Doctor Uzick's Healthy E-News
     
 

In This Issue

Urgent Flu Edition Intro.

 

Colostrum Dramatically Better than Flu Vaccine

 

Vitamin D Declines May be the Cause of Influenza

 

Colds and Flu: How to Tell Them Apart

 

Lecture at Sunstone Cancer Foundation

 

Dr. Uzick Update

 

Past Issues

 

 

 

Michael Uzick, N.M.D.

1 West Wetmore Rd

Ste. 101, Tucson

 Arizona, 85705

Phone: 520-887-4287

Fax: 520-887-0100

 www.DoctorUzick.com

 

 

 
 

Urgent Flu Edition

With world wide concerns over an impending deadly swine flu epidemic, I've been spurred into action in order to help spread the word about safe and effective ways to prevent and treat influenza that you won't hear on the nightly news.

Each and every year there are dire warnings of the worst flu season in decades. Fortunately, each year the deadly pandemic never manifests. Many feel that this winter the concern is greatly exaggerated once again. However, it seems to me there are a couple of differences this year.

There have been an unusually high number of influenza cases & related deaths reported this spring and summer. I can't recall any significant spring or summer influenza outbreaks in my life time. Perhaps I missed them, but it's certainly not common. This concerns me because the 1918 influenza epidemic first appeared in the early summer with few fatalities. Then in the winter it appeared again with a vengeance, responsible for over 30 million deaths.

While flu vaccination is heavily promoted by the government and media, there is little to no evidence supporting its effectiveness in pregnant women or the elderly - the groups most strongly encouraged to vaccinate.

As such, it seems only reasonable to utilize safe and effective natural treatments to protect ourselves, families and friends, rather than find out what will happen this winter after it's too late.

~Michael Uzick, N.M.D.

 

Vaccines for preventing influenza in the elderly. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2006 Jul 19;3:CD004876. Review.

Delivering influenza vaccine to pregnant women. Epidemiol Rev. 2006;28:47-53. Epub 2006 May 26. Review.


Colostrum Dramatically Better than Flu Vaccine

Colostrum is the first substance every infant mammal receives from their mother's breast. Babies are born without a fully formed immune system and their mother's colostrum provides them with crucial protection against infections.

Most colostrum used medicinally today comes from cows. A number of studies on Colostrum and substances contained within it have been shown to be effective in treating a variety of infections. As you probably know if you are a patient of mine, I often use colostrum to boost weakened immune systems and fight different kinds of infections. It's one of my favorite natural treatments because of its great safety and effectiveness.

In 2007 a study was conducted comparing the effectiveness of the flu vaccine with a single capsule of colostrum each day. The study looked the effects in healthy adults and people with advanced cardiovascular disease.

This clinical trial examined the incidence of influenza occurring in four matched groups: 1. Flu vaccine 2. Colostrum 3. Flu vaccine plus Colostrum 4. No flu prevention treatments.

The results showed that Colostrum was over 4 times more effective at preventing influenza than flu vaccination. Colostrum was 3 times more effective than doing nothing. The group receiving only the flu vaccine actually had more cases of flu than the group that had no treatments (57 vs 41)! The combination of the flu vaccine and Colostrum were equally effective as the Colostrum only group. Among those with advanced heart disease, Colostrum was twice as effective as the flu vaccine. In this smaller group, one person in the flu vaccine group died from complications of influenza infection.

This research confirms prior animal research demonstrating Colostrum's antiviral effects against influenza strains.

One of the nice things about Colostrum is that it's safe enough for babies. Our clinic only uses colostrum that comes from the 2nd and 3rd milkings. The first milking goes to the calves. In the U.S. they can take colostrum from the first milking which has the highest amount of Colostrum. However, the calves are deprived and become sickly.

 

Prevention of influenza episodes with colostrum compared with vaccination in healthy and high-risk cardiovascular subjects: the epidemiologic study in San Valentino.  Clin Appl Thromb Hemost. 2007 Apr;13(2):130-6.


Winter Declines in Vitamin D May be the Cause of Influenza

Edgar Hope-Simpson was a country doctor who captivated the medical establishment in 1965 by proving that the childhood chickenpox virus reactivates as shingles in adults.

