MONTREAL, Dec. 26, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - A recent report by the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) reveals that the 2014-2015 flu vaccine may not be effective enough to protect you from this year's predominant influenza strain, H3N2.
According to Dr. Joe Bressi, with the Centre for Disease Control (CDC), only 50% of the viruses in circulation in North America match those found in the vaccine.
"Considering the PHAC's recent report and the changing strains of viruses currently attacking the population, now more than ever, it is important that Canadians consider complementary measures that can help in the prevention, and if necessary the treatment of colds and flu," said Sherry Torkos, pharmacist and author of the Canadian Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine.
A.Vogel's Echinaforce® is an effective remedy made from fresh, organic Echinacea purpurea that is safe to take up to four months and is clinically proven to help Canadians, aged 2 and up, reduce their chances of falling victim to seasonal viruses despite their strain.
In 2012, the largest clinical study using Echinaforce® was conducted at Cardiff University's Common Cold Center. The results refuted previous negative publicity on Echinacea and rekindled health care professionals' faith in recommending clinically studied forms of it by proving its effectiveness in strengthening the immune system and in reducing the incidence and duration of cold and flu symptoms.
"Because there is a great variance among echinacea products, I always emphasize the importance of choosing one that has been clinically researched with proven efficacy. Echinaforce by A.Vogel has been demonstrated to have broad antiviral effects, including activity against H3N2," said Torkos.
According to PHAC, so far this season, 312 patients with laboratory confirmed influenza have been hospitalized in Canada, 301 of them due to influenza A and 23 patients with influenza A have died.
With the recent spike of influenza across Canada, Canadians need to practice extra caution as they hug and kiss their way into the New Year.
- Pleschka S, Stein M, Schoop R, Hudson JB. Anti-viral properties and mode of action of standardized Echinacea purpurea extract against highly pathogenic avian influenza virus (H5N1, H7N7) and swine-origin H1N1 (S-OIV). Virol J. 2009 Nov 13;6:197.
- Sharma M, Anderson SA, Schoop R, Hudson JB. Induction of multiple pro-inflammatory cytokines by respiratory viruses and reversal by standardized Echinacea, a potent antiviral herbal extract. Antiviral Res. 2009 Aug;83(2):165-70.