Flu Shots Are Ineffective, How to Protect Yourself or Recover from the Flu

Flu Shots Are Ineffective, How to Protect Yourself or Recover from the Flu

Fix Your Gut Podcast on Flu Vaccinations and Why We Consider Them to Be Ineffective at Best and Harmful at Worst, Information on How to Protect Yourself and Lessen Influenza

Flu Shots Are Ineffective, How to Protect Yourself or Recover from the Flu

Winter is coming! What signs have I seen that have told me so? Is it the change in weather or leaves turning orange and brown and falling off the trees? Is it the smell of pumpkin spice everywhere or is it the signs I see in every store with a pharmacy reminding me to get my flu shot? Offers of free flu shots for people with insurance or Medicare at most pharmacies and heck you might also be eligible to receive a free gift card at participating locations! They are now paying you to get a flu shot. Finally, getting paid for making healthy choices, yes! Wait, what is this I see on the Walgreens page?

I can get access to “clean” flu vaccine now!?!?! Wait a minute, “checks CDC website”, it looks like they just removed thimerosal.1

Hey, at least removing the controversial mercury-containing preservative is a start. You know what I might check the Afluria Quadrivalent vaccine insert and see what preservatives they are using.2

Well at least I do not see any aluminum in the additional ingredients. I do, however, see listed the antibiotics, neomycin and polymyxin B, which may reduce the function of your mitochondria, but they are in minute amounts. Ovalbumin is egg protein, and it appears some left in the vaccine from manufacturing processes in every shot which is why people that are allergic to eggs cannot get certain vaccines which are cultured inside eggs.3

What about the preservatives in the nasal vaccine FluMist? Monosodium glutamate (inhaling MSG in people who are sensitive to it or have asthma is not a good idea as it may trigger airway constriction), gelatin, arginine, and sucrose being inhaled? Those might affect the nasal microbiome differently, possibly negatively if one has dysbiosis that would use the additives for sustenance. I also see the addition of the antibiotic gentamicin, which would also adversely affect the nasal microbiome, granted it is a minimal dose.4 5

Interesting, it states that the FluMist vaccine does not contain any preservatives yet gentamicin would be one as an antibiotic, seems misleading. I am going to keep reading these inserts and see what they state.6

Wait, am I reading this pamphlet right the flu vaccine might be ineffective? But my healthcare provider and the advertisements at pharmacies make it seems like the flu shot will protect me from the flu if I get it yearly. I wonder what the statistics are on vaccination effectiveness?7

Flu Vaccines Are Ineffective at Best

The effectiveness of flu vaccination is “studied” each year from a small population of people that report to their doctors with upper respiratory symptoms at five locations in five different states. Those people are then tested for antibodies to the flu, in Washington, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Texas. They are asked if they received a flu shot this year and when they received it (people who received it a week or two before being excluded from the study because of the ability of the flu shot triggering a false positive in the antibody test). Flu shots generally are supposed to protect against two to three Influenza A subtypes and one to two Influenza B subtypes that are guessed to be active for the flu season the shot will be used. The Influenza virus can rapidly mutate, and it is tough to predict what subtypes might be virulent for any particular year and if they predict the wrong subtypes, no matter what the popular literature states it does not offer you any protection from the subtypes that you are not vaccinated against. How can I make this statement when most conventional medical sources say otherwise? Because all of the flu vaccine package inserts tell us that they do not, no matter what your doctor, pharmacist, or nurse states. Do yourself a favor, the next time your medical professional asks you if you want a flu shot, ask them if they have read the flu vaccine package insert of the vaccine they are offering, I bet they have not. So what do the vaccine package inserts state about the quadrivalent vaccines (vaccines that vaccinate against four Influenza subtypes) for the 2018-2019 season about protection from the flu if they guess the wrong subtypes?8

9

10

11

12

13

I do find it interesting that the wording used in most flu vaccine inserts seem to be copy and paste. Also, some of the inserts stated that having antibody tiers for the Influenza virus of >or=1:40 are effective in preventing symptomatic illness in up to 50% of people, but would getting the flu shot be able to match or beat it? So what is the CDC reported the effectiveness of the flu shot in the past few years?14

