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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Flu Quiz Answer 10/08/11 Weekly Quiz

What did Dr. Oz recommend last week for the flu?
Vitamin D

Answer: Umckaloabo

Your Answers:
Echinecea - 13%
Umckaloabo - 66%
Elderberry - 6%
Vitamin D - 13%

On the 9/27/11 episode of The Dr. Oz Show, Dr. Oz recommended Umckaloabo to suppurt the immune system during the cold and flu season.

While Dr. Oz recommended a singular product to support the body during the flu season, ALL the products listed on the quiz are great choices when it comes to supporting the immune system during a cold or flu and some even play a role in supporting the immune system so you are less likely to get a cold or the flu.

Umckaloabo goes by the name of Umcka® and is sold in the U.S. by Nature's Way. Umcka is a homeopathic therefore it is generally considered safe. There is even a children's version. Nature's Way makes a Cold Care formula and a Cold + Flu formula. Both products support the immune system as well as the respiratory system. According to the label, Umcka can reduce the duration of a cold by as much as two days. Umckaloabo had been used in Europe for many years before it was brought to the States. Feedback on Umcka has been excellent and consistent.

Echinecea is one of the most widely known herb sold in health food stores and is used to ramp up the immune system. When the weather turns cold, people stock up on echinecea. Echinecea provides the fire to the immune system, only if you have enough fuel. Many years ago I attended an employee training by Herbs, Etc. makers of many wonderful herbal tinctures and supplements.

The formulator recommended taking astragalus to support the creation of white blood cells and when exposed to those nasty bugs or feel you are coming down with something switch from astragalus to echinecea. His logic is that the immune system needs white blood cells to go into action. The white blood cells are the fuel to the immune system's engine. If there are not enough white blood cells available then the immune system will not be to rev up as high as needed to rid the body of invaders. Sounds logical to me.

Echinecea is related to the daisy family which includes chamomile, daisy's and ragweed. People allergic to ragweed [ME!] do not typically tolerate echinecea and should look toward other herbs to support the immune system for either maintenance or invasion, like the two products discussed next.

Elderberry, Sambucus in latin, is a delicious berry with a multitude of uses. From jam to pancake syrup to wine to cold and flu supplements this little berry can do seemingly everything. Elderberry has long been used to bolster the immune system during an attack from germy invaders as well as away from the cold and flu as a general maintenance for the immune system. Wikipedia gives a great summary of studies that I have seen cited in magazines and product literature for years.
Sambucus, or black elderberry has been shown in studies to reduce the incidence of flu by several days, and that's a good thing.

Elderberry comes in whole berries, liquid extract, caps, and chewables. The liquid can be mixed with water to make a juice incredibly similar to grape juice. Purchase whole berries and make your own immunity syrup
A co-worker made her own batch and said it was easy to make and I thought it tasted great.

And what's not to love about the tree who gave the wood to become the Elder Wand?

Vitamin D is utilized for most every process in the body. Helps the body absorb calcium from the teeth to the bones and everywhere in between, regulates cell growth, may play a role in limiting the division of cancer cells, supports the immune system, has been linked to hormonal balancing, manages skin health, and it is an antioxidant. The pertinent question is what doesn't it do?
For more nformation on Vitamin D, see and
In my book, the most amazing function of vitamin D is supporting the innate immune system. The innate immune system kicks in when the body comes in contact with a germ it has never seen before. With vitamin D in the system the body has the tools necessary to quickly access an invader, determine if it's friend or foe and call in the necessary mechanisms to get rid of the bad guys.

Vitamin D is also the lease expensive product on the page. It supports the body with an incredible amount of key functions and can cost less than $10 for a 6 month supply.

Note on alternatives to Echinecea...
As I said, I'm allergice to echinecea and all it's cousins. If I take echinecea or chamomile I break out in a skin rash - eczema, actually - that is red, itchy and flaky. It took a year to figure out what allergen was causing my rashes and all the while I was drinking chamomile tea and taking echinecea while at the same time trying different steroid creams from the dermatoligist. The rash continued, and so did my doctors bills, until I eliminated the ragweed family.

Instead of echinecea I take vitamin D as a general supplement which also supports my immune system. My favorite immune supporting product is Now Allibiotic that contains elderberry, oregano oil, olive leaf, garlic and other herbs. Allibiotic can be utilized for immune maintenance as well as during a germ invastion.

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