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April 2009 Newsletter
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Your Way to Wellness
Our mission is to serve our community by educating families that healing comes from within. We strive to change individuals who step through our door, positively impact their lives & drive our community towards wellness, a pursuit of constant & never ending improvement.
Vaccinating Your Children: Safety & Efficacy of Vaccines
Vaccination is a hotly debated topic in our country. More and more parents are questioning modern medicine and deciding to delay or avoid vaccinations for their children. Dr. Joshua and I are committed to educating our practice members and empowering them with knowledge to make informed decisions about their health and the health of their families. To better serve our practice members and expand our knowledge, we attended a vaccine lecture in New York City by Dr. Lawrence Palevsky, a medical doctor dedicated to healing children naturally. Dr. Palevsky presented the most current applicable medical research on vaccination. His concepts and theories presented were both insightful and thought provoking. We have decided to share our notes from this lecture. These notes are shared for educational purposes only and do not represent medical advice. If this topic is of interest to you, read the article and explore the sites listed for more information.
Vaccination is based on these five beliefs:
1. Vaccines mimic natural infection
2. Vaccines pose minimal risk
3. Vaccines teach the immune system to recognize organisms before we encounter them
4. Vaccines protect against disease and save lives
Vaccines wipe out organisms
Vaccines mimic natural infection.
Before we are born, our bodies are sterile. From the birth process onward we encounter trillions of microorganisms via eating, breathing and touching. Though our immune systems are immature at birth, they are not weak. As we encounter microorganisms, our immune system is activated and begins to mature.
Natural infections commonly occur either through ingestion, respiration or through contact with our skin. A virus is identified by the body as foreign and our bodies react by activating our immune system. A cascade of immune events follows: inflammatory reaction, counter-inflammatory reaction, anti-inflammatory reaction, and repair. Each part of the immune system reaction is equally important. Vaccines bypass these gradual steps, as they are not contracted through our gut, airway or our skin. Rather, they are injected, causing our body to go immediately into an alarmed stage. We do not have any research to prove that an injection of a vaccine mimics natural exposure. We also do not know the effects of an injection on the natural cascade of immune reactions.
Vaccines pose minimal risk.
We cannot be certain that all vaccines pose minimal risk for every child. We know that there are side effects to even the most “mild” over the counter medications. Saying that vaccines pose minimal risk to everyone is a dangerous, “one size fits all” argument that has no medical research to support it. It would be prudent to test children prior to vaccination to minimize any associated risks.
There are several vaccine ingredients (aluminum, thimerosal, formaldehyde, MSG, glutaraldehyde, carbolic acid, phenooxyethanol, polysorbate 80, tri butylphosphate) which are known to be toxic to humans. These substances are known to be toxic and carcinogenic in humans when ingested. Is it safe to assume a substance that is toxic when ingested would also be toxic if injected? We do not have sufficient data to ensure that the combination of these ingredients do not have a more potent harmful effect on us. For example, one vaccine may contain several known toxins. These toxins may have an additive effect on our bodies, and pose more danger than if exposed to our body by themselves. Also, it is common to receive more than one vaccine per visit, if you follow the standard vaccine schedule for the United States. Research must be completed to test the safety of injecting vaccine ingredients in children. Further research must be completed to test the safety of administering several vaccines on one visit.
Vaccines work by triggering the production of antibodies. This is only one portion of the cascade of the immune system. They have not been found to activate the other portions of the immune system, because they bypass our natural protective mechanisms. The immune system relies on a balance of all of its parts to function optimally and protect us. If we are bypassing our natural protective mechanisms, are we effecting the balance of our immune system and possibly predisposing ourselves to weaker immunity?
The viruses used in vaccines are grown on animal tissue. It is impossible to separate the animal tissue from the virus being used. Thus, each vaccine also contains animal tissue. In addition to animal tissue, substances such as casein, peanut, wheat, gluten, soy & eggs are also used in vaccine preparations. You may notice these are common allergens to many children. Is it possible that by injecting our children with vaccines with these substances in them, we are predisposing our children to these specific allergies?
