Thursday, January 31, 2013


Beanitos are loaded with non-GMO vegetable fiber (20% of the daily value in just 10 chips, that’s 5 grams!), 4 grams of complete protein and are rich in Essential ALA Omega 3s (600mg in Pinto Bean and Flax) all which are packed into one great tasting serving!
Beanitos are always free of corn, wheat, soy, potato, trans fat, cholesterol and are verified non-GMO, gluten free, lab tested and certified low glycemic & kosher! For more information on our 3rd party independent testing, check out the health benefits page.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

5 Benefits of Exercising Outdoors

5 Benefits of Exercising Outdoors When You're Freezing Your Buns

Are you tempted to dive under the covers and hibernate when cold weather hits? It certainly seems like a good excuse, but exercising in the cold actually has some (pardon the pun) cool advantages.

Is it ever TOO cold to exercise outdoors? Not according to the experts interviewed here.

Growing up in the south, I never had to contend with super cold weather workouts so when I relocated to the Northeast it was new to me. But over the years, I’ve become an avid winter fitness buff and the crisp, clean, cold air really makes me feel alive, healthy and tuned in.

As a fitness instructor, I teach a boot-camp class in New York’s Central Park and some of our best workouts are in the cold weather. We have to keep moving to stay warm, we work hard, we yip and yell and burn a ton of calories! 

After an hour lunging, jumping, squatting, doing push-ups, step ups and all types of exercises, we feel invigorated, satisfied and know we’ve pushed our minds and bodies to new extremes.

5 Benefits of Cold Weather Workouts:

1. You burn more calories. 

This is probably the best and most popular perk. Because your body is working harder, your metabolism revs up and your body burns more calories and fat to produce energy for your workout.

2. Your endurance performance increases. 

By challenging yourself in the cold weather, you are strengthening your heart, lungs and circulatory system, thereby improving your overall health. 

3. Working out in the winter can help fight SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). 

Being outside and taking in more sun during the daylight hours helps keep your mind sharp and relieves depression as well as increasing your body’s manufacturing of vitamin D.

4. Exercise can help to boost feel good endorphins which elevate your mood and make you happier! 

The cold stimulates your parasympathetic system. (The sympathetic system is known as the “fight or flight” response while the parasympathetic is known as the “relax and renew” system). These endorphins can trigger the release of dopamine and serotonin, neurotransmitters that keep us happy, feeling good and ease depression.

5. It's invigorating, exciting and energizing. 

This is my personal favorite benefit of cold weather exercising. There’s nothing like adding that rosy glow to your cheeks after an intense outdoor winter workout.

Keep it safe, a few simple tips for exercising in the cold:
  • Make sure you hydrate before, during and after your workout.
  • Wear layers that you can peel off as necessary. 
  • Wear a hat and gloves.
  • Adequately insulate your extremities. The face, fingers and toes are the first to get frostbitten. (Pain or tingling in your ears, fingers or toes is usually a sign it’s time to come indoors and warm up.)
  • Beware of ice. (I’ve had a few slips out there myself.)
No excuses now! Don’t let the cold keep you indoors this winter. Get outside, get your butt moving and enjoy the extra benefits a cold weather workout has to offer.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Juice Fast tips

Juice Fast – What You Should Know by Drew Canole

I have been getting a lot of messages on how to start a juice fast. When you go on a juice fast you are abstaining from eating any solid foods, instead you are consuming fresh vegetable juice for a period of time. A juice fast usually last 3, 5, 7, 30, 60 or 90 days.
Toxic substances are everywhere – in the air we breathe, the processed foods we eat, and even the water we drink. It’s critical for us to support the body’s detoxification systems. A periodic juice fast is a healthy way to support your body’s ability to detox and get rid of toxins. When my clients first come to me the first thing I recommend is the Alpha Reset. The Alpha Reset is a easy guideline on how to start and complete a juice fast and what gives you recipes that are good for a juice fast.

Here are some tips for starting a juice fast and what to expect.

It’s important to make your juice fast journey as easy as possible. The first thing you want to do is actually start detoxing one week before starting your  juice fast. This means cutting out processed foods, drinking more water, eating more vegetables, limiting the amount of meat you eat and most importantly limiting the amount of caffeine and sugar you consume, stop smoking and stop drinking alcohol. Also during this week start to introduce fresh vegetable juice to your daily consumption. This will help get you acquainted with the taste of vegetable juice if you aren’t already.
It’s also very important to buy organic fruits and vegetables. During the juice fast you are trying to eliminate toxins from your body and if you’re using fruits and vegetables with pesticide and other toxins on them then you are not doing your body justice.
Here is a list of the fruits and vegetables that should always be purchased organic.
juice fast
 Be sure the corn is not GMO, along with any other product you use. Use fresh Organic whenever possible, especially for juicing.

What you should do during your juice fast

During your juice fast you should take it easy on exercising. I recommend walking or yoga but not heavy lifting, cardio, or aerobic activity. During this time you want your body to heal and you shouldn’t push yourself.
Another recommendation I have is to start and end everyday with one cup of warm water and half a lemon. This is amazing for promoting a healthy immune system, balancing pH, helping with weight loss, aiding in digestion, hydrating the lymph system and acting as a natural diuretic.
Many people ask me how much juice they did to consume during a juice fast. It’s really simple, when you’re feeling low on energy or get hungry have a juice. Don’t over do it. Remember to drink plenty of water during your juice fast.
During your juice fast you can still take your vitamins.
While you are juice fasting you will have different symptoms from fatigue, headache, skin eruptions such as acne, feeling cold, light headedness, aches and pains – but don’t worry these symptoms will pass and you will feel great afterwards.
The Alpha Reset  provides amazing recipes for the juice fast. Here are some of my favorites.
juice fast
Here is a great juice. To get more juice from your parsley, try wrapping it around the ginger and feeding it into the juicer. Also the green leaves on the beets are very nutritional even more than the beet root. If you don’t like beets you can leave it out of the recipe but try juicing the green top.
juice fast
Garlic is amazing for you. Most people don’t like to eat or juice garlic because of the odor that is created. Wrapping parsley around garlic cloves and then feeding it into the juicer helps absorbs the odor that garlic creates.
juice fast
Try to juice more vegetables and dark leafy greens rather than fruit – apples are okay. If you have to have fruit it’s better to have it in the morning.
Check out this recipe I made for my own juice fast –> here

