A highly worrisome, antibiotic-resistant superbug seems to spreading slowly but steadily through Canada.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says eight cases of NDM-1 bacterial infection have now been confirmed, up from three as of late August.

At least five of the eight people had travelled to India or Pakistan, where NDM-1 superbug infections were first discovered and where they are becoming more widespread. Four of the patients spent time in hospital, while the fifth had “contact” with the health-care system.

Two of the infected patients have died, although not directly from NDM-1 bacteria. One was a 76-year-old B.C. woman who died of complications from sepsis, while the other patient, from Quebec, had cancer.

NDM-1 is a gene that renders bacterial infections immune to most, if not all, manufactured antibiotics. The gene, whose full name is New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase-1, makes the bacteria produce an enzyme that neutralizes the activity of pharmaceutical carbapenem antibiotics, which are the class of “last resort” pharmaceutical antibiotics (drugs) reserved for only the most severe infections.

The gene has been found in several types of bacteria, so far, primarily in bacteria that cause urinary tract infections and some types of pneumonia.

Bacteria carrying the gene were first discovered in hospitals in India and Pakistan. Cases have now been reported in the U.K., Australia, the Netherlands, the United States and Canada, generally among patients who had medical care in India or Pakistan.

Lancet Journal of Infectious Diseases has stated “The potential for wider international spread and for NDM-1 to become endemic worldwide, are clear and frightening.”

Writing in the medical journal Lancet Infectious Diseases, co-authors of the research, Prof Timothy Walsh from Cardiff University, and Prof David Livermore, from the Health Protection Agency report that there have been 37 cases in the UK and warn the bug has ‘alarming potential to spread and diversify’.

A new superbug NDM-1 which is resistant to almost every (manufactured) antibiotic is poised to spread and wreak havoc across the world unless new (manufactured) antibiotics are developed quickly warns the UK Health Protection Agency.

Here is some very good news for the UK Health Protection Agency, the Lancet Journal of Infectious Diseases and the Public Health Agency of Canada. The drug resistant NDM-1 superbug is easily destroyed by Vitamin C. What pharmaceutically (lab) created antibodies can’t do Vitamin C can. What very expensive drugs can’t do nature’s Vitamin C can.

Vitamin C is a key factor in the immune system, including white blood cell function and interferon levels. It combats the effects of free radicals and promotes growth and tissue repair.

Two-time Nobel prize winner, Dr. Linus Pauling was the first to realize vitamin C’s crucial importance in the maintenance of a healthy immune system. In 1970 he proposed that regular intake of vitamin-C in amounts far higher than the officially sanctioned RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) could help prevent and shorten the duration of the common cold and even prevent them. Although the medical establishment immediately voiced their strong opposition to this idea, many ordinary people believed Dr. Pauling and began taking large amounts of vitamin-C. Most immediately noticed a great decrease in the frequency and severity of their colds

Dr. Pauling recommended vitamin C intakes of 1000 mg/day or more. The official RDA is 60 mg/day (100 mg/day for smokers). So who is right? How much do we need? To answer this question it is crucial to realize that the RDA is not, in anyway, based on what is required for optimum health. The RDA is simply the amount required to avoid scurvy, the most obvious deficiency disease. Actually the RDA is based on the vitamin C content of the average diet. The logic goes somewhat like this: “The average “healthy” North American diet provides about 60 mg/day of vitamin C, so since scurvy is virtually unknown in the USA today 60 mg/day must be adequate.” So much for science!

Many experts are now realizing that the RDA of 60 mg/day is far too low to provide for optimum health and protection against disease. A team of medical researchers at the National Institutes of Health in the USA recently completed a study designed to determine the vitamin C requirements of healthy, young men. They found that a minimum intake of 1000 mg/day was required to completely saturate the blood plasma with vitamin C. They also found that vitamin C should be taken in divided doses throughout the day as urinary excretion increases rapidly when individual doses exceed 500 mg. The researchers conclude that the RDA should be raised to 200 mg/day. This amount of vitamin C can be obtained from a diet containing five daily servings of fresh fruit and vegetables; unfortunately, less than 15 per cent of children and adults in the USA actually consume such a diet.

While 200 mg/day of vitamin C may be sufficient to maintain a reasonable health status in healthy, young men, it is clear that such a relatively low intake is far from adequate for older and sick people. It is also evident that far greater amounts are required to provide optimum protection against degenerative diseases such as cancer and heart disease.

It has long been accepted that a diet rich in vitamin C from fruits and vegetables provides protection against cancer and heart disease. Researchers from the National Institute on Aging report that elderly people who take vitamin C and E supplements have a 50 per cent lower risk of dying prematurely from disease than do people who do not supplement.

A Californian study concluded that people who consume more than 750 mg/day of vitamin C reduce their risk of dying prematurely by 60 per cent. Italian researchers have concluded that older people, especially the sick are exposed to a much higher level of oxidative stress than are younger people and that their low blood levels of vitamin C reflect this. Other research has found that people who suffer from asthma, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, and heart disease have much lower levels of vitamin C in their blood than do healthy people.

Taken in large enough doses, vitamin C revs up your immune system by pumping enough fuel into white blood cells to destroy invading viruses and bacteria.

Vitamin C increases interferon levels and has interferon-like properties itself. It acts as a natural antihistamine that helps dry up watery eyes and reduce nasal and chest congestion. It is also a powerful antioxidant that can help prevent the damage that your body endures when viruses or bacteria attack your immune system.

At the first sign of cold or flu symptoms, take vitamin C with bioflavonoids or rose hips four to six times a day, says Dr. Meletis. “The bioflavonoids and rose hips strengthen the vitamin C’s infection-fighting power by 35 percent,” he says.

German researchers have now demonstrated that a baseline amount of beta-interferon must be active in order for competent immune recognition and response to any viral invader, which of course includes the swine flu (H1N1), the Avian flu and the NDM-1 superbug. One of the many immune roles of vitamin C is to enhance the production of flu virus and superbug killing beta-interferon.

German research helps to clarify one angle of healthy immunity. Certain immune cells must be primed to go into action, and a key sign of their readiness is a small baseline production of beta-interferon. This enables a more vigorous production of interferon upon viral exposure, and they demonstrate that the interferon is specifically used to help your higher-powered immune response actually identify the invader for a targeted immune response. Without adequate interferon there is a delay or inefficiency in recognition, making it more difficult to identify the enemy and mount a response.

Interferon levels are boosted with vitamin C. In fact, it was just a few years ago when a paper was published explaining how vitamin C could contain a world-wide avian flu pandemic (at that time we were more concerned with the bird flu). This comprehensive review paper emphasized the importance of vitamin C in regards to the flu, and a flu pandemic in particular. The research suggests up to 5 grams of vitamin C per day for general health, 1 gram of vitamin C every hour to help fight off a bug, and much higher amounts if a flu bug has gained a toehold in you. There are no dangerous side effects to taking a higher dosage of natural Vitamin C. There are major side effects to increasing the dosage of pharmaceutically made antibodies that we are now told are useless against the alleged superbug that is now spreading around the World.

Public health officials are putting all their eggs in the experimental vaccine basket, a very careless gamble in defense of a flu pandemic. We have always been told to diversify to reduce risk, after all, one plan might not pan out as hoped. It is high time public health officials get rid of their perverted negative view of dietary supplements. Many lives hang in the balance. We are told antibodies do not kill the superbug so the choice for treatment and to kill the bug is obvious - Vitamin C. Vitamin C is truly a wonder nutrient and there is no doubt that many of the serious degenerative diseases plaguing the civilized world today can be prevented or even reversed through an adequate intake of this essential vitamin.