How to Make Fire Cider to Boost Your Immune System

How to Make Fire Cider to Boost Your Immune System

  I’d never heard of Fire Cider until maybe 2 years ago. I saw it on Pinterest (naturally) and it caught my eye as an “old school” way to stay healthy. People have been making it for generations. It’s definitely something my grandfather would have known about. He always had a home remedy up his sleeve (Tomato plan leaves on a bee sting! Vicks Vapo rub up the nostrils for congestion!) Although you can buy it pre-made, there’s something satisfying about making it the way older generations did, and carrying on the tradition. Plus it’s quick and easy! Fire Cider is a concoction of naturally potent anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory ingredients like garlic, onions, lemons, turmeric steeped in apple cider vinegar.  I mean, any one of those individually is great for warding off what ails you but mix them all together and it’s you against the world!! You take it daily “to help boost the immune system, stimulate digestion, and get you nice and warmed up on cold days.” (Source) We already make our own elderberry syrup (this is the recipe we follow, although we cut the honey by half) but I’m always curious to try “weird hippie” popular folk remedies so I made my grocery list and set out to the store.     On my list –  ginger, turmeric root, jalapeños, lemons, oranges, horseradish root, garlic, onion, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar and the optional ingredient rosemary. I’ve seen a wide variety of recipes online and it’s generally pretty forgiving. The concept is simple – buy the main ingredients known for fighting off the crud, add in herbs and citrus that you...
My Favorite Dairy-Free Options

My Favorite Dairy-Free Options

I’ve been dairy-free for a few years now and although my reason was for my own health, many nursing moms make the adjustment for the health of their babies or to help their older kids feel better. While I’ll save the impacts of consuming dairy for a future post, I wanted to share my favorite dairy-free substitutions that will help ease your transition to living without cheese and milk! Most of these can be found in your local health food store. As always, you’ll want to check the label for hidden sources of milk and look at the allergen statement to see if it says “Contains: Milk”. Depending on how strict you need to be with your elimination, you can experiment with different dairy ingredients and your side effects after consuming them. Just know it can take around 6 weeks for dairy sugars and proteins to be out of your system once eliminated. After being allergy tested a few years back and doing some trial and error eating of my own, I know my problem isn’t so much with lactose (a milk sugar) as it is with casein (a milk protein) and the varying amount of it. I have figured out through trial and error that I still can’t eat products higher up the dairy ladder which contains more protein, like milk, ice cream, yogurt, and cheese. Dairy products that contain barely any protein, such as butter and cream, only have traces of casein. I’ve found I can tolerate butter in almost any amount, small amounts of creamy dressing, crackers and chips with cheese flavoring, and baked dairy. My Favorite...
5 Smart Swaps for Non-Toxic Living in 2016

5 Smart Swaps for Non-Toxic Living in 2016

Every day, we’re exposed to toxins, from our food, water and air! Did you know the average woman wears 168 chemicals on their bodies DAILY in just their beauty products? Yep, there are 13,000 chemicals are used in cosmetics, and only about 10 percent have been evaluated for safety! Scary stuff. The liver, gut, skin, kidneys and lungs work overtime each day to detoxify our system of all these various pollutants.While we can never be truly 100% non-toxic, there are some easy steps we can take to make their jobs easier. In our household we already conscious about making choices for a non-toxic lifestyle, like avoiding artificial air fresheners, scented laundry detergent & highly toxic pest control sprays to name a few. We’ve replaced 90% our chemical-laden household cleaners in favor of plant-based ones like Mrs.Myers or I make them myself with a few basics like vinegar, baking soda and essential oils. We use natural remedies first before immediately filling a prescription for an antibiotic or other meds with artificial sweaters, dyes and questionable ingredients that don’t support healing. We get our sleep so our bodies can repair during the night. We’ve come along way from even 1-2 years ago! It’s all about baby steps that add up into a lifestyle with fewer chemical exposure. Below are my goals for further reducing our harmful chemical exposure in 2016. Leave shoes at the door A study from a professor at the University of Arizona found an average of 421,000 units of bacteria on the outside of a shoe (including E.Coli and C.Diff ) and 2,887 on the inside. Herbicides, pesticides, animal fecal matter (or human from public...
How Not Get Sick This Winter (And What To Do If You Already Are)

How Not Get Sick This Winter (And What To Do If You Already Are)

When my son was 3 months old, we were fortunate enough to find a lady who ran a daycare out of her home. The traditional daycare wait lists were crazy long and without her help we would have been up the creek without any solution since we both work full time. The benefit to an at-home daycare was there were fewer kids to spread their germs and sickness wasn’t too much of an issue. Last October, a few months after his first birthday, we enrolled Bennett in a traditional daycare. What followed was the “Winter of Crud”. He got 3 ear infections (no coincidence they came shortly after I stopped breastfeeding), croup twice, we all had the flu over Christmas, at least one bout with a stomach bug, and plenty of runny noses. Add in the adjustment of a new daycare situation, teething and weaning and it’s a wonder I wasn’t drinking daily.  I know the first year of daycare can be brutal while the kids’ immune systems adjust, but I vowed to buff up my preventative measures for this winter and try to avoid repeat illnesses and missed work. We’ve added several steps into our routine now that temps are dropping and I’m confident they’ll not only lessen our chances of getting sick, but if we do happen to catch a bug they’ll lessen the severity. Side note: let me say that I’m not against modern medicine. I am very grateful for the latest and best medical advances and practices that are within a short drive for most of us. I do think our society is over dependent on prescriptions...