The Flu Vaccine Isn’t What Will Save You From The Flu This Year
When I recently read a Bloomberg article talking about how this is one of the worst flu seasons in the last decade, I realized how much of our society is driven by fear. This mistake is echoed constantly by our blue-pill society – news, friends, and family. Be afraid. It’s coming.
And what do you have to do to overcome the fear? To avoid the next “thing” that’s always coming?
Look for something outside yourself – in this case, that means buying a flu vaccine.
This is a mistake.
And it has nothing to do with whether or not you decide to get the flu vaccine itself, but rather, your fundamental philosophy on why we get sick.
Will The Flu Vaccine Really Save You – or Will Something Else Save You?
It’s hard to deny the facts about how widespread this year’s flu is:
Reported cases in some states, like Arizona, are up more than 758 percent over this time last year, and the CDC reports the flu is in widespread conditions in 46 states, including California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York and Virginia, as of Dec. 30, 2017. To make matters worse, the flu vaccine is not proving to be very effective against this year’s main strain, because of a virus mutation. In Australia it has been effective in only 10 percent of cases, reports The New England Journal of Medicine.
The vaccine now being administered to Americans uses the same formulation.
If the flu is this serious – shouldn’t I be running out the door?
Shouldn’t I be avoiding sick people?
Shouldn’t I be getting any vaccine that I think will help stop it or prevent it?
Maybe. Maybe not. That depends on why you think you get sick.
Do You Get Sick Because of What’s Inside You – or What’s Outside You?
Do you really need this spiffy-looking professional to save you?
We’ve all had the experience of seeing all our friends and family catch a cold, or the flu, and not getting sick ourselves.
And we’ve all had the experience of not taking care of ourselves, eating poorly, not exercising, stressing out, not going to the gym, and then catching colds much more often than usual – often when no one else is sick.
And so it comes down to how you want to look at your fundamental life philosophy.
Do you want to live your life thinking that something “outside” of you makes you sick, e.g. a virus? And that the solution is to find something else “outside” of you for a solution, e.g. a vaccine or medicine?
This was the age-old debate between Louis Pasteur and Claude Bernard in the 19th century:
Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), chemist and microbiologist, put forward the germ theory, according to which diseases are caused by infectious microbes, that impair the functioning and structures of different organ systems. This paradigm is the basis for the use of antibiotics to destroy these invasive microbes and vaccines with low doses of the microbe to challenge the body’s immune defenses and thereby prevent systemic infection.
Pasteur’s contemporary and friend, the physiologist Claude Bernard (1813-1878), argued instead for the importance of balance in the body’s internal environment – what he called le milieu intérieur. “The constancy of the interior environment is the condition for a free and independent life.” Bernard thought that the body becomes susceptible to infectious agents only if the internal balance – or homeostasis as we now call it – is disturbed. After all, there are billions of microbes and bacteria inhabiting our guts, our blood, our whole body. Why do we sometimes sicken from them, sometimes not? When a bacterial or viral agent is “going around,” as we say, why do some people sicken and others remain healthy ?
Am I saying don’t wash your hands or avoid sick people?
Am I saying that viruses and germs don’t exist or make us sick?
No, of course not.
But maybe there are two fundamentally different philosophies. And your philosophy dictates your actions, and the way you live.
If you eat well, sleep well, regularly exercise, are happy, you already have the greatest defense from the flu (and heart disease,and cancer, and depression,and diabetes).
Dietary and Other Factors Related to Flu and Cold Prevention - https://nccih.nih.gov/sites/nccam.nih.gov/files/Flu_and_Colds_01-27-2016.pdf
Diet and CVD Risk - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4597475/
Diet and Cancer Risk Factors - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15452458
Mediterranean Diet and Depression Risk - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23636545
Dietary Risk Factors Related to Diabetes - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4597475/
Those are things you can control.
Do you want to be looking outside, feeling weak, incomplete, in need of “assistance?”
Or do you want to look inside, at the factors you can control, on strengthening yourself?
They both can work, but at what cost, and how does each philosophy influence your life?