Cold and flu season is officially here, and there’s nothing worse than when your kids get sick. That being said there are ways to avoid illness, and improve symptoms. I reached out to my good friend Andrea to share with us her tips on natural cold and flu remedies.
I would like to start by saying thank you to Lauren for asking me to be a guest blogger on a subject that I’m really passionate about!
My interest in healthy living started after I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Although this was scary and not the easiest time in my life, if this had not happened, I may not have been as receptive to my wonderful massage therapist who started questioning me on how I handled my health. She lived a lifestyle so different from mine: eating only raw food, avoiding medicine, drinking things like reishi tea, and I found it fascinating. She answered my questions, and my family started changing the way we lived on a day to day basis.
After spending a few years changing our diet and avoiding conventional medicine, we started seeing noticeable differences in how we felt. This was very exciting and my interest began to grow as did my research into holistic living. A little over two years ago, we welcomed our son Benjamin into our lives and 20 months later our daughter, Emily.
As we all know, kids seem to pass germs back and forth and sickness seems to be popping up all year round, especially in the winter months. It’s one thing to avoid conventional medicine when you’re looking after yourself but watching your child suffer through a cold or flu isn’t fun. However, I was determined to find ways that did not overload their little bodies with chemicals or causes health issues down the road.
Over the past two years working with and learning from two different homeopaths, my massage therapist, my chiropractor and reading various books, I’d like to share what has worked for my family to fight colds and the flu.
A few things to keep in mind; if you can breastfeed, do it! This is always the best thing for your baby if they’re sick. Your body reacts to your baby’s saliva and produces antibodies to help fight any illness. It’s actually recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) to breast feed babies until they are at least 2 years old, which is definitely not the norm in today’s western society. Second, if your kids eat sugar, it is wise to ease them off of it when they’re sick. Sugar suppresses your immune system so it’s best to avoid it when their body needs extra help. I also mention some homeopathic remedies below. Homeopathy is a safe and natural way to treat pretty much every ailment you can imagine; however it can take a while to find the exact remedy you need, so while the remedies I mention are pretty common, it may take working with a homeopath to find the right one for you or your child.
The following suggestions will focus specifically on what we give our kids. I won’t go into too much detail on each item, but just a general description. It’s also best (and fun!) to research further on any item that you’re interested in.
1) Probiotic: This is key all year round to a strong immune system. The studies coming out about the benefit of a healthy gut are numerous. 70% of immunity is in our gut so it’s important to keep it healthy and filled with good bacteria (unfortunately yogurt isn’t enough). Make sure to find a probiotic that does not have fillers and needs to be refrigerated. The brands I use are BioGai and Flora Baby.
2) Colloidal Silver: This has antiviral and antibacterial properties. If we have a sore throat, eye infection, cut, sinus infection, (the list goes on!), a few squirts of colloidal silver and everything heals up quickly. The brand I currently use is Sovereign Silver.
3) Immune Essential Oil Blend: I currently use the brands Doterra, Living Libations and Saje. I put this oil blend on the kids’ heels and also diffuse it in the air for anyone with a stuffy nose or the start of a cold. This is one of my favorites as it seems to really stop a cold overnight.
4) Respiratory Essential Oil Blend: I add a few drops of this oil to a carrier oil (any oil will do, ie. coconut, grapeseed, etc.) and rub it on their chest, diffuse it in the air or add it to a bath.
5) Tissue Salts: Ferrum phos and Kali sulph are the ones we use regularly. They both have many great uses that you can look up. We use ferrum phos to help boost immunity. The whole family gets a dose if someone starts to get sick.
Kali sulph is great for moving mucus and keeping it from settling in the ears. It’s great to give to a baby while they have a cold and is helpful to give kids after swimming during the winter months or after a day in the cold air.
6) Belladonna 200c: We use belladonna during fevers. This was one of the hardest lessons for me to understand as a mom: Fevers are good! A fever is your body’s way of fighting illness and shouldn’t be suppressed by Tylenol! Obviously there are times when a fever needs to be treated, but for the most part it’s about making your child comfortable and letting their immune system fight. Belladonna is a natural way to help a child be more comfortable if the fever is bothering them. Here is a great article by Dr. Mercola on the benefits of fevers.
7) Pulsatilla 200c: I give a dose when the kids get a cold. Usually, I give them a dose for three days. This helps move things along in their system.
8) Gelsemium 200c: This is great for flu symptoms like aches and chills. I give a dose to the kids if they are feeling achy and they seem to be fighting something. It’s also helped my husband and I when we’ve come down with flu symptoms.
9) Chiropractic adjustment: Getting a chiropractic adjustment is one of the most effective ways I’ve seen my kids get over colds. Traditional thinking assumes chiropractic care is only for adults but finding a chiro. who works with kids is a wonderful addition to a healthy kid!
These are all based on my own experiences and I recommend working with a homeopath, reading books and taking a course in essential oils to find remedies that work for you. It’s always good to check with your family doctor, as well. We have a great family doctor who supports our ‘alternative’ way of doing things, but not every doctor will.
My best mom advice is to do your research (I’ve listed a few resources below) and feel comfortable with whatever it is you do!
Have a healthy winter!
*Here are some great resources: