading up to the trip, the level of stress increased. It was at this point that Mrs. H started to mention feeling some soreness in her throat and a bit of congestion in her chest and nasal region. This is when the panic kicked in! There were only a few days until the trip and certainly not enough time to work through a cold, much less an H1N1 crisis. When feeling her worst, my wife looked at me and (almost) shouted: “You’re the Healthy Fellow! Fix this!”. Talk about pressure!

So, here’s what we did. First, I insisted that Mrs. H try to get a decent night’s sleep. I was only partially successful in this regard. Next, I called upon the power of every anti-viral, immune-boosting supplement we had in our pantry. Here’s a list of what my wife graciously took for several days. I say “graciously” because she has a hard time swallowing lots of capsules and I already ask her to take quite a few as part of her daily routine.

  • Morning Cocktail - 3 softgels of Anti-V and 1 capsule of NAC
  • Mid-Morning - “Normal Breakfast Supplements” + Extra Vitamin C and D
  • Late Morning - 2 elderberry lozenges w/extra C and zinc (Sambucus Immune)
  • Afternoon Cocktail - 3 softgels of Anti-V and 1 capsule of NAC
  • Nighttime - “Normal Dinner Supplements” + Extra Vitamin C and D
  • Bedtime - Probiotics - Primadophilus Reuteri (1,2,3)
Intestinal Immune Cells Before (A) and After (B) L. Reuteri Supplementation
Source: Appl Environ Microbiol. 2004 February; 70(2): 1176–1181. (a)

In total, Mrs. H was taking approximately 5,000 mg of Vitamin C, 10,000 IUs of Vitamin D, 50 mg of zinc and 1,200 mg of NAC. Please keep in mind that was only a short-term regimen. Diet-wise, I strongly suggested that she cut back on any form of sugar, which wasn’t too difficult since she’s recently embarked on a low carb diet. I also administered a nightly foot massage to further support her immune function and improve sleep quality. This also compensated for the displeasure of having to take so many extra pills and tart lozenges! (4,5,6,7,8)

To make a longer story slightly shorter, we took the airplane trip, spent several days at a hotel (a germ breeding ground) and mingled with a large groups of people at several family functions – not to mention lots of handshaking, hugging and kissing. Somehow, someway, Mrs. H managed to fight off the infection that was doggedly trying to use her body as a host. And, by the way, I also managed to avoid getting sick!

Earlier I mentioned that anecdotal evidence needs to be presented and interpreted responsibly. I’m not suggesting that what worked for Mrs. H (and me) will work for everyone. We simply utilized several natural remedies that are scientifically validated and we had a successful outcome. It didn’t cost us a lot money, but it did require some effort and patience. However, the reward of not getting sick and, more importantly, having the opportunity to share some much cherished time with family and friends more than made up for those minor inconveniences. My main reason for telling you all of this is to remind you (just as I was recently reminded) that staying healthy is a real possibility even under the worst of circumstances. We’re all stronger than we know. We just need to remember it.

Be well!

JP

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13 Comments & Updates to “H1N1 Success Story”

  1. Nina K. Says:

    Hello JP,

    your wife had really good luck :-)

    Thank you for sharing your experiences.

    Can you pleas tell me what are your “normal morning – and evening” supplements? You know i write a “h1n1 emergency list” ;-) .

    wish you and yours a wonderfull weekend.

    Nina K.

  2. JP Says:

    Good day, Nina. :)

    My wife’s usual morning and evening supplements consist of a high-potency multi-vitamin/mineral, liquid calcium/magnesium, extra Vitamin C and D (about 2,000 of C and 2,000 IUs of D), fish oil and an assortment of antioxidants (cocoa extract, coenzyme Q10, pine bark extract, pomegranate and resveratrol).

    I hope you and your loved ones have a fun-filled and healthy weekend as well!

    Be well!

    JP

  3. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    Congrats on your success JP.

    On several occasions when I started getting a scratchy throat I utilized “Stoss Therapy”, taking 1,000iu of vitamin D3 per pound of body weight, taking at least 200,000iu and each time it worked.

