Natural Remedies Beat the Flu

Dear Health Conscious Reader,

Flu season hit us this year with a vengeance. With the swine flu (H1N1), it’s an epidemic.

And it’s not over yet. Moms are in a panic, waiting for a cough or fever that signals the start of a serious, contagious disease. It’s not entirely unreasonable to worry, because the flu results in approximately 30,000 deaths a year.1

But there is something you can do about it. Prevention is as close as your cupboard.

Last month a Japanese researcher showed that green tea contains a powerful antioxidant that fights against three types of flu viruses, including H1N1.2

Simply gargling or drinking a cup of green tea is a better way to prevent the flu than the common prescription drug used to prevent and treat it, Amantadine.

A good cup of home-brewed tea contains five to seven times the concentration needed to cut flu infections in half. Even H1N1.

Natural Flu Remedies: Green tea contains anti-bacterial properties, and has also been shown to:

  • Zap harmful free radicals.3
  • Promote joint comfort and mobility.4
  • Support healthy DNA, leaving cells stable and healthy.5
  • Boost your exercise capacity by up to 30%.6
  • Offer 25 to 100 times the potency of vitamins C and E.7
  • Change the way your body reacts to LDL to maintain healthy arteries.8
  • Fight against the damaging effects of toxin exposure.9,10
  • Guard against cancer.11
  • Increase the length of telomeres to reset your biological clock.12
  • Prevent bad breath and maintain healthy skin.13

But stay away from green tea drinks that contain sugar, aspartame, or chemical additives. These additives counter the effects of the tea.

Instead, brew your own…

To brew a cup of green tea, bring water to a boil and combine with tea leaves in a teapot. Steep for one to four minutes, depending on the tea you use and the strength you enjoy. Drink it hot or pour it over ice. Try drinking green tea throughout the day for the best effects.

You can’t entirely isolate yourself from infection. But you can do something else right now to start building up your immune defenses.

Natural Flu Remedies: Here are five supplements I recommend for maximum protection:

1. CoQ10 – CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant that shields your body from free radicals that bombard your cells every single day. I recommend that everyone take CoQ10 regularly as a constant source of new energy for your cells. For best results, make sure it contains a special form of CoQ10 called ubiquinol, which is 8 times more potent than regular CoQ10.

2. SOD – Often called the body’s “master antioxidant,” SOD can do more for your health than any other antioxidant on the planet. SOD doesn’t just seek and destroy free radicals… it acts as a suit of armor, making every cell in your body more resilient and better able to fight off free radical attacks.

3. Resveratrol – Resveratrol acts as a potent antioxidant by binding with free radicals. It’s found naturally in grapes, blueberries, and cranberries, but it’s difficult – if not impossible – to get enough of it from food alone. That’s why I recommend taking a supplement for the highest degree of protection.

4. Cod Liver Oil – The omega-3 essential fatty acids found in cod liver oil can help reduce inflammation. And it’s full of vitamin D, which acts as a great immune system booster. In fact, a recent study found that people recovering from colds, flus, and other respiratory infections had low levels of vitamin D in their blood. The study results also showed people with lower levels of vitamin D were 40% more likely to have respiratory infections.14

5. Daily Multi-Vitamin – Unfortunately, with our western diet of processed and refined foods, most of us are lacking all the vitamins our bodies need. This chronic lack of critical nutrients puts you at risk for today’s most serious health threats. I always say that taking a multi-vitamin is the first step to better health for everyone. It’s inexpensive and easy to add to your daily routine.

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, accessed 1/1/10:
  2. EGCg in Green Tea Inhibits Flu Infection, The Medical News, 12/24/09:
  3. Rahman I, Biswas SK, Kirkham PA. Regulation of inflammation and redox signaling by dietary polyphenols. Biochem Pharmacol. 2006 Nov 30;72(11):1439-52.
  4. Haqqi T et al. “Prevention of collagen induced arthritis in mice by a polyphenolic fraction from green tea.” PNAS April 13, 1999 vol. 96 no. 8 4524-4529.
  5. Curin Y, Andriantsitohaina R. Polyphenols as potential therapeutical agents against cardiovascular diseases. Pharmacol Rep. 2005;57 Suppl:97-107.
  6. Murase T, Haramizu S, Shimotoyodome A, Tokimitsu I, Hase T. Green tea extract improves running endurance in mice by stimulating lipid utilization during exercise. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2006 Jun;290(6):R1550-6.
  7. Pillai SP, Mitscher LA, Menon SR, et al. Antimutagenic/antioxidant activity of green tea components and related compounds. J Environ Pathol Toxicol Oncol. 1999;18(3):147-58.
  8. D. Kaul, K. Sikand, A. R. Shukla. Effect of green tea polyphenols on the genes with atherosclerotic potential. Phytotherapy Research. Vol.18, Issue 2, pp. 177 to 179.
  9. Shangqin Guo, et al. Green Tea Polyphenol Epigallocatechin-3 Gallate (EGCG) Affects Gene Expression of Breast Cancer Cells. J. Nutr. 135:2978S-2986S, December 2005.
  10. Sun CL, Yuan JM, Lee MJ, Yang CS, Gao YT, Ross RK, Yu MC. Urinary tea polyphenols in relation to gastric and esophageal cancers: A prospective study of men in Shanghai, China. Carcin 2002; 23(9):1497–1503.
  11. R. Chan, J. Woo, E. Suen, J. Leung, N. Tang, “Chinese tea consumption is associated with longer telomere length in elderly Chinese men” British Journal of Nutrition, Aug, 12, 2009:
  12. Cho HS, Kim S, et al. “Protective effect of the green tea component, L-theanine on environmental toxins-induced neuronal cell death.” Neurotoxicology. 2008 Jul;29(4):656-62. Epub 2008 Mar 20.
  13. Hamilton-Miller, JM.“Antimicrobial properties of tea(Camellia sinensis L.)” Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1995 November; 39(11): 2375–2377.
  14. Archives of Internal Medicine, Vol.169 No.4, Feb. 23, 2009.