I know it's still summer, but we have to address the elephant in the room. September is right around the corner and that means the autumn chills are coming back too! Let's be honest with the cool, crisp breeze germs and sickness comes in with a vengeance.
I have begun to stock up on dried elderberries for the winter. For the past few years I have noticed Elderberries sell out well before cold and flu season hits, so I recommend stocking up now while you can. It's quite simple to make your own elderberry syrup with dried elderberries, honey, water, and of course our most favorite essential oils (I always include thieves, cinnamon bark, nutmeg, and frankincense). We take 1-2 tsp each day for the duration of the fall/winter!
I am also stocking up on several other oily goodies for the fall and back to school season. Clark is heading back to school in a few weeks, and we know that the influx of illness will begin. In general, we try to stay away from indoor playspaces, museums, and generally populated places.
While many public places have chemical hand sanitizer (often used by everyone and their mother's brothers aunt, lol), in reality our best defense against illness is a strong immune system. Building up a body natural defense doesn't happen overnight.
Remember, It takes time.
I learned that it's important to start an immune- boosting routine well before these activities / school starts, so we have a better chance at avoiding illness. While its nearly impossible to avoid every cold, flu and bug from making us ill, we can strengthen our defenses against common germs.
Carefree summer days are dwindling down and my focus is to support our systems and get back into our routine.
Some ways we have seen success with supporting our immune system are:
+Enjoying healthy diet filled with nutrient dense foods- highly processed , chemical preservatives, dyes, artificial sweetners make us feel sluggish and can cause inflammation in the body . This inflammation lowers the body's ability to fight infection! Encourage yourself and children to eat plenty of nutrient foods such as - free range eggs, nuts +seeds, wild fish, organic leafy greens, colorful veggies +fruits, grass fed beef, and free range poultry. These foods will provide the vitamins, minerals and nutrients needed to support a healthy body and mind.
Check out more on this topic here (delicious recipes included!).
Physical activity is so important for overall health. Aside from helping to maintain a healthy weight, exercise improves hearth health, brain function, and even impacts the body's immune system. That's a WIN in my book!
For more on Working out with limited space/ time check out my blog post.
Unfortunately, when school begins kids spend alot more time outdoors. To combat this , we often go for walks along the beach, head to a new playground, hunt for natural materials such as rocks, sticks, leaves, flowers to take in doors for some fun projects. It's amazing how good to feels to have the cool crisp air on your cheeks! Feel free to make it fun- dance party, exercise scavenger hunt, jump rope, hula hoop. Anything can be turned into a game! The kids love our family fun movement games!
+Sleep- rest is best, its also super important and plays a key role in preventing illness. Start working on your sleep habits now before heading back to school, work, or before the clocks change. A Sleep routine that has been helpful for myself and the boys has commenced ( I suggest start 2 weeks before the start of the new school year).
+Set a consistent bedtime
Set your Desert Mist Diffuser with your favorite sleepy time/ calming oils. Run 15 minutes before entering the bedroom. This allows the scent to permeate the room before entry.
Reading before bed - allow time to wind down. We set about 30 minutes before the lights go out to read as a family.
Lights out- lights can disrupt the body's production of melatonin during the night. Blue light from TV, video games, ipads, etc also suppress melatonin. Limit the use of these devices before bedtime.
+Soothe worries - kids (as well as adults) can be anxious with a new school year, new job, new friends/ co-workers. Often these feelings are brought up at bedtime .
Some natural ways to soothe anxiety and calm the mind are
rub magnesium butter onto the feet
use a sound machine ( or the new Feather Owl Diffuser from Young Living) we love a gentle " natures music" option.
use a sleepytime foot spray or relaxing pillow spray with your favorite Young Living essential oils. Peace and Calming, Lavender + Cedarwood, Dream Catcher, Valor + lavender are all amazing for relaxation.
Probiotics - they provide good bacteria that is important for gut health. We are loving MightyPro from Young Living. This is a "pixie stick" type of powder that can be added to your fruit, cereal, and /or water. Sometimes my boys just dump the packed into their mouths and go about their day,
+ Healthy Hygiene
We don't use antibacterial products but we do use the entire Thieves product line for personal hygiene. Each day when Clark comes home from school, he washes any exposed skin with Thieves hand soap, washes his face, brushes his teeth. He then takes off all his clothes and puts on a new set of clothing. This way all of the germs for the day are in the laundry room and not walking around my house. While I know NO ONE likes extra laundry (lol) we have been using this method since I taught. I have seen such a wonderful boost in our immunity and believe its due to getting all the crud off our body.
We use thieves foaming hand soap for all bathrooms and Thieves Hand Sanitizer for both Clark's lunch box and snack box.
Until August 31st, Young Living is giving those of you who are going inactive ( meaning have not placed an order in almost a year) a FREE Bottle of Thieves Foaming Hand Soap when you order 50PV! In order to take advantage of this you must call into Young Living and reactivate!
A place for many types of bacteria to enter is through the mouth. Use a natural toothpaste and teach your children how to brush to get all the properly to get all the bacteria away from the gum line.
We don't rush bath time. Taking time to cleanse the body is an act of self care and I want my boys to know that it important to pay attention to their body's needs.
For more information on the Thieves Household product line we are holding a quick class over on Facebook tomorrow evening Tuesday, August 20th starting at 6pm(EST). Come check the event.
There are so many ways to boost the immune system and it can feel overwhelming. But don't be discouraged! Even a few small changes can make a big impact on your immune system ( or your child's). Start with diet,sleep, hand washing then incorporate some of the other suggestions above.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or post in our oil education group The Lavender and Frank Lounge.
Be sure to subscribe to our blog and you'll receive our Winter Wellness Guide. This e-book is a wonderful resource to help you through the next several months.l It's chock full of healthy habits that we can utilize in order to be more proactive about taking care of our wellness
during the fall and winter!