How to end your juice fast

When ending your juice fast you should slowly introduce solid foods back into your daily consumption. The first day after your juice fast you should have egg whites. After each day you can introduce new solid foods back into your life. Still continue to juice and eat vegetables. For more information check out the Alpha Reset.
For more information, juicing recipes and motivation check out Juicing Vegetables and the Saturday Strategy community.

Monday, January 28, 2013

10 Signs You're Gluten Intolerant

10 Signs You're Gluten Intolerant

More then 55 diseases have been linked to gluten, the protein found in wheat, rye, and barley. It’s estimated that 99% of the people who have either gluten intolerance or celiac disease are never diagnosed.

It is also estimated that as much as 15% of the US population is gluten intolerant. Could you be one of them?

If you have any of the following symptoms it could be a sign that you have gluten intolerance:

1. Digestive issues such as gas, bloating, diarrhea and even constipation. I see the constipation particularly in children after eating gluten.
2. Keratosis Pilaris, (also known as ‘chicken skin’ on the back of your arms). This tends be as a result of a fatty acid deficiency and vitamin A deficiency secondary to fat-malabsorption caused by gluten damaging the gut.
3. Fatigue, brain fog or feeling tired after eating a meal that contains gluten.
4. Diagnosis of an autoimmune disease such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Lupus, Psoriasis, Scleroderma or Multiple sclerosis.

5. Neurologic symptoms such as dizziness or feeling of being off balance.
6. Hormone imbalances such as PMS, PCOS or unexplained infertility.
8. Diagnosis of chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia. These diagnoses simply indicate your conventional doctor cannot pin point the cause of your fatigue or pain.
9. Inflammation, swelling or pain in your joints such as fingers, knees or hips.
10. Mood issues such as anxiety, depression, mood swings and ADD.
How to test for gluten intolerance?

I have found the single best ways to determine if you have an issue with gluten is to do an elimination diet and take it out of your diet for at least 2 to 3 weeks and then reintroduce it. Please note that gluten is a very large protein and it can take months and even years to clear from your system so the longer you can eliminate it from your diet before reintroducing it, the better.

The best advice that I share with my patients is that if they feel significantly better off of gluten or feel worse when they reintroduce it, then gluten is likely a problem for them.  In order to get accurate results from this testing method you must elimination 100% of the gluten from your diet.

How to treat gluten intolerance?

Eliminating gluten 100% from your diet means 100%. Even trace amounts of gluten from cross contamination or medications or supplements can be enough to cause an immune reaction in your body. 

The 80/20 rule or “we don’t eat it in our house, just when we eat out” is a complete misconception. An article published in 2001 states that for those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity eating gluten just once a month increased the relative risk of death by 600%.

Still unsure?

Seek out an integrative practitioner or functional medicine physician to help to guide you.

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Did you know that broccoli is one of the most studied vegetable? Thanks to it’s high phytochemicals and it’s ability to fight against disease, it’s regarded as a superfood.
Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family. It is one of the most nutrient dense foods. Packed with vitamin C and has anticancer effects. When selecting broccoli to juice, look for dark green broccoli or purplish heads. The stalks should be firm. Avoid broccoli with wilted, yellow or soft leaves since their nutritional content is low.

Here are 8 nutritional facts about broccoli.

1. Beta-Carotene

Beta-carotene is regarded as a powerful antioxidant because it can help neutralize damaging free radicals. Beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body. Beta-carotene is good for vision, immunity and overall health.

2. Calcium

Broccoli doesn’t contain any fat nor is it a dairy product but it’s packed with calcium. Calcium is essential for bones, muscles, nerves, hormones and enzymes that affects every function in the body.

3. Dithioethiones

Dithioethiones are anticancer agents that may help stimulate glutathione. Glutathione is an antioxidant that helps neutralize free radicals.

4. Folate

Folate is a vitamin B which can lower risks for cancer and birth defects. Folate may also help reduce the risk of heart disease due to it’s ability to control homocysteine. Homocysteine is an amino acid that is linked to heart disease.

5. Glucosinolates

Broccoli contains glucosinolates. When you eat broccoli glucosinolates are broken down into different health promoting compounds such as indoles, sulforaphan and isothiocyanates which all can help prevent cancer. Isthiocyanates helps stimulate the body’s own natural anticancer compounds and may also help fight carcinogens that are in smoke. Sulforaphane is a powerful phytochemical that can increase anticancer activity and also can reduce tumor formation.

6. Insoluble Fiber

Who doesn’t love fiber? Broccoli is packed with insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber helps “push” everything out of the system and prevents constipation.

7. Lutein

Lutein is a carotenoid that that can help prevent colon cancer and macular degeneration.

8. Potassium

Potassium is great for blood pressure regualtion and decreases the risk of having a stroke. One cup of broccoli contains 456 mg or 15% of the Daily Value (Barone et. al 2002).

