Flu fears

The panic over bird flu raises questions about public-health policies and conventional medical treatments

Tijn Touber | April 2006 issue

Seven and a half million deaths. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), that could be the human toll resulting from the allegedly imminent outbreak of bird flu around the world. American President George Bush has issued a warning: At least 2 million Americans could fall victim to the flu. In an effort to prevent this pandemic, governments are furiously stockpiling antiviral medicines—primarily the drug Tamiflu manufactured by Roche. But is there really a pandemic at hand? And if so, will Tamiflu help?

The answer to both questions is “no,” according to the respected British alternative-health newsletter What Doctors Don’t Tell You (December 2005), among other sources. Why? Because the specific virus involved (H5N1) was discovered 45 years ago, when terns in South Africa were infected, and has never posed a serious threat to humans in all that time. The virus may have claimed victims recently in Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Turkey, but as far as scientists have been able to gather, only those who had direct contact with birds risked infection. Around half of them died as a result. The virus only occasionally spreads to third parties who have no direct contact with poultry.

There was never any question of a pandemic, asserts the newsletter. Approximately 65 people in total have died so far from the virus over the past eight years. To put that in perspective, about 500,000 people die each year from seasonal flu.

Scientists are worried the virus will mutate and transfer to humans. This fear is based is partly on the increasing number of bird-flu outbreaks at poultry farms, but primarily because major flu epidemics occur on a regular basis. Last century there was the Spanish flu in 1918 (which may have killed as many as 20 million worldwide), the Asian flu in 1957 and the Hong Kong flu in 1968. This trend led the World Health Organization to predict a new flu outbreak. In 2003 scientists issued similar warnings about the SARS virus that ultimately only claimed some 1,000 victims worldwide.

Even if the bird flu were to spread, it isn’t necessarily advisable to stock up on Tamiflu, according to What Doctors Don’t Tell You. In order to be effective, a vaccine must respond directly to a particular virus. Viruses mutate quickly, which means they continually surprise our immune systems. Therefore, it’s highly doubtful that an existing treatment will be able to combat a virus that hasn’t yet even mutated to a human variation. And Tamiflu is not completely safe. Eight people died in Japan after taking Tamiflu and 64 cases of psychological instability have been reported.

The question is, therefore, why the United States has ordered 20 million doses of Tamiflu—worth $2 billion U.S., according to USA Today (October 8, 2005). Authorities at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta have even officially stated that there is currently no vaccine that can offer protection against the H5N1 virus (see www.cdc.gov/flu/avian/gen-info/facts.htm). It looks as though the American government may be influenced by the growing anxiety stemming from an endless series of reports about an imminent epidemic.

Research by the late British psychiatrist Colin McEvedy has shown that an epidemic based on mass hysteria is fairly easy to create. He reports that in 1955, 200 nurses suddenly and mysteriously fell ill. After awhile the symptoms disappeared. McEvedy suspects the symptoms were the result of the fear of polio, widespread at the time. Further study showed him that such outbreaks were not uncommon in other settings such as schools. If a few students are hospitalized with vague symptoms, the entire school may well get sick. McEvedy studied one such “epidemic” that lasted nine days, where the many patients’ symptoms sharply diminished on the fourth and fifth days, which just happened to fall on the weekend. No pathogen was ever discovered in this outbreak.

In other words, fear is just about the worst possible weapon against illness. The threat of bird flu deserves a calm response that starts with strengthening our immune systems. What Doctors Don’t Tell You advises daily doses of 8,000 to 12,000 IU (international units) of vitamin A, 200 to 400 IU of vitamin E and 1,000 mg of vitamin C. Zinc supplements also have strong antiviral properties. And the very best defense is undoubtedly Sambucol, a supplement made of elderberries. This remedy was developed 10 years ago by the French virologist Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu and, in laboratory studies conducted by the prominent British Retroscreen Virology, which is affiliated with the University of London, it was found to be 99 percent effective in combating various types of flu, including bird flu. Sambucol can be purchased in 17 countries, including the U.S.

During a recent flu epidemic in Norway, Sambucol, made by the Israel-based company Razei Bar Industries, was double-blind tested against a placebo. Half the patients were given four tablespoons of the remedy per day. After 24 to 48 hours, 95 percent of the patients were doing better, and after 48 to 72 hours, 90 percent of the group had completely recovered. In the placebo group, only eight percent of the cases showed improvement after 24 hours, and 48 to 72 hours later only 24 percent were doing better.

The question is: Why don’t we hear anything about these remedies from our health authorities?

