Antibiotics may have saved many lives and killed an unimaginable number of harmful bacteria, but they also indiscriminately kill the beneficial bacteria as well, not to mention surviving strands can become resistant over time forming SuperBugs. The less we have to use antibiotics for everyday illnesses, that our own bodies immune system should easily handle, the better.
So I’ve compiled a quick list of household remedies and natural cures, so we can improve our health and give our immune system a health boost, naturally.
Salt water gargle for sore throats, strep throat and tonsillitis
Half a teaspoon of sea salt in a glass of warm water several times a day, gargle well and spit. This kills off the bad bacteria causing your sore throat, boosts the healing process and helps your body fight the infection or inflammation. Avoiding taking pills, sprays or lozenges that often contain unnecessary chemicals and additives. And it’s very nearly free!
Make your own cough and cold drink with lemon, ginger, honey (optional cayenne pepper) for sore throat, cough and colds
Use fresh, natural ingredients, squeeze half a lemon into your mug (look out for the pips), cut several slices of ginger, add a spoonful of honey, a pinch of cayenne pepper if you like and top off with hot (but not quite boiling water), give it a few stirs and you have your own health drink, packed with goodness! Lemon juice has high vitamin C content, ginger warms the body and has anti-bacterial properties, honey helps sooth and boosts the immune system (Manuka honey from New Zealand has additional health properties, I recommend checking it out) and optional cayenne pepper adds a little zing that complements the taste and warms the body more. Chillis are thought to be alkalising for the body and open the pores, allowing toxins to leave. And there you have a tasty natural drink, costing next to nothing and using only totally natural ingredients!
Salt water nasal cleans for sinus infections, colds, allergies and hay fever
This is an ancient health practice from both the Ayurvedic tradition as well as Taoist Longevity practices. Similar to the throat gargle above, mix half a teaspoon of sea salt in a glass of warm water several times a day. Either buy the special Neti Nasal pot from a health store or online (Amazon has several) or simply pour into the palm of your hand. One nostril at a time (closing the other with your finger), you are going to suck the salt water solution up your nose. The water will feel strange, probably sting but will certainly be washing out lots of built up junk, gunk and rubbish. When you’ve taken the salt water up as fas as you can go, let it out again over a basin or sink, blow the excess out with several exhalations through the nose, and begin again on the other side. Continue for as long as you feel the need. This will certainly get easier over time and can be used as a preventative if you are prone to sinus problems. I find that this will speed up recovery from nasal problems, such as a cold or infection, much more quickly than normal, progressing a cold through several stages in a day, rather than waiting for your body to struggle though. When you really need to do this, it will most probably hurt the most. But see that as a good indication of your nasal health and keep going.
You can’t beat Vitamin C to boost the immune system
So squeeze your own juice. Grab some fresh oranges, a lemon or two and any other citrus fruit you like and get juicing. Either a hand juicer, or any of the electric juicers available on the market (I quite like the hand juicer which gives you some nice bits of chomp on). Be careful of the pips, and drink it while it’s fresh. The vitamins and enzymes are sensitive to air and will quickly oxidise, so drink up while it’s just squeezed. Your body doesn’t store Vitamin C as it’s water soluble and will need more of it while you’re ill, so give yourself a boost with some fresh citrus juice.
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) for tummy upsets and diahorrea
There are a lot of products on the market and plenty of people in doctors’ waiting rooms trying to deal with mild food poisoning or something that didn’t agree with them. Often the products just put a stop to your urgency, while not actually dealing with what is making you ill. Doctors already have far too much on their plates to deal with and may simply prescribe antibiotics (which are generally not a good idea for things like this as they may make matters worse. In fact you may have diahorrea because of antibiotics).
Of course diahorrea may be a symptom of another more serious illness, but try this first. If you don’t feel a remarkable and often near instantaneous improvement, you should contact your doctor.
Take a shot of your standard variety Apple Cider Vinega, several times a day until your stomach calms, stool frequency and urgency subsides and your internal organs stop rebelling against you. I prefer organic Apple Cider Vinegar, but this is just my preference. Standard Apple Cider Vinegar will work just as well. It seems that the ACV has a two-fold effect: it kills the bacteria (and maybe even viruses) causing your upset and at the same time calms your stomach. I’ve used this as a preventative when I’ve suspected that something I’ve eaten may well cause problems later. Take a quick spoonful of Apple Cider Vinegar and sleep soundly.
When the emergency is over, it is a good idea to supplement with prebiotics and probiotics for a while to help re-establish the healthy bacterial balance in the gut. Remember to stay hydrated if you are vomiting or have frequent stool.
So there you have it. I hope you’re learned something from this post and that this ancient knowledge will benefit you, your friends and family for many years to come.
Please feel free to add any of your own natural home remedies below in the comments section.
But do remember, if symptoms persist or worsen, see a health professional.