Saturday, January 26, 2013


A Crash Course on Coconuts: See How the World Uses this Fruit

coconut uses infographic 

Click image to make larger

You have probably heard me praise the benefits of coconut oil and coconut water. Studies about their health benefits are piling up as we speak. Coconuts carry have a variety of functions beyond just these two products.
However, these functions and benefits seem to be largely overlooked in the United States. Americans have very limited knowledge about this fruit because it is not a traditional part of their diet. And very few stores sell coconut products.
The term "coconut" can be used to refer to both the coconut palm and fruit. Every part of the coconut can be used for myriads of functions, so it has gained significant recognition and has become a steady source of living in many cultures.

Coconut Uses - How the Coconut Proved Its Worth

The physical properties and nutrients of coconuts can vary depending on their maturity. Young coconuts have either a white husk or a green shell, and possess larger amounts of coconut water and softer meat. On the other hand, mature coconuts, the brown and hairy variety, have less water and firmer meat.
Whether they're young or mature, coconuts are considered the "plant of life" due to their astounding commercial and domestic uses:
  1. Parts of the coconut palm, as well as the exterior layers of its fruit, are turned into several products, from simple kitchen tools and utensils to strong structures – for both humans and animals. Some of these coconut parts include:
    • Coconut husks
    • Coconut shells
    • Coconut leaves
    • Coconut trunk
    • Coconut roots
  2. The meat and water within its fruit are rich resources of nutrients. Native cultures in Asia, Pacific Islands, South America, and limited parts of North America use coconut fruit as a staple in their diets. Some popular coconut products are:
    • Coconut meat
    • Coconut oil
    • Coconut milk
    • Coconut water
    • Coconut wine
    • Coconut vinegar

Go Nuts about Coconuts - Learn More about This Amazing Plant

Probably no fruit or plant has garnered the level of recognition the coconut has. The list of benefits you can obtain from coconuts goes on and on.
I urge you to read Plant of Life: An Infographic on Various Coconut Uses to discover some interesting trivia about its uses around the world. Share this infographic with your friends and family to help spread knowledge about this astounding plant.

Friday, January 25, 2013


Resveratrol shields against high blood sugar surges to prevent diabetic complications and improve cardiovascular health

Allopathic practitioners and the pharmaceutical giants enjoy promoting natural compounds including resveratrol as worthless, akin to snake oil and frequently attempt to convince the public that they are wasting their money by using these supplements. Naturally, the big medical concerns make huge profits by selling a host of prescription drugs that account for more than 100,000 deaths every year, even when taken as prescribed. Not a single death has been recorded from using resveratrol, yet the health benefits are profoundly significant and repeatedly documented in peer reviewed scientific studies.

Researchers from China have published the results of a study in the journal, Genes and Nutrition, showing how resveratrol protects against common damage to the arteries that leads to atherosclerosis and cardiovascular dysfunction. While the scientists specifically detailed how the natural compound helps prevent complications in diabetics where fasting and post meal blood glucose can surge from three to five times normal, many health-conscious individuals can benefit from this information to protect them from arterial deterioration frequently associated with cardiovascular disease and increased heart attack risk.

Scientists detail how resveratrol prevents damage from high blood glucose to maintain vascular health

Our arteries are lined with a delicate, single cell layer of tissue called the endothelium that is essential to maintain proper blood pressure and volume, and acts as a barrier to protect against metabolic byproducts floating in circulation. The endothelium is very sensitive to excess levels of glucose in the bloodstream and can become damaged and tear when sugar crystals remain in circulation for extended periods, such as occurs after a meal high in sugars and refined carbohydrates. When the endothelium is breached, micro cracks occur that accumulate foamy plaque leading to future coronary artery disease.

Scientists found that blood sugar surges caused the endothelium to become permeable, allowing oxidized LDL cholesterol, calcium and other circulating materials to become lodged inside the arterial wall. The study team determined that resveratrol stopped endothelial leaking and helped maintain proper vascular structure even under stressful conditions experienced with high blood sugar levels. Further, the researchers detailed the precise mechanism exerted by the compound to maintain the structural integrity of the arterial wall.

The team concluded that resveratrol helped prevent the most common type of arterial damage caused by poor diet and advanced aging. Advanced glycation end products (AGE's) are formed when blood sugars and protein become bound to form useless structures that can adhere to and damage our arteries. Resveratrol (nutritionists recommend 400 mg of a standardized formulation per day) was shown to halt this damage and provides a critical nutritional intervention to prevent complications and maintain cardiovascular health in both diabetics and healthy individuals.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


By Dr. Mercola
Every year, up to 2 million children in the European Union (EU) are born with methylmercury exposures that exceed the EU’s safe limit. Of them, 200,000 have levels above the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommended maximum for mercury exposures, which means they’re born with hazardous levels of mercury in their tiny bodies.
These alarming statistics came from a new study revealing the huge health burden and economic toll that mercury pollution is taking on populations worldwide.1

Controlling Mercury Pollution Could Save 700,000 IQ Points a Year

Mercury is a potent neurotoxin; it doesn't take much to cause serious damage because there is absolutely no safe level of exposure. For instance, if you were to take the amount of mercury in a typical thermometer and put it in a small lake, that lake could be closed down due to environmental hazards.
Children and fetuses whose brains are still developing are at greatest risk because of their small size, their more permeable blood-brain barriers and the fact that they're detoxification systems are not yet capable of effectively removing toxic challenges. Exposure to mercury while the brain is still developing has been linked to lower IQ, and therefore a lower lifetime learning potential.
For instance, research has revealed that babies exposed to higher levels of mercury in the womb scored lower on skills tests when they became infants and toddlers.2
According to the new study, if the effects of mercury on developing brains were converted into IQ points, controlling mercury pollution would save 700,000 IQ points per year in the European Union alone, and lead to significant economic benefits as a result. Researchers noted:
“These estimates document that efforts to combat mercury pollution and to reduce MeHg exposures will have very substantial economic benefits in Europe … “