So if you average the adjusted overall vaccination effectiveness percentage of the flu shot from the CDC data you get 41% (nowhere near what is needed for “herd immunity” which is as low as 83% but most immunologists say 95%). The percentage may be higher or lower depending on where the actual data lies on the confidence interval. At worst if you take the lowest of the average the flu shot is 24% effective and at best if you take the highest it is 54% or a little better than half. The data for the CDC vaccination effectiveness on the CDC website is however flawed, for various reasons. The information itself is not taken from the gold standard of research, multiple double-blind placebo studies of vaccination effectiveness (studies using flu vaccines and saline only vaccines and monitoring a group of people to determine if they get the flu during the flu season). The data is taken from a small sample size throughout the country of people who are tested for antibodies against selected influenza subtypes that are supposed to be virulent for that year when reporting to five locations to visit their doctor for an upper respiratory infection. In addition, there is no reported average from the CDC of the percentage of people who did not get vaccinated and if they contracted the flu or not, but the data of how many are not vaccinated is however reported in some of their listed studies without an average or confidence interval. Let us look at the data for the proposed vaccination effectiveness from the two recently published years, the 2014-2015 (19% effectiveness) season and the 2015-2016 (48% effectiveness) season (I would have used the studies for the last two seasons, from 2016 to 2018, but it is unpublished).15 16 17

Influenza Vaccination Effectiveness in the United States During the 2014–2015 Season18

Let us briefly review the 2014-2015 flu vaccination effectiveness study. The study tested people for antibodies against one subtype of Influenza A (H3N2) and one subtype of Influenza B (Yamagata) that were supposed to be virulent during 2015-2016 flu season. Those who were studied reported to five different medical facilities for upper respiratory issues in five different states in the United States. The study listed the information on the rates for people who did not get the flu vaccine that year and did not get the flu at that time. “Current season vaccination status was self-reported at enrollment and documented by review of EMRs, employee health records, and state or local immunization registries, collectively termed electronic immunization records (EIRs). All participants with EIR-documented 2014–2015 influenza vaccination ≥14 days prior to illness onset were considered vaccinated. Participants in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Texas were additionally considered vaccinated if they were able to report a plausible place and time of vaccine receipt from an off-site provider without vaccination records (plausible self-report), and participants in Washington who reported any off-site vaccination ≥14 days before illness onset were considered vaccinated. Those vaccinated 0–13 days prior to illness onset were excluded. All other participants were considered unvaccinated. Information on prior seasons’ vaccine receipt was derived from EIRs.” The flu shot was found to be 19% effective overall that your for protecting against H3N2 and Influenza B Yamagata in people who were vaccinated that year. There was little difference (around 5%) between the odds of catching the flu that year if you got vaccinated or did not get vaccinated. In addition, more people in the study tested positive for H3N2 that were vaccinated in 2013 only (22.6) or 2013 and 2014 (22.5) than those who not get vaccinated at all (21.8). The number of people that got Influenza B and were not vaccinated in the study was slightly higher than those who were, 4.4% difference.

Finally, as always (at least the put in in the study for everyone to see):

Influenza Vaccination Effectiveness in the United States During the 2015–2016 Season19

Let us briefly review the 2015-2016 flu vaccination effectiveness study. The study tested people for antibodies against two subtypes of Influenza A (H3N2 and H1N1) and two subtypes of Influenza B (Yamagata and Victoria) that were supposed to be virulent during 2015-2016 flu season. Those who were studied reported to five different medical facilities for upper respiratory issues in five different states in the United States. The study listed the information on the rates for people who did not get the flu vaccine that year and did not get the flu at that time. The flu shot was found to be 48% effective at protecting against those strains in people who were vaccinated for the 2015-2016 flu season. However, the data shows that the flu shot vaccine was insignificantly better in protecting against the flu compared to not getting one (+/- 3%). So while the vaccine “was found” to protect against those strains statistically, most people who did not get the flu shot that year also failed to get Influenza. Reduction of contracting Influenza in the not vaccinated could be higher if they were taught how to reduce their risk of contracted the flu and easily would surpass the percentage of vaccine “effectiveness”.

