With each change of the season, the body's internal chemistry also changes. A study in the journal, Nature Communications, showed that as much as 25% of human genes change during the winter months. These changes are driven by external (epigenetic) factors such as different food choices, total daily sunlight exposure, activity levels, temperature adaptations and sleep patterns. All of these seasonal changes, especially when going into the colder, winter months, make the human body more susceptible to infections such as the cold virus or the flu. Keeping patients from getting sick, especially when they, "always get sick in the winter," is one of the most rewarding things that I do. Below, I will outline how this is done, but first, a crash course in immunology will give us the big picture. Think of the immune system as a giant teeter-totter. On the one side is a composite of immunological agents that we will call the, TH-1 side. The other side we will call TH-2 side (the "TH" stands for T-helper cells). The TH-1 side becomes very active when a virus is replicating and causing harm, like what happens with the common cold. The TH-2 side is most active when fighting off non-viral intruders and when developing an immunity to foreign substances. In cases of autoimmune disease, one of these sides is chronically out of balance. Most asthma patients, for example, have a great deal of ongoing TH-2activity, whereas those with Multiple Sclerosispatients generally have too much TH-1 activity.
For the general population, when we start to get sick, one or both of these sides becomes very active. Supporting the active side with proper supplementation, is how to overcome an illness rapidly. However, most people genetically tend to have one side lower on the teeter-totter than the other. If they were to support this lower side, even before there ever was a sign of illness, thereby keeping their teeter-totter balanced, they could avoid sickness altogether. In-office testing can determine, in just a few minutes, which side of your teeter-totter is low. Once you have this answer, here are the nutritional steps required to boost your immune system:
TH-1 function too low - increase it with substances like echinacea, zinc, isatis and astragulus. We carry a product called, IMMUNE SUPPORT (the marketing/labeling team must have had that day off) that works very well against colds and other viruses.
TH-2 function too low - increase it with substances like berberine, goldenseal, green tea, white willow, olive leaf extract, and grape seed extract. The product I highly recommend is BERBERCAP. If you at all get a sore throat as part of your sickness pattern, the winter remedy for you, along with Berbercap, is OLIVE LEAF EXTRACT. This is one of the best choices for Strep infections.
Hit the brakes - After you have your TH-1 or TH-2 support figured out, here is how to stabilize or modulate the entire teeter-totter and keep it steady: add VITAMIN D, EPA/DHA, glutathione,and specific PROBIOTICS.
Anti-viral homeopathic remedy -Finally, here in the office we make a homeopathic/energetic, WINTER WELLNESS, remedy (30C strength) that is specifically designed to keep the body strong against winter viruses. The list of testimonials praising this little "miracle" gets longer every year. Tami and I regularly hear how taking this remedy (two sprays, twice a day) has kept patients from getting sick when everyone else around them, at home and at work, had succumbed.
Get a tune up. Here is an article I wrote detailing how the spinal adjustment profoundly balances and regulates the nervous and immune systems.