By Yvonne M. Glasgow
There are many people out there that don’t have health insurance. Either they are unemployed, or they just can’t afford the insurance that their employer offers. For some minor injuries and illnesses an expensive visit to the doctor’s office can be avoided with holistic remedies, right at home. Homemade remedies, and inexpensive store bought herbs and supplements, can be a cheap alternative to those living on a budget. They can be made from foods, oils, herbs and condiments. Many holistic home remedies have been used for years, decades even. These remedies help heal what is wrong; instead of just masking the issue like pain killers do. Here is a list of possible ailments and the holistic ways to treat them.
An immune system boost is the best way to avoid a cold, and it’s the best way to fight a cold. This means getting plenty of antioxidants (found in many fruits and vegetables) and vitamin C. Homemade, fresh, 100% juice is best; if there is a juicer present. When buying juice make sure it’s 100% juice and hasn’t gone through any heating processes (which reduces the vitamin C content). Oranges, blueberries, and strawberries are the highest in vitamin C and antioxidants of fruits.
Camphor has been used for ages to help suppress coughing. It is actually an ingredient in the vapor rubs sold to help with coughing and congestion. Camphor can be bought at any drug store. Rub some on the chest area and it is readily absorbed into the skin. The strong scent of it will clear the sinuses and help inhibit coughing.
The best holistic way to reduce a fever is to drink plenty of water and get plenty of sleep. As long as the fever remains between 100 degrees and 102 degrees it can be dealt with from home. Take short baths in cool water to help bring the temp down. If it goes over 102 it is important to see a doctor. Fevers are meant to help the body fight infections, but if they get too high they can cause other serious problems, including brain damage.
When a sore throat comes creeping up, the first thing to do is gargle with some warm salt water. This will help kill the bacteria that is causing the pain. Soothing a sore throat, and helping it heal, can easily be done with some tea, lemon juice and honey. The warmth of the tea helps soothe the scratchy pain, the lemon juice works as an antiseptic and the honey coats the throat to keep it from being too painful. One last way to help battle sore throat pain is to chew on raw garlic. Chew a whole clove as soon as it feels like a sore throat or cold coming on. It is antimicrobial and it can help boost the immune system.
Unsalted butter, not margarine or oleo, helps reduce inflammation in the body. In fact, some people claim that adding fish oil and unsalted butter to a daily diet can actually help heal cavities. Cloves can help reduce toothache pain. Suck on a whole clove in the area of the pain. Cloves were actually used as an antiseptic when dentistry first came about.
There are numerous types and causes of skin rashes. Some can mean something is wrong internally, while some are just an allergic reaction to something. Internal reasons can not simply be treated by removing the rash. Detoxing the entire body can help. Do this by drinking water and 100% fruit juices for the first day and then adding in fruits and vegetables for two days. This three day fast will help reset the body internally and clear out negative things within. To get rid of the external rash use aloe, vitamin E, olive oil and/or chamomile tea. Chamomile tea will help bring down swelling and soothe the rash. Aloe and vitamin E are healing. And olive oil will help replenish the dry skins moisture.
Tea tree oil, which comes from a tree in Australia, is a great holistic and topical treatment for acne. It has a pleasant, though strong, odor, and it helps dry up pimples. It is an anti-inflammatory, so it helps reduce acne, outside the skin and inside.
Use aloe for cuts, scrapes and burns. Aloe is very healing and comes from the aloe plant. There are many lotions that contain aloe, and aloe gels. And keeping an aloe plant in the house can also come in very handy. Vitamin E can help wounds heal faster, in place of antibiotic ointments.
There are two great ways to help fight insomnia. The first is to drink some chamomile tea, or tea that contains Valerian root, which can also be found in supplement form, about a half hour before bed. These teas will help you relax. Chamomile tea is milder than Valerian, and also less expensive. The other is to take a nice, warm relaxing bath. Scent the bath with a relaxing scent to help calm the nerves and promote sleep, like vanilla or lavender.
An old diarrhea remedy that actually works is blackberry juice. Anti-diarrhea pills can block the system up for days and cause gas, but a simple glass of blackberry juice can harden the soft stools without messing the body up.
The best natural way to get rid of a headache is with peppermint oil. This natural oil is good for more than headaches too. To save money, buy peppermint oil in the cooking department, where you’ll find it used for candy making. This way it is natural, and edible. For headache relief just dab some on your temples. It will soak into the skin and it’s scent will help chase away any head pain. It’s even used by migraine sufferers.
Pass on the ibuprofen and other pain killers and reach for natural capsaicin. It’s not the cheapest alternative, but it is worth the money. Capsaicin not only helps with general muscle pain, but it also helps with arthritis. It comes from hot peppers. It can be found in supplement form and creams. Another cheaper alternative that can help with arthritis and joint pain is fish oil. Or, add fish into the diet at least two meals a week. Some of the best fish choices for meals are salmon, perch, pollock, tilapia and trout. These fish are also low in mercury content.
Here’s where peppermint comes in again. Add a drop or two of natural peppermint oil to a bottle of water to ease stomach upset. Ginger is good for stomach problems too. Ginger is commonly used as a tea for stomach issues. Ginger ale can also be useful, if it contains actual ginger. Ginger ale, with it’s carbonation, can also help with gas relief.