Interesting enough the study speculates on why they live attenuated nasal flu vaccine was utterly worthless during the 2014-2015 flu season (it was also concluded to be useless the 2015-2016 flu season as well at a 4% effectiveness for the LAIV4 vaccine type for people between the ages of 2 to 49 years).” A recent important finding of the Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Network, later confirmed by other studies, was that the quadrivalent live attenuated influenza vaccine lacked effectiveness against A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses in young children during the 2013–2014 influenza season. This occurred in a season in which trivalent and quadrivalent inactivated influenza vaccines were effective at preventing influenza, indicating that the failure of the live attenuated vaccine was not due to a poor match between vaccines and circulating A(H1N1)pdm09 strains. This failure of the live attenuated vaccine was surprising, since earlier randomized trials had suggested that, among young children, the trivalent live attenuated vaccine provided protection against influenza that was superior to that provided by the trivalent inactivated vaccine. Poor thermostability of the A(H1N1)pdm09 vaccine strain was suspected as a possible cause, and the A(H1N1)pdm09 strain in the live attenuated vaccine was updated to A/Bolivia/559/2013 (an A/California/7/2009-like virus) for the 2015–2016 influenza season. Here, we report estimates of influenza vaccine effectiveness from the Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Network for the 2015–2016 influenza season, including comparisons of vaccine effectiveness between the trivalent and quadrivalent inactivated vaccines and the quadrivalent live attenuated vaccine.”

In addition the study concludes that getting vaccinated with the prior’s seasons flu vaccine and with mixed results getting a flu vaccine both seasons does reduce 2015 vaccine effectiveness. The study claims that it makes little difference, but if that is the case, then neither does getting vaccinated and getting the flu for that year at all when you look at the data.

Finally, we have the financial disclosure part of the study. This study was not funded by vaccine production companies this time. However, they list the Center for Disease Control for giving support:

Does Vaccination Really Protect Against the Spread of Influenza?

Flu vaccination does not do very well in preventing the spread of Influenza even compared to proper hygiene methods including frequent hand washing, avoiding touching your face, avoidance of handshaking or personal contact, sneezing into your elbow or a tissue instead of your hands, and wearing a mask if you are suffering from the flu. If you average the adjusted overall vaccination effectiveness percentage of the inactivated flu shot from the Centers for Disease Control data you get 41% which is nowhere near what is needed for “herd immunity” which is as low as 83% but most immunologists say 95%. The flu shot does not prevent the spread of Influenza subtypes that are not included in the vaccine (I would, however, argue that it does not stop the spread of even the subtypes it does provide antibodies against, because it is still possible for someone to spread those subtypes, albeit according to them you are more likely to be asymptomatic therefore chances of spreading it are minimal) and the nasal FluMist vaccination may actually spread the flu since it is a live attenuated virus therefore capable of replication. FluMist vaccination also causes nasal congestion as a side effect which would increase the spread of the virus without proper hygiene. There is one study mentioned in the FluMist insert on a tiny population of fewer than two hundred children in a daycare facility where one child contracted the Influenza subtype directly from another kid that received the FluMist vaccination, but more studies with a larger population need to be performed. If you are working at a hospital around immunocompromised patients, you probably would not want to get the FluMist vaccination because of its ability to spread Influenza. Finally, the FluMist vaccination has been found in multiple studies to be extremely inefficient in flu prevention (most of the time below 10%) and may cause the flu in some people who receive it because it is a live attenuated vaccine.20 21 22

Cold and Flu Protocols 2019

The updated 2019 cold and flu protocol is here to help you hopefully find some relief. In the United States we are dealing with a bad flu season this year, these recommendations may help you combat a cold or flu and recover quicker. If you ever have a high grade fever (greater than 104F), or any other life threatening symptoms of a flu or cold (trouble breathing, long-term vomiting, severe pain, severe vertigo, etc.) make sure you seek out medical help ASAP! Finally, do not use any of the following protocols if you are pregnant, nursing, or on any children without consulting your medical professional first.

If you are trying to prevent becoming ill this winter, proper hand hygiene (washing with natural soap and purified water instead of using sanitizer when out in public), avoidance of face touching, avoidance of hand shaking or personal contact, following an nutritionally optimal diet like the Perfect Health Diet, maintaining a proper circadian rhythm, optimal sleep hygiene, preventing excess stress, and making enough endogenous vitamin D throughout the year, are all healthy habits you can do to hopefully prevent you from becoming ill.

