FOX10 News is committed to your family's health. So with the flu being as widespread as it is right now, what's the best way to fight it?
People are buying two popular products, Elderberry and Oscillococcinum. According to Krissy Little Manager at Virginia's Health Foods, people buy them to prevent and fight the flu. A Pediatrician Dr. Katrina Skinner said social media, recent health crazes, and old wives tales are what make these products popular.
"It's good for building your lymphatic system in terms of your lymphocytes," said Greg Dees. Dees said he hasn't had a cold in 20 years. Dees owes it all to natural products like Elderberry.
Dees said, "I think its just a vital part of everyday living." In the last week, Dr. Skinner has seen more than 400 kids with flu-related symptoms. "More than double the symptoms we had seen last week with similar symptoms," she said.
Little told us the store sold out of Oscillococcinum also knows as OCC in just 3 days. "Because they feel like it's a safer way and there's no side effects with like elderberry," Little explained why people bought them.
Dr. Skinner said both Elderberry and OCC do not have enough scientific backing. In fact, she said OCC is no more effective than a placebo.
She added, "Just because something may say natural on the label, a lot of things that are found in nature can be harmful." Dr. Skinner said getting the flu shot is your best bet.
"I encourage parents always to look at vaccinations as the first line of defense," Dr. Skinner said. She said honey and Vick's Vaporub are scientifically proven.
"For things like a cough you can take a little bit of honey, use Vick's Vaporub on the chest, use a humidifier turn your ceiling fan off, things like that to keep your airway passages moist."
But the best remedy? Patience. "Time is the best cure, you have to let it run its course," said Dr. Skinner.
Dr. Skinner encourages people to consult with their doctors prior to taking any kind of over the counter medicine to determine what the benefits are as well as side effects.
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