Natural ways to beat the cold and flu

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With cold and flu season fast approaching I wanted to share some of my favorite natural remedies. These alternatives are cost effective, easy and all natural with no dyes or additives that are included in many over the counter and prescription medicines.

The first step is prevention. Living a healthy lifestyle helps to build up your immune system so that when you do get sick, your body is able to overcome most illnesses. Eating lots of organic fruits and veggies help to ensure that your body has the essential vitamins and minerals to keep you healthy. Vitamins such a A, C, D and Probiotics help to protect your system and help to prevent and treat many sicknesses. Recent studies have shown that Vitamin D deficiency is detrimental to the body and can result in many diseases such as cancer, diabetes and even depression. One of the cheapest and easiest ways to get an ample amount of Vitamin D is to go outside for 10-15 minutes and enjoy the sunshine!

Even the healthiest person is not completely immune to getting sick, but the healthier the person is the less severe the sickness will be. Using natural alternatives helps to heal the body rather than mask the symptoms like many over the counter medicines such as NyQuil and Robitussin do. Many of the options I am about to share are safe to use on infants and toddlers (unless stated otherwise).

All Natural Cough Medicine (not safe for infants):

Ingredients:
Honey (local organic is best)
1/2 an onion (any color)

Chop up the onion and place in a Tupperware or jar and cover with honey. Put the lid on the container and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight. The next day strain the mixture saving the liquid and discarding the onions. You can keep this in your fridge for up to two months. I promise you this doesn’t taste as bad as it sounds. It has no alcohol so you don’t feel loopy, its safe on kids over 1 year old (due to using honey) and works incredibly.

Herbs to have in your Natural Medicine Kit:

All of these herbs are safe and effective and can be found at most health food stores or online! Ever since the multiple Children’s Motrin & Tylenol recalls since I had my daughter 4 years ago, I swore off commercial brands and have gone strictly homeopathic. The results have been great! Children can take 2 pellets every 30 minutes for acute symptoms and 3 times a day for less severe cases. Adults can take double the dose of children with the same frequency.

Chamomilla 6C- This homeopathic remedy is good to have on hand for irritability and digestive issues. It is also great to help with severe pain associated with teething, ear aches and gas pains.

Belladonna 6C- Helpful for fevers that come on suddenly as well as a clear runny nose. Also helpful in relieving headaches and inflamed, red sore throats.

Nux Vomica 6C- This is useful when a child has eaten too many sweets or has overindulged and has a tummy ache and nausea. Also works well to cure adults of the same symptoms (including hangovers!)

Pulsatilla 6C- This is to be used with nasal discharge is thicker and colored or when children act clingy and weepy. Also helpful for earaches that are less intense.

Arsenica Album 6C- This is used to treat signs of food poisoning or stomachache accompanies by diarrhea. If your child vomits suddenly and it’s not due to overeating, Arsenica should be the natural treatment.

Natural Cold & Flu Buster (Adults Only!):

Ingredients:

Peeled Garlic cloves
Peeled Ginger
Cinnamon
Cayenne Pepper
Lemon
Honey
Water

Boil fresh, purified water as if you were making tea. Roughly chop up the garlic and ginger and add it to the water to boil. Once it comes to a boil turn off the heat and cover the pot to let it steep for about a half an hour. After it has stepped you can remove the garlic and ginger and discard. Add cinnamon and cayenne pepper and squeeze some lemon and add honey to taste.

This elixir is strong but I like to get hardcore and try to kick the butt of whatever is coming after me! This drink is awesome at soothing a sore throat, alleviating congestion and clearing out sinuses. The combination of these ingredients are powerful and work well to boost the immune system. It’s a little harsh at first but after the first couple of sips you should be fine and start to feel better pretty quick.

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