Mercury Fillings Remain a Major Cause of Mercury Pollution

You’ve probably heard about the risks of consuming seafood that’s contaminated with mercury. Ever wonder where all that mercury in fish and seafood comes from? As Charlie Brown of Consumers for Dental Choice put it:
“Mercury fillings are one source of mercury contaminating the fish and seafood that we eat. The environmental health effects of dental mercury are well known: brain damage and neurological problems, especially for children and the unborn babies of pregnant women.”
The use of mercury fillings is very much an issue of global concern, as once in the environment, dental mercury converts to its even more toxic form, methylmercury, and becomes a major source of accumulated mercury in the fish you eat. Mercury from dental amalgam pollutes:
  • Water via dental clinic releases and human waste (amalgam is by far the largest source of mercury in our wastewater)
  • Air via cremation, dental clinic emissions, sludge incineration, and respiration; and
  • Soil via landfills, burials, and fertilizer

Mercury Fillings May Pose Risks to Children, Pregnant Women

Even the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) admits that amalgam could be dangerous for children and that there is no evidence that it is safe for them. Buried deep in the FDA's 2009 amalgam rule, FDA conceded:3
"The developing neurological systems in fetuses and young children may be more sensitive to the neurotoxic effects of mercury vapor. Very limited to no clinical information is available regarding long-term health outcomes in pregnant women and their developing fetuses, and children under the age of six, including infants who are breastfed.”
There is overwhelming evidence showing mercury from dental fillings to be easily released in the form of vapor each time you eat, drink, brush your teeth, chew gum, or otherwise stimulate your teeth. This mercury vapor readily passes through cell membranes, across your blood-brain barrier, and into your central nervous system, where it can cause psychological, neurological and immunological problems. In the United States, children and pregnant women continue to have their health and the health of future generations put at risk because the FDA is failing to protect them.
The WHO also reports the known toxic effects of mercury exposure, including in its inhaled vapor form, stating:4
"Mercury is highly toxic and harmful to health. Approximately 80% of inhaled mercury vapor is absorbed in the blood through the lungs, causing damages to lungs, kidneys and the nervous, digestive, respiratory and immune systems. Health effects from excessive mercury exposure include tremors, impaired vision and hearing, paralysis, insomnia, emotional instability, developmental deficits during fetal development, and attention deficit and developmental delays during childhood."

If You’re Pregnant, WAIT to Have Your Mercury Fillings Removed

For those of you who have mercury fillings, I recommend that you have them removed -- but this should NOT be done while you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because when you have these fillings removed you can be exposed to significant amounts of mercury vapors if the dentist doesn't know what he or she is doing, and this could be quite toxic to a fetus or breastfed infant.
It's also for this reason that I strongly suggest you get healthy BEFORE having your fillings removed, as you want your detoxification mechanisms optimized prior to removal. Once you are healthy and no longer pregnant or nursing, find a qualified biological dentist who is experienced with mercury filling removal. Some things that need to be done to keep you (and your dentist) safe during mercury filling (amalgam) removal include:
  • Providing you with an alternative air source and instructing you not to breathe through your mouth
  • Using a cold-water spray to minimize mercury vapors
  • Putting a rubber dam in your mouth so you don't swallow or inhale any toxins
  • Using a high-volume evacuator near the tooth at all times to evacuate the mercury vapor
  • Washing your mouth out immediately after the fillings have been removed (the dentist should also change gloves after the removal)
  • Immediately cleaning your protective wear and face once the fillings are removed
  • Using room air purifiers

How to Detoxify from Mercury Exposure

In the video above, Dr. Christopher Shade, a mercury and glutathione expert from the University of Illinois, explains how your body’s natural heavy metal detoxification system works. It’s a lengthy lecture — about three hours. But if you truly want an in-depth understanding of this topic, he gives an excellent presentation of the latest science about the human biochemistry of mercury.
Your body is designed to detoxify mercury and other heavy metals, but an impaired metabolism can lead to mercury toxicity. My revised mercury detoxification protocol, which incorporates the work of Dr. Shade, supports your glutathione system and all of the enzymes and transporter proteins that must be working properly if your body is to efficiently cleanse itself of mercury. You can get all the details in my revised protocol to detoxify your body from mercury exposure.

Forward-Thinking Government Agencies Urging a Phase-Out of Mercury in Dentistry

For example, in a letter to EU member state representatives and dental experts, the EEB asked recipients to support a phase-out of the use of mercury in dentistry, both in the EU and around the world. The EU has been aggressive in both their intent and actions aimed at reducing mercury usage, and even adopted a mercury strategy in 2005, which contains 20 measures to reduce mercury emissions, cut supply and demand protections against exposure.
The EEB letter came on the heels of a July 2012 European Commission report by BIO Intelligence Service (BIOS),5 which also recommended the phase-out of dental amalgam and mercury in button cell batteries.
Sweden has already phased out dental mercury, and several other European countries have either significantly reduced its use or have imposed restrictions on it. The fact that amalgam releases so much mercury into the environment is one reason why WHO is working to facilitate "a switch in use of dental materials" away from amalgam.6 They, too, noted that dental amalgam raises "general health concerns." The WHO report observed:
"According to the Norwegian Dental Biomaterials Adverse Reaction Unit, the majority of cases of side-effects of dental filling materials are linked with dental amalgam."
With dental mercury uncontrollably entering the environment from multiple pathways, phasing out amalgam and transitioning to non-mercury alternatives is the only way to phase down – and eventually eliminate – this significant source of mercury that threatens our environment and ultimately our health.
This is why support for Consumers for Dental Choice, which has worked to educate the government about dental mercury pollution and the many mercury-free alternatives to amalgam, is now more important than ever. Consumers for Dental Choice leads the battle for mercury-free dentistry both in the U.S. and worldwide, especially at the UN mercury treaty negotiations. Its financial needs are greater than ever, so we ask for your help! Please consider a donation to Consumers for Dental Choice, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to working for mercury-free dentistry for every child and every adult.
Donations can be made online here. Checks can be mailed to:
Consumers for Dental Choice
316 F St., N.E., Suite 210
Washington DC 20002