More information: www.sambucol.com

Solution News Source

Flu fears

The panic over bird flu raises questions about public-health policies and conventional medical treatments

Tijn Touber | April 2006 issue

Seven and a half million deaths. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), that could be the human toll resulting from the allegedly imminent outbreak of bird flu around the world. American President George Bush has issued a warning: At least 2 million Americans could fall victim to the flu. In an effort to prevent this pandemic, governments are furiously stockpiling antiviral medicines—primarily the drug Tamiflu manufactured by Roche. But is there really a pandemic at hand? And if so, will Tamiflu help?

The answer to both questions is “no,” according to the respected British alternative-health newsletter What Doctors Don’t Tell You (December 2005), among other sources. Why? Because the specific virus involved (H5N1) was discovered 45 years ago, when terns in South Africa were infected, and has never posed a serious threat to humans in all that time. The virus may have claimed victims recently in Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Turkey, but as far as scientists have been able to gather, only those who had direct contact with birds risked infection. Around half of them died as a result. The virus only occasionally spreads to third parties who have no direct contact with poultry.

There was never any question of a pandemic, asserts the newsletter. Approximately 65 people in total have died so far from the virus over the past eight years. To put that in perspective, about 500,000 people die each year from seasonal flu.

Scientists are worried the virus will mutate and transfer to humans. This fear is based is partly on the increasing number of bird-flu outbreaks at poultry farms, but primarily because major flu epidemics occur on a regular basis. Last century there was the Spanish flu in 1918 (which may have killed as many as 20 million worldwide), the Asian flu in 1957 and the Hong Kong flu in 1968. This trend led the World Health Organization to predict a new flu outbreak. In 2003 scientists issued similar warnings about the SARS virus that ultimately only claimed some 1,000 victims worldwide.

Even if the bird flu were to spread, it isn’t necessarily advisable to stock up on Tamiflu, according to What Doctors Don’t Tell You. In order to be effective, a vaccine must respond directly to a particular virus. Viruses mutate quickly, which means they continually surprise our immune systems. Therefore, it’s highly doubtful that an existing treatment will be able to combat a virus that hasn’t yet even mutated to a human variation. And Tamiflu is not completely safe. Eight people died in Japan after taking Tamiflu and 64 cases of psychological instability have been reported.

The question is, therefore, why the United States has ordered 20 million doses of Tamiflu—worth $2 billion U.S., according to USA Today (October 8, 2005). Authorities at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta have even officially stated that there is currently no vaccine that can offer protection against the H5N1 virus (see www.cdc.gov/flu/avian/gen-info/facts.htm). It looks as though the American government may be influenced by the growing anxiety stemming from an endless series of reports about an imminent epidemic.

Research by the late British psychiatrist Colin McEvedy has shown that an epidemic based on mass hysteria is fairly easy to create. He reports that in 1955, 200 nurses suddenly and mysteriously fell ill. After awhile the symptoms disappeared. McEvedy suspects the symptoms were the result of the fear of polio, widespread at the time. Further study showed him that such outbreaks were not uncommon in other settings such as schools. If a few students are hospitalized with vague symptoms, the entire school may well get sick. McEvedy studied one such “epidemic” that lasted nine days, where the many patients’ symptoms sharply diminished on the fourth and fifth days, which just happened to fall on the weekend. No pathogen was ever discovered in this outbreak.

In other words, fear is just about the worst possible weapon against illness. The threat of bird flu deserves a calm response that starts with strengthening our immune systems. What Doctors Don’t Tell You advises daily doses of 8,000 to 12,000 IU (international units) of vitamin A, 200 to 400 IU of vitamin E and 1,000 mg of vitamin C. Zinc supplements also have strong antiviral properties. And the very best defense is undoubtedly Sambucol, a supplement made of elderberries. This remedy was developed 10 years ago by the French virologist Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu and, in laboratory studies conducted by the prominent British Retroscreen Virology, which is affiliated with the University of London, it was found to be 99 percent effective in combating various types of flu, including bird flu. Sambucol can be purchased in 17 countries, including the U.S.

During a recent flu epidemic in Norway, Sambucol, made by the Israel-based company Razei Bar Industries, was double-blind tested against a placebo. Half the patients were given four tablespoons of the remedy per day. After 24 to 48 hours, 95 percent of the patients were doing better, and after 48 to 72 hours, 90 percent of the group had completely recovered. In the placebo group, only eight percent of the cases showed improvement after 24 hours, and 48 to 72 hours later only 24 percent were doing better.

The question is: Why don’t we hear anything about these remedies from our health authorities?

More information: www.sambucol.com

Solution News Source

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