The dreaded winter is over, but the snot is still flowing, what’s a poor mother to do? There has been a lot of sicknesses this year, from chicken pox all the way to lice and back up again with fevers, cases of flu, and coughs! Throw in a sore throat for good measure! I bring up this topic because it’s spring, and there is hope for the future so I can start brainstorming for NEXT WINTER! I want to hear your best tested, mother approved ideas for getting rid of bugs. Here is what I do…….
The first thing I always try is a homeopathic remedy. This is a personal education project that is ongoing. I am not an expert, but I have some great friends who are, so I usually ask them or read up in books & online to try to identify the remedy best suited to the child. When assessing symptoms, homeopathy looks at all responses to illness, their attitude, and their “look.” For instance, I have a few kids who are Pulsatilla kids, just whiny and sensitive to the core. I often start those particular children on pulsatilla and then move on to other more specific remedies from there. It can be a puzzle figuring out which homeopathic remedy to turn to, but once you find the correct one- BINGO! It works fast. I have recently had success using Boiron brand Coldcalm. It really got me through some rough allergies I had been experiencing, which made me feel as if my face was falling off. Coldcalm is a combination of several different remedies, and so it has a good success rate.Do you use homeopathy?
I follow with herbs and essential oils. I am new to the whole essential oil craze, but have used them with some success! I recommend using Young Living Essential Oils, as their purity and concentration are the highest quality I have found. I have used thyme and Thieves oil combined with olive oil or coconut oil on the neck and chest to help with coughs or congestion. Peppermint and lavender oils can help out with many things! I use it for headaches, mood swings, and hormonal issues. I plan on reading up more on oils, as they seem to be really effective for many different ailments.
Hot tea is fantastic for all problems in life. Have you ever given warm tea to your child and noticed how much it affects them? Maybe it’s just because they need to feel doted on, but the warmth really goes a long way. I give my kids Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra tea, it contains the herbs: Chamomile, Tilia Estrella, Valerian, spearmint, lemongrass, hawthorn, and orange blossoms! I also give all of us echinacea tea and elderberry syrup during the cold and flu season. My dear friend Simone taught me a sore throat remedy for the ages! There is always gargling with salt water, of course, but freshly squeezed lemon juice with honey does amazing things to heal up the tissues in the throat!
Heat. That is what works. Steam with eucalyptus oil, breathed in, hot packs microwaved and resting on whatever hurts, hot showers, baths, or hot towels on the face. Hot soup. Hot tea. You get the idea. I have been known to call our local Vietnamese restaurant and order hot and sour soup if I’m not feeling well!
Another Simone trick (love you, girl!), the onion is such an alkaline vegetable, that it actually absorbs any nasty stuff out of the air. If I have someone with a cough, in particular, I will chop an onion, put it into an old produce sack (you know the mesh kind), and hang it near their bed. It takes days off of the recovery period!I have also heard of using onion tea to help stop a cold and cough! If you are struggling with congestion of any sort, avoid dairy, and drink lots of clear fluids! And if by chance you have a stuffy infant, my dear, run out and buy a Nose Frieda asap! It’s a Swedish tool used to suck the boogers out. Very effective. I can’t figure out why I didn’t have one before!
We have avoided tummy bugs so far this season, but my doctor recommended giving the children some good probiotics (we like Life 9 from Young Living) to counteract the effects of a bout of stomach flu. I also learned of activated charcoal. You can buy it at health food stores, in capsule form, and I give the kids some in juice. It stops diarrhea in its tracks! Yea!
That’s all I got. I will tell you that the research is ongoing, and nutritional science is uncovering many new truths. Our bodies are directly affected by what we eat. Everything that comes into our bodies has the potential to truly nourish us. It has been helpful to read Joel Fuhrman’s book, Eat to Live, and more recently, Super Immunity! He speaks about how the diet can build up our defenses…
“Food gives us energy and the building blocks to grow in the form of calories, but we have not fully appreciated the noncaloric micronutrients in food, including those that are neither vitamins nor minerals, but phytochemicals- elements that strengthen and support normal immune function.” – Joel Fuhrman
It truly is amazing how well I feel when I eat well. If only I could have a personal chef to spend hours in the kitchen getting all those vegetables chopped! Right now in my reality, with a bunch of hungry kids and a new baby, I am lucky if we all EAT something. We have been somewhat successful making ahead healthy meals to pull out of the freezer when days are crazy. I make it a goal to eat a “real” food, something that is unprocessed- a fruit or vegetable. My go-to snack instinct is salami and cheese, so I have work to do, I am trying to think more along the lines of carrots and bananas!
Please share your immune boosting secrets! And if you are ever beating up on yourself for not eating as well as you should, remember that awesome passage from Proverbs, and keep your attitude positive!
A cheerful heart is a good medicine, but a downcast spirit dries up the bones.