Did you know that Chinese medicine is amazing at treating colds and flu? It has an extensive history (2000+ years) and numerous strategies for every stage of development, ranging from prevention to beginning stages, to full-blown bed-ridden attacks.
I recommend my clients come in or call when exposed or showing the first signs so as to prevent the cold/flu. If you are already showing signs, acupuncture and herbs will shorten the course in the majority of cases if not fully turn it around within 24 hours.
The strength of Chinese medicine is that it treats the individual presentation and not the disease (the cold) or the virus. Therefore, there is not a single formula/supplement that I believe works in either Chinese or Western alternative medicine. Thus, I do not find supplements like Cold Quell, Cold Snap, Kick-Ass Immune, or even Gan Mao Ling to be that effective. See this article and this article discussing the dangers of such supplements. Consequently, ten people with the same virus will all receive different formulas. Although this might sound complicated, this is precisely why individualized Chinese medicine treatments work so well. And when that is not possible there are some worthwhile pre-made formulas to consider. Differneitation is the key, so you may want to consult a Chinese medicine practitioner.
Wind-Cold Attack (feeling warm/chills, chills predominate, no sweat, headache, muscle aches, nasal obstruction, cough (runny white), and sneezing) – Jing Fang Bai Du San
Wind-Heat Attack – (feeling warm/less or no chills, sore or dry throat, mild sweat, headache, thirst, cough, nasal obstruction (yellow mucus)- Yin Qiao San
Wind Dryness – Dryness is the main feeling, feeling warm, cracked lips, aversion to wind and cold, headache, slight sweat, dry cough – Sang Xing Tang
If you have a certain predisposition for a pattern, consider having a formula on hand for the winter season.
Some Functional Medicine tricks I like for prevention and treatment of colds/flu are:
- Arabinogalactan – Promising research from 2016 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4828828/
- Vitamin D (High doses)
- Immunoberry (Designs for Health)
- You can purchase them here.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Also see information on how to prevent colds and flu, self-treating your cold/flu and a note on antibiotics.
Jason offers phone / Skype long distance consults.
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Open Gate Acupuncture, located in Boulder Colorado, serves patients throughout the Boulder county region including Denver, Longmont, Gunbarrel, Lafayette, & Louisville.
Jason Blalack has been treating patients in Boulder for over 16 years, is an international lecturer on Chinese medicine and has an extensive collection of Chinese medicine articles published in professional journals worldwide. Jason specializes in autoimmune, digestive disorders, fertility, and emotional disorders.