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Research Shows Antioxidants Beneficial in Flu Treatment

Every time I hear of a death related to the respiratory problems associated with the current flu situation I ask "Why aren't these doctors using key supplements known to heal you from viruses, especially vitamin A for people getting the bacterial pneumonia?"

Well it seems while not high dose vitamin C or high dose vitamin A along with vitamin D, some researcher are seeing thelight on the benfit of antioxidants for people with flu, and consider it for other viral maladies as well.

High dose of vitamin C has been shown to relieve respiratory health issues as has vitamin A.  While I don't recall to many vitamin C drips in ICU in the 60s and 70s, we routinely used multi-vitamins and vitamin A in IVs.  Certainly there are other substances that have anti-oxidant benefit, this article points to glutathione and resveratrol.

Also note that nettle is one of the best herbs to calm cytokine storm. Nettle is rich in chlorophyll, vitamins A-C-D-E plus protein, iron, potassium, silica, calcium, sulfur, sodium, copper, manganese, chromium and zinc, along with fiber and essential fat  Just think about all the healing packed into this one this wonderfully green herb. And it contains tannins that reduce swelling.
A report published in the November 2009 issue of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Journal revealed the discovery of researchers at the University of Alabama and Southern Research Institute in Birmingham of a protective effect for antioxidants against lung damage caused by the influenza virus.
Sadis Matalon of the University of Alabama's Department of Anesthesiology Pulmonary Injury and Repair Center and colleagues demonstrated that the virus damages the lungs via its M2 protein, which attacks the cells of the lungs' inner lining by disrupting their ability to remove fluid, resulting in increased susceptibility to pneumonia and other conditions. The M2 protein accomplishes this by decreasing the expression and function of ameloride-sensitive epithelial sodium channels (ENaCs).
The researchers conducted a series of experiments using frog eggs and human airway cells. Airway cells transfected with M2 revealed increased levels of damaging molecules known as reactive oxygen species. Co-administration of M2 with glutathione ester (an antioxidant compound) prevented M2 from causing damage. "In this study we show for the first time that an influenza virus type A protein, M2, down-regulates the function of a major epithelial ion channel, ENaC, both in oocytes microinjected with human ENaCs and in human airway cells . . . by increasing levels of reactive species and activating specific isoforms of protein kinase C," the authors write. "These novel findings suggest a mechanism for the influenza-induced rhinorrhea and life-threatening alveolar edema in humans."

"The recent outbreak of H1N1 influenza and the rapid spread of this strain across the world highlights the need to better understand how this virus damages the lungs and to find new treatments," Dr Matalon remarked. "Additionally, our research shows that antioxidants may prove beneficial in the treatment of flu."

"Although vaccines will remain the first line of intervention against the flu for a long time to come, this study opens the door for entirely new treatments geared toward stopping the virus after you're sick," added Gerald Weissmann, MD, who is the Editor-in-Chief of the FASEB Journal. "As Thanksgiving approaches, this discovery is another reason to drink red wine to your health."
And on another note, here's a place for anti-oxidants.  Not only will vitamin A help treat pneumonia, it is also benficial in malaria.
UN: $39 billion needed for pneumonia

AP – Mon Nov 2,
LONDON - To fight pneumonia, the world's top killer of children, United Nations officials say they need $39 billion (euro26.35 billion) over the next six years. 

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