To Be Protected

Introduction

Depending on the camp you choose to rally behind your ideology of protection against disease will vary greatly. If you believe solely in the modern medical system then to live without immunization and seasonal bouts of the common or expected diseases would be synonymous with playing Russian roulette. However, I pose the question of what is the basis of contracting disease in the first place? If you raised your hand and said the state of your immune system, than pat yourself on the back. If you didn’t realize the connection then it is not a problem, just buckle up and enjoy the ride.

The Ground

A lot of emphasis is placed on vaccinations, whether it be for or against, however the thing that matters the most is the state of individual health. Although, that depends greatly on what your diet is on a daily basis. When I say diet I am not talking about the occasional diversion from the normal way that you eat to obtain some weight goal that is jeopardized days or weeks later by the abandoning of the diet that was attempted to achieve it in the first place. Diet really is a lifestyle and can also be a fleeting moment that lasts as long as you will put up with it. Alright, so to put it in simple terms if your daily diet consisted of foods that are nutritionally complete, meaning they have all or an abundance of the minerals and vitamins that they were meant to have then your body will have the same. Here is a little tip, if the soil is depleted that the food is grown in or the animals graze from, then just as you guessed it, it isn’t there when you digest it.

In the summer of 2009 a French Government project yielded from their researchers that compared with non-organically produced crops, organic plant products tend to have more dry matter, more minerals like iron and magnesium, which are critical for calcium uptake, and more antioxidant micronutrients such as phenols and resveratrol (LaSalle, 2010). It also was recorded that between the years of 1940 to 1991 that in the UK and US statistics yielded a 28% to 76% reduction in the levels of trace minerals in non-organic fruit and vegetables (LaSalle, 2010). Isn’t that just plain wrong to force the digestive system to output so much energy only to return no reward for its hard work? I don’t know of anyone who would willfully invest money into anything that they knew would result in a yield of zero or even close to zero. I emphasize willfully because without knowing it a diet full of processed foods, filled with chemicals and lab concocted vegetables grown in dead soil and etc… results in a weakened body unfit for dealing with external and internal threats that it has to handle on a daily basis.

The Body

Your blood needs to maintain a pH (potential of hydrogen) between 7.35 – 7.45 (angelfire.com, n.d.). “A pH of 7.0 is neutral, a pH below 7.0 is acidic and a pH above 7.0 is alkaline (angelfire.com, n.d.). An acidic pH can occur from, an acid forming diet, emotional stress, toxic overload, and/or immune reactions or any process that deprives the cells of oxygen and other nutrients. The body will try to compensate for acidic pH by using alkaline minerals.” (angelfire.com, n.d.) If the diet does not contain enough minerals to compensate, a buildup of acids in the cells will occur. “Acidosis, or over-acidity in the body tissues, is one of the basic causes of diseases, especially the arthritic and rheumatic diseases” (angelfire.com, n.d.).

Acidosis sets the stage to upset the natural balance of your intestinal flora. The more acidic your body is the less oxygenated your body is and the less favorable of an environment for friendly bacteria. Bad bacteria and foreign pathogens that invade your body are anaerobic; so the more inviting it is for them the more they will multiply and overrun your system. “Disruptions and changes in the acid/alkaline balance of the bowels can play a major role in reducing the growth of beneficial bacteria and in addition, these changes tend to favor the growth of harmful viral and fungal organisms as well as putrefactive disease-causing bacteria” (Barron, 2002, p. 30). “In a healthy colon there are, on average, anywhere from 100 billion to 100 trillion beneficial bacteria per milliliter (about 1/5 of a teaspoon) that consume harmful bacteria and other invaders. “ (Barron ,2002, p. 30). However it has been stated that for the typical American, and their lack of a good diet and taking good care of their colon that the beneficial bacterial count could be as low as four or five per milliliter (Barron, 2002).

