I have never liked taking medication. You don’t know what’s in them or what the long term effects are, and for me personally, I’m very sensitive to regular, western, medications and usually end up with most of the possible side effects listed, and then some.
Sure, there are times when you absolutely need antibiotics or other drugs, I’m not saying that western medicine is useless, but I really wish doctors would try natural alternatives first whenever possible, or at least mention the possibility to you so you can make an informed decision about how to treat an illness.
Since they don’t do that, I have experimented with natural remedies on my own, and through trial and error over the years, have found many alternative options that work great for me.
These are my top 4:
Sambucus (Black Elderberry)
We call this the magic potion, and it really is. Black Elderberry is a natural antioxidant, antiviral and immune booster, and many clinical studies show that taking it daily can prevent colds and flu, or if you’re already sick, shorten the duration by several days. A recent study also showed that it is 68.37% effective against the H1N1 (swine flu) virus.
My husband started taking it about a year ago, and he would come home with the beginning of a cold, drink lots of Sambucus and be fine. We’ve tried a few different kinds, but we like Nature’s Way Sambucus the best. You mix 2 teaspoons with water, and it tastes like a juice drink, but not overly sweet.
We use this both in pill and gel form from Boiron. Great for sprains, strains and sore muscles. Whenever I have lower back pain, I take the pills and put the arnica gel on my back and it’s almost instant relief. When our dog sprained a toe, her vet suggested we put some arnica pills in her water, and she was better within a few days.
We keep bottles of this 5-flower essence blend from Dr. Bach everywhere – in the house, in my purse, in our cars. It’s great for settling your nerves and just calming you down in general when you (or your pet) is in a stressful situation, like going to the dentist (or vet), driving in Boston :-), funerals, anything that makes you stressed out and/or uneasy. I also use it in the water for my plants. I read that it’s great to give it to plants after they have been moved or fallen over, but since plants tend to not survive for very long in my care, I use it all the time (and I have several plants that have survived for years now!).
Not as fast acting as Rescue Remedy, but a great natural treatment for depression, PMS, and irritability. You need to take it for a few days to really notice the effects, but once it kicks in, it really works.
Remember to always check with your doctor before taking a new medication, regardless of whether it’s natural or not.