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I used to have a love-hate relationship with this time of year. I often long for the colder weather and shorter days towards the end of summer and the end of the year holidays bring a special kind of joy to my soul. There was a time though when I spent those months feeling sluggish, often with chapped lips and a runny nose. I wasn’t good at taking care of myself and giving my body the support tools it needed when stress and illness ran high.
Over the past few year I’ve gotten better about looking after my health, so I wanted to share a few of the remedies I’ve learned along the way.
This is my favorite tea to drink in the winter. Anytime I start feeling stuffy I drink a cup of cayenne tea. The first time I tried this tea, I was honestly scared to take the first sip. The idea of cayenne pepper and hot water did not sound fun to me. The spiciness from the pepper isn’t actually too that strong and it mixes well with the lemon and honey.
1/4 tsp cayenne powder
Juice of half a lemon
1 TBSP honey
- Place cayenne powder in a mug, then pour boiling water over it. Add lemon + honey, and stir.
- Sip slowly once it has cooled a bit.
Fire cider is a sweet and spicy infused vinegar, packed full of anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. This traditional folk remedy is wonderful to have on hand this time of year because not only is it an immune booster but acts as a decongestant, digestive stimulant, and helps with circulation throughout the body.
Elderberry syrup has been a favorite of mine for years now. This can be taken alone, or you can mix it into tea or yogurt.
1 c dried black elderberries
3 c water
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 tsp cloves or clove powder
1 cup honey or simple sugar syrup (I use simple syrup because I currently have an infant, but I’ve used honey in the past)
- Combine water, elderberries, cinnamon, and cloves in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer on low for about 30 minutes or until the liquid is reduced by half.
- Remove from heat. Use a potato masher or fork to mash the berries, then let sit until it is cool enough to handle.
- Pour through a strainer into a glass bowl. Keep the juice and discard the pulp. Let cool to lukewarm.
- Add in the honey or simple syrup and mix well. Transfer to a lidded jar or glass jug. Store in the fridge for up to 3 months.
Lemon + Ginger Honey
I love this honey infusion during the winter months because of its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Lemon and ginger honey is excellent to add to teas and warm drinks.
Get the recipe here.
Moisturizing Sugar Scrub
Sugar scrubs are a must in the winter when skin starts to get dry. Here are a few of my favorite recipes.
- Woodsy Grapefruit Sugar Scrub
- Pink Lemonade Sugar Scrub
- Vanilla Brown Sugar Scrub
- Peppermint Sugar Scrub
- Lavender Sugar Scrub
Feel Better Tea
How to make: Combine equal parts meadowsweet, elder flowers, rose hips in a jar. Scoop 1 TBSP into a tea infuser, add to a mug a mug of hot water. Cover and let steep 10 minutes.
Chicken soup has all that immune boosting goodness we are usually looking for during the cold winter months. I’m not much of a fan of most chicken soup recipes because they are too
Some Other Tips:
- Drink lots of water. I try to make sure I am drinking at least 64 oz of water a day. The right amount of water will vary for each individual, so listen to your body.
- Take a vitamin D supplement
- Get enough sleep. Lack of sleep can lower your immune system response.
- Keep the air in your home clean. I like to crack a window every now and then to let in some fresh air. I also often have some sort of cleansing essential oil in my diffuser. Room sprays are great too.
- Speaking of essential oils, it’s good to have some on hand. Melaleuca, Lavender, Peppermint, and Orange are great ones to start with.
- Probiotics and Adaptogens. I use the Mommy’s Bliss probiotic drops for the girls and I use these. For adaptogens, I really like Moon Dust from Moon Juice.
Let’s discuss! What are some of your favorite winter remedies?