It differs greatly from a typical medicine cabinet, filled with drug store medicines. Instead it includes herbs, essential oils, homeopathics, and even food and beverages.
Because the colder months bring shorter days with less sunlight and therefore less time to be outdoors for fresh air and exercise, we also make sure to put extra beneficial things into our bodies. Warm foods and beverages are key – things like drinking heated bone broth and vital veggie broth, drinking a variety of organic herbal teas*, and eating nourishing soups.
When we start to feel under the weather, here is a list of our favorite things to have on hand:
- Thieves Essential Oil – This essential oil is our go-to remedy at the first sign of not feeling well. We put a few drops on the bottom of our feet before going to bed with some white socks and often feel much better in the morning.
- Eucalyptus Essential Oil – We use this when there is congestion in the lungs. Put two to three drops in the palm of your hand with a small amount of organic olive oil and rub on the chest, back, and sides in the lung area. (Use this instead of Vicks VapoRub which has petroleum as its base.) Great for helping you fall asleep.
- Peppermint Essential Oil – When a tummy ache occurs, you can put a drop in the palm of your hand and use it one of two ways: (1) put a bit in the belly button with your finger or (2) touch it with the tip of your tongue and hold your tongue to the roof of your mouth for relief. (Use a carrier oil like olive oil if this is too strong.)
- Thyme Tea – A wonderful overall antimicrobial herb. Drink it a few times a week to boost your immune system. If one person is sick, have everyone in the house drink thyme tea to stay well.
- Echinacea – This herb is great for viral-related illnesses like the flu. You can typically find it in both capsule and liquid form. Echinacea and golden seal is another good combination.
- Olive Leaf – More broadly anti-microbial, olive leaf works on viruses, bacteria and fungi. It is best to find capsules with extra outer coating to help it get deeper into the digestive track so you do not feel a burning sensation in your stomach after taking it.
- Oregano Oil or Tea – Oregano oil’s active ingredient, carvacrol, is also antimicrobial. The oil itself is quite strong but is really good to put on a sore tooth when you have a tooth ache. We find the tea most comforting when feeling under the weather. (Clove oil is another tooth pain remedy.)
- Garlic – You can take a natural remedy like Allicidin which incorporates garlic’s active ingredient, allicin, or use actual raw garlic. If your digestive system can handle it, mincing and swallowing minced raw garlic is nature’s version of an antibiotic. It actually works on all microbes.
- Ginger – Ginger is another food to keep on hand. Thinly cut to make tea or put it in a green juice. Ginger tea can help stomach aches and when used with quality honey, helps sooth the throat.
- Colloidal Silver – We use this when all else fails. We do not use it often so that our bodies do not build up a resistance to it. It is also really good for topical infections like red eye and an infected cut.
If you know you have a virus, bacteria or fungal infection, there are also homeopathic remedies you can use. (Muscle testing is a great way to figure this out.)
Other nutrients we like to add more of in the colder months is vitamins D3 and K2 (these should be taken together) and a good quality fish or cod liver oil. (Make sure you have a good brand like the one I carry in the office by Premier Research Labs. Many fish and cod liver oils are produced in the same handful of factories where synthetic vitamins A and D are added.)
I also want to remind you that a fever is your friend. We have been trained to be afraid of fevers and taught to try to reduce a fever as soon as it shows up. In reality, a fever is a good thing. It is your body’s way of healing and burning off whatever is going on. Unless the fever is extremely high, you should let it run its course whenever you can. If you feel you need to reduce the fever, you can take a cooling bath or put apple cider vinegar on the bottom of the feet.
When stocking your natural medicine cabinet, read your labels and be sure to get the best quality supplements you can. As explained in more detail here, natural supplements can still contain fillers, binders, preservatives, etc. If you need help obtaining quality products, you can go to my Fullscript dispensary and signup for free to purchase a wide variety of immune building supplements at 10% off.
For other immune system building ideas, check out my previous articles here.
* Make sure you are drinking organic herbal teas since non-organic brands are often sprayed with pesticides and irradiated to kill bacteria. Also look for brands that indicate they are using non-bleached, plastic-free tea bags. (Most tea bags are made from polypropylene which leaves microplastic residue in your tea.) Loose organic teas are often the best option. Learn more about tea here and the detrimental affects of plastic here.