So what protects you from flu - your immune system! This is why 80% of people won't get flu even when in very close contact with those who are infectious. You may only get symptoms of an infection when your immune defences are down and the infection gets on top of your immune system.
Your immune system has 2 main parts - the innate immune system and the adaptive immune system. The innate immune system is mostly found in your respiratory and digestive tracts, but also reproductive and urinary tracts too. The white blood cells of your innate immune system find and destroy foreign microbes which are recognised as not being "self". These immune system cells are non-specific, meaning that they find and fight any foreign invaders, and especially those which haven't been encountered before.
The adaptive immune system develops from the innate immune system, so that the adaptive immune cells can "learn" about the newly encountered microbes, and develop antibodies to them for longer-term protection and a quicker immune response when the microbes are found in the future.
Another problem with the flu vaccine is that this bypasses the innate immune system, as the simulated "infection" starts in the muscle where the injection occurs, and not in the respiratory tract where the innate immune system would normally start the healing process. Because of this, the innate immune system doesn't trigger the normal "learning" about the flu virus to produce permanent or even long-term memory against the infection. As a result, the flu vaccine's attempt at "immunisation" or developing an immunity only lasts a few months at most. In a real flu (or other microbial) infection, the innate immune system triggers the adaptive immune system to develop antibodies and learn for a PERMANENT immune response against the infection. In this instance, the adaptive immune system will never forget how to respond to a particular natural infection, unlike what happens with a flu vaccine.
When many other published studies show little or no benefit to the flu vaccine in terms of duration or severity of flu symptoms compared to people who don't get the flu vaccine, you have to wonder why there's such a push for everyone to get this shot...
The Cochrane review studies, which are the highest form of published research, show that the flu vaccine only reduces the flu infection rate by 1%, or in other words, only one person in 100 actually benefits from the vaccine. Another Cochrane study found that the flu vaccine only had a modest effect on time off work (1 day difference) and had no effect on hospital admissions or complication rates compared to those who did not get the flu vaccine. This study also reported that "reliable evidence on influenza vaccines is thin but there is evidence of widespread manipulation of conclusions and spurious notoriety of the studies", and "Studies funded from public (ie, independent) sources were significantly less likely to report conclusions favourable to the vaccines". Meaning that there is a lot of bias in pharmaceutical industry studies reporting "benefits" to the flu vaccines.
Other studies I referenced in a previous article suggests that the flu vaccine actually causes more respiratory infections (viral as well as bacterial), which can spread and infect more people.
You are much better off preventing flu by:
1) Improving your nutrition intake and lifestyle factors, which can boost your immune system
2) Improving hygiene during winter - washing hands more, and not touching your eyes, mouth or nose
3) Improving your vitamin D levels with more safe sun exposure, or vitamin D3 supplements during winter. Remember, "Vitamin D is the key" to prevention and treatment of flu!
Stay healthy this winter!