The original meaning of the word “doctor” is teacher. A principle objective of naturopathic medicine is to educate the patient and emphasize self-responsibility for health.

Naturopathic physicians also recognize and employ the therapeutic potential of the doctor-patient relationship.

Dr.DiRienzo on what you can do this flu season.

by DrDiRienzo ~ November 11th, 2009




14.5-58 million Americans get the flu each year

More than 200,000 of these Americans are hospitalized

Approximately 36,000 die each year

(According to Center for Disease Control)

Risks for developing colds and flu:

  • Stress
  • High exposure to children or others who are ill
  • Poor diet
  • Inadequate rest
  • Poor Health Habits
  • Certain medications?

What steps can you take to help prevent illness?

  • Stress reduction
  • Avoid close contact with people who are ill
  • Diet—a combination of all vitamins and minerals is important, but the top 5 nutrients that most of us are missing in our daily diets, even when eating “healthy foods” are:
  • Copper
  • Quercetin
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin E
  • Folate and B12
  • Exercise—an essential piece to becoming and staying healthy, there is no substitute.
  • Proper hygiene

Herbs to Consider:

  • Echinacea
  • Black Elderberry
  • Goldenseal
  • Astragalus
  • Schizandra
  • Oregano

Other therapies of interest:

  • Homeopathic remedies—Oscillococcinum
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D

Nutrition for Colds/Flu

  • For the first day or two, eat simple and easily digested foods such as: vegetable juices, herbal teas, broths and homemade soups (miso and chicken soup are good choices)
  • Avoid dairy, sugar which tend to increase and thicken mucous.
  • Also avoid processed foods and alcohol.
  • Increase vegetables and fruit intake
  • Consider making nourishing broths with ingredients like: parsley, celery, watercress, garlic, lemons and carrots
  • Red beet juice can inactivate the flu virus.
  • Green tea provides extra antioxidants (2-3 cups/day)

Summary of information to Prevent/Treat Colds/Flu

  • Eat healthfully—choose a “colorful” diet rich in fruits and vegetables
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Wash hands and face frequently
  • Exercise regularly
  • Reduce Stress
  • See a Naturopathic physician for help in choosing appropriate herbal therapies

If you have an existing health condition, make sure to see some type of health care provider if you contract the flu.