With the sniffly season upon us, I wanted to share our home remedies that we use to quickly get over colds/flu’s which let’s face it is going to happen when having a preschooler (no matter how healthy and well fed he is) he is going to bring home preschool germs and with us having a toddler who is on a immune /gut healing journey we can’t afford to be sick for long so quick action is needed but without the nasty potions you pick up at the chemist which we avoid at all costs.
- Firstly diet is super important – eating food rich in good essential fats, antioxidants and that are immune boosting is essential. Your body needs the nutrients and vitamins to heal itself. The modern day diet (SAD in many cases (standard Australian diet) leaves much to be desired.
- Olive Leaf Extract – it’s horrible to drink (although my children are slightly strange and enjoy the taste!) but my goodness it is like liquid gold! It is 100% natural and is gluten, sugar, preservative, alcohol and yeast free (check labels of different brands to confirm). Not only is it great for cardiovascular support it is also a great immune support and has 400% more antioxidant power than the equivalent amount of Vitamin C. I give it to the boys almost daily in winter and any other time of the year at the first sign of a sniffle. 2.5mls for a child over 2 years of age twice a day and 5mls for an adult twice a day is usually the recommended dosage on the bottle but please do ask at your health food store /naturopath ( or your chemist if they do stock it).
- Another super easy trick is to get a face washer and put some 100% eucalyptus oil on it (make sure it’s 100% you don’t want the ethanol blends) and put it on the shower floor whilst you shower and the water/steam act as though you are doing a vapour inhaler (which let’s face it is hard to get little kids to do using the old bowl and towel method sitting down). I also put the same face washer in a bowl and re splash with the oil and cover with boiling water and put it in the boy’s rooms overnight (I found using a traditional vaporiser created too much dampness which leads to mould on windows etc which I do not want in a newly built house!!) (Please do not put this where children can access of course as its boiling water and it will burn them! Top of a cupboard etc out of little peoples reach is best)
- One of our favourite products is Little Innocents Vapour rub which unlike Vicks & Vicks baby balm is a non toxic way to help your child breathe easier when they are sniffly We rub it on the boy’s chests/backs, behind their ears and on the soles of their feet (then covered with socks).
- Garlic is nature’s own natural antibiotic so put it wherever you can, load up dishes like soups, casseroles, bone broths etc with garlic or if you have fussy eaters even make up some homemade garlic bread with some yummy organic butter (or olive oil if dairy free) and smoother on the crushed garlic (spelt sourdough and put some oregano sprinkled on top with the olive oil/garlic mix is lovely too) Just a word of warning on raw garlic though, it can cause issues to those with sensitive digestive tracks so if this is the case cooked garlic in soup etc is your best option.
- Drinking plenty of fluids, lots of filtered water (not chilled), tea (with no dairy, avoid dairy for the duration you are unwell), bone broth are all great as well as clear soups to rehydrate your system.
- Dairy free Probiotics, (we use a practitioner only brand everyday) and when sick we use a double dose to help up the good bacteria levels in the gut.
- Raw honey is also another great natural bacteria fighter. The boys like a spoonful of raw honey off a spoon if they have a sore throat. It is very soothing. (Not for children under 12 months)
- A good nasal aspirator – or “the snot sucker” as it’s called in our house. These are brilliant for clearing a blocked nose.
- Plenty of rest and if possible get out in the sunshine for a daily dose of Vitamin D! It does wonders for healing and your general mood which tends to be a little off when sick!
So here you have our remedies, I’d love to hear some of your own.
Disclaimer – I am not a Doctor or Naturopath etc these are my own personal remedies that I have chosen to use based on my research over the years and from various holistic sources. The above remedies are suitable for children over 2 years of age. For young children as their conditions can deteriorate quite quickly please seek medical advice if you have any concerns regarding their symptoms.