Also, for timely updates and information, please join Consumers for Dental Choice on Facebook.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Flu shot

By Dr. Mercola
More people than ever are reportedly sick this winter,1 including those who got their flu vaccination. But while the push for vaccination reaches a fever pitch, the hard evidence has yet again shown that flu vaccines rarely work, and when they do, they don’t offer much in terms of protection.
There are many other, far more effective ways to prevent the flu and other flu-like illness, such as dietary interventions, making sure your vitamin D and gut flora are optimized, being more meticulous about washing your hands, getting enough exercise and sleep, and eating foods that support your immune system like oil of oregano and garlic.

Multiple Epidemics Emerging at Once

According to the New York Times,2 the United States is in the middle of not just one, but three emerging flu or flulike epidemics:
  • An early start to the annual flu season with “an unusually aggressive virus”
  • A surge in a new type of norovirus (“stomach flu”), known as the Sydney 2012 variant, and
  • “The worst whooping cough (pertussis) outbreak in 60 years”
Boston has declared a health emergency, as hospitals are filling up. In New York, many are also coming down with laryngitis, characterized by a sore, scratchy throat, and sometimes loss of voice. Other infections also appear to be widespread. One of the researchers on my staff was recently ill with severe flu-like symptoms. She told me:
“I just went through this over Christmas/New Years. I was around an Alzheimer's patient who'd been sick. I was helping him get seated in a chair when he began coughing in my face. Two days later I had a fever of 101.2 and really felt bad. I also was coughing. I went to my doctor, who did a flu test. But it was NOT the flu... a few tests later,

I found out I had strep with a cough. It lasts about a week, the fever about three days. The doctor said it's 'terribly contagious' and it's going around 'all over.'
Since then I've talked to many people locally who said they came down with this 'flu' even though they had a flu shot (I never get them myself)... yet I'm the only one I've talked with whose doctor bothered to actually do tests to determine whether it was flu or not -- everybody else's doctor just assumed it was flu. Makes me wonder how much of this reported 'flu' is flu, and how much is this strep-with-cough thing that I had?”

Is Vaccination the Answer?

According to Google Flu data,5 this year’s flu season is the worst we’ve seen in quite some time, reaching a peak, or “Intense” level as of mid-December 2012. It all sounds ominous, to say the least, and clearly you should take precautions to avoid becoming a statistic. But the official solution to all these outbreaks remains disappointingly weak. “Get vaccinated” is the mantra, even though the scientific evidence backing such a recommendation is flimsy at best. Forbes magazine, for example, recently presented a slide show6 of “how to ward off the flu,” beginning with a flu shot recommendation:
“It’s good news if have already been vaccinated so far this season. But if you have not already had the vaccine, it is still recommended that you get it,” Forbes states.
A new flu strain, the “H3N2 type variant,” has been identified as being particularly aggressive, and is believed to be the cause of many if not most of the illnesses.7 Interestingly, according to Dr. Joseph Bresee, a medical epidemiologist in the influenza division at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the H3N2 component in this year’s seasonal flu vaccine “has been a good match against almost all the confirmed H3N2 samples the agency has tested,” the New York Times reports.8
Still, effective or not, vaccines are “flying off the shelves” and manufacturers are reporting shortages9 of both flu vaccines and Tamiflu — the potentially dangerous antiviral recommended if you’ve already contracted the flu — in part due to the early onset of the flu season. Michael Szumera, a spokesman for Sanofi told Fox Business:10
"At this point we are not able to make any more vaccine because we are gearing up for next year's vaccine."
According to one report, 112 million Americans had been vaccinated against the flu by late 2012. Walgreen’s recently reported they’d administered 5.7 million flu shots so far this season — up from 5.3 million in 2012.11 The fact that many flu shot recipients are still coming down with serious influenza should be a testament to the ineffectiveness of the flu vaccine — not a selling point for it... Especially when you consider the fact that the vaccines available this year are a good match to the actual influenza type A and B strains in circulation.

The Battle over Flu Vaccine Continues as Flu Spreads

The power of the media to modify behavior is being milked for all its worth this season, with “superstars” of every caliber getting their flu shots on air. For example, Piers Morgan, host of Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN, rolled up his sleeve to receive his first ever flu shot on the Dr. Oz show.12
This is a Flash-based video and may not be viewable on mobile devices.
Dr. Oz then went on to satisfy the station’s advertisers by reciting the conventional vaccination recommendations while completely ignoring the issues of safety and effectiveness — or rather the lack thereof. No mention was made about individual susceptibly that might make you more prone to vaccine damage, or the questionable rationale for vaccinating pregnant women, babies and all Americans each and every year, starting from the age of 6 months throughout childhood and adulthood until the year of death...
Coming from someone like Dr. Oz, such nonchalance is disappointing to say the least. Avoiding the issue of side effects, which can be just as lethal as the flu itself, is nothing short of irresponsible. Some states, such as New Jersey and Connecticut, now have mandates in place preventing children from attending school unless they receive the flu vaccine each year. This is a draconian over-reach that can place young children at grave risk. To see a powerful profile of a flu vaccine victim (in this case a former nursing professor), please see my previous article The Hidden Risks in This Heavily Promoted Seasonal Routine.

