H1N1 Injection – To Vaccinate or Not To Vaccinate

By Guest Blogger Michlyn Metropolit

‘Tis the season.

H1N1 Injection - To Vaccinate or Not To Vaccinate

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love the crispness of the cool air that has blown in. I love the display of pumpkins and mums at every grocery store or market that I frequent (and I MEAN frequent. I have three small children and a fully stocked ‘fridge is a very, very temporary thing).

I love grabbing a chunky sweater. I love fall sports. I love making stocks from scratch and then turning them into amazing, hearty, yummy and vibrant soups. I love seeing leaves transform into something magical. I love boots more than flip flops (wow!). I LOVE this season.

I can honestly think of only one thing that makes me feel less than giddy about Fall. FLU SEASON! From a personal perspective, I don’t have a ton of anxiety for my own family when it comes to contracting (and dealing. ughhh) with a flu virus, perhaps because I am equipped with some very basic knowledge (and formal education) on how to prevent such an event.

“The plan” is not an absolute, but we have had great success in my family over the years and will continue to follow “the plan”. In fact, “the plan”, has left our entire family of five, flu free for as long as I can remember (even runny nose free, cold free, cough free).

We’ll get back to “the plan,” but for now let’s talk about “the new black” of flu season- Swine Flu (or H1N1- defined as the genome composition for the subtype of influenza). There are thousands of strains of flu viruses, including many mutated forms- resistant to most anti viral medications. Every year, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) monitors the influenza virus, focusing on type A strains, such as H1N1 and type B strains.

H1N1 Injection - To Vaccinate or Not To Vaccinate

I recall this time last year, we were living in New Jersey (my husband plays professional hockey). NJ became the first and only state in the US to mandate a seasonal flu vaccine for all children enrolled in school.

I chose to opt out and seek an exemption for my children. While this was a very informed, educated and responsible decision for MY children, I would never broadcast my opinion or judge anyone for (perhaps) not making the best decision for their own children. As a society, we are taught to follow rules (good God, everyone close to me knows I have a TON of rules. And they are expected to be strictly adhered to. Not quite Captain Von Trapp style, whistle and all, but very close), and I don’t fault these people for following those rules.

New Jersey had many schools that had to close for more than a week because the strains going around were so strong and the kids were so sick. Parents were piled in Doctors’ offices only to hear that their child was sick with a different strain than which they were vaccinated for. This had to have been frustrating as it was presented as a vaccine to PREVENT the flu.

H1N1 Injection - To Vaccinate or Not To Vaccinate

But back to “the new black of influenza”. Oink Oink! While swine flu is continuing to rear its head across North America, data shows that it is no more severe than the regular, seasonal flu. A recent study showed that those already exposed to the virus (though that didn’t contract symptoms) have developed antibodies.

Canadian researchers have found (the data is being considered for publication in medical journals) that those who received a seasonal flu vaccine are twice as likely than those who did not, to contract swine flu. While there is no scientific evidence demonstrating that the swine flu vaccine offers real-world protection against the circulating swine flu, it is being paraded as a completely safe and effective way to prevent contraction of the virus. Believe me, I hope that this vaccine turns out to be safe and effective for all. It is a scary thing for a parent to be told that there is nothing else that you can do to protect yourself and your children (so you MUST get the vaccine). Talk about ON THE FENCE!!!

But so you know, the vaccine WAS NOT properly safety tested by the FDA and was approved with a waiver, utterly bypassing the normal process of long-term safety that the public expects the FDA to enforce. In fact, according to attorney, Jim Turner, the FDA’s baseless approval is a violation of federal law.

For my own family, I am initiating “the plan”, which includes beefing up vitamin D in the form of supplementation. Flu season pops up when summer is gone and regular vitamin D intake is decreased. The plant, elderberry, is widely used in Europe and Asia as an immune booster that is effective in combating influenza (and has worked quite well for us as well).

In fact, there are hundreds of anti-viral herbs. Adding or upping a probiotic- always a good idea. Trust your doctor, but also trust yourself!!! It’s quite empowering to have the knowledge to make an informed decision, whatever that may be.

And another thing we have been doing in our family religiously that has also helped ward off those flu germs…
Wash your hands! Wash your hands! Wash your hands!

I wish you all a happy, healthy, and flu-free Winter season.