Another internal factor the body must deal with is Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS); more commonly known as a free radical due to the reducing of molecular oxygen into water (Singh, 2009.). “The intermediate steps of’ oxygen reduction are the formation of the superoxide anion radical, hydrogen peroxide and the hydroxyl radical corresponding to the steps of’ reduction by one, two and three electrons, respectively,” (Singh, 2009, slide 5). Free radicals are a natural ongoing internal byproduct of or normal metabolic functions that must be dealt with or it can result in mass destruction if you don’t maintain a healthy intake of antioxidants (Barron, 2002). The reason they are such a problem is, they are molecules that are void of an electron (Barron, 2002). Although, that in itself is not so bad except for the fact that they will forcefully bind themselves to the nearest molecule and rip away one of its electrons (Barron, 2009).

When this process happens it is similar to a person being bitten by a vampire and turning into one themselves and biting someone else and the cycle is repeated until they are eliminated. Well, that is the same way this free radical process is in your body and could result in a protein molecule, strand of DNA or an entire cell being destroyed by a single free radical (Barron, 2002). Antioxidants such as Superoxide dismutase (S.O.D), Alpha Lipoic Acid (A.L.A), Vitamin C and Vitamin E, just to name a few, help to neutralize free radicals. Also worth mentioning, is the infiltration of any foreign pathogens into the body will unleash their own horde of free radicals such as the Common Cold and the Flu along with many others. It is not until these free radicals eliminate enough of your body’s antioxidants, especially Vitamin C, that your body enters a state of acute scurvy and then you officially declare sickness, hence that this is the point that you take notice due to the symptoms (Cathcart, n.d.) ”Stress itself accelerates the body’s production of free radicals-oftentimes by a factor of eight, or more.” (Barron, 2009, p. 72). So if your diet is heavily depleted in just antioxidants on top of having bad bacteria gone wild I really don’t think it is too hard to see the picture here.

How it ties in

Okay, so you are thinking how does all of the above have to do with vaccinations? Glad you asked. The bottom line here is state of individual health. Individual health = Diet + Mentality + Exercise. There you have it, your official equation for health, for all you math addicts out there. The health it equals really depends on the variable used. It is no different than any other equation. So let’s start with a diet solely of highly processed foods like milk, soda, snack chips, candies, pizza, fast food, genetically altered vegetables, meat from animals pumped full of hormones and antibiotics feeding on an unnatural diet and fruits that are heavily poisoned to kill bugs along with plenty of bad trans and saturated fats. So, add this to a highly stressed mind, easily agitated due to multiple deadlines that must be filled, limited income due to a bad economy  and then add a minimal amount of exercise.

That equals a state of health called sickness waiting to happen and likely some chronic degenerative diseases to follow in the future along with a never ending cycle of seasonal allergies. While this is really a worse case type of scenario it is too close to home for many. This is worthy of reiteration, “Stress itself accelerates the body’s production of free radicals-oftentimes by a factor of eight, or more.” (Barron, 2009, p. 72). So this individual would have without a doubt a weakened immune system unable to defend itself from within or without. If the pathogen was to happen upon this person naturally or forcefully in the form of an injection, what do you really think that their odds are of standing against it without great discomfort and possibly death?

Furthermore, while you ponder the aforementioned, the whole premise for a need of an immunization in the first place is to prevent and control the spread of disease, correct? However, we have laid the foundation for the ability of said disease to be so problematic in the first place, the weakened state of the host immune system. Aside from that, the immunization accomplishes its protection by injecting the very thing it is protecting against but how can it accomplish this if in fact the host immune system is not functioning correctly? Yes, I do realize that this question is really a hidden way to reiterate the previous one to further emphasize my point. Kudos, to all who saw through my little ruse. If you said that it can’t then you are definitely on the right track here.

What about babies and children you might say? “When you were born, your intestines were free of microorganisms, virtually sterile. Almost immediately, however, bacteria, both beneficial and harmful, fought for dominance. If you were breast fed, somewhere between days four and seven after you were born, the “good guys’ won the battle and staked their claim to virtually every square inch of your digestive tract-from your mouth to your anus and researchers now realize that one of the chief reason breast-fed babies get so many fewer infections than formula-fed babies is that mother’s milk tends to promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, whereas store-bought formulas have little such beneficial effect” (Barron, 2002, p. 29). Also the end result of the breast fed child is beneficial bacteria like bifidobacteria control over 90% of the intestinal tract and these microorganisms have a large enough output of essential byproducts in the intestines that function as a barrier to the growth of dangerous pathogenic microbes that can cause disease and infection (Barron, 2002.) In consideration of children who are eating solid foods, Individual health =Diet + Mentality + Exercise.

