Measles: a natural history

Panic over measlesIf you watch the news for any length of time, which you shouldn’t, the measles “epidemic” will surely come up. From what I can gather Mickey coughed in some kids sugar slam frozen delight with extra artificial food coloring, but natural flavoring, and now everyone west of the Mississippi will surely die of measles. OK so that’s probably not exactly how it happened, but there are about 100 kids with measles who didn’t have them before they vacationed at the happiest place on earth. Is this reason to freak out like the mainstream media would like you to believe? Or will this story go the way of the Bird Flu and the Swine Flu? Remember those? No you don’t, because they killed everyone just like we were warned and you’re not really here reading this.

You got me. You are alive reading this because the bird flu and swine flu were made up pandemics that went away naturally and some other horrible story took precedence on the news.

I understand measles is different because hundreds of years ago people in the United States and Europe really did die from measles. People in rural Africa and India are still dying from measles today. The reason people die after getting measles isn’t because the disease is so dangerous it’s because being malnourished and living in poor sanitary conditions is so dangerous. A few hundred years ago stepping on tack in the street of a city could be fatal. At the very least there was a good chance you were losing your foot or leg. There is a reason they used to call doctors sawbones.

Now if we use the example of stepping on a tack being fatal in the 1700s, which it could very well be, which solution makes the most sense?

Implement a federal program to make tack protectors to go over all of the tacks in the street that way no one gets a tack in the foot.


Clean the human and animal waste out of the street so the amount of harmful bacteria on the tack going into the foot is reduced. Then make sure people have an adequate supply of healthy food, clean water and there are medicines to treat people who are weaker and have the greatest chance of dying from getting a tack in the foot.

Only the lobbyist for the Acme tack protector factory would choose the first solution. Everyone else would logically choose cleaning the environment and improving the health of the people so they can naturally fight off infection.

Guess what? The second scenario is why people in the United States and Europe stopped dying from the measles and it’s why people still die from it in impoverished countries. If you look at statistics of how many people died in the US from measles it was in drastic decline and at very low percentages long before the vaccine was introduced. Proponents of the vaccine will only show you the part of the graph that shows the decline after the vaccine came out, not the decades preceding that which show the same decline. The reason people stopped dying from the measles is they cleaned up their drinking water, had better access to healthy food, and better access to medical care for those that actually needed it.

Once measles wasn’t so deadly, because we cleaned up our environment and diet, here is the normal course of the disease. A woman would get measles in her childhood. She would have a fever, sore throat, and a rash starting in her mouth and spreading to her body. After a few days she would recover and now have lifelong immunity naturally to the measles. When she had a baby later in life she would breast feed her baby. There were none of the chemical and aluminum filled formulas available like today. Breastfeeding would transfer the naturally acquired antibodies to her baby protecting her while she is most vulnerable to getting very sick from the measles. Later on she would grow, stop breast feeding, start eating normal food, allow mom to sleep through the night (which increased her chances of survival much more than getting measles) and then she would contract measles herself repeating the cycle.

This is how it worked for decades before the vaccine was introduced.

Now with widespread vaccination we are seeing outbreaks of measles popping up in primarily vaccinated people. This is because we have totally bypassed the natural course of the disease. Vaccination does not give you lifelong immunity it is only temporary so the only answer is more vaccinations in the form of boosters.

What was wrong with nature’s original plan that gave us natural lifelong immunity?

One thought on “Measles: a natural history

  1. Pingback: Breastfeeding isn't natural? - Research for all of us

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *