Matthew Capowski

Staff member
While the common cold may be referred to as the flu, influenza is a specific family of RNA viruses that is different from the common cold which is caused by a large number of different viruses.

Google has a map that represents world-wide flu trends:

Paul Bergner has written significantly on the subject of influenza:

Influenza: Lesson for the clinic from 1918

Influenza prevention: Immunization and Tamiflu are not enough

Influenza: Treatment of Acute Febrile Disease

Influenza: Treatment of the Dry Cough

There are also the two Youtube videos of Paul Bergner on the subject of influenza:

Todd Caldecott has also written on this subject. See:

Colds, Flu and Fever:

There is book by Kathy Abascal titled: Herbs & Influenza: How Herbs Used in the 1918 Flu Pandemic Can Be Effective Today

Paul Bergner wrote a review of this book:

With the specter of a major influenza pandemic on the horizon, this book is a timely review and update on therapeutics for this sometimes-lethal disease. Even if today's bird flu does not evolve into a major killer as feared, seasonally epidemic influenza remains a serious disease throughout the world. Abascal's book looks back to the 1918 epidemic, the worst influenza epidemic in recent history, which killed millions of people worldwide. During that epidemic in the U.S., both homeopaths and herbalists claimed a better survival rate than that achieved by physicians of the day. Abascal's review of Eclectic herbal materia medica goes beyond the standard Felter and Ellingwood texts, and includes dozens of references to articles in the Eclectic Medical Journal. A primary source for the book is a survey of Eclectic remedies used during the 1918 Epidemic - the survey was done by the Lloyd brothers pharmaceutical company in 1919. She also includes historical and contemporary naturopathic and herbal sources. The fifteen most commonly-used Eclectic remedies are described in detail. About half of these, including four of the five top herbs, are Class IV low-dose toxic botanicals or other strong herbs generally not available to the non-physician herbalist. She also covers twenty more herbs covered in somewhat less detail. The relevance of this book for the clinical practitioner is four stars out of four. It is sure to broaden your thinking about materia medica and tailoring treatments to the presenting symptoms in the various stages of flu, including fever, muscle pain, headache, and respiratory complications.

Another article by Paul Bergner:

Boneset and Influenza: Historical notes and commentary. Paul Bergner RH(AHG):

The herb Eupatorium perfoliatum, boneset, has been used to treat in fluenza and other viral respiratory infections continuously in the U.S. since before first contact with the Europeans. A review of this use by physicians of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries is reviewed, with commentary, along with their general recommendations for prevention and care of influenza.

Managing Aggressive Flu with Homeopathic and Herbal Remedies by Nancy Angelini

"A study found that people with vitamin D levels above 38 ng/mL recovered from influenza in an average of 2 days; whereas people with vitamin D levels below 38 ng/mL took an average of 9 days to recover from influenza."

Paul Bergner talks a bit about treating the cough that is part of influenza in this short video:

The American Botanical Council has put together a document on Herbs for Seasonal Influenza:

Types of flu people encounter in childhood may affect susceptibility to different flu strains later in life

A team of researchers from the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Pittsburgh, Centro Nacional de Diagnóstico y Referencia, Nicaragua, and the University of Michigan has found that the strains of influenza virus that infect people when they are young may influence their susceptibility to other influenza strains later in life.