Without any formal training in epidemiology, he conceived, researched and demonstrated on his own what had eluded medical researchers for decades and ultimately brought Nobel prizes to others who followed his work.

Hope-Simpson spent the rest of his life researching the influenza virus and authored a text book on the subject. He argued that the flu is not spread by sick people, but rather, lies dormant and is activated by some unknown force intimately tied to variations in solar radiation.

Hope-Simpson described several mysteries about flu epidemics that our understanding of infectious transmission could not answer. 1. Why is influenza both seasonal and world wide; and where is the virus between epidemics? 2. Why do countries of similar latitudes, but separated by great distances have outbreaks of influenza at the same time? 3. Why do epidemics end so abruptly? 4. Why did outbreaks before modern transportation spread faster than can be explained by human contact?

John Cannell, MD of the Vitamin D Research Foundation, has written a fascinating article in which he reviews the meticulous work of  Hope-Simpson on influenza. Cannell illustrates convincing subsequent research which lends greater support for his ideas. Cannell points out that the unknown factor intimately connected with solar radiation is the production of vitamin D in humans. Large studies comparing serum levels of vitamin D demonstrate that significant winter declines match perfectly with flu incidence.

There are few dietary sources of vitamin D, but humans manufacture it in substantial amounts when UV radiation contacts oils naturally found in our skin. What has only been discovered in recent years is that Vitamin D plays an essential role in our innate immunity which plays a key role in protecting us from viral infections. This was one of the essential pieces unknown to Hope-Simpson.

One of the shocking aspects of Hope-Simpson's theory are the studies demonstrating the difficulty of infecting people with the flu virus. Cannell details numerous studies in which healthy volunteers were exposed in all manner of ways to the secretions from sick patient's nasal, throat and lung passages. While other viral upper respiratory infections are easily transmitted in the fashion, scientists have had great difficulty infecting healthy patients with influenza viruses.

I'm sure the above might be hard to fathom since it goes completely against the universal belief that influenza is highly infectious. However, what is most important to understand is that in studies of those supplemented with Vitamin D, the incidence of influenza  dramatically decreases and with higher doses of the vitamin, cases seem to be non-existent.

If this winter's Swine Flu does manifest as the deadly epidemic some are predicting, supplementing with Vitamin D could be a safe and inexpensive way to powerfully protect yourself and your loved ones.

Another good reason to bring your serum vitamin D levels into an optimal range is that recent research has shown you can decrease the incidence of breast, colon, prostate, lung, ovarian and pancreatic cancers by an incredible 50-80%.

The most effective approach to ensuring optimal levels is having your serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D tested and then supplementing accordingly. Then retest to make sure you're in the right spot (55-70 ng/ml). All doctors can perform this basic blood test. All insurance companies will cover the cost of the test. For those of you without insurance the cost of the test at our clinic is $66 - if you paid the lab directly the cost is $292.

It's important to realize typical doses like 400-800 IU's won't change your blood levels. It literally takes months to move your serum vitamin D levels using many times those dosages. But you can get into the optimal range in a couple of weeks with higher and completely safe dosages.

 

On the epidemiology of influenza. Cannell JJ, Zasloff M, Garland CF, Scragg R, Giovannucci E. Virol J. 2008 Feb 25;5:29. Review.

What is the dose-response relationship between vitamin D and cancer risk? Nutr Rev. 2007 Aug;65(8 Pt 2):S91-5.

Molecular basis of the potential of vitamin D to prevent cancer. Curr Med Res Opin. 2008 Jan;24(1):139-49


Stop the Flu Dead in Its Tracks

Over my life I've tried every imaginable natural cold remedy. Here's a list of some that I recall: Echinacea and goldenseal - numerous times and in high doses, a slew of other powerful herbal concoctions, 2 cloves of raw garlic every 2 hours, hydrogen peroxide in the ears, zicam, hyperthermia baths combined with sweat inducing herbal teas, massive doses of oral vitamin C - several times I've taken up to 60 grams of powdered vitamin C. None of the remedies stopped my colds and all of them are claimed to be cures.

What I have found that can reliable stop a cold ~70% of the time is high dose intravenous Vitamin C. Regardless of how much Vitamin C one takes orally, blood levels can't go above a certain point. However, delivered intravenously serum concentrations rise many fold higher even with relatively small amounts of Vitamin C.

