Monday, November 24 , 2014

#1 Chicken Soup for a Cold

You hear it every time you get a cold—eat some chicken soup! That's great advice, but not all varieties are created equal. Here’s an easy chicken soup recipe that really heals.

Irwin Ziment, MD, professor emeritus of clinical medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles, is an authority on respiratory conditions. Here’s his healing chicken soup recipe for colds, coughs and chest congestion. It tastes great...but take care! This is strong stuff. Be sure to follow the dosage at the end of the recipe.

Dr. Ziment’s Chicken Soup

1 quart homemade chicken broth,

or 2 cans low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth

1 garlic head—about 15 cloves, peeled

5 parsley sprigs, minced

6 cilantro sprigs, minced

1 tsp lemon pepper

1 tsp dried basil, crushed, or

1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil

1 tsp curry powder

Optional: Hot red pepper flakes to taste, sliced carrots, a bay leaf or two

Place all ingredients in a pot without a lid. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes. (If the soup is for your own personal use, carefully inhale the fumes during preparation as an additional decongesting treatment.) Remove the solid garlic cloves and herbs and, along with a little broth, purée them in a blender or food processor. Return the purée to the broth and stir. Serve hot.

Caution: Since this soup contains large amounts of garlic (which can irritate the digestive tract), you shouldn't eat a substantial portion at one time. Please follow the dosage instructions.

Dose: Take two tablespoons of Dr. Ziment's Chicken Soup at the beginning of a meal, one to three times a day. (If you feel you want a little more than two tablespoons, fine, but do not exceed more than one-half cup at a time.)

The respected Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, states, “Researchers say that chicken soup acts as an anti-inflammatory and temporarily speeds up the movement of mucus through the nose. This relieves congestion and limits the amount of time viruses are in contact with the lining of your nose. Plus, soup and other liquids help loosen congestion and prevent dehydration.”

We have both felt the assault of cold symptoms and have “taken” this soup in the evening (the one-half cup portion). The following day, we were symptom-free.

More natural healers...


Thursday, November 20 , 2014

Instant Cough Fix

We all have a cough center in our brain. It's generally motivated by an irritation in the respiratory tract. In other words, a cough is nature's way of helping us loosen and get rid of mucus and other irritants that shouldn't be in our system. But sometimes you need a break! Here's a quick cough stopper...

Quarter a fresh lemon, sprinkle it with lots of black pepper and salt, and suck on it for quick relief. Black pepper stimulates circulation and mucus flow…salt and lemon are natural germ fighters. This works best for coughs due to colds, not dry coughs from smoking or irritants.

Note: If your cough lasts longer than a few days, or if it is accompanied by fever or shortness of breath, have it checked by a health professional. It could be serious.

Thanks to Kitchen Cabinet Cures by Sara Altshul with Dr. Pamela Hops (Reader’s Digest and Bottom Line Books) for help with this tip. (To purchase Kitchen Cabinet Cures, call Bottom Line Books customer service at 800-678-5835.)

More natural help for colds and flu...


Wednesday, November 19 , 2014

Tap Away Stress

Acupressure is great—it's free and completely portable! Aside from helping to heal pain, it's a good way to help you refocus and de-stress. Here's what to do if you need to relax...

Soothe your tension by stimulating the acupressure point called Yingtan, which is one-quarter inch above the midpoint of your eyebrows. Once you've located it, use your middle finger to tap on it lightly for 10 seconds. Breathe deeply, and think happy thoughts. Hey, just by stopping you'll feel better. (And all kidding aside—it works!)

More natural stress relief...


Wednesday, November 12 , 2014

Make Your Own Ben-Gay

Do your joints