The Holistic Approach to Cold/Flu Season

Nov 19, 2020

"The first wealth is health."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

With the shift from Summer into Fall brings layered clothing, hot beverages, and possibly, runny noses, but Mother Nature always has our back and offers us a wide variety of natural remedies that can help to strengthen our immune systems. If this is new to you, and you’re wondering about your littles at home, read on to learn about how the following herbs and natural remedies can prepare you and your family for this cold and flu season. 

Elderberry

This dark purple berry holds a wealth of antioxidants, making it a great herb for the whole family. It has been used for centuries in helping to heal respiratory infection and reduce the symptoms of the flu. While it does not stop you from catching a cold or flu, it will help you reduce symptoms and speed up recovery. 

You can find elderberry capsules in many pharmacies. They are readily available and easy to use. It is not recommended to consume raw elderberries. However, you can also use elderberries to make a wonderful syrup. This syrup can be used to aid off infection, and it tastes amazing! This elderberry syrup recipe will have your kids eating up their pancakes or waffles while getting the benefits of elderberry!

 

Ginger 

This flavorful and scented root offers a melody of benefits. Ginger contains gingerol which helps with digestion, reducing nausea, helps reduce pain from headaches, and helps fight cold and flu. Ginger has many uses for common ailments that we face on a daily basis. Using ginger can help to boost your immune system and keep these illnesses at bay. 

Fresh ginger can be found in any supermarket. One of the most common ways to enjoy ginger is through tea. To make ginger tea you will need: 1 piece of ginger peeled cut into thin pieces, a slice of lemon, and organic honey. Take your ginger and put it into your boiling pot of water, allow to boil for 10 to 30 minutes. If you would like a stronger cup of tea, place more ginger into the water, and boil it longer. Once the tea has boiled, remove your pot from heat and strain into a teapot or desired container. Flavor with lemon and honey. 

Chamomile 

One of the most important things your body needs when a cold or flu starts is rest. Chamomile supports us in getting the rest we need. However, chamomile has many other benefits, such as easing an upset stomach, reducing stress, and acting as an anti-inflammatory.

Chamomile can be used in a wide variety of ways, but the easiest is simply drinking it as tea. Chamomile tea is a very popular option that can be found in the tea and coffee aisle of any supermarket. Chamomile can also be used as an essential oil, either through an oil diffuser or placed behind your ears.  One thing to remember is that if you have a small child who is prone to nervousness, prolonged use of chamomile to help them wind down can have an adverse effect. Use chamomile sparingly if this applies to your child. 

Epsom Salt 

Taking a nice warm bath with Epsom salt is a great way to aid sleep and relaxation for sick children. When added to a bath, Epsom salt can help reduce stress while relaxing muscles in the body. It only takes 15 minutes of soaking to feel the relaxing effects. 

Epsom salt is found in many local supermarkets or retail stores. Epsom salt is recommended for soaking only, it is not meant for internal consumption. If you are putting your child in the bath please be sure that the salt has completely dissolved.

Honey 

Honey has been used for its amazing healing properties for centuries. Honey has been known to expedite the healing of wounds, suppress coughs in young children, and ease the effects of seasonal allergies. If you have a child who is over the age of 1, dark local honey is a wonderful addition to your medicine cabinet. Selecting local honey will help your child develop tolerance to local allergens or help heal from an upper respiratory infection. You can buy local honey from any supermarket or farmers market. We recommend selecting honey that is darker in color, such as buckwheat honey. Darker honey, like buckwheat, has 20 times more antioxidant power than lighter colored honey. 

*Using honey in teas is a great way to help aid in soothing a cough or simply taking a spoonful before bedtime will help reduce cough throughout the night. 

At Origins we focus on the “whole child”: mind, body, and spirit, and we know that if we’re not feeling well, we will not learn well either. We hope that our favored holistic remedies will soothe and boost your immune system, and keep you well throughout the cold season.

If you have any further questions about holistic healing or how to use herbs contact your local herbalist. We received our information about herbs and their use from Monica Walters L.Ac. MSOM, owner of Inner Strength Acupuncture and Massage, located in Missoula, MT. 

At Origins we focus on the “whole child”: mind, body, and spirit, and we know that if we’re not feeling well, we will not learn well either. We hope that our favored holistic remedies will soothe and boost your immune system, and keep you well throughout the cold season.

If you have any further questions about holistic healing or how to use herbs contact your local herbalist. We received our information about herbs and their use from Monica Walters L.Ac. MSOM, owner of Inner Strength Acupuncture and Massage, located in Missoula, MT.