Mild – Moderate Cold and Flu Protocol

Sore Throat

or

  • Traditional Medicinals organic throat coat – Follow tea recommendations for general usage. Do not use if you suffer from high blood pressure because the licorice extract in the tea may cause water retention and raise blood pressure.
  • Gargling with warm filtered salt water (1/4-1/2 teaspoon in 1/4 cup of water) with a pinch of organic cayenne pepper may help reduce throat inflammation.

Chest Congestion

  • Stay hydrated as much as possible drinking at least two liters of filtered water while you are ill. More water might be needed if you are febrile.
  • Integrative Therapeutics – Mucaplex– follow supplement recommendations for dosage.29
  • Jarrow Formulas NAC Sustain – one tablet on an empty stomach, twice daily, do not use if you are mercury burdened, have mercury amalgams or are suffering from hydrogen sulfide dysbiosis.
  • Manuka honey – consuming one to two teaspoons mixed in warm filtered water may improve coughing. Do not use if you are Th1 dominant or have salicylate sensitivity.

Sinus Congestion

Severe Cold and Flu Protocol

Sore Throat

or

  • Traditional Medicinals organic throat coat – Follow tea recommendations for general usage. Do not use if you suffer from high blood pressure because the licorice extract in the tea may cause water retention and raise blood pressure.
  • Gargling with warm filtered salt water (1/4-1/2 teaspoon in 1/4 cup of water) with a pinch of organic cayenne pepper may help reduce throat inflammation.

Relief of Chest Congestion

  • Stay hydrated as much as possible drinking at least two filtered liters of water while you are ill. More water might be needed if you are febrile.
  • Integrative Therapeutics – Mucaplex – follow supplement recommendations for dosage.
  • Jarrow Formulas NAC Sustain – one tablet on an empty stomach, twice daily, do not use if you are mercury burdened, have mercury amalgams or are suffering from hydrogen sulfide dysbiosis.
  • Manuka honey – consuming one to two teaspoons mixed in warm filtered water may improve coughing. Do not use if you are Th1 dominant or have salicylate sensitivity.

Relief of Sinus Congestion

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/vaccines.htm
  2. https://labeling.seqirus.com/PI/US/Afluria/EN/Afluria-Prescribing-Information.pdf
  3. https://labeling.seqirus.com/PI/US/Afluria/EN/Afluria-Prescribing-Information.pdf
  4. https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm294307.pdf
  5. Ring, Johannes, Burg, Gunter. New Trends in Allergy II, Springer Science and Business Media, December, 6, 2012.
  6. https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm294307.pdf
  7. https://labeling.seqirus.com/PI/US/Afluria/EN/Afluria-Prescribing-Information.pdf
  8. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/effectiveness-studies.htm
  9. ahref=”https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm294307.pdf” target=”_blank”>https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm294307.pdf
  10. https://gsksource.com/pharma/content/dam/GlaxoSmithKline/US/en/Prescribing_Information/Fluarix_Quadrivalent/pdf/FLUARIX-QUADRIVALENT.PDF
  11. https://www.gsksource.com/pharma/content/dam/GlaxoSmithKline/US/en/Prescribing_Information/Flulaval_Quadrivalent/pdf/FLULAVAL-QUADRIVALENT.PDF
  12. Flucelvax Quadrivalent Seqirus (ccIIV4)
  13. https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm356094.pdf
  14. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/effectiveness-studies.htm
  15. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/effectiveness-studies.htm
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5727917
  17. https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/63/12/1564/2282808
  18. https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/63/12/1564/2282808
  19. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5727917
  20. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/habits/index.htm
  21. https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/52/7/911/299077
  22. https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm294307.pdf
  23. http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/ss06/cold.html
  24. http://chriskresser.com/the-truth-about-flu-shots-and-what-to-do-instead
  25. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/echinacea
  26. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/12/13/zinc-for-colds-and-flu.aspx
  27. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15080016
  28. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19682714
  29. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682494.html
  30. http://www.touroinstitute.com/natural%20bactericidal.pdf

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