  4. JP Says:

    Thanks, Iggy. :)

    Your strategy is definitely something I’d consider trying.

    Here’s some additional information for those who might be interested:

    http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/newsletter/2006-june-july.shtml

    Be well!

    JP

  5. Bill Rawls Says:

    Glad to hear you and your wife were able to dodge the flu!

    I’ve been reading about supplements for preventing illness this week, and see that studies behind andrographis are very convincing. Last night I read about a company called the Swedish Herbal Institute (www.shi.se) that makes a product called Kan Jang with standardized extracts of andrographis and eleuthero. I think this might be the most promising cold/flu supplement I’ve heard about yet! Looks like a very cool company, they specialize in adaptogens and every product on their lineup is backed by numerous clinical studies. It doesn’t look like they sell in the US yet? Anyone familiar with this company?

    All this talk about vitamin D, the sun is FINALLY out in NC, I better go take advantage.. Have a good Sunday all!

  6. JP Says:

    Thanks, Bill!

    I wrote a column about andrographis a few months ago. The research behind it looks very promising indeed.

    http://www.healthyfellow.com/343/andrographis-paniculata-and-immune-support/

    I’ve yet to try Kan Jang myself but I’m sure I’ll eventually get around to it. So many supplements, so little time! ;)

    I believe you’re correct about the SHI products – they’re not widely available in the US yet.

    I hope you enjoy your sunny Sunday!

    Be well!

    JP

  7. Nina K. Says:

    JP,

    more questions: how do i have to calculate my vitamin d dose? do i have to look for my weight?

    how much vitamin d would you sugest for me: im 161 cm tall and weigh 46 kg. i don’t now my bodyfat composition but i think its normal.

    thank you so much.

    Nina K.

  8. Nina K. Says:

    something interesting about h1n1:

    read an report about how the media (TV, press etc) makes horrorshows about h1n1 here in germany. this was on a very serius scientific site.

    the neglect for example results of the swineflu wave during the winter season in australia: h1n1 has completely displaced the normal seasonal fluvirus and led to very much fewer ill people and the death rate is very very low

    http://www.healthemergency.gov.au/internet/healthemergency/publishing.nsf/Content/18D06BAC4644C98DCA25763E00823442/$File/ozflu-no26-2009.pdf

    and here some infos of the motherland of the swineflu “mexico”: not really horrible ;-)

    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736%2809%2961638-X/abstract

    Stay healthy :-)

    Nina K.

  9. JP Says:

    Thanks, Nina!

    I think there is some degree of sensational coverage with regard to H1N1. It could *become* a major threat but it’s something that appears to be largely manageable in it’s current state – for the vast majority of people.

    Having said that, I personally know several people who have been hit very hard by it. As I type this, a 5 year old we know well is running a high fever due to this viral spoilsport.

    The most important thing however is that no one I know has died from H1N1. Still, prevention is the best way to go. We’re doing our very best to avoid it altogether. No sense in taking any chances. Not to mention reducing the risk of being out of commission for a week or so.

    Be well!

    JP

  10. JP Says:

    Nina,

    Here is some good, general information about Vitamin D dosing.

    http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/health/deficiency/am-i-vitamin-d-deficient.shtml

    Testing is really the key. As an example: I believe my parents, who live in sunny Southern California, need to take about 3,000 IUs in order to achieve a healthy 60ng/ml D level.

    As a general comment, I think most people would benefit from a minimum of 1,000 IUs but 2,000 IUs or more appears to be necessary to reach optimal D status for many.

    Also, please remember to take your D with with food. Fat should assist it’s absorption. Oil-based Vitamin D3 supplements can also help in that regard.

    Be well!

    JP

  11. Nina K. Says:

    Thanks JP!

    Wish a nice weekend :-)

    Nina K.

  12. JP Says:

    You’re most welcome, Nina! :)

    I wish you and yours the same!

    Be well!

    JP

  13. Ranee Says:

    cool :)

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