Avoid Cold & Flu This Winter

‘Tis the season – cold & flu season. It seems the Northeast is getting hit very hard this year with all sorts of illnesses: flu, strep, stomach bug, you name it. As a certified health coach, I believe many illnesses commonly suffered can be avoided by making simple dietary changes and supplementing with natural immune support when needed. Rather than relying on pharmacies and prescriptions, I like to give my body the natural support it needs to fight off illness and feel its best. When your body is functioning optimally, it is much less likely to get sick, and if you do get sick, the duration will be much shorter.

Some of my all time favorite winter supplements include:

  • Organic Elderberry Syrup: A powerful antiviral that tastes great too! Perfect for fighting off the flu.
  • Garlic: Anti-microbial power that is great for boosting the immune system. It’s most powerful when eaten raw, so I like to chop it up and use in in dips like guacamole and hummus.
  • Young Living Thieves Essential Oil: An anti-microbial blend of essential oils that supports the immune system. I like to diffuse it to clear the air of germs, clean with it, apply it to the soles of my feet to prevent illness and it can also be taken internally as well.
  • Epsom Salt Bath: A relaxing way to pull toxins out of the body. I like to mix lavender essential oil to boost relaxation and reduce stress as well.
  • Probiotics: Replenishing your body’s “good” bacteria will help you to fight off the “bad” bacteria that cause illness. Improving the function of your gut is vital, as this is where the majority of your immune system dwells.
  • Alive Organic Vitamin C powder: Vitamin C can help reduce the duration and severity of colds. Unlike many chemically processed vitamins, this food-based supplement is easily assimilated and digested.

Of course, supplements are great to help support your body, but it is also essential that you maintain a healthy, balanced diet to keep your body feeling its best. Reducing or eliminating sugar is essential to good health. One of the reasons so many people get sick during the holidays is because of the high consumption of sugar, which compromises the immune system. I also like to suggest limiting or eliminating dairy products, as these are mucous producing, which is obviously not ideal during cold and flu season. You don’t have to live a life of total deprivation but making sure your diet and supplementation focuses on whole foods, with little processed “junk” food can really work wonders for your health! Here’s to a happy, healthy winter!

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

Beating Dandruff Naturally

I confess, when I was younger I went through a stage where I had dandruff. Store bought shampoos helped, but at the time I never really thought about WHY I was getting dandruff because I was just so focused on how to get rid of it. Things like dandruff are your body’s way of signaling you that there is an imbalance. As with any health related symptoms, it’s important to look at the root cause of the issue, rather than simply treating the symptoms.

The good news is, I haven’t had dandruff in many years! I am happy to report I no longer have to worry about those ugly flakes finding their way to my shoulder. So what causes it? Dandruff is frequently cause by a type of fungus called Malassezia. It can be present in many of us in normal amounts, but when the body is out of balance, it creates the opportunity for this fungus to grow out of control and present itself in the form of dandruff. So what’s my secret? Probiotics! By flooding my gut with good, healthy bacteria, it helps it to fight off the bad guys like Malassezia and prevent them from growing out of control. A diet low in or free from sugar, dairy and yeast is also helpful, as fungus feeds on them.

When looking for a probiotic, I suggest going for something high end. They should always be refrigerated to maintain potency. I also prefer that they be gluten and dairy free, as those can feed the yeast/fungus you are trying to starve.

If you’ve got dandruff there is a natural alternative that is better for your overall health than the toxic shampoos and treatments you find in the drug store. In this study thirty patients with seborrheic dermatitis and dandruff were asked to rub diluted honey on their scalp and massage for 2-3 minutes every other day, then leave it on for 3 hours. Itching was relieved and scaling disappeared within one week, while skin lesions were healed and disappeared completely within 2 weeks – those who continued the treatment once per week had no relapses. Twelve of the 15 patients who did not continue the honey regimen relapsed within 2-4 months.

How To Use Raw Honey for Dandruff according to mommypotamus.com

Wet hair, apply diluted raw honey (90% honey and 10% water). Massage into scalp for 2-3 minutes, then let it sit for three hours while you catch up on your favorite show, read, or fold laundry. Rinse with warm water. If desired, follow with 1/4 cup vinegar and 3/4 cup water to seal the hair cuticle and make hair shiny.

Repeat every other day for about two weeks. In the study, participants reported that their dandruff was gone within two weeks. Those who continued the honey treatment once a week after that had no relapses, while those who did not relapsed in 2-4 months.

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

Beating Back To School Germs Naturally

As the summer starts winding down and kids return to school – there is only one thing more imminent than the onslaught of pumpkin flavored everything…cold and flu season. Yes, I said it. You know it’s on its way. Many of us are already starting to feel that dreaded tickle in the back of our throats that signifies something unpleasant is brewing.

