Cynthia Dalton, a Master Nutrition Therapist in Denver who specializes in using BioNutritional Care models to help children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, offers some interesting advice for health practitioners when it comes to recommending the flu shot:
To be on the safe side, you can go to the CDC site to find the ingredients in vaccines, including the flu vaccine. If you go to my website under the resources tab you will find a link to the CDC vaccine ingredients site. Most flu vaccines have aluminum, formaldehyde and thimerosol, as well as other preservatives. Vaccine ingredients vary slightly depending on the brand. I just checked the site, and it has been updated as of Feb 2012. There are at least two brands that contain Polysorbate 80! I have had numerous LEAP patients reactive to this preservative. The flu mist contains the least ingredients, but you need to be certain that your patient can handle the live virus.
I typically do not recommend the flu shot for patients – instead I prefer to build their natural immunity with diet and supplements. However, there are those immune-suppressed patients who may require immunization. For my mother, who lives in a Memory Care Facility, rather than give her the flu shot, I supplement her well and two yrs ago gave her the pneumonia shot – which has fewer ingredients and no thimerosal. The pneumonia vaccine does not require annual dosing – so once you have it, it doesn’t need to be repeated for years. Also, often pneumonia is what is feared as a byproduct of the flu, so by dosing the pneumonia vaccine in lieu of the flu shot, I feel that I have protected my mother without compromising her health.
These are private decisions that our patients must make with their doctors.
Thank you, Cynthia, for giving me permission to share your interesting solution to avoiding the undesirable ingredients in the influenza vaccine!