With so many people under the weather thanks to colds and the flu making their rounds I thought I’d share a few natural tips for staying healthy this winter. 1. Eat well. Your diet is the number one means by which you can build your immune system. It is a bit more challenging to find fresh fruits and vegetables in the winter but broccoli, greens, citrus fruits, and squash are a few that are readily available. More »
You might be surprised to know that the air inside your home could be dangerous. In fact, our indoor air is often what causes common illnesses and ailments such as fatigue, asthma, skin conditions, learning disabilities, ADHD, digestive issues, infertility, obesity, and cancer. More »
In our house very little food goes to waste. If leftovers aren’t eaten within two days they get frozen. Vegetables that are looking a little sad get thrown into a batch of pasta sauce or soup. If I don’t have time to whip up a batch of something with them then, most vegetables, I can just quickly chop and throw in the freezer (I almost always have frozen chopped peppers or broccoli in my freezer.) More »
When it comes to colds and flu, there are two approaches: prevention and treatment. There are natural remedies for both of these approaches. Stock up on treatments and begin prevention now, and you should have a much more comfortable cold and flu season. Here are some ideas: More »
Natural Treatment for Heat Rash
With record breaking heat waves all over the country this summer it’s only natural that a lot of people, especially small children, will suffer from an itchy, annoying heat rash at some point.
There are several ways for healing and soothing heat rash naturally:
Simple but effective, an icy compress can soothe and cool skin very effectively. Rather than rubbing the skin directly with ice, put ice cubes or an ice pack in a zip-top plastic bag and wrap it with a cloth before applying it to the skin.
2. Baking Soda (sodium bicarbonate)
A lukewarm bath (the cooler the better) in which 1/4 cup of baking soda has been dissolved, helps relieve heat rash. For children, use 2-3 teaspoons of baking soda since the bath will have less water. For babies, add only about a teaspoon to their bath. Remember to pat dry with a soft towel; don’t rub your skin vigorously or that will worsen the rash.
Another option is to apply baking soda to the rash in the form of a compress. On a wet cotton cloth, sprinkle baking soda liberally. Fold the cloth over so that the baking soda is on the inside, and lay the cool compress on the affected areas. You may need several compresses, and the applications will need to be repeated. Cool the compress in a cooler or refrigerator between applications, and/or re-dampen the cloth with cool water.
3. Peppermint Powder
You can make this cooling powder yourself. Mix 1 part baking soda with 3 parts cornstarch. Add 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil per cup of the soda/cornstarch mixture. Shake vigorously to mix the oil in well. Pat this on to cool and soothe heat rash. It is especially effective as a heat rash preventative, and/or applied after a lukewarm shower or bath.
4. Peppermint Tea
All of the mints – wintergreen, spearmint, peppermint, etc. – have cooling properties. Add a cup or two of mint tea to a lukewarm-to-cool bath. You can also apply mint tea to your heat rash directly, like a lotion. Soaking a cloth in mint tea and applying it to the rash as a compress is also effective.
5. Witch Hazel
A cotton ball soaked in extract of witch hazel (available at drugstores, usually sold near the hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol) can be patted on the skin to soothe heat rash.
This ancient skin remedy is very effective at treating burns, and although heat rash is not a burn, it is a hot, prickly skin irritation that responds well to aloe vera gel. You can use the gel directly from the plant; just slit an aloe leaf lengthwise and press the split leaf onto the skin. Do not rub it in, as you don’t want to irritate the skin further.
The anti-inflammatory properties of oatmeal are very soothing to skin irritations. It can be applied as a poultice using the method described in number 2 above; just replace the baking soda with finely ground oats or oatmeal. You can also add a cupful of oatmeal or oat flour to a lukewarm bath, but you will want to tie it into a muslin or cheesecloth bag so that it does not clog up your bath drain after you’re through.