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Being a stay-at-home mom of a homeschooled teenage daughter and a three year old girl can be overwhelming and physically exhausting at times, but since I began taking better care of myself six months ago (click here to read my article on how I lost 35 pounds), I am rarely ill anymore. However, during the past two weeks, the spring pollen caught up with me and I found myself suffering from an upper respiratory infection that I just couldn’t seem to shake. The first week I took all of the typical over-the-counter (OTC) medications: Tylenol, Motrin, Theraflu, Claritin-D12, Benadryl (not at the same time, of course), saline nasal spray and menthol cough drops. I drank a ton of water and mixed in my favorite go-to: Emergen-C powder powder. Nothing was working. In fact, I seemed to be getting worse. On the eighth day I was desperate for relief from the fatigue, the hacking cough, sore throat and stuffy nose. That’s when I remembered that I used to be a “hippie.”
I climbed up on a chair and got down my dusty old notebook of natural remedies that I complied years ago. In it I found this little gem that I swiped off of Facebook once:
So I dragged my exhausted self up to the local health food store, purchased the ingredients above, got out the immersion blender, threw this potion together and started drinking it immediately. Within a couple of minutes I felt my ears “burning” from the inside and my nasal passages started to clear. Within an hour, the sore throat and tickle in my chest subsided and I could breathe without coughing. I started to feel more energetic and was able to function closer to my “normal” for the remainder of the day. That night the cough and sore throat returned and I was having trouble sleeping, so I tried another natural remedy that a mama friend suggested:
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup filtered water
- cinnamon to taste
- honey to taste
*Put all ingredients in a small pot, simmer on stove until warm, pour into favorite mug and drink.*
Granted, the house smelled like bitter vinegar for awhile (complained the teen), but it worked like a charm! I was able to sleep better than I had in over a week.
The next day, another wise woman friend of mine brought me a tea that she made with cloves ,slippery elm bark , honey, various other herbs and basil leaves from her garden. The combination of these natural ingredients were working faster than all the OTC medications I’d been using and within two days I was back to feeling like myself again. I still have a slight residual cough, but this experience reminded me how powerful plants and herbs are and how important it is for me to incorporate them into my daily self-care. So beware pollen, the next time you flood my immune system, I will be ready for you!