Bev Dunne

During the past couple of weeks, there has been some publicity about the prevalence of Ross River Fever and Barmah Forest Virus in our community.

Unfortunately, after a wet summer there has been an abundance of mosquitoes and as a consequence, unfortunately some of our community have been afflicted with these very debilitating viruses.

 When it comes to these diseases the obvious solution is to avoid being bitten by these pesky mosquitos. I have written previously about an insect repellent known as Bug-Grr Off which contains oil of lemon eucalyptus. When it comes to natural insect repellents, oil of lemon eucalyptus is the only natural ingredient recommended by the Centre of Disease Control and the World Health Organisation. A study published in the Journal of Insect Science in 2015 found plant-based sprays containing oil of lemon eucalyptus were the only DEET free formulas to deliver strong and long-lasting results (1). We need to be aware there is a difference between oil of lemon eucalyptus and lemon eucalyptus essential oil. This is due to the processing which delivers quite different chemical compositions and efficacy. The essential oil does not have the effectiveness of the oil of lemon eucalyptus when it comes to protecting us from insects’ bites. 

Symptoms of Ross River virus and Barmah Forest Virus can be

  • fever and chills
  • fatigue
  • headaches
  • joint pain, swelling and stiffness plus muscle aches
  • rashes and swollen lymph nodes

If you are unfortunate enough to contract these viruses there are a few supplements I would strongly suggest.

For many years we have experienced great success treating these viruses with the herb Astragalus.

Astragalus is known as an immune tonic, assisting to stimulate our body’s immune system against viruses, increasing the activity of our white blood cells. This makes Astragalus a great herb for treatment of repeated colds plus incapacitating viruses such as Glandular Fever, Ross River Fever, Barmah Forest Fever and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It can also be used when recovering from the debilitating effects of chemotherapy.

Astragalus may be used as a preventative as well as a great recovery tonic. I often write about Astragalus at the end of winter when the flu season seems to drag on and we just don’t seem to be able to recover from our colds and flu properly.

Both Ross River Virus and Barmah Forest Virus, as well as Glandular Fever are extremely debilitating ailments and time and time again we receive amazing feedback from customers being treated with an Astragalus formula which also contains Siberian ginseng, Schisandra, Reishi Mushroom, Ligustrum, White Atractylodes, Codonopsis and Chinese Licorice. Unfortunately, the symptoms of these viruses can lay us low for weeks, months and sometime years. We suggest three-month course of this formula to restore a weakened immune system. Often we suggest, once recovering from the viruses, take the formula if the symptoms return, which can often happen when our bodies are under stress and we are run down. Be aware Astragalus cannot be taken when suffering a fever. At that time, it would be best to take Echinacea which also boosts the immune system.

Recovery from these debilitating illnesses can be very slow, however on taking the Astragalus formula, we generally find improvement is very noticeable.

To assist in reducing joint pain and increase mobility we would suggest a combination of curcumin, black pepper, boswellia and ginger which may assist with pain and inflammation.

Magnesium may also assist in reducing the muscle soreness.

Coenzyme Q10 may also assist in energy production in cells aiding in increasing energy levels as well as with immune support.

Obviously, bed rest is extremely important together with a healthy diet to assist in recovery.

For more information contact Bev and the team at Go Vita, your health shop at 5 North St, Batemans Bay or phone 44729737. Don’t forget to tune into Bev on 2EC every Wednesday on Go Get Healthy at 12.30pm.

(1) Journal of Insect Science 2015:15(1):140 DOI:10.1093/jisesa/lev125