Important information for those who are pro-vaccine, anti-vaccine or anywhere in the middle!
(Yes, there is a middle!)
With the current measles outbreak, there have been a lot of heated articles from mostly two conflicting viewpoints regarding measles and the measles vaccine. This information is designed for those concerned about the measles outbreak, those vaccinated for measles or about to get vaccinated, and for those unvaccinated.
• If your family is vaccinated and you are concerned about one of your children contracting measles (whether your child is fully or partially vaccinated), there is something you can do to support your child’s immune system and decrease the severity of measles if infected.
• If you have just scheduled your measles vaccine for yourself or your child there is something you can do to improve the effectiveness of the vaccine and decrease the side effects.
• If your children are unvaccinated and you are concerned about them contracting measles, there is something you can do to support your child's immune system and decrease severity of measles if infected.
• Vitamin A plays an important role in immune modulation, specifically with viral infections. (1)
• Studies show that severe measles is more likely among poorly nourished young children, especially those with insufficient vitamin A. In developing countries with a greater likelihood of vitamin A deficiency, vitamin A therapy has been shown to decrease measles related deaths by 50%. (2)
• Vitamin A therapy decreases complications from measles infection and prevents bacterial pneumonia secondary to viral infections. (3)
• A study performed on children in New York showed that many children under the age of 2 who had been infected with measles had low vitamin A levels after infection. These children who also showed increased measles related morbidity. (4)
• Clinical experiments have shown that doses of vitamin C given after infection from measles can decrease severity and duration of the illness. (5)
• Vitamin C is well known to decrease severity of the flu virus, common cold virus, and viral pneumonia it is a strong anti-viral vitamin. (6)
• Vitamin C plays an important role in immune function and the modulation of host resistance to infectious agents, reducing the risk, severity, and duration of infectious diseases. (7)
• Zinc is a trace element essential for cells of the immune system. Zinc deficiency affects the ability of T cells and other immune cells to function as they should. (8)
• Zinc may be the single best nutrient defense against viral infections. (1)
• Daily zinc supplementation in infants causes a substantially reduced incidence of diarrhea and pneumonia. (9)
• Zinc supplementation is important during acute measles illness. It has been shown that zinc levels drop significantly (increase in copper to zinc ratio) in acute measles illness. (10)
See your Naturopathic Doctor or other medical professional for appropriate dosing for you and your children.
(1) (Andrews, H. The Vaccine Balancing Act: A scientifically holistic approach. Vaccine Consult: 2014-2015.)
(6) (http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2015/675149/ )
Dr. Joy Bozzo is a licensed naturopathic doctor, wife, and mother practicing comprehensive and holistic medicine in Santa Monica. Dr. Bozzo sees a broad range of conditions but specializes in autoimmune conditions, digestive disorders, and adrenal and thyroid support. Optimizing health through natural treatments, Dr. Bozzo strives to uncover and reverse the causes of chronic illness.