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Home Remedies and Natural Cures

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As conventional healthcare costs continue to rise and as the idea of being more mindful when taking medication becomes more widespread, home remedies have become more appealing.  What if you could use ingredients you already have on hand to tackle a common issue?  You can!  Read on for my recommendations on how to treat a common cold, stomach ache, hangover, and heartburn.  If you’d rather get this information in podcast form, listen to my Home Remedies episode on the Crunchy Cocktail Hour!

Disclaimer:  None of the suggestions below should take precedence over the advice or treatment prescribed by a medical professional.  Additionally, none of these methods should be used as consistent care for a persistent problem.

Common Cold

Natural Cough Syrup

Ingredients: ¼ cup honey, ¼ cup apple cider vinegar

Combine in a sealed jar and shake.  Take a tablespoon every 4 hours.  This is especially great for the littles since the FDA does not allow children under 3 to take cough medicine and children 4-6 only to take it when advised by a doctor.  To mask the taste for yourself or for the kids, add some apple juice or apple cider.

Saltwater Gargle

Ingredients: ¼ tsp salt, 8 oz. glass of water

Take mouthfuls and gargle on the back of your throat every few hours.  Not only does this help alkalinize the mouth, which is an unfavorable environment for bacteria, but salt water is also astringent and helps to shrink inflammation in the throat.

Vaporize with Essential Oils

Ingredients: Eucalyptus essential oil or a mix of oils that contain eucalyptus

Fill a large soup pot with water and heat until it steams (but not boiling for safety reasons).  Add a few drops of essential oil to the pot, put your face over the pot and put a towel over your head to lock in the steam.  Breathe in the eucalyptus steam for 10-15 minutes and then head over to the bathroom to cough up anything that is dislodged.

Non-alcoholic Hot Toddy

Ingredients: Chamomile tea, honey, lemon, optional: fresh ginger, cinnamon

Steep the tea to your liking and add all other ingredients to taste.  Honey and lemon soothe the throat and chamomile help for a good night’s sleep.

Stomach Ache

BRAT Diet: Bananas, Rice, Apple (sauce), and Toast

This is as simple as eating those foods listed – bananas, rice, apples or applesauce, and toast.  These foods are low fiber which doesn’t force your stomach to work hard processing and these are fairly bland foods with no spice, which can aggravate the stomach.

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Ginger Tea or Ginger Ale

Ginger is naturally anti-inflammatory and is extremely soothing to the stomach.  You can drink it hot or cold or even just add some fresh ginger slices to steep in a cup of hot water.  If you’re drinking ginger ale, be sure it actually contains ginger.  Most mainstream ginger ale does not, however you may have some luck finding real ginger ale in the health food or organic isles at your grocery store.

 

Peppermint Leaf Pills

Peppermint helps promote digestion and provide a nice cooling effect to an upset stomach.  If you don’t have peppermint pills on hand, you can also try a peppermint candy.

Hangover

Bananas with Honey

As you’re probably aware, when you drink you go to the bathroom more.  When you go to the bathroom more, you expel a lot of potassium.  Bananas help replenish your potassium and honey helps to increase blood sugar.

Ginger Tea or Ginger Ale

Ginger is naturally anti-inflammatory and is extremely soothing to the stomach.  You can drink it hot or cold or even just add some fresh ginger slices to steep in a cup of hot water.  If you’re drinking ginger ale, be sure it actually contains ginger.  Most mainstream ginger ale does not, however you may have some luck finding real ginger ale in the health food or organic isles at your grocery store.

Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is different than your average charcoal.  It has been treated in a way that makes it porous.  Those pores draw in and help flush out toxins.  Alcohol is absorbed into your body extremely quickly, however taking activated charcoal a few hours prior to a night out may help with hangover symptoms.  As an example, wine naturally develops sulfites in the fermentation process.  Activated charcoal will draw in and help flush sulfites out. Quite frankly, some of what you flush out may not even be the toxins in the alcohol, but anything not so good for you mixed into your drinks.

If you aren’t allergic to coconut, I highly recommend a coconut-derived charcoal.  Otherwise, I recommend this one.

Disclaimer: Activated charcoal is powerful.  If you are taking any prescribed medications, do not consume activated charcoal without first speaking to your doctor as it may flush out medicine in your system.  Be mindful to drink plenty of water as activated charcoal can dehydrate you.  Most importantly, this method should be used sparingly.

Bonus: Crack open one of those pills and use it to brush your teeth for a natural way to whiten.  But again with a disclaimer, do not do this consistently for more than 3-5 days as activated charcoal is powerful and can break down the enamel on your teeth if used too frequently.

Heartburn

Applesapple-red-pectin-heartburn

Apples contain pectin, a type of soluble fiber, which can help absorb stomach acid.  You’ll want to stick to a sweeter, redder apple.  The acidity in a tart apple could further upset your stomach.

Baking Soda

Ingredients: 1/2 tsp. baking soda into a full glass of water

Baking soda is a natural antacid and can help alleviate heartburn.  As with anything else mentioned in this post, you should use this sparingly because baking soda is high in salt.

Don’t be afraid to try a home remedy!

I’m always on the hunt for new home remedies to try, so share your favorite ones with me and let me know if any of the ones above are already in your home remedy toolbox.


Larisa Explains It All is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.

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