As a certified health coach, I believe many illnesses commonly suffered can be avoided by making simple dietary changes and supplementing with natural immune support when needed. Rather than relying on pharmacies and prescriptions, I like to give my body the natural support it needs to fight off illness and feel its best.

Some of my all time favorite fall/winter supplements include:

  • Organic Elderberry Syrup: A powerful antiviral that tastes great too! Perfect for fighting off the flu.
  • Garlic: Anti-microbial power that is great for boosting the immune system. It’s most powerful when eaten raw, so I like to chop it up and use in in dips like guacamole and hummus.
  • Young Living Thieves Essential Oil: An anti-microbial blend of essential oils that supports the immune system. I like to diffuse it to clear the air of germs, clean with it, apply it to the soles of my feet to prevent illness and it can also be taken internally as well.
  • Epsom Salt Bath: A relaxing way to pull toxins out of the body. I like to mix lavender essential oil to boost relaxation and reduce stress as well.
  • Probiotics: Replenishing your body’s “good” bacteria will help you to fight off the “bad” bacteria that cause illness. Improving the function of your gut is vital, as this is where the majority of your immune system dwells.
  • Alive Organic Vitamin C powder: Vitamin C can help reduce the duration and severity of colds. Unlike many chemically processed vitamins, this food-based supplement is easily assimilated and digested.

Of course, supplements are great to help support your body, but it is also essential that you maintain a healthy, balanced diet to keep your body feeling its best. Reducing or eliminating sugar is essential to good health. One of the reasons so many people get sick during the holidays is because of the high consumption of sugar, which compromises the immune system. I also like to suggest limiting or eliminating dairy products, as these are mucous producing, which is obviously not ideal during cold and flu season. You don’t have to live a life of total deprivation but making sure your diet and supplementation focuses on whole foods, with little processed “junk” food can really work wonders for your health! Here’s to a happy, healthy fall this year!

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

The season for sneezing… natural remedies for seasonal allergies

The season for sneezing...natural remedies for seasonal allergies

When you are exposed to allergy inducing grasses or pollen, your body responds by producing histamine, which leads to all the awful allergy symptoms many of us have come to dread.  By taking an anti-histamine – preferably before exposure to allergens – your cells are able to resist the binding of histamine, which then spares you from experiencing these dreadful symptoms. Whenever possible, I always prefer to use natural alternatives over medications. Here are some great natural alternatives you can use this allergy season.

Apple Cider Vinegar: It’s not the best tasting stuff on the planet, but it has powerful health benefits, including aiding digestion, supporting weight loss and thinning mucous. Its ability to reduce mucous production and cleanse the lymphatic system makes it useful for allergies. To use, take a teaspoon of organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar with “The Mother” (the mother is important), pour into a glass of water and drank this three times a day.

Neti Pot or Xlear Nasal Rinse/Spray

Flushing the nose out with a sterile solution helps remove allergens, which in turn reduces allergy symptoms. I like xlear nasal spray better than saline spray, as the xlear contains xylitol which helps keeps tissues moistened, rather than drying out as saline can.

Nettle Leaf

Nettle leaf is a natural antihistamine that can be very effective because it naturally blocks the body’s ability to produce histamine. It can be made into a tincture, tea or capsules. Personally, I prefer capsules as they’re just easier.  Nettle leaf can be mixed with peppermint leaf or red raspberry leaf to make a refreshing allergy relief tea.

Local, Raw Honey

It is said that consuming local honey from where you live will help your body adapt to the allergens in the environment there. Almost like a natural allergy “shot” because it exposes your system to small amounts of the allergens so your body can build up tolerance. Enjoy a teaspoon or more of raw, local honey from as close to where you live as possible – start doing this one month before allergy season to see the most benefits.

Probiotics

Allergies are caused by an imbalance in our immune systems that causes our body to react too strongly to external stimuli. Therefore, it stands to reason that healing our gut with healthy bacteria can help to reduce our reaction to allergens. Fermented foods, probiotic powders/capsules and drinks like Kombucha or Kimchi can be great for supporting a healthy gut.

Lavender Essential Oils

Lavender essential oil is a natural anti-histamine, and anti-inflammatory. . .  which is exactly what you want to safely and effectively conquer your seasonal allergies. Not only does it have great benefits for dealing with allergies, but it smells great too! You can diffusing lavender at bedside while sleeping, applying lavender to the soles of the feet, rubbing lavender on the face after washing, taking lavender orally in capsules. I use Young Living brand, therapeutic grade oils.

Himalayan Salt Lamp

Himalayan salt lamps can help clear the air of impurities. They also look naturally beautiful and are very peaceful, which I just love! Salt lamps are a nice (and attractive) way to keep the air in your home clear of impurities. Simply turn it on and let it get to work while you bask in its soft glow!