Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Cold Care: Stopping it Before it Starts

I don't like being sick.  I know this because I have been sick, and I've decided that based on my experiences, that's just not really for me.

Now, the two most important ways to stay healthy are sleep and to eat/hydrate well.  I do a pretty good job eating and hydrating, although I could stand to drink a LOT more water.  Sleep, on the other hand, is not my strong suit.  So, all things being equal, I wouldn't even get sick, really.

Sadly, without sleep or lots of hand washing...  Yeah, I'm just going to go ahead and say I should wash my hands more.  I come in from the store and grab a snack- my grandmother just rolled over in her grave.  She was meticulous about washing her hands as soon as she walked in the door after a trip to the store.  I'm terrible.  Plus, with two toddlers, I should be washing my hands non-stop!

Okay, so sleep, nutrition/hydration, and hand washing...

Anyway, so when I do find that somehow I still wake up feeling cruddy (or feel cruddy at any point in the day, it just seems morning is more common), I have a few tricks up my sleeve.

Now that I have doTERRA oils in my life, I have bypassed the second suggestion and started by disinfecting my environment and body by diffusing essential oils, specifically OnGuard blend if I'm starting to feel sick.  I use the AromaAce diffuser, which is the better quality one.  I love it.  The whole house smells like whatever I diffuse, and that means that the oils have diffused through the house.  The aromatic is an indicator that the therapeutic elements are all over too.  I've found that diffusing really stops it that day.

The second trick is my mom's "cure" that she always gave me when I didn't feel well.  I realize this is a variation on the Master Cleanse, but we don't drink it exclusively, just as a drink like a cup of tea.

The recipe is for the amounts I find useful and that I can stomach.
Juice from 1 lemon
1-3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (my mom would chime in, here, "With the mother!")
1-3 Tbsp maple syrup (honey or agave are fine, but not the same for me)
hot water to fill the cup after these ingredients have been added
a dash- 1/2 tsp of cayenne powder

We have a boarder currently, and she was prone to colds when she first moved in (probably adjusting to living with the germs of two toddlers).  After her first round, she would then come into the kitchen on mornings when her throat hurt, or if she felt run down from a hard day at work and say, "I need oils and cure."  The stuff works.

Now I have a story about what doesn't work.  When I was in college, I got what was known around the dorms as "the crud."  I just wanted my mother's cure, but I was in no state to leave my bed, so I improvised.  In many recipes, I think it's good to improvise.  You discover new and wonderful things and you don't spend money needlessly on EXACTLY what you were supposed to use.  That was not the case in this situation.
What I had was seasoned rice vinegar (not the same as ACV- with the mother), lime juice in a squeeze bottle (I was in college, okay, you know what that was for), some packets of raw sugar (the point of the sweetener in this recipe is to balance the vinegar, but also to coat the throat, so this didn't work), and Tapatio hot sauce (just, no).  After that drink, I caved and went to the health center and took medications for a cold for the first time in my life.  I proceeded to have an allergic reaction to the decongestant that made me hallucinate.
The moral of my story is that this is a good cure when done right, and I need to personally avoid pharmaceutical decongestants or I lose my mind and end up on the phone crying to my friend across the country because I know I CAN put my hand through the wall, but it's not working.  Oh college...

A few extra tips:  If I have any sinus-y stuff, I add a few drops of grapefruit seed extract to my cure tea. That stuff tastes AWFUL, so only a few drops.  I also make up gel caps (veggie gelatin) of my oils.  I like a combo of oregano, melaleuca, and frankincense with some more of that disgusting grapefruit seed extract.  If I'm really battling the sinuses (and since I had my wisdom teeth out and got a wicked sinus infection, I seem to be prone to them for life now), I'll take a gel cap like that every half hour for a few hours until I'm breathing clear.

I also have a roll-on bottle of essential oils I blended myself that I roll over my sinuses and lymph nodes when I don't feel like taking some pills.  I use that if it's just some minor pressure.

I hope these tips help you, and that you never need them because you sleep, eat, hydrate, and wash well!

If you'd like to buy Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade essential oils, here is a link to my doTERRA store.  All the oils I've mentioned in this post are safe for consumption- although be careful with oregano and either dilute or put in a gel cap because it is "hot" and will burn the tongue or skin if taken directly.
My Online doTERRA Store

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