How is Firing Competent Nurses in the Best Interest of Patients?

In related news, some states are now taking corrective action against health care workers who refuse to get vaccinated. In one Indiana hospital, eight nurses were recently fired for not complying with the hospital’s new mandatory vaccination rule, announced in September 2012.
One of them was Ethel Hoover, who had worked at the hospital for 22 years, with a stellar work record. How can you possibly justify firing a highly skilled veteran nurse who doesn’t want to get a flu shot, only to replace her with a vaccinated but less experienced newcomer? Seriously... How does this translate into patient safety? If you were seriously ill, who would you rather have tending to your health? Hoover told ABC News:13
"'This is my body. I have a right to refuse the flu vaccine. For 21 years, I have religiously not taken the flu vaccine, and now you're telling me that I believe in it.' ...When Hoover first heard about the mandate, she said she didn't realize officials would take it so seriously. She said she filed two medical exemptions, a religious exemption and two appeals, but they were all denied. The Dec. 15 flu shot deadline came and went. Hoover's last day of employment was Dec. 21.
Fellow nurse Kacy Davis said she and her colleagues were 'horrified' over Hoover's firing, calling her their 'go-to' nurse and a 'preceptor,' ABC News reports.
...Alan Phillips, who represented several nurses at the hospital, says his clients had the right to refuse their flu shots under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964,14 which prohibits religious discrimination of employees. Religion is legally broad under the First Amendment, so it could include any strongly held belief, he said, adding that the belief flu shots are bad should suffice...
Phillips, who is based out of North Carolina, has made a name for himself fighting for employees' rights to get out of mandated flu shots, but he has never needed to go to court. Although he usually handles a couple dozen health care workers per year, he had 150 this fall in 25 states.”
If the administrators who made this ludicrous decision were to ever step back and look at the scenario rationally and holistically, they would soon realize that they fired a valuable veteran employee and would most likely replace her with a rookie, an inexperienced nurse that could not provide anywhere near as competent care to the patients. If they ever bothered to independently use their own brain cells, rather than rely on the CDC and the media, they would quickly realize that there is no solid evidence to support the effectiveness of the flu vaccine. Watching the Cochrane video below would have been a major start in the right direction. Once viewed, it probably wouldn’t take long for them to realize that they seriously compromised patient care in their hospital by firing this nurse.

When Propaganda Spin Goes Hilariously Bad...

A recent Activist Post by Janet C. Phelan15 points out just how ridiculously bad a lot of the reporting passing for “news” is today:
“In an article entitled, 'Flu reaches epidemic level in U.S.,' says CDC, reporter Sharon Begley pumps up alarm concerning the virulent and epidemic nature of the current flu sweeping the country. However, the report admits it lacks documentation of the very numbers it purports to use to buttress its claims.
While the Reuters article, published on January 11, solemnly announces that a pandemic is officially at play when the flu achieves a rate of 7.2 % of deaths during a time period, it also earnestly states that there is no definitive count of the total deaths caused by the flu. Wait a minute here... So the exact percentage of deaths caused by flu is known but the number of flu deaths is not?
I wasn't planning to go on a rant about the idiocy of our mainstream media at this juncture, but it does appear that a few things must be said. First of all, reporters must be schooled in statistics in order to complete a journalism graduate program. That course is not for wimps, I can assure you... anyone who had been in my class at the University of Missouri Graduate School of Journalism would have received a failing grade if they had produced this article...”

“Gold Standard” of Scientific Inquiries Blast Flu Vaccine Claims

Again and again you hear that the influenza vaccine is a first-line, essential prevention tool against the flu. And yet, science does not support this blanket recommendation. According to Dr. Tom Jefferson with the Cochrane Collaboration — an international, independent, not-for-profit organization of over 28,000 contributors from more than 100 countries — “the response to the [flu] virus is driven by vested interests.” The following video is from 2009, when the H1N1 swine flu pandemic had just been announced. But he’s talking about the seasonal flu vaccine when he states:
“...they do not have a good track record. The evidence from the hundreds of studies that we’ve synthesized, is that sometimes they work a little, and sometimes they don’t. In general, the quality of the literature is such that it is very difficult to understand if they actually work.”

So, are you thinking about vaccinating your infant with the flu vaccine? Then I highly recommend reading the independent study review from the Cochrane Collaboration16 first, published as recently as August 15, 2012. According to these independent research reviewers:
The review authors found that in children aged from two years, nasal spray vaccines made from weakened influenza viruses were better at preventing illness caused by the influenza virus than injected vaccines made from the killed virus. Neither type was particularly good at preventing 'flu-like illness' caused by other types of viruses. In children under the age of two, the efficacy of inactivated vaccine was similar to placebo.
It was not possible to analyse the safety of vaccines from the studies due to the lack of standardisation in the information given, but very little information was found on the safety of inactivated vaccines, the most commonly used vaccine in young children. Influenza vaccines were associated with serious harms such as narcolepsy and febrile convulsions. It was surprising to find only one study of inactivated vaccine in children under two years, given current recommendations to vaccinate healthy children from six months of age."
Their independent review of flu vaccines for adults17 also cast serious doubt on the blanket recommendation to use flu vaccine as the primary form of protection against the flu:
“Over 200 viruses cause influenza and influenza-like illness which produce the same symptoms (fever, headache, aches and pains, cough and runny noses). Without laboratory tests, doctors cannot tell the two illnesses apart. Both last for days and rarely lead to death or serious illness.
At best, vaccines might be effective against only influenza A and B, which represent about 10 percent of all circulating viruses.
Authors of this review assessed all trials that compared vaccinated people with unvaccinated people. The combined results of these trials showed that under ideal conditions (vaccine completely matching circulating viral configuration) 33 healthy adults need to be vaccinated to avoid one set of influenza symptoms. In average conditions (partially matching vaccine) 100 people need to be vaccinated to avoid one set of influenza symptoms.
Vaccine use did not affect the number of people hospitalized or working days lost but caused one case of Guillian-Barré syndrome (a major neurological condition leading to paralysis) for every one million vaccinations.
Fifteen of the 36 trials were funded by vaccine companies and four had no funding declaration. Our results may be an optimistic estimate because company-sponsored influenza vaccines trials tend to produce results favorable to their products and some of the evidence comes from trials carried out in ideal viral circulation and matching conditions and because the harms evidence base is limited.”

