It's mind boggling to realize how many disorders and diseases begin with "flu-like symptoms."
Here's a bit from the wikipedia page on Influenza-like symptoms:
Infectious diseases causing influenza-like symptoms include malaria, acute HIV infection, herpes, hepatitis C, Lyme disease, rabies, myocarditis, Q fever, dengue fever, chronic fatigue syndrome, poliomyelitis, leukemia and many others.
Flu-like symptoms are the rallying cry of the human immune system, kicking itself into gear to face a perceived threat. It's not the virus or the disease that makes you cough, throw up, or get feverish, it's your immune system. It's almost freaky how powerful it is - or can be, I should say.
Here is a link to an excellent article from this week's New Yorker about treating cancer with immunity boosting drugs. It's very exciting. Turning away from the established protocols of chemotherapy and radiation - both of which damage immunity - is a step closer to the true cure, if indeed there is one.
If you're reading this, you already know how to build strong immunity: eat well, get enough sleep, move around, drink water, have fun, find inspiration, do good work, learn how to relax. You know how, but perhaps have not realized how crucial good immunity is. Cutting edge theory about cancer these days imagines many of us developing cancers that our magnificent immune systems control or destroy. Some researchers believe that the tiny calcium deposits routinely found in body scans reflect the fossilized remnants of a cancer that was vamoosed by the immune system. You didn't even know, but your immune system did. Wow.
Not that fighting cancer by boosting immunity is any fun. Think of the worst flu you've ever had and triple the intensity of the symptoms. But the thing is: it works! I should say it works for many people. Nothing works for everyone.
At last we are turning away from the idea that almost killing people with extremely poisonous drugs is the way to fight a disease that already renders them greatly weakened. I am so glad that the people who research these things are recognizing how formidable human immunity is.
Yes, yes and YES. May your mind and heart be peaceful, may your immune function be fierce and alert. May it be so. Shalom.