Vaccines teach the immune system to recognize organisms before we encounter them.
We know that we are exposed to trillions of organisms in our lifetime. Simple exposure does not mean we get sick though. The conditions must be right for us to get “sick” and produce symptoms. For example, a mother has two children who both get sick, yet she does not. A mother is obviously exposed to the same organisms as her children. She breathes the same air, eats the same foods, and is exposed to the same environment as her children. However, if she does not get sick, then the conditions must not have been right in her body. A second example is in an office, 6 of 10 employees get the flu. What happened to the other four employees? They were exposed to the same organisms, through the air. If exposure was sufficient to get us ill, we would all be dead! In fact, we have millions of organisms living inside our bodies, which assist in digestion and elimination. We are dependent on these organisms.
We are vaccinated for a mere 34 organisms, though we are exposed to trillions. How is it that we are exposed to organisms all the time, except the 34 that we vaccinate for? In other words, how are we not exposed to the organism prior to receiving that vaccination? There are no guarantees that the first exposure to the microorganism is the vaccine.
Vaccines protect against disease and save lives.
This claim is the most influential for parents deciding to vaccinate their children. As a parent, I know that you want to do what is best for your child. You would do anything to protect them and keep them healthy.
In the beginning of the 20th century, there were major declines in child mortality. Initially, it was believed that this was due to implementation of vaccine programs. Later research proved that the decline in mortality was attributable to a combination of improved socioeconomic conditions and public health strategies such as the development of local health departments, water treatment, food safety, organized solid waste disposal and public education about hygienic practices.
“Vaccination, while first used in the 18th century, became more widely implemented in the middle part of the century. Vaccines against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis became available during the late 1920s but only widely used in routine pediatric practice after World War II. Thus vaccination does not account for the impressive declines in mortality seen in the first half of the century.”
Vaccination does provide protection from disease. This protection is not lifelong, hence the use of booster shots. In fact, the length of time you are protected varies from person to person. If you are exposed to a disease naturally, your body does have lifelong protection. This is because all parts of your immune system were involved in the normal cascade of reactions. Your body has a memory of that specific disease and protects you from contracting it a second time.
There is a theory that naturally contracting many of the diseases we vaccinate for helps to build the immune system of a child. We know that each exposure to a microorganism triggers an immune response. We are exposed to trillions of microorganisms. This matures our immune system. It is unknown if vaccinating for these diseases produces the same maturation for our immune system.
Vaccines wipe out organisms.
Vaccines are not actually wiping out organisms. We simply change their expression. Our vaccine schedule puts enormous pressure on the organisms they guard against. This upsets the balance in the ecosystem. For example, examine the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine is different every year. It is produced based on a hypothesis of which strain will migrate to the U.S. The flu is never wiped out however, it simply mutates. If vaccines wiped out organisms, they would never reappear.
We have seen firsthand how the misuse of antibiotics has created an overgrowth of superbugs. This is the same mechanism that occurs with vaccines. The virus is forced to mutate to survive.
Use this information as a starting place. This is by no means all inclusive. Question what you have read and investigate further, if it interests you. I have included some thought provoking questions and sources for more information. As always, we welcome your questions and are happy to discuss this topic.
Questions to think about:
What choices to parents have about their child’s vaccinations?
What are vaccine ingredients? How do they interact with each other>
How are vaccines manufactured?
Are vaccines safe? Who and what determines safety?
Are vaccines effective? Have they wiped out illness?
What dosage does a child need? Do all children get the same dosage?
How do multiple vaccines at one time or over time affect a child’s immune system?
Do non-vaccinated children pose a health risk?
How do vaccines affect DNA?
Are there other methods for preventing and treating childhood illnesses?
Sources for more information:
Dr. Palevsky frequently speaks in the NYC area. If you are interested in attending a future vaccination lecture, check the links below for his upcoming speaking engagement locations and dates.