Simple Graphic Illustration of How the Flu Infects You

The following video offers an excellent, rapid-fire cliff-notes-type education on flu viruses, where the “H” and “N” flu classifications come from and their transmission, along with common flu symptoms. Bear in mind that I obviously do NOT recommend or advise getting a flu vaccine, which is listed as one of the prevention methods at the end of this video. I recommend that anyone thinking about getting a flu shot carefully consider the risks of the vaccine and influenza and make an well educated decision for themselves.

Insider Expert Reveals Previously Unrevealed Physician Flu Incentives

An article in Infectious Diseases in Children, titled "Influenza vaccination makes sense for everyone,"18 written by Dr. Richard Lander, MD, a pediatrician in private practice in northern New Jersey and a member of the Infectious Diseases in Children Editorial Board, offers an insightful glimpse into the motivations behind the at times near-rabid push for flu vaccinations. In short, it’s a money-maker.
No, Dr. Lander most certainly did not intend for this to be the conclusion after reading his article, but it does spell out the financial incentives for pediatricians and other physicians to “sell, sell, sell!” the vaccine to as many as possible. When you read his disclosure, the root of his pro-vaccination stance becomes quite obvious as it too is the color of green... Not only is he co-owner of the National Discount Vaccine Alliance, he’s also a speaker for Merck, Novartis, Pfizer and Sanofi-Pasteur.
Here, for the first time, a real doctor, in real time, with real numbers reveals exactly how profitable giving the flu vaccines is for doctors. He writes:
“Before the influenza season began, physicians had been told to get ready for a bad season. With this in mind, my practice started vaccinating during the summer as soon as our influenza vaccines arrived. We gave it to the kids as they came in for their well appointments, we reached out to our high-risk patients (asthmatics, immunocompromised patients and cardiac patients), and we organized influenza parties, which assembled large numbers of patients to receive influenza vaccines at the same times... These visits did not allow for discussions about the child’s 5-year history of encopresis or behavioral problems. We all hope to be effective in reaching large numbers of patients.
It is undeniable that vaccinating against influenza is good for patients. As luck would have it, vaccinating against influenza is good for the financial health of your practice as well. For example, let’s calculate monies generated for administering influenza vaccine for a doctor with a panel of 2,000 patients. We’ll be conservative and consider that only 1,000 patients will get their influenza vaccine in your office. Some of the 1,000 not receiving the vaccine in your office might be infants younger than 6 months of age and not eligible for the vaccine, and some patients will go to retail-based clinics or refuse the vaccine.
I know you are all financially savvy and you have purchased influenza vaccines at the lowest possible price... The fee you receive has been set by your contract with each managed care organization and you are seeing a 10% to 25% profit.
If your practice purchased the vaccine at approximately $10, the profit on these 1,000 patients will range from $1,000 to $2,500. Additionally, you are receiving a vaccine administration fee, which should range from $14 to $30. This amounts to $14,000 to $30,000 for the 1,000 patients. Furthermore, in my practice, we do not vaccinate if a patient has not received a well visit in the last 12 months. If 100 patients who call for a flu shot ending up scheduling a well visit, you should be generating an additional $10,000. Bottom line: $25,000 to $42,500, which is not bad! Influenza can be devastating. Offering influenza vaccines to your patients is good for their health. It is good for the whole community. Giving influenza vaccine is also good for the financial health of your practice.”

