Kick Your Sick Naturally!

Naturalcolds

{Revised edition}

Cough.

Sniff…

Ughhhhhhh..

Sniff, sniiiiiifffffff!

Uck…

That’s the soundtrack of my past week. No, you can’t download the full album on iTunes. I’m a one-woman nose and throat band/mucous factory, but I only do live performance.

IMG_20131217_123324

This is what my album cover would be… if i had an album.

I’m sick. It’s been a week. I haven’t done nearly as much as i had hoped to do considering I’ve had more free time to do my projects. But I’ve managed to get some things done actually. I pulled out all the Sorghum to put in another vegetable bed.

SorghumHeads
Sorghum is a grain commonly added to bird seeds and feed mixes.

I also spent a lot of time putting in those dread extensions i talked about (as promised, the tutorial is here), and I managed to spend more time with loved ones.

But I think it would have been worse if not for the remedies i used. Those are why you’re here right? I appreciate your patience with my notes on life while I get to the point, most of you are probably skipping right over this section, I can’t blame you…. You’re sick, who gives a crap what sorghum is!

So here’s MY regimen for naturally easing away a cold:

Step I. Eat Right & Be Well

Yum

First thing is first when it comes to health, and that’s diet. So drop the junk. I’m not saying eat chocolate and die, in fact there are many articles all over the internet on the health benefits of chocolate. But the sugar, greasy foods, even a lot of “healthy foods” which are processed and packaged often contain harmful ingredients that make your immune system work overtime. Some things will worsen your symptoms even though they aren’t necessarily “unhealthy” (not for everyone anyway). Dairy foods, for example, will increase mucous production, making you more miserable than before.

One of the major things to keep in mind while you’re nursing your self back to health is to keep your meals small and light. Heavy meals force your body to use more of it’s energy to digest instead of letting that energy be delegated to the immune system where it’s needed most! Just remember: The only thing your body should be fighting is that cold you have, so don’t make it work harder than it needs to.

Obviously most people will tell you to eat foods high in vitamin C. That’s nice and all but we can’t subside on oranges alone, and even if we could vitamin C isn’t the “end all, be all” of nursing yourself back to health! Kombucha is a great (& dairy free) way to get probiotics (healthy gut flora) which are shown to prevent upper respiratory infection if you’re not sick…. yet… as well as manymany…  many….. many……. other benefits that are being brought to light by nutrition scientists these days.

Whole grain will give your body the sustainable energy it needs to get through the (foggy, icky, congested) day.  But be aware that wheat gluten is a common gut agitator and intolerance (and sometimes allergy) is still often overlooked by doctors. Keeping to gluten free grains might not only encourage your body to heal faster, it could have the added benefit of curing all those “mystery symptoms”!

  Tea, be it green, black or white contains antioxidants to promote immune support. Speaking of antioxidants, Mushrooms are also a great source plus they have potassium (which is great for muscle soreness) B vitamins (good for energy regulation, meaning better sleep at night and more energy in the day). Blueberries are another antioxidant food, actually, they have more than any other fruit, and they’re delicious so eat up! And lets not forget… Leafy greens will get you more vitamins and minerals than anything else. An easy tip to remember: the greener the leaf the more nutritious it is!

Step II.

Garlic! Garlic! Garlic!

garlic-clove

Here’s where we get into the real stuff!

Garlic is a (delicious) natural antibiotic, antibacterial and antiviral. There are a few ways I get my garlic when I’m sick, mostly…. anyway that I can.

One thing to note is if you have problems with acid reflux or GERD, garlic may aggravate your stomach and should probably be avoided or taken with a strong  stomach ease tea [affiliate link]

But don’t think it’s as easy as putting a ton of chopped or…. powdered (yck!)… garlic in your pasta!

While using extra garlic in your cooking certainly won’t hurt, it also won’t help unless you chop it finely and let it oxidize for at least 10-15 minutes. Doing this converts the constituent, Allicin, into the helpful natural anti-biotic/viral/bacterial, Allinin. If you’re into getting the most from garlic you can go to this site: Allicinfacts.

