Holistic, NYRO, Product of the month

March Product of the Month – Organic Echinacea Tincture

I had all kinds of ‘refresh and rejuvenate for spring’ ideas for my March product of the month but with the Coronavirus getting ever closer I felt I should offer some natural and organic ways to try and keep healthy.  Alongside a healthy diet with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables we can take a number of supplements that can help to boost our immune system.  Now I’m not a herbalist or nutritionist and as you know Product of the Month started as my favourite of the moment from the wonderful and wide range from Neal’s Yard Remedies Organic.  So this is me sharing with you what I’m taking and using currently, rather than telling you what you should use or take.

There are many supplements that claim to boost the immune system but my favourites are Echinacea Tincture and Elderberry Syrup (which was my October Product of the Month)

Why is it even important to boost our immune system?  I don’t know about you, but “boosting the immune system” is a phrase I see a lot of online and in the press.  And for me it’s almost become one of those phrases that loses it’s meaning in the constant repetition – a sound-bite or whatever the press jargon phrase is these days!

So let’s go back to basics.  The immune system is the body’s internal defence mechanism which guards against disease-causing organisms – namely bacteria and viruses.  Because it affects the whole body it is also affected by everything that goes on in our lives – good and bad.  We can use vaccinations, a healthy diet and supplements to improve our immune system but as it can be negatively affected by stress, it is also a good idea to make changes to our lifestyle too.  Creating habits that avoid stress such as regular exercise, meditation or time in nature, which are my favourite stress busters, can all be beneficial to helping our immune systems and increasing the likelihood of our remaining healthy.

And finally, one other candidate for product of the month in this little group is the amazing Organic Defence Handspray (or essential oil blend for a diffuser).  A blend of herbs and essential oils with antiviral and antibacterial properties which work together as an effective and oh-so-lovely-smelling hand sanitiser.

Organic Defence Hand Spray 50mlOrganic Defence Aromatherapy Blend 10ml

Holistic, NYRO, Product of the month

October Product of the Month – Organic Elderberry Syrup

Organic Elderberry Syrup is a must have at this time of year, especially if you don’t have the time to make your own.  Elderberries are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A and potassium as well as anti-oxidants.

These nutritional components are great for helping our bodies protect themselves from the stresses and strains of everyday life including helping us fight off colds and ‘flu.  The syrup can be used to ease the symptoms of colds, but also as a preventative by helping to boost our immune system and defences in the first place.  I took this through the autumn and winter last year and managed to avoid the bugs!

Vitamin A is great for the skin, helping to soothe troubled skin conditions, such as acne, and even reduce liver spots and ease lines.

Other benefits have been suggested as a help for cystitis or UTIs, digestive health and allergy relief.

I love mixing this delicious herbal cordial with warm water and serving to my clients after their treatment alongside the usual glass of water.

The Neal’s Yard Elderberry Syrup is free from GM and is made from 100% organic ingredients!

Holistic, Lifestyle, self-love

Hayfever

Holistic Alternatives for Hayfever?

For many there will never be an alternative to conventional hayfever medication but I have tried hard this year to see what holistic alternatives I can find.  Much of what I have found does not treat the symptoms directly but works to prevent contact with or absorption of the pollen as well as things to soothe the symptoms.

So far this season I have had far fewer symptoms and therefore have been able to reduce the amount of over-the-counter medication I would normally have taken by this stage in the season.  There is a place for conventional as well as holistic solutions so reduction is definitely something I am pleased with.

  • Keeping windows closed and not drying your clothes out of doors will reduce the amount of pollen you are exposed to
  • Wearing sunglasses (even if it’s not very sunny) will prevent a good deal of pollen getting into your eyes
  • Spreading an oil based balm under the nostrils will help to catch the pollen before it enters the nostrils.  This advice often suggests a petroleum jelly (Vasolene) but if you are looking for a petro-chemical free alternative there are a growing number on the market
  • Building up the body’s immunity by eating foods high in Vitamin B, Vitamin C, Omega-3 Fatty acids and other anti-oxidents, will help the body to fight the histamines which cause the unpleasant reactions that hayfever sufferers are so familiar with.
  • Avoiding foods which create a build-up of mucus such as dairy and sugar.
  • Quercetin has unique biological properties that may improve overall health and disease resistance, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant effects and is believed to prevent the release of the inflammatory chemical histamine.  Quercetin is found in many foods including nettle, onions, green tea, apples, berries, Ginkgo biloba, St. John’s wort and even red wine, as well as in supplements.
  • Anything that cools on the outside helps to cool on the inside – natural products with aloe vera, white tea or rose will help to cool and soothe symptoms or use a cooling eye pack kept in the fridge and applied when needed.  Some Neal’s Yard products that can help:
    • White Tea Toning Eye Gel can help to reduce the puffiness that accumulates with irritable eyes and blocked sinuses
    • White Tea facial mist or rose water in a spray bottle can help to cool the skin and bring general comfort (an absolute must in my handbag and the products that got me into NYRO!)
    • Eucalyptus salve (or essential oil) in hot water and inhaling the steam can help to clear stuffy noses and congested sinus discomfort
  • Regular reflexology – I’ve noticed this year with my regular reflexology clients who are suffering from hayfever symptoms and are showing an imbalance in the nose/eyes/sinus reflexes, that regular treatments are easing their immediate symptoms and reducing the intensity of their symptoms overall.
  • Eating local honey is often recommended as the bees are collecting pollen from the flowers and plants in your vicinity to make their honey.  Eating this then acts like a vaccination by building up your immunity to the local pollen.  One teaspoon a day is recommended and now that we have neighbours with bees who are very busy in my garden, I’m currently putting this to the test – I’ll let you know how I get on – yum!

Unfortunately for those with an intolerance to pollens there is no getting away from the symptoms of hayfever.  However, there is much we can do to reduce our exposure to the pollens and even to help build up our body’s defence system so that it doesn’t produce so much histamine in response to the pollen.

Please leave me comments below and share the preventions or remedies you use.  You could also share how you get on with some of the suggestions above.

Here’s hoping you have a beautiful and low-symptom summer!