As most of you know, we just returned from a year and a half living in South America. Before I left, I spent quite a bit of time putting together an EPIC holistic medicine kit. I had no idea what I would face in our expat journey and I wanted to be prepared for anything. Today I want to give you a sneak peek into my own personal holistic medicine kit and offer my thoughts on how to create a holistic medicine kit of your own.
How to Create a Holistic Medicine Kit
1. Ester C: Vitamin C is a powerful supplement that supports the immune system. I use this during cold and flu season when there are many viruses floating around and I see one of my children is feeling tired or down. Ester C is my preferred form of vitamin C and is easy on the tummy. We use it in capsule form as my older child can swallow pills. For my younger child I may use rosehips tea as a natural source of vitamin C, or open an Ester C capsule and add it to a smoothie or a little juice. You can also introduce foods containing vitamin C like oranges and pomegranates.
2. Plant-based Omega-3: Our immune systems depend on essential fatty acids to stay in optimal shape. We call these fatty acids “essential” because the body cannot make them for itself and must obtain these fatty acids from food. Wild caught seafood like salmon or sardines are good sources, but my kids won’t eat those foods right now (we’re in a picky phase, my son used to eat salmon by the handful). Nuts and seeds like walnuts and chia seeds also contain essential fatty acids, but the nuts should be soaked overnight first to be better absorbed by the body. I prefer algae-based DHA supplements to avoid any heavy metal contamination. This is my preferred brand.
3. Probiotics: Probiotic flora (good bacteria) in the gut is the key to our immune function. To boost immune function year round I give both of my children a probiotic supplement. My kids love them because they taste good and we cycle between these two (here and here) probiotics year round, with a week or so off every few months.
4. Vitamin D3: Vitamin D is an essential vitamin to support immune function during healing and is a necessary vitamin to consume year round. We take these drops every day, but in times of acute illness I increase the amount slightly to help support immune function.
5. Elderberry syrup tincture: Elderberry syrup is best to take when symptoms first come on. High in antioxidants, elderberry is a powerful natural medicine. I add this to water or juice for my kids when they are sick or when I think they are fighting off a virus OR when we are about to travel.
6. Echinacea tincture: These herbs support the immune system . You can buy them in tincture form and add them to a bit of water or juice.
7. Liquid zinc sulfate: Zinc is an essential trace mineral we are almost all deficient in due to the mineral depletion of our soils. Zinc is a trace mineral we NEED for proper immune function. Zinc sulfate is the first thing I give to my kids when they come down with a virus. Make sure to take it with food as it can be hard on the tummy alone. I talk about correct dosages for children in my ebook: Natural Remedies for Children. This is the zinc sulfate we use.
8. Trace minerals: Modern farming practices have depleted our soils (and hence our food supply) of many important trace minerals that are vital to immune function. When my kids are under the weather I make a batch of mineral broth and include extra kombu, the broth for extra trace minerals too.
9. Homeopathic medicine: I use this book to help me decide on the correct homeopathic medicine to use with my children. I have had good success using homeopathic medicine when my children have fevers or a cold virus. Because the pellets taste like sugar, my children don’t give me a fight about taking them.
10. Essential oils: Essential oils are very powerful plant extracts that can help aid in healing. Because they are very powerful I am careful about how I use them with my kids. What I love about essential oils is that my kids don’t have to take them internally (they smell them instead by using a diffuser). And my kids LOVE the smell so they never fight me on using essential oils. Here is my must have list:
11. Epsom salts: We use Epsom salts in the bath when my kids are sick. Here’s my post about how to give a child a safe detox bath. These baths are a staple in my holistic medicine kit. Even my children request Epsom salt baths when they are feeling down. We also keep them healthy year-round by using Epsom salt baths on a weekly basis.
12. Garlic: Known as nature’s antibiotic, garlic is anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral. An immune boosting (and very cheap) powerhouse! But kids may not want to eat raw garlic. I have had success chopping garlic up finely and my son swallows it like pills. I do this if he is in the middle of an acute illness and I make sure we do it with a meal so the garlic isn’t hard on his tummy. Another option is to make chicken and vegetable soup and add lots and lots of garlic, or chop up fresh garlic and sprinkle into a bowl of soup. Raw garlic has more healing benefits but if cooked garlic is all your kids will eat…it’s still all good.
13. Mineral Broth: Homemade mineral broth is highly absorbable and is almost like giving your immune system an IV drip of liquid gold. We make a big batch of broth when someone is feeling under the weather and freeze the extra to use the next time we need it. I love the soups in this cookbook and use my mineral broth to make something yummy for the kids.
14. Trust the body to heal: One of the biggest lessons I learned while living in South America with limited holistic health resources was to TRUST the BODY to heal. I tell my kids all the time that their bodies will heal as long as they give them the proper food, drink and rest. Our bodies are true miracles and are capable of SO MUCH healing all on their own.
These are my most used tools in my holistic medicine kit. Obviously I don’t use them all at once for every bacteria or virus, but instead I pick and choose according to the situation. These remedies have worked for our family time and time again. During our year and a half in South America, I healed us of everything we faced there with these tools, no pharmaceuticals required.
What are your holistic medicine kit must haves? Tell me below in the comments!
Interested in learning more about natural remedies for kids? You might be interested in these posts from me (click on the photo to read the post):
Or you may be interested in my ebook: Natural Remedies for Children.
Great tips! Do you know of a good bug spray and suntan lotion?
We use badger sunscreen or california baby sunscreen when we need it (mostly we avoid sunscreen altogether and just cover up after our skin has had enough sun) and badger bug spray. 🙂
Magnesium Oil- spray b kids get at night. Helps calm and restore minerals.
I have been reading your blog the past day and a half and soaking everything up ! I love it! I found you while on Pinterest searching for natural remedies for a sinus infection. The information your providing is so straight forward and easy to follow and understand. I am a mom of 3 boys ages 5,3, and 3 months and have been becoming more holistic the past 2 years while working closely with an awesome chiropractor/naturopath. Your blog is like a powerhouse of everything I gave been studying! Wow!!!!! Thank you so much for your time and research putting this all together. From bone broth, FCLO, fermented foods, detox bath, low-no sugar…. Etc., I have repinned like 50 of your posts. Hopefully we can spread the word about your amazing site!
Ashley! Thanks so much for this comment. I’m so happy you like my posts. My goal is to help families as much as I can. I’m so glad you found the site! xo
GREAT article. Thanks for putting this together. Couldn’t agree with you more on your choice of essential oils as well.
There are so many chemicals in most products. It’s nice to have a healthy, natural list of products to purchase or make. Thank you.