 On top of getting my oxidized garlic on, I like to take garlic capsules. I take 500mg to start and increase to 1000mg after 1-2 days.  On top of the cooking and capsules I make a Garlic/Ginger/Cayenne honey. The garlic and ginger are great antivirals and the cayenne clears congestion. It’s pretty simple, so… How’s about a recipe?

Healing Honey:

  • 3 Organic Garlic Heads
  • 1 Medium sized (think 2 1/2 in. long 1-2″ wide) Ginger Root
  • 3 Tbsp Organic Cayenne Powder {Amazon}
  • 2 Cups Local Organic Honey
  • 1 Tbps Organic Cinnamon (optional, for taste)
  • 1 Quart size large mouth mason jar

Preferably this should be prepared at least a week before you GET sick, but that hasn’t stopped me from using it the same, or next, day I make it.

Start by breaking the heads and skinning the garlic cloves. I’ve found that it’s helpful to put all the cloves in a bowl, cover with another bowl and shake it vigorously. This will skin the cloves for you (I know, awesome right?!). chop the garlic into finely and set aside to oxidize.

Next peel your ginger root, try to keep as much of the inside as possible and then chop it up really fine.

Put the all the ingredients in leaving the honey for last. When i put the honey in I like to add half close the jar and shake it then add the other half before I shake it again to make sure it’s good and mixed. Shake the jar once a day to stir up any settling, and shake it before using.

The honey is very strong, so be prepared, but the honey takes away a lot of the “bite”. I eat a spoonful or two in the morning until it’s gone or just eat 1-2 tablespoons of it every day 2-3 times a day.

Step III.

Grab A Tincture!

tincture

Whenever possible, I strongly believe tinctures they are the best way for many herbs to be administered into the body.

Anyway…

My first experiance with tinctures was finding Wishgarden Herb’s Kick Ass Immune and Kick It Immune for Kids on sale at the grocery store. Figuring it was a sign… or really, an opportunity for experimentation, i snagged them all up. A few days later my 4 year old daughter started with a runny nose, and a cough…

P e r f e c t. I immediately started giving her the former. Her symptoms disappeared within 24 hours! Since I know that you should continue taking tinctures until after symptoms have been gone for a few days, I continued through the course and moved her on to the Kung-F’u Fighter to build her immunity. that was two months ago and she’s not been sick since.

But what if you can’t get or don’t want to get the tinctures from Wishgarden?

I’m also a big fan of Herb Pharm, they have a wonderful Echinacea/Goldenseal tincture that is perfect for the onset of a cold!

But what if you just want some info on herbs?

Well here are some you can look for and how they help:

  • Osha root – Helps with cough, mucous and general cold symptoms
  • Echinacea – Immune support at the onset of a cold (the active constituent in echinacea is NOT available in tea by the way, as it is only alcohol soluble, tincture wins again!)
  • Mullein – Works as an expectorant, antibacterial
  • Goldenseal – Powerful antiviral/antibacterial (Only to be used in more extreme cicumstances when other herbs have failed to help. Make sure the company indicates that their Goldenseal is cultivated as the herb is in close to endangered in the wild.)

Whatever herbs you choose know that quality, dedication, and method of administration are key.

Also, please know that this list is very limited. There are countless herbs for colds and cold symptoms and seeing a licensed herbalist would be very beneficial as they can suit their recommendations to you personally.

*Please note that I’m not a doctor or medical professional licensed to make diognosis or prescribe any form of medical treatment. Although if i was I’d be a Naturopathic Doctor :). I’m only writing from my experience what has helped me. Any course of treatment you choose, be aware that you do so at your own risk.

With that said…

Good luck with your cold and cheers to your health!

Advertisements

One thought on “Kick Your Sick Naturally!

  1. Thanks for the info! I knew about a couple of the natural cures and preventatives, but not all. I haven’t had my winter cold yet, so off I go to Sprouts! Puritan’s Pride has a nice line of herbs and tinctures as well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s