Seaweed extract found to prevent H1N1 infectionFriday, December 17, 2010 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
(NaturalNews) New research published in the journalPLoS ONEhas found that a red seaweed-based compound known as Carrageenan is an effective treatment against the common cold, viruses and even H1N1 influenza. The substance works by binding directly to viruses and preventing them from attaching to cells and spreading throughout the body.
Carrageenan is commonly used as a food thickening additive because of its gel-like texture. Though technically derived from natural seaweed, the substance is actually not all that healthy to consume. Studies have found that it can cause gastrointestinal upset, and in many cases, the additive creates a form of processed free glutamic acid (MSG) in food (http://www.naturalnews.com/025066.html).
But when used as a nasal spray, Carrageenan forms a physical barrier between nasal tissue and foreign invaders, which effectively protects healthy cells from harmfulviruses. In fact, the recent study found that Carrageenan works just as well as the popular antiviral drug Tamiflu at preventingviral infections, except without all the harmful side effects.
"Influenza viruses still represent a substantial threat to publichealthon a global scale and with increasing viral resistance toTamiflu, the need for alternatives has never been greater," explained Dr. Andreas Grassauer, CEO and co-founder of Marinomed Biotechnologie, the company that funded the study. "This study confirms that iota-carrageenan can be used as an alternative to neuraminidase inhibitors and should be further tested for prevention andtreatmentof influenza A in clinical trials in humans."
Consuming plenty of superfoods and immune-boosting vitamins and minerals will do wonders to protect you fromthe flu. Vitamin D, for instance, is a powerful antiviral nutrient that works better than any vaccine or drug at preventing the flu (http://www.naturalnews.com/029760_v...). And elderberry is another powerfulfoodmedicine that has been used for thousands of years to prevent viral infections (http://www.naturalnews.com/025019_e...).