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Natural And Easy Immune Boosters

Tis the season for colds and flus and allergies, and I find myself hovering around Defcon Three sometimes in my hyper-alertness for signs of sniffles and such.

We weathered Cora’s case of the croup remarkably well last week, using only natural home remedies and getting her back on her feet super fast. And having remedies on hand to help treat an illness is great- but having something on hand TO MAKE SURE YOU DON’T GET SICK IN THE FIRST PLACE is even better.

We do a few different things here: first, we take natural vitamins that are pretty much just dehydrated fruits and vegetables. We don’t take them all year long, since we eat a ton of produce – both fruits and veggies – when we’re making smoothies multiple times a day. But when the weather turns cold somehow an ice-cold strawberry/blackberry smoothie just doesn’t hit the spot. So our vitamin regime starts back up.

Second, I make an herbal immune-boosting syrup out of elderberries, rose hips, astragalus, and raw honey. This is startlingly good for allergies – I think it’s the astragalus – and seems to help us keep allergies at bay on all but the worst days. I’ll also start spooning it down the girls’ throats at the first sign of, well, anything. And it’s the absolute first thing I reach for when the flu comes around – elderberries are like kryptonite to the flu virus. Seriously.

Third, I make a throat spray/gargle out of distilled water, a pinch of salt, and a few drops of good-quality thieves oil. At the first sign of a sore throat Cora will reach for the throat spray, do a couple squirts and give it a good gargle. It does seem to be quite effective for sore throats and the bugs that cause them. I’ve heard it’s killer on strep but I’ve never had cause to try it – and honestly, strep is something I don’t mess around with. It’s easily killed with antibiotics and, conversely, can relatively easily turn into PANDAS, which is seriously no joke.

But if mixing potions and buying essential oils just isn’t your thing, you can turn to my favorite all-around immune booster and bug squasher – cinnamon and honey. I take half a tablespoon of good powdered cinnamon and mix it with two tablespoons of raw, local honey. I’ll have my child eat a spoonful of that every few hours – she should be able to eat all of it over the day. I’ve seen it work well on allergies, colds, random viruses, and more – it’s my favorite all-round cure since both ingredients are anti-bacterial and anti-viral.

See what you can add to your bug-fighting repertoire this cold season, and remember that I may wear many hats but none of them say “M.D.” on them. I’m no doctor, and this is simply what’s worked for me! Definitely listen to nice people with lots of letters after their names if you’re sick.


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