Looking for an alternative for H1N1 vaccine

Chinese herbs at the Eastern Healing Centre
Photo Credit: Anna Harrison

The H1N1 vaccine can be difficult to get. Long wait times, and a high-risk list that keeps changing means that not everyone has equal access to treatment. This has caused some Winnipeggers to look to alternative methods to beat the bug.

Vita Health, a Manitoba health food store, has seen an increase of foot traffic in both their McPhillips Street and Corydon Avenue stores.

Manager of the McPhillips location, Rose Castro, said many of their customers are concerned about H1N1 prevention and have a list of products when they come in the door. “There has been a major increase in people coming in. People are loading up on vitamin C, vitamin D and oil of oregano,” she said.

Oil of oregano acts as an anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal. It is something Castro would recommend for virus prevention.

“Oil of oregano can have the ability to kill viruses. At the first sign of a cold or flu, take oil of oregano. A couple drops three times a day will help avoid the flu virus,” she said.

At the Corydon location, manager Alison Robinson, has also seen an increase in customers, but as of yet, has not had anyone seeking symptom treatment.

“For symptom treatment our advice would probably be similar to preventative action, except it would depend on what you have. For a sore throat we would suggest lozenges. If you came in with a fever we would suggest fluids.”

There are alternatives beyond western methods. Dr. Lin Liu is the owner and head practitioner of the Eastern Healing Centre on Portage Avenue. Liu has developed a prescription of Chinese herbs to prevent the H1N1 virus.

“In China they have already started to use Chinese herbal medicine for prevention. So we advise these herbs which you can cook, raw herbs, or granular herbs, that we give as a prescription. You take it for about five or six days in a row to help you prevent the H1N1 virus,” she said. The combination of herbs and acupuncture are used in Chinese medicine to help the flow of energy through the body.

“We would suggest acupuncture, with the herbal medicine. The traditional Chinese herbal medicine will give something to boost the immune system, and the acupuncture will help you rebalance the body. Many times the people getting H1N1, or other diseases, have an imbalance in the body. For some people, overtime, it can cause the body to burn out,” said Liu.

Liu’s treatments are compatible with the H1N1 vaccine, and people are able to have both treatments. Liu also appreciates the effects of vitamin C, but for the most effective treatment for H1N1 prevention, she suggests a personal consultation.

“They can take those herbs; that is stuff to help immunity. But if they can have a consultation they can get certain herbs to boost certain parts. Through the consultation we will know exactly what your weak parts are.”


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Dr Bala » Nov 24th 2009, 16:37

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Katie Li » Mar 26th 2011, 06:34


I'm new on here and just wanted to say that I agree with the above post that oil of oregano is indeed a great natural remedy to use for flu. Also great for colds, skin conditions, respiratory complaints and lots more.

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Anna Harrison of Red River College

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