Flu Vaccine Shortage Spurs Wild Oats Markets to Provide Natural Flu-Fighting Alternatives

BOULDER, Colo., Oct 21, 2004 (PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX) -- With more than 48 million doses of the flu vaccine unavailable this year, Wild Oats Markets want consumers to be aware of natural, homeopathic alternatives to flu shots that can fight flu symptoms during the flu season. The only way to prevent the onset of the flu is to use the common sense suggestions by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

-- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
-- Stay home from work, school or errands when you are sick
-- Cover your mouth or nose when sneezing or coughing
-- Wash your hands often to protect you from germs and viruses
-- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth

If you do come down with the flu, there are plenty of natural, homeopathic remedies available at Wild Oats that can fight flu symptoms, including sinus pain, sore throat, sneezing, runny nose and congestion as well as fever, chills and body aches and pains. Homeopathics such as Oscillococcinum(R), Sinusalia(R), Roxalia(R), Flu Relief(R) and Coldcalm(R) are wise choices to help you relieve cold and flu symptoms.

As extra insurance for your immune system during these stressful times, make sure you eat a good, nutritionally balanced diet and get plenty of exercise and rest. Wild Oats also carries many other products that have been shown to support the immune system and promote general well-being. The elderly and immune-compromised individuals should always take a multivitamin and make sure they are getting plenty of vitamin E.

Other helpful natural alternatives to aid the immune system include:

-- Plant extracts, such as Echinacea, astralagus, goldenseal and
elderberry. Look for dietary supplements, throat sprays and wellness
products using combinations of these extracts.
-- Vitamins, such as vitamin C, vitamin A and beta-carotene
-- Minerals, such as zinc and selenium
-- Mushroom extracts, such as reishi and maitake

Wild Oats has knowledgeable, trained Natural Health associates available for interviews and in-store or in-studio segments to discuss how consumers can protect themselves against the flu in the absence of the vaccine. Sample flu immunity kits are available for segments and stories, as well.

To speak with a Wild Oats Natural Health staff member, please contact Sonja Tuitele at Wild Oats (720) 562-4984 or Denette Bartoli at Edelman (415) 222-9944.

Wild Oats Markets, Inc. is a nationwide chain of natural and organic foods markets in the U.S. and Canada. The Company operates 108 natural foods stores in 24 states and British Columbia, Canada. The Company's markets include: Wild Oats Natural Marketplace, Henry's Farmers Market, Sun Harvest and Capers Community Markets. For more information, please visit the Company's website at http://www.wildoats.com/.

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