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Winter is upon us and many are already feeling under the weather. My husband laid low for much of the weekend feeling less than stellar. In addition, even healthy practices can put us at greater risk of weakened immune systems. For example, prolonged periods of exercise and heavy training regimens are associated with suppression of immune system function, which can increase your risk of picking up opportunistic infections. Check out this paper for a deeper dive into this topic. To reach and maintain peak physical condition, it is important to both minimize exposure to elements that may harm your immune system and to take proactive, consistent measures to enhance your body’s ability to protect itself. By developing a daily, consistent routine, you can easily and effectively keep your families healthy throughout all seasons of the year.Essential oils are amazing when it comes to getting you through sickness and supporting immunity. This involves two strategies: prevention and response. Prevention involves adding healthy habits to your daily routine. It is best to practice these habits regularly, as oils are most effective when used frequently in small amounts, rather than irregularly in large doses. See the recipes below for practical ways to go about both prevention and response.
There are many essential oils that can combat "ick" and support health at the same time, but you don’t actually need a huge collection. There are several “powerhouse oils” that you can do so many things with!
On Guard (protective blend)
HOW DO I USE THESE OILS?
GARGLEWhen your throat tickles or feel scratchy or you've been exposed to germs, use this gargle 2 - 3 times a day. Add 1 drop of melaleuca to 1 Tablespoon of filtered water. Swish throughout mouth and gargle for 1 minute. Spit the water out. STEAM INHALATIONSteaming is the best way to cut off a cold before it sets in. Try doing several steams a day for a few days until all signs of the cold are gone. Some of the best oils for steaming include Siberian Fir, Eucalyptus, and Melaleuca.
Directions: For adults, add 1 or 2 drops of a respiratory clearing essential oil to a bowl of steaming water, placing your head with closed eyes over the bowl, and draping a towel over your head to trap in the steam. Inhale deeply for several minutes. Use 3 to 4 times a day for 3 days.
Quick Tip: These same oils can be added to a dollop of lotion or cream and rubbed on your chest after a hot morning shower.DIFFUSER BLENDSScientific study demonstrates that diffusion of essential oils can purify and cleanse the air, providing added protection when the seasonal threats are high. I recommend diffusing essential oils every day, as they contain powerful cleansing properties that purify the air we breathe, delivering positive effects on the immune system. Here are some basic blends to get you started!
Daytime Diffuser Blends
Nighttime Diffuser Blends
PROTECTIVE ROOM SPRAY (to cleanse the air) Add essential oils and 2 ounces of water to a glass spray bottle. Shake before using.
Daily Protective Practice: Mix one drop of On Guard with carrier oil and apply along your spine and to the bottoms of your feet.
Daytime Chest & Neck Rub
Nighttime Chest & Neck Rub
Use Essential Oils to Clean SurfacesFrequently touched surfaces, such as door knobs, keyboards, cell phones, and grocery carts can be even more treacherous during certain times of the year. Cleaning these surfaces often is an important part of minimizing exposure to harmful particles. Essential oil-based cleaning products are a highly effective way to sanitize surfaces while preventing exposure to toxins. I suggest using Lemon, Grapefruit, Wild Orange, Melaleuca, Purify (cleansing blend), or On Guard. On Guard hand sanitizing spray makes it easy to clean hands and surfaces when you're out and about.
Hey! I'm Rachel! I dove into natural wellness after my health crashed in 2014. I'm on a mission to help you understand the ingredients in the products you use and show you how easy it is to exchange toxin-containing ones for things that support rather than burden your body. You'll find me growing microgreens, tending my urban garden, cooking whole food meals, hiking, foraging, and creating DIY skincare products.
Skincare and makeup is one of the most important areas to tackle! You'll love my favorite clean beauty brand, which makes swapping your existing product for toxin-free ones a breeze! Plus, I'm here if you want help picking out the right product or shades for you!
The Holistically Healthy Home Amazon Shop has tons of clean options across nearly every category in your life!
Sea Love hand poured soy and coconut candles & was melts are by far my toxin-free favorites. Use the code HHH10 to get 10% off at checkout!
My Green Fills is my absolute favorite for virtually all home cleaning needs, from laundry to sprays to dish soap. This link will get you a HUGE (70%+) discount on your first order!
It is difficult to find toxin-free deodorant that actually works. Primally Pure is my hands down favorite. Beautiful ingredients that won't let you down throughout the day. Use the code RACHELRABA to get 10% off at checkout.
Castor oil packs are my go to for improving sleep, digestion, bowl movements, immune support, and sundry other health issues. You can find my favorite ones here.