Vaccines are the most useful and lifesaving inventions in medical history. Beware of baseless claims that try to create panic and spread unscientific views on vaccination.
A viral WhatsApp forward claims that “mother’s milk, fresh air, good sleep, good organic food and adequate exercise” are the “only vaccine we need” to fight COVID-19 and monkeypox. The message further claims that all those who have been vaccinated will die soon.
While there’s no denying that breast milk or mother’s milk, fresh air, good sleep, good organic food and exercise are beneficial for one’s health, they cannot be substitutes for vaccines. The claim is simplistic and unscientific.
The second claim has been doing the rounds online in various forms since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the fact remains that vaccines are the most useful and lifesaving inventions in medical history. They have helped eradicate endemic diseases, such as polio and smallpox, in several parts of the world.
Dr Sunil K. Arora, Professor of Immunology at the Department of Immunopathology and Head of Department of Translational and Regenerative Medicine at PGIMER Chandigarh, India, offers an interesting perspective. “As per latest data more than 6.4 million people have died due to the coronavirus till now. Does it mean that none of these people were given mother’s milk in their childhood?”
Studies show that breast milk is the best nutrition for infant growth and development, and is also rich in antibodies that provide the first source of adaptive immunity in a newborn’s intestinal tract. However, this immunity does not last for life; it lasts for up to 12 months. That is the reason children are advised to take vaccinations against measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR), polio and other diseases.
It’s true that vaccines don’t provide us 100% protection. However, they significantly reduce the severity of the disease and thereby aid the body in fighting the infection. So, beware of baseless claims that try to create panic and spread unscientific views on vaccination. Trust facts, backed by scientific evidence.