To stop a cold this way you do have to catch it early. If you've had the cold for a couple of days or more, the treatment can be very helpful, but it won't "shut it off." I've had numerous cases of early onset cold's completely resolve after treatment. Most patient's said they had never experienced anything like that in their lives. I've had the exact same experience myself and it's pretty great if you're like me and it takes 3-weeks before you sound normal again.

The above is based on my clinical experience. No studies have looked at intravenous vitamin C in the treatment of colds and flu. However, a number of studies have looked at the effect of Vitamin C on cold & flu viruses in cell culture and in humans taking it orally.

A meta-analysis of 29 controlled studies looked at the benefit of 200 mg/day of Vitamin C for colds & flu in over 11,000 people. Vitamin C was shown to decrease the severity and duration of colds and flu, but not the incidence. A major flaw of this meta-analysis is that the majority of studies used 1 gram or less of Vitamin C daily. If we consider that blood levels of vitamin C reduce by half after 30 minutes, dosing what would be considered a small amount once daily is hardly a fair assessment of this important nutrient.

Interestingly a subgroup of 6 studies looking a 642 athletes and soldiers exposed to physical stress and cold weather showed a 50% reduction in the incidence of colds and flu among those taking oral Vitamin C.

 A 2-year study of 715 students used high dose Vitamin C to treat cold symptoms compared with OTC decongestants and pain relievers. The Vitamin C group received 1 gram every hour for the first 6 hours and then 1 gram 3 times daily there after. Treatment with Vitamin C resulted in a 85% decrease in symptoms compared to the group treated with OCT medications.

Cell culture studies show very potent inhibitory effects against a number of viruses, including influenza strains. The reason I believe Intravenous Vitamin C is so effective at stopping colds, is because we are able to flood our cells with high concentrations of the vitamin, in the same manner cell culture studies do.

 

Douglas RM, Hemila H. Vitamin C for preventing and treating the common cold. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2004;4:CD000980.


Colds & Flu: How to Tell Them Apart

 

Feature

Colds

Flu

Etiological Agent

>100 viral strains; rhinovirus most common

3 strains of influenza virus: influenza A, B, and C

Site of Infection

Upper respiratory tract

Entire respiratory system

Symptom Onset

Gradual: 1-3 days

Sudden: within a few hours

Fever, chills

Occasional, low grade (<101 F)

Characteristic, higher (>101 F), lasting 2-4 days

Headache

Frequent, usually mild

Characteristic, more severe

General aches, pains

Mild, if any

Characteristic, often severe & affecting the entire body

Cough, chest congestion

Mild-to-moderate, with hacking cough

Common, may become severe

Sore throat

Common, usually mild

Sometimes present

Runny, stuffy nose

Very common, accompanied by bouts of sneezing

Sometimes present

Fatigue, weakness

Mild, if any

Usual, may be severe and last2-3 weeks

Extreme exhaustion

Never

Frequent, usually in early stages of illness

Season

Year around, peaks in winter months

Most cases between November and February

Antibiotics helpful?

No, unless secondary bacterial infection develops

No, unless secondary bacterial infection develops

 


Lecture at Sunstone Cancer Foundation

This Friday 9/25/09 at 9:00 am I will giving a lecture on Naturopathic approaches for Ovarian cancer at Sunstone Cancer Foundation.

There are a limited number of seats available, if you would like to attend please call Sunstone at the number below to be sure there's a seat and confirm your attendance.

Sunstone Resource Center NE 2545 N. Woodland Road Tucson, AZ 85749 (Near Tanque Verde and Catalina Highway) Phone: (520) 760-0607

Click here for Map

 


Dr.Uzick Updates

I've had a couple of exciting professional changes this year. In addition to private practice, once a week I'm teaching Oncology to 4th year Naturopathic medical students at the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Tempe Arizona. I'm currently in the middle of my second semester teaching and enjoying it immensely!

In July of this year I was nominated and elected to the board of directors for the Oncology Association of Naturopathic Physicians (OncANP). I was also voted Secretary and appointed by the president as the Chair of research for the organization. 

It's a great honor to be recognized for all these positions, especially because working with cancer patients is both a great privilege and passion of mine.


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