Whatever the parents put before the children will determine the first part and generally most children are very active so the exercise most likely is there but the mentality really depends on their home environment. I would wager for a child that the environmental impact has the most severe consequences on their health in comparison to diet and exercise. A child in a tension, stress filled, environment of constant turbulence between parents or significant others will have much greater repercussions on the overall health of the child then a poor diet and lack of activity (Me). Therefore, take this scenario and couple it with the worse case scenario of individual health I gave earlier and if they get the flu or something else by natural causes or via injection through vaccination, do you really think their body will hold up under the extra flood of free radicals when their system can barely cope with the daily grind of internal activities as it is? The same goes for an adult.

Wrapping it up

Medicine has its proper place which is and should remain a quick fix to give ease to an ailment until you have solved the diet problem causing the ailment. Keep in mind that it may take a longer duration of taking medication while changing the diet slowly due to financial difficulties and lack of knowledge. Also “When it comes to powerful pharmaceuticals, less is more and the best goal of all when it comes to drugs is zero but while it may not be attainable for everyone, it doesn’t mean it’s not worth shooting for,” (Bowden,2008, p. 23). Also keep in mind, “Depression is not a Prozac deficiency and you don’t get heart disease because you don’t have enough Lipitor in your diet” (Bowden, 2008, p. 23). I also would like to add in the fact that you don’t merely prevent disease and walk away Scott free just because you receive an immunization if your health equation equals a very, very poor state of health. Based on the information presented here in this paper I ask you this question, are you really protected? If everything that has preceded this point still seems blurry then let me ask you this, why is there not a need for a Scurvy vaccination? The answer is that it is well understood that its necessary to have only about 10 mg or so of Vitamin C in the daily diet to offset a very horrible demise in that fashion due to this discovery that came after this vitamin deficiency devastated the lives of many sailors who had a diet comprised of salted meats and lacked a way to keep vegetables and fruits on long sea voyages. Plain and simple scurvy is a result of a vitamin deficiency where people who receive absolutely no Vitamin C in their diet become sick and die (Pauling, 1971). It was not until the year 1911 that the correlation between the brutal killer and the diet was made (Pauling, 1971).

Although scurvy may be all but vanquished, many people suffer unknowingly from severe vitamin and mineral deficiencies along with unbalanced pH and intestinal flora that are passed off as something else and receive a pill to ease the discomfort, without realizing the diet connection. So, by all means feel free to rattle your saber in the camp of your choice but always remember the root of the matter is the state of your individual health. Let that be the driving force behind your decision for why you think you need protection or not. I also urge you to research on your own the subjects discussed in this paper such as pH balance and the foods you eat, importance of foods coming from good soil, the effects of stress on the body, the importance of antioxidants and so on considering that these and the others have entire papers, and even books dedicated to them and you will have an even greater understanding of what it truly means to be protected.

References

angelfire.com (n.d.) Retrieved February 4, 2011 from http://www.angelfire.com
/az/sthurston/acid_alkaline_foods_list.html

Barron J. (2002) Lessons from the Miracle Doctors
Healing America Inc.

Bowden J. (2008) The Most Effective Natural Cures on Earth Beverley, MA:
Fair Winds Press

CathCart R.F. (n.d.) The Ascorbate Effect in Infectious and Autoimmune Diseases
Retrieved on February 4, 2011 from http://www.orthomed.com/auto.htm

LaSalle T. (2010) Organic Logic: Healthy soil produces healthy food, Healing Our World
29, 18 -20.

Pauling L. (1971) Vitamin C and the Common Cold San Francisco, CA:
W.H. Freeman and Company, Publishers

Singh H. (2009) Antioxidant System in Body Retrieved on February 5, 2011, from
http://www.calstatela.edu/faculty/hsingh2/ntrs525.htm