The Natural Way

Saturday, October 20, 2001

Anthrax, as a word, carries an age-old fear.

In the dark ages, pustules (blisters or boils) with an ugly coal-black center would appear most commonly on the hands and arms of workers who handled wool and hides.

In the worst case, the disease attacked the lungs (wool-sorter's disease). In those very old days, antibiotics were unknown as was good hygiene. No one knew what the cause was, so fear of the disease and the word "anthrax" itself became dreaded.

Modern medical treatment is effective and efficient, the antibiotics work. Good hygiene, such as washing with soap and water, not touching the pustules, and care givers using universal precautions, goes a long way. The risk is greatest in the elderly, the very young, folks with lowered immune systems and in people who are not diagnosed early.

Be cautious in choosing natural remedies. Many are trying to sell products according to the "fear factor." The key to dealing with anthrax, from a natural perspective, is in keeping your immune system optimized.

Supplements such as Beta Glucans, MGN-3, any of the mushroom extracts and Moducare all should do the job nicely while reducing the probability and severity of other ailments such as colds and flu. These will all enhance your immune system, which should even make your flu vaccine more effective, should you decide to get one this year. Other supplements, such as grapefruit seed extract in pill, liquid or ointment as well as monolauren, seem to be a good choice for killing bacteria. These also reduce colds and flu.

The old herbalists used an herb for anthrax so revered they called it Blessed Thistle. These days, we all can use the soothing which comes from being blessed.

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