what is bird flu

We keep hearing about bird flu. Sounds scary, but what exactly is involved? Why are governments freaking out?

Avian invluenza is a very contagious disease of animals caused by viruses that normally only infect birds and, sometimes, pigs. Avian influenza viruses have, on rare occasions, crossed the species barrier to infect humans.

In domestic poultry, infection with avian influenza viruses causes two main forms of disease. The so-called "low pathogenic(less dangerous)" form commonly causes only mild symptoms (ruffled feathers, a drop in egg production) and may easily go undetected.

The highly pathogenic(more dangerous) form is much more serious. It spreads very rapidly through poultry flocks, causes disease affecting multiple internal organs, and has a death rate that can approach 100%, often within 48 hours.

Which viruses cause the serious disease?

Influenza A viruses1 many differnet types. Only viruses of the H5 and H7 subtypes dangerous. However, not all viruses of the H5 and H7 subtypes are that dangerous and not all will cause severe disease in poultry.

H5 and H7 viruses are common in poultry flocks in their mild form. The problem is that when allowed to circulate among many bird populations, the viruses can mutate, quickly, into the highly dangerous form. This is why the presence of an H5 or H7 virus in poultry is always cause for concern, even when the initial signs of infection are mild.

What can you do to protect yourself? One thing is to take immune boosting
A wise Herbal protection would be to take Astragalus Root as a daily protective tonic.

Known as HuangQi(pronounced "WongChi"), Astragalus
is a TCM Herb, prescribed as a tonic, for centuries, for strength and vitality. Taken as a tea or tincture, two to three times daily,
Astragalus can boost your ability to protect and fight flu in general.
A TCM botanical that fights viruses is Honeysuckle(Lonicera, in Latin). Yes, the pretty ,sweet smelling yellow, or pink flower is a serious antiviral medicine. The Chinese have used the unopened buds, known as JinYinHua for centuries to combat infection.

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