Challenge: Seek a replacement for one conventional medicine with a more natural option.
Why: While pharmaceuticals can occasionally have their rightful place, in general we rely on them far too heavily. This creates an unnatural and unnecessary dependence on them and are losing our abilities to heal naturally. Most conventional medicines are full of preservatives, dyes, sugar, and harmful (often synthetic) chemicals which can cause dependence and damage our immune systems and even our internal organs.
Most cold symptoms are a good response to illness. They are not really "symptoms" of the illness, they are defensive actions our bodies take to heal itself or let us know something isn't right. An example of this is the heat of a fever which kills bacteria and serves as a warning to us that something is wrong. Eczema is often just an allergy, lack of nutrients, or hormone imbalance. Headaches are most often caused simply by dehydration. Other than extreme cases perhaps, these problems don't require drugs.
How: I love natural remedies. It is always so amazing to me how effective they are. I have talked about a few in prior posts. One that I can't believe I hadn't talked about yet is my neti pot! I got a head cold recently, and thus I thought it would be a good choice to talk about today.
Looks pretty weird, eh?
I began using a neti pot after being told by my doctor that I would have to take prescription Nasonex everyday for the rest of my life. Nasonex is a steriod, and thus I was not comfortable with this. It can cause or even hide infections and impair the ability of wounds in the nose to heal. Other side effects included headaches, nosebleeds, inflammation of the throat, nasal irritation, nasal burning, nasal ulcerations, and smell and taste disturbances. Uh, wasn't this medication supposed to be helping my nose? Didn't sound like it to me.
Originating in ancient India, the neti pot is used to flush out the nasal cavities with a warm salt water solution. When I first started I used it daily, but after my body was able to heal itself, I only use it when I am sick now. To treat a nasal problem, I use it once in the morning and again at night. The first couple of times ever using one it can feel slightly uncomfortable, but I've got it down now and it takes no time. During this last sickness, I was also adding eucalyptus essential oil to my diffuser at night to help clear up nasal congestion. I felt better in a couple days, and that is coming from someone who used to use up an entire value pack size box of extra strength Sudafed or Sinutab every time I got a cold or sinus infection.
There are lots of good resources for finding natural remedies on the internet, but my tried and true resource is my book 1001 Natural Remedies by Laurel Vukovic. I would encourage anyone interested in more natural living to check it out. It has sections on health, beauty, home, and even pets.