How to Protect Yourself During the Flu Season

Again, as with Dr. Oz, what really disturbs me here is the complete lack of safety discussion. In fact, he actually states that these vaccine-drives “do not allow for discussions” about a child’s potty habits or behavioral problems — both of which could be very important clues or indicators that a child might be more prone to vaccine damage, and likely would be best served by having their gut flora checked before receiving another vaccine. For more information about this novel but promising way to prevent vaccine damage, please see my interview with Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. Honestly, what’s more important here? Making a buck or making sure that each and every patient is unlikely to be harmed by the treatment?
Avoiding a serious case of influenza is not about vaccination but more about maintaining a healthy, well functioning immune system. By following these simple guidelines, you can help keep your immune system in optimal working order so that you're far less likely to acquire the infection to begin with or, if you do get sick with the flu, you are better prepared to move through it without complications and soon return to good health.
  • Optimize Your Gut Flora. This may be the single most important strategy you can implement as the bacteria in your gut have enormous control of your immune response. The best way to improve your beneficial bacteria ratio is avoid apply avoid sugars as they will feed the pathogenic bacteria. Additionally, processed foods and most grains should be limited and replacing with healthy fats like coconut oil, avocados, olives, olive oil, butter, eggs and nuts. Once you change your diet than regular use of fermented foods can radically optimize the function of your immune response.
  • Optimize your vitamin D levels. As I've previously reported, optimizing your vitamin D levels is one of the absolute best strategies for avoiding infections of ALL kinds, and vitamin D deficiency may actually be the true culprit behind the seasonality of the flu – not the flu virus itself. This is probably the single most important and least expensive action you can take. Regularly monitor your vitamin D levels to confirm your levels are within the therapeutic range of 50-70 ng/ml.
  • Ideally, you'll want to get all your vitamin D from sun exposure or a safe tanning bed, but as a last resort you can take an oral vitamin D3 supplement. According to the latest review by Carole Baggerly (, adults need about 8,000 IU's a day. Be sure to take vitamin K2 if you are taking high dose oral vitamin D as it has a powerful synergy and will help prevent any D toxicity.
  • Avoid Sugar and Processed Foods. Sugar impairs the quality of your immune response almost immediately, and as you likely know, a healthy immune system is one of the most important keys to fighting off viruses and other illness. It also can decimate your beneficial bacteria and feed the pathogenic yeast and viruses. Be aware that sugar (typically in the form of high fructose corn syrup) is present in foods you may not suspect, like ketchup and fruit juice. If you are healthy than sugar can be consumed but the LAST thing you should be eating when you are sick is sugar. Avoid it like poison while you are sick.
  • Get Plenty of Rest. Just like it becomes harder for you to get your daily tasks done if you're tired, if your body is overly fatigued it will be harder for it to fight the flu. Be sure to check out my article Guide to a Good Night's Sleep for some great tips to help you get quality rest.
  • Have Effective Tools to Address Stress. We all face some stress every day, but if stress becomes overwhelming then your body will be less able to fight off the flu and other illness. If you feel that stress is taking a toll on your health, consider using an energy psychology tool such as the Emotional Freedom Technique, which is remarkably effective in relieving stress associated with all kinds of events, from work to family to trauma.
  • Get Regular Exercise. When you exercise, you increase your circulation and your blood flow throughout your body. The components of your immune system are also better circulated, which means your immune system has a better chance of finding an illness before it spreads. Be sure to stay hydrated – drink plenty of fluids, especially water. However, it would be wise to radically reduce the intensity of your workouts while you are sick. No Peak Fitness exercises until you are better.
  • Take a High-Quality Source of Animal-Based Omega-3 Fats. Increase your intake of healthy and essential fats like the omega-3 found in krill oil, which is crucial for maintaining health. It is also vitally important to avoid damaged omega-6 oils that are trans fats and in processed foods as it will seriously damage your immune response.
  • Wash Your Hands. Washing your hands will decrease your likelihood of spreading a virus to your nose, mouth or other people. Be sure you don't use antibacterial soap for this – antibacterial soaps are completely unnecessary, and they cause far more harm than good. Instead, identify a simple chemical-free soap that you can switch your family to.
  • Tried and True Hygiene Measures. In addition to washing your hands regularly, cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze. If possible, avoid close contact with those, who are sick and, if you are sick, avoid close contact with those who are well.
  • Use Natural Antibiotics. Examples include oil of oregano and garlic. These work like broad-spectrum antibiotics against bacteria, viruses, and protozoa in your body. And unlike pharmaceutical antibiotics, they do not appear to lead to resistance.
  • Avoid Hospitals. I'd recommend you stay away from hospitals unless you're having an emergency and need expert medical care, as hospitals are prime breeding grounds for infections of all kinds. The best place to get plenty of rest and recover from illness that is not life-threatening is usually in the comfort of your own home.

Protect Your Right to Informed Consent and Vaccine Exemptions

With all the uncertainty surrounding the safety and efficacy of vaccines, it's critical to protect your right to informed consent to vaccination and fight to protect and expand vaccine exemptions in state public health laws. The best way to do this is to get personally involved with your state legislators and the leaders in your community.

Mass vaccination policies are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level. It is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights can have the greatest impact. It is critical for EVERYONE to get involved now in standing up for the legal right to make vaccine choices in America because those choices are being threatened by lobbyists representing drug companies, medical trade associations and public health officials, who are trying to persuade legislators to strip all vaccine exemptions from public health laws.
Signing up for NVIC's free Advocacy Portal at gives you immediate, easy access to your own state legislators on your Smart Phone or computer so you can make your voice heard. You will be kept up-to-date on the latest state bills threatening your vaccine choices and get practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community. Also, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have the up-to-date information and call to action items you need at your fingertips..
So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Share Your Story with the Media and People You Know

If you or a family member has suffered a serious vaccine reaction, injury or death, please talk about it. If we don't share information and experiences with each other, everybody feels alone and afraid to speak up. Write a letter to the editor if you have a different perspective on a vaccine story that appears in your local newspaper. Make a call in to a radio talk show that is only presenting one side of the vaccine story.
I must be frank with you; you have to be brave because you might be strongly criticized for daring to talk about the "other side" of the vaccine story. Be prepared for it and have the courage to not back down. Only by sharing our perspective and what we know to be true about vaccination will the public conversation about vaccination open up so people are not afraid to talk about it.
We cannot allow the drug companies and medical trade associations funded by drug companies or public health officials promoting forced use of a growing list of vaccines to dominate the conversation about vaccination. The vaccine injured cannot be swept under the carpet and treated like nothing more than "statistically acceptable collateral damage" of national one-size-fits-all mandatory vaccination policies that put way too many people at risk for injury and death. We shouldn't be treating people like guinea pigs instead of human beings.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the following web pages on the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) website at
  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment and sanctions by doctors, employers, school and health officials for making independent vaccine choices.

Connect with Your Doctor or Find a New One that Will Listen and Care

If your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don't want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to stop the change in attitude of many parents about vaccinations after they become truly educated about health and vaccination.
However, there is hope.
At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they're starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents. It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.
So take the time to locate a doctor, who treats you with compassion and respect and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child.