Courtesy of NewsMax
Health author and Hollywood actress Suzanne Somers doesn’t believe in getting a flu shot to protect herself from the respiratory illness.
Too often, she has seen friends get the shot and still get the flu — severely, she says.
“Everybody I know who’s had the flu shot always end up getting the flu, and they seem to get it very badly,” she tells Newsmax Health.
What’s her alternative? Vitamin C and thymus extract.
“If you keep yourself healthy … if you load up with vitamin C and if you take the supplement thymus [extract] — the moment I feel I am getting anything, if I’ve been on an airplane where people are coughing and hacking, I just load up on thymus, I load up on vitamin C. I never ever, ever, ever get sick.”
Thymus extract is considered an immune system booster and has been used to treat hay fever, asthma, and other respiratory-related ailments, including colds and the flu. (It’s also used to treat cancer, although evidence proving its effectiveness against that is lacking, according to WebMD.) Thymus extract is manufactured synthetically or taken from the glands of cows. Potency can vary among products, so checking with a health-care provider on dosage is recommended.
Vitamin C, well-known for its ability as an antioxidant to fight off damage from free radicals, also works as an immune system booster. Dr. David Brownstein, author of the Newsmax Health newsletter Natural Way to Health, recommends 1,000 to 6,000 mg per day to help ward off the flu. But avoid overdoing it, he warns, because too much can cause diarrhea.
While Somers doesn’t believe in the effectiveness of the flu shot, many health experts, including officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, say it’s the best way to prevent getting the illness. Other ways of protecting yourself from the flu include:
• Frequent hand washing.
• Coughing and sneezing into the inside of your elbow, not your hand.
• Wearing a mask when traveling via airplane if your immune system is compromised and using antiseptic wipes to clean the areas around you, especially the tray table.
• Staying home if you are sick so you don’t infect others and waiting 24 hours after your fever breaks before being around people again.
In addition to writing books about health, Somers has a new television program that focuses on health and well-being. The Suzanne Show on Lifetime Television, airs Wednesday at 7 a.m. (ET and PT).