What to do if you have the Flu

Original article August 2014 Copyright Jaine Kirtley

The title is rather ambitious for this short column; there are so many treatments available for the flu; both within conventional medicine and in complementary medicines. Here I’ll point out a few practical remedies that will help. 
If at any time you become very concerned about your symptoms do seek professional help.
Influenza or Flu is not one disease. There are many different types; all are caused by viruses. These viruses mutate so new viruses develop constantly. Virus are different from bacteria so antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Sometimes viruses weaken the body so much that bacterial infections develop. 
The best way to help your body when you have a virus is to rest, sleep and rest more. You need to take time off from work, school, general commitments, and….. rest. Your whole immune system works more efficiently when you have adequate rest. 
Exercise does usually boost immunity however during a Flu it will over tax your body, and encourage the virus to grow.
Water is often an under-appreciated healer; though it is the greatest nutrient for your body. It helps absorb nutrients and helps detoxify. When you are ill and are eating little food, water is vital to keep hydrated and to fight infections.

Many other nutrients are especially helpful to boost immunity and fight infections. In particular Zinc, Vitamin C and the essential Fatty Acids Omega 3, Omega 6 and Omega 9. I recommend the Entire Katoa Food State range for the optimum absorption, low dose and low toxicity; available at www.entirekatoa.co.nz.
Garlic is both a highly nutritious food and a powerful medicinal herb. Garlic improves immunity and fights viral infections including some influenzas, and bacterial infections. 
The healing powers of garlic have been recognised for centuries; even now scientific research is confirming the great health benefits of eating garlic. Raw garlic or a garlic tea works best. 
Garlic is both a highly nutritious food[1-4] and a powerful medicinal herb[1, 5, 6].
Scientific studies show garlic helps combat viral infections including some influenza[7] bacterial infections[8-10], even some of those not helped by drug antibiotics[11], it improves immunity[1, 9, 12]. 
Ensure the garlic is fresh, and chew parsley after the garlic which is an effective way to get rid of smelly breath. 
If you have the flu drink 3 – 6 cups of garlic tea a day. To make Garlic tea chop 1 clove garlic add ginger root/powder put in boiling water- cover with lid (saucer) let stand for 10 minutes can add squeeze lemon, and sip.
If you find garlic triggers digestive problems, then put a clove of lightly peeled garlic into your sock at might. Your body will absorb some of the special garlic oils through the sole of your foot. Do not chop the garlic clove as direct contact with garlic juice can irritate the skin. Please tread carefully when you get up!
For more information on ways to improve your immunity read the other article here. Contact us for personal consultations in person or via skype.


1.    Amagase H: Clarifying the Real Bioactive Constituents of Garlic. The Journal of Nutrition 2006, 136:716S-725S. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/136/3/716S.abstract 2.    Malik MN, Fenko MD, Shiekh AM, Wisniewski HM: Isolation of α-Tocopherol (Vitamin E) from Garlic. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 1997, 45:817-819. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf960524b 
3.    Montaño A, Casado FJ, de Castro A, Sánchez AH, Rejano L: Vitamin Content and Amino Acid Composition of Pickled Garlic Processed with and without Fermentation. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 2004, 52:7324-7330. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf040210l 
4.    Casado FJ, López A, Rejano L, Sánchez AH, Montaño A: Nutritional composition of commercial pickled garlic. European Food Research and Technology 2004, 219:355-359. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00217-004-1003-5 
5.    Gorinstein S, Jastrzebski Z, Namiesnik J, Leontowicz H, Leontowicz M, Trakhtenberg S: The atherosclerotic heart disease and protecting properties of garlic: contemporary data. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research 2007, 51:1365-1381. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mnfr.200700064 
6.    Sun T, Powers Joseph R: Antioxidants and Antioxidant Activities of Vegetables. In Antioxidant Measurement and Applications. Volume 956: American Chemical Society; 2007: 160-183: ACS Symposium Series].http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/bk-2007-0956.ch012
7.    Mehrbod P, Aini I, Amini E, Eslami M, Torabi A, Bande F, Kheiri M: Assessment of direct immunofluorescence assay in detection of antiviral effect of garlic extract on influenza virus. Afr J Microbiol Res 2013, 7:2608-2612. 
8.    Sivam GP: Protection against Helicobacter pylori and Other Bacterial Infections by Garlic. The Journal of Nutrition 2001, 131:1106S-1108S. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/131/3/1106S.abstract lore the possibility of using garlic as a low-cost remedy for eradicating H. pylori.
9.    Wang JP, Yoo JS, Jang HD, Lee JH, Cho JH, Kim IH: Effect of dietary fermented garlic by Weissella koreensis powder on growth performance, blood characteristics, and immune response of growing pigs challenged with Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide. Journal of Animal Science 2011, 89:2123-2131. http://jas.fass.org/content/89/7/2123.abstract T
10.    Bjarnsholt T, Jensen PØ, Rasmussen TB, Christophersen L, Calum H, Hentzer M, Hougen H-P, Rygaard J, Moser C, Eberl L, et al: Garlic blocks quorum sensing and promotes rapid clearing of pulmonary Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections. Microbiology 2005, 151:3873-3880. http://mic.sgmjournals.org/content/151/12/3873.abstract 
11.    Tsao S-m, Yin M-c: In vitro activity of garlic oil and four diallyl sulphides against antibiotic-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsiella pneumoniae. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 2001, 47:665-670. http://jac.oxfordjournals.org/content/47/5/665.abstract 
12.    Budoff MJ, Ahmadi N, Gul KM, Liu ST, Flores FR, Tiano J, Takasu J, Miller E, Tsimikas S: Aged garlic extract supplemented with B vitamins, folic acid and l-arginine retards the progression of subclinical atherosclerosis: A randomized clinical trial. Preventive Medicine 2009, 49:101-107. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091743509003181 
13.    Eidi A, Eidi M, Esmaeili E: Antidiabetic effect of garlic (Allium sativum L.) in normal and streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. Phytomedicine 2006, 13:624-629. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0944711305002175 
14.    El-Demerdash FM, Yousef MI, El-Naga NIA: Biochemical study on the hypoglycemic effects of onion and garlic in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Food and Chemical Toxicology 2005, 43:57-63. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691504002741 
15.    Borek C: Garlic Reduces Dementia and Heart-Disease Risk. The Journal of Nutrition 2006, 136:810S-812S. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/136/3/810S.abstract 
16.    Auer W, Eiber A, Hertkorn E, Hoehfeld E, Koehrle U, Lorenz A, Mader F, Merx W, Otto G, Schmid-Otto B: Hypertension and hyperlipidaemia: garlic helps in mild cases. British journal of clinical practice Supplement 1990, 69:3-6. http://ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/2083170 
17.    Borek C: Antioxidant Health Effects of Aged Garlic Extract. The Journal of Nutrition 2001, 131:1010S-1015S. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/131/3/1010S.abstract