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A big thanks to my fellow natural mama and blogger, Jill, for writing here at my blog today!  Jill is a Certified Family Herbalist and is sharing how to create a natural medicine cabinet for cold and flu season. 

So we’ve survived the busiest time of the year, and the holidays are behind us.

But the winter months, and the remaining weeks of cold and flue season, still loom ahead.

I don’t know about you, but I do NOT have time to be sick.

That’s why I do what I can to stock my natural medicine cabinet to help us stay well and avoid as much sickness as possible, and to also get better quickly if sickness does strike our home.

Instead of turning to the flu shot and over the counter medicines, I turn to God-created herbs! These herbs are not only safe to take, they are very effective as well. Below is a list of some of my favorite must-haves.

How To Create A Natural Medicine Cabinet For Cold and Flu Season

Elderberries

Elderberries have to be the best tasting flu fighters around. Active phytochemicals in elderberries inhibit the reproduction of the flu virus. What that basically means is that they attack the flu virus and keep it from attaching to the red blood cells, thus helping you to get better in a hurry.

Elderberry Recipes

Garlic

Garlic is a very strong antimicrobial that kills viruses, bacteria, and fungi. When studied, those who consume garlic daily had fewer illness than those who did not consume it. One of my favorite ways to add garlic to my daily diet is by making my own fire cider. Fire cider combines garlic with the powers of horseradish, ginger, hot peppers and onion, steeped in raw apple cider vinegar and mixed with honey. This is a spicy sweet dressing to take by the spoonful or drizzle over salads. It’s sure to treat and prevent illness too!

Ways to use garlic

  • Eat 1 or 2 raw cloves a day
  • Add fresh garlic cloves to soups and dishes
  • Fire Cider Recipe @ Mommypotamus

Olive Leaf

Olive leaf is one of my very favorite herbs for infants and small babies, as it is such a very gentle herb. It is antiviral and supports the immune system. This herb is great for all ages, but is especially helpful for the itty bitty ones. I would follow the recommendation on the bottle and use as needed to prevent or treat colds and flus.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is an extremely important nutrient and the best source is the sun!  Many of us that live in colder regions don’t get much of it in the winter months. Sledding, skiing, and snowman-building compels us outside for a while, but we don’t spend nearly the same amount of time outdoors as we do when the sun is shining warmly. A lack of vitamin D can contribute to cancer and other diseases, plus it makes the immune system weak, which makes us more likely to catch colds and flus.

Vitamin D can be taken in capsules or liquid form. I personally love the convenience of vitamin D drops because I can easily add it to juice for my children to take, or just drop it under the tongue.  The brand we use has no taste at all.  For me, this is a must-have vitamin to supplement this time of year.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is always stocked in my cabinet.  It really helps the immune system by clearing out toxins in the body so the immune system can function better.  For daily supplementation of this important vitamin, Indian gooseberry or Herban C Tea are great options.  Tablets for adults and chewable vitamin C for children are convenient  too!  If my children are really sick, I like to use a brand like Nutribiotic (which is a non-GMO option) in powder form and give them high concentrated doses to help them recover.

In one of my favorite books, Be Your Own Doctor, it is recommended to use “Vitamin C Therapy” when a person is really sick.  Here’s how you do it: Adults take 10 grams of vitamin C every day spread out over waking hours.  (10 grams equals 2 tsp)  Children should take 90-170 mg. of vitamin C per pound of weight.  {1/2 tsp. = 2,500 mg.} So if a child weighs 50 lb., they would take about 1 tsp. a day.  Be sure to spread the vitamin C out throughout the day.

Fermented Foods

Homemade fermented foods are such a powerhouse of nutrition! They are FULL of the best and least expensive form of probiotics, and will greatly help your immune system to stay healthy. I have noticed a big difference since feeding my family homemade fermented foods. Everyday I make us a homemade kefir smoothie sweetened with bananas and added herbs for an extremely healthy drink. I also like to keep homemade kombucha and sauerkraut on hand. I guarantee you will notice your family is healthier when they are eating these foods! 🙂

How To Create A Natural Medicine Cabinet For Cold and Flu Season | by Jill York for KristysCottage.com

Echinacea

And how could I stock my medicine cabinet for this season without echinacea? Echinacea is the very first herb I used on my oldest daughter when she was just a baby. I was so surprised at how quickly she got over her illnesses when taking echinacea versus just toughing it out on her own. Echinacea is such an excellent immune booster and natural antibiotic, that I will likely recommend it in many posts for the rest of my life!

My very favorite way to consume echinacea is in an herbal mix that combines it with elderberries and other herbs high in nutrients. Any time I feel run down or can tell I’m in the beginning stages of an illness, I brew a quart of this herbal mix and drink it throughout the day. When I do this, I am so much better the next day and back to myself the day after!

Read how I use this herbal mix here:

Having a cabinet full of natural remedies for the cold and flu season does not guarantee that you won’t get sick, but it does greatly lessen the chance and helps you to be on the mend in no time!

What do you have in your natural medicine cabinet? I would love to hear about it in the comments below!

Resources

Mercola, J. (n.d.). How to Treat the Cold or Flu Naturally. Retrieved November 10, 2015.
Mercola, J. (n.d.). Do You Need a Vitamin D Supplement to Maintain Ideal Levels? Retrieved November 11, 2015, from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/02/01/daily-vitamin-d.aspx
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Author: Jill

Jill York is a Christian herbalist and a homeschool mom of 4. As a young adult, she found her health spinning out of control, and was for the first time introduced to natural medicine, where she found healing. Her desire is to encourage and empower other moms to take control of their family's health naturally. You can find her blogging at Jill’s Home Remedies and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

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2 thoughts on “How To Create A Natural Medicine Cabinet For Cold and Flu Season

  1. Thank you for the great recommendations! Am fascinated by the fire cidar recipe. Have a healthy rest of the winter!

    Posted on January 14, 2016 at 5:15 pm
    1. You too! The fire cider is pretty awesome! 🙂

      Posted on January 14, 2016 at 8:14 pm