Michlyn Metropolit, M.S., herbalist, holistic health consultant.

For a full list of ingredients for the vaccine, check out www.CDC.gov or your respective government agency website.

  1. Knowledge is power. I have given my children the flu shot every year. This year I did some thorough research, and read about mercury levels in the H1N1 vaccine, amongst numerous other unsafe ingredients, and am opting out for my whole family. This winter, we’re filling up on lots of antibacterial soap and hand sanitizers, good nutrition, our usual daily multivitamin, and praying for the best! Thanks!

  2. Such a great article and so much truth. Ga. has been hard hit with the flu this early in the season, and most of those with it have been given the flu vaccine from what I am hearing. Could it be possible that there is a link between the two? Sure appears to be. The healthier people seem to be the ones refusing the vaccine. As for me and my household we will do like you suggest… steer clear of the shot and do the more natural, safe things to prevent the flu. That just sound more logical anyway.

  3. I know how difficult this decision can be. Some of my doctor-clients say that the flu shot is just another pharmaceutical scam to make them money. Here in Italy it gets pushed a lot especially for healthcare workers, children, the elderly and people with chronic diseases. I get offered it for free by the blood donor clinic where I donate and by one of the schools I teach for (freelance). I did it for the first few years I lived here and then once it made me really sick and I stopped! My ‘natural’ plan is a 500mg chewable vitamin C tab and an ECHINACEA capsule everyday! I take it in fall and winter for flu and spring for allergies. IT IS FANTASTIC! Sometimes I take a break in the summer but not if we’re travelling to another country. And now I carry hand sanitiser with me always. Each one of us has to do what’s best for us: Even if it means NOT doing what is expected by society. Don’t we know about that!!! 🙂

  4. So heres the thing.. if you choose not to vaccinate then you are not only increasing the possibility of spreading it but its healthy people that are getting affected by it most. The same thing should go for this vaccine that goes for others. If your children are not vaccinated then they should be not allowed to attend school. By not vaccinating your child you are potentially putting other peoples children at risk. How do u think we got outbreaks of mumps and measles after so many years of vaccinating that would be from parents not vaccinating there children. When you see a healthy young person in ICU on a respirator from swine flu or maybe if thats your child then you may change your mind. washing your hands cannot protect you from water droplets from sneezing and coughing of other people. Sometimes you have to take the risks if its gonna benefit not only you, your family, but other people in the community now is not the time to be selfish. Think about it. YOUNG PEOPLE ON RESPIRATORS IN ICU DYING FROM H1N1 this could be your children.

  5. I completely agree with you regarding the H1N1 vaccination. The flu shot has always been a “shot in the dark” in my opinion and my family (with exception to my husband who is military and it is mandatory…beyond his control) has NOT been vaccinated in YEARS. The last time I got a flu shot was in 1998 — and guess what — I got the FLU! What a bunch of bologna!
    So, NO, we will NOT be vaccinated by the H1N1 vaccine and I feel great as a well educated, fully informed parent about that decision!
    As for children being taken out of public schools for this “non-vaccination”, I completely disagree! If there are children not being vaccinated, it is the parent’s decision and right!! (I take on the responsibility that IF my children were to contract this virus, I will do what is necessary for their well being.) And as far as I am concerned, IF this vaccination REALLY is that perfect and great, then those that were vaccinated have no need for worry — they won’t contract it!
    I have no problems with what side of the line that anyone is on…PRO Vaccinate or NOT. I just know what is right for ME and MY FAMILY. The risk of GBS or other Neurological issues is too high for my comfort. So, instead, we have amped up on Lysol, hand washing, hand sanitizer, Vitamin C & D, and covering coughs/sneezes.
    I hope that EVERYONE that is ON THE FENCE about this issue takes a good, hard look at the facts of this vaccine and makes the decision that fits their family best.
    Wishing all of you a FLU FREE SEASON!! 🙂

  6. I must admit that a few years ago when I used to take any flu shot they only made me sick for two weeks thus making them completly useless. I have since started using Vitamin C (Ester C to be exact) and a Slippery Elm Bark Extract in a drink for and those two suppliments combined have increased my amune system. I have also found that when I do get sick I up my dose of Vitamin C to 4000mg a day and that does wonders for my recovery time. I am no Dr by any means but it works great for me. Great post! =)

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