Thursday, October 15, 2009
Surely there is something that I can eat or drink to prevent me from getting the flu?
Answer: There's no magic food or drink to ward off the flu.
In fact, the Food and Drug Administration is identifying potential fraudulent products that claim to help prevent the flu. If you want to report a product you can do that online. Dubious products that appear on FDA's website include herbal extracts, supplements and teas. There are also non-food items on this list.
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) also suggests that you check with your doctor or pharmacist about any products that say they prevent, cure, treat, or diagnose H1N1 flu.
Another resource is the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. You can search their website for more information about products. The center's website reminds us that "natural" doesn't mean that something is safe. Also, herbal supplements may contain ingredients whose activity are unknown at this time.
**This just in, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and FTC (Federal Trade Commission) identifies a supplement called "Immune Support Formula" as unapproved for warding off swine flu.
What you CAN do: Make healthy food choices to keep your body and immune system in good shape, include physical activity as part of your lifestyle and wash your hands!