A few weeks ago, I shared with my Instagram friends all that I keep in my holistic medicine cabinet in illness & wellness during the fall and winter months.
It was such a popular topic that my friends asked for details, so I thought to put it together in a blog post for easy reference.
I always grab for my natural remedies first before opting for less natural means of support so don’t forget the adult and kids Tylenol, Ibuprofen, and over the counter medications JUST IN CASE.
Please know, this blog post is in no way medical advice. I only share to help others find what they may want to add to their natural medicine cabinets.
Use your judgement: If you or a family member are experiencing an emergency or prolonged illness – consult your family practitioner or visit your nearest emergency room.
Taking a ‘hygiene bath’ can help reduce the duration of sickness and decrease fevers – It’s recommended by the author of “The Brighton Baby” who is an Osteopath – which was recommended to me by one of the founders of Branch Basics (shared in their Instagram Stories – Original Post Here).
The recipe for Adults is 1/4 cup of Iodine + 1 Cup of Iodized Salt – dissolved in a warm bath (not hot). Soak 20-40 Minutes.
The recipe for Children is 1TB. of Iodine + 1 LB. of Iodized Salt – dissolved in a lukewarm bath. Soak for 10-20 Minutes. (This has been an amazing mom-hack when fevers are up. It has helped my little to relax and decrease the duration of fever spikes).
Sinus & Head / Congestion:
Baby: Kids Xclear + Nasal Suction – For head congestion, drop saline into nose (misting seems to be less agitating in my experience but drops seem to reduce contact with boogers ), use suction once the saline has had a few minutes to loosen mucous. Do this as needed (1-3x a day), especially after lying down for a long period of time.
- If you have any type of virus (If you know what I’m saying) – Use the Xclear nasal spray 3-5 times daily. Here is a link to pub med suggesting a nasal spray with carrageen would help reduce viral load.
- Here is a link to the business wire article stating how Xclear works against THE virus.
- I Included links to the 3 pack because it’s the best bang for your buck. Make sure you are wiping that nozzle after each use and keeping it clean and not sharing with other family members.
Steam Therapy: In a bowl of hot (steaming) water, drop in 2-4 drops of Olba’s Oil (for Adults with a towel over hear) or 1-2 drops Olba’s for Kids (for Kids breathing close over the bowl, without a towel recommended for kids 6 +).
Use caution and keep eyes closed as you inhale!
Steam Therapy is also great for Colds and Coughs.
Onion Poultice – Instructions and Directions
Garlic Salve – Instructions and Directions
Ginger Tincture: Ginger is a well-known, safe herb that is usually used for Nausea. It is also a GREAT cough suppressant. Add a few drops to warm apple cider, tea, or apple juice.
Ginger Tincture is a great option to use if you are pregnant.
Adult: oscillococcinum is a wonderful homeopathic remedy that actually shortens the duration of the flu. It is sideeffect free and does not have any known drug interactions.
Kids: oscillococcinum is safe for children as young as 2 years old.
Baby: Cold Calm
Fire Cider is a old folk medicine recipe that uses apple cider vinegar to extract the medicinal properties of the herbal properties. Fire Cider recipes vary but usually contain onions and other members of the allium family (like shallots, leeks, and especially garlic) as they are high in flavonoids (including quercetin and kaempferol), polyphenols, and allicin. These properties are antimicrobial, antiviral, antioxidative, immune-enhancing, and anti-inflammatory, and they help enhance the action of vitamin C (apple cider vinegar, source).
Horseradish stimulates digestion, increases gastric secretions and appetite. It also promotes gentle detoxing through sweating, making it useful in fevers, colds, and flu. Horseradish is also an expectorant and has mild antibacterial properties (source).
Ginger has a warming affect, as it stimulates circulation of the blood. It’s widely used in Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine to break up congestion throughout the body, including in the lungs and nasal passages. Ginger can also be used to help with fevers by warming the body and increase sweating. It is a powerful anti-inflammatory as it stimulates the immune system and can soothe nauseu and promote digestion (source, source, source).
