I am hearing a lot of different opinions regarding the Swine Flu. What can I do to protect myself and my family? Should we get the Swine Flu shot?
While I have strong opinions on vaccinations and personally am not getting the H1N1 vaccine or encouraging anyone in my family to get it, there are differing opinions from competent, caring, respectable health care professionals, and individual circumstances and risk factors may also be part of the equation. I think Dr. Oz offers a balanced discussion on the question. There is also a lot of sober discussion about how much fear has been generated around the Swine Flu "epidemic," including the biggest push for immunization since Polio. Is this Big Pharm flexing its muscles to feed its pockets or are the scare tactics justified? I found the article Swine Flue Fact vs. Fears to provide a good brief overview of what is known. I cannot advise what you should do regarding the vaccine, but I can suggest that keeping your immune system healthy and strong is the first line of defense against any infectious illness.
Besides the ultra obvious, such as keeping your hands clean, this means:
- Regardless of the pressures on you in our fast-paced world, making choices that minimize chronic stress should be at the top of your priority list. If you lose your health, it doesn't matter how important it was to do all those other things. They won't get done. So find a reasonable balance and commit yourself to maintaining it!
- Don't leave your energies in a homolateral pattern (pp. 250-252)!!! Do plenty of stretch and cross over patterns throughout the day (pp. 80-83 and 187-203).
- The Daily Energy Routine (Chapter 3) is designed to keep your immune system strong. I recommend that you do it daily, that in times of stress or vulnerability you do it a couple of times each day, and that in addition you do it or parts of it at any time you are feeling particularly stressed. Working your lymphatic reflex points moves toxins out of your body and is particularly supportive of optimal immune system functioning.
- If you sense you are starting to come down with a cold or worse, add: The Triple Warmer Smoothie, Connecting Heaven and Earth, flushing spleen & lung meridians, breathing deeply while tapping on the meridian endpoints, and any other techniques in the book which particularly call to you!
- Rest! Certainly if you feel something coming on, do not wait for it to be screaming at you before you pay attention. I like to start with a long hot bath! I do my emergency energy exercises in the tub. One of my favorites, which helps the lungs and is a good flu preventive, is to cross my arms, push my thumbs into my mid-arms, and place my elbows into my inner thighs, while they are supported by the bathtub sides. And feeling great or feeling down, be sure you are getting enough sleep. That is one of the most basic choices you can make to support your health.
- Eat well: Although your diet is obviously another basic set of choices for supporting your health, also remember that there are no guidelines, no generalizations, that can tell you what your unique body needs or what it needs at a particular time. Energy testing is a great tool for finding a good nutritional balance (Chapter 2). As David is fond of saying, "Test before you ingest." Same with vitamins and supplements, including those that strengthen the immune system.
- Use your body! Our ancestors were not sedentary creatures and your body did not evolve to spend 8 hours/day at a computer. If your job requires you to be at a desk, take frequent brief breaks where you move vigorously. Breath fresh air when possible. And as it is with diet, different bodies need and thrive best with different kinds of exercise.