Cod Liver Oil is rich in Omega 3 (essential fatty acids) DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and also has naturally occurring Vitamin A & D which are widely used within the body. It great to take daily during the winter months to support mental and emotional well-being. (source, source, source)
Bone Broth is easily made from cooking the bones of animals and has been a staple in traditional diets for centuries. As bones are cooked down, they release their building blocks such as collagen, glutamine, and glycine which are imperative for essential cell and organ function. (Check out my Recipe on how I transform chicken feet into a healing broth). Essentially, Chicken soup is good for the soul and also for the body.
Fermented Foods, Such as Sauerkraut (Check out my Recipe), are also considered traditional foods. This means these foods would likely have been served at the tables and made in the kitchens of our ancestors. Fermented foods improve digestion, increase vitamin content in food, and make it easier to absorb. Fermented foods are also rich in enzymes that promote proper digestion and absorption and encourage good gut bacteria.
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin which means what your body doesn’t use, is excreted through the potty. It as a free-radical avenger and aids the bodies natural immune defenses.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin which how now been reclassified as a hormone. It is vital for calcium, magnesium and phosphorus utilization. Many are exceptionally low due to decreased sun exposure.(source) Get out in the sunlight first thing in the morning to get the maximum benefit !
B Complex Being under the weather can zap energy and mess with your mental well being. Super B Complex deliver a boost of energy without stressing your adrenals or raising cortisol. It also supports the cardiovascular system, and nervous system. This was what I reached for after being unwell to help boost my energy levels and support my emotional well being. (source) (source) (source)
Cell Salts – I personally use Bioplasma cell salt tablets They are homeopathic and do not have known drug interactions. This particular remedy is made of the 12 essential cell salts for cellular function.
Aromatherapy is a holistic healing modality that utilizes plant extracts to promote healing and over all well being. Aromatherapy is more than just smelling – it engages all of the senses and is deeply helpful to the body as essential oils are lipophilic (fat-loving) and able to quickly penetrate the phospholipid layers of every cell in our bodies. Aromatherapy can be applied diluted on the skin, breathed, or diffused. I personally enjoy using Plant Therapy and Mountain Rose Herbs USDA organic essential oils.
Sleep is important to prioritize. While you rest, your immune system will take care of fighting illness much easier than if it were also focused on keeping you awake and other normal bodily activities that coincide with being awake. Do what you can to prioritize good, deep and restful sleep so your body has the energy to focus and fight well for you.
Decreasing Stress may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s deeper than one may think. Stress can come at you from all directions. Toxic chemicals, overconsumption of food-like products (junk “food”), relationships, finances, spiritual health, career fulfillment – these all play a large part in our stress load. It’s important to remove stressers from your life to support real health in all areas.
The largest reason for decreasing stress in our lives is because our brains do no recognize that the stress we may be feeling as it can be emotional versus physical (stressful job environment vs. running for our life, away from a lion). It stimulates the adrenals to release cortisol levels into the blood stream. Rising levels of coritsol stimulate an appetite for sweets – which is a quick way to gain energy to cope with the stress load we are experiencing. What is unfortunate is many other factors will keep this dangerous merry-go-round in affect such as constant carb consumption and reliance of caffeine. This is essentially like paying for energy on credit – the payment of borrowing from tomorrow’s energy will come at a high premium and added interest rates.
Real, Healthy Food is the best way to ensure you are properly fueled to maintain a healthy homeostasis, and to give your body the nourishment it needs to perform well for you. Make real food a priority.
You can start small by replacing a night where you would normally eat out, and try your hand at recreating your favorite take-out meal. You can gain ideas from pinterest or a wholesome cook book. I’ve currently been enjoying cooking from Hope’s Table, Nourishing Traditions , and for more whole food reading, Beyond Labels and Nourished Kitchen.
Hydration is key to good health. Dehydration is actually one of the MOST common underlying causes (next to inflammation) for modern disease. Stay hydrated with healthy, clean water. Add a few sprinkles of real salt (electrolytes and trace minerals) to help water get into your cells. You can make Sole Water. If you have any issues with kidneys or liver or fluid retention – it is not advised.
This post is very long now, and if you’ve read this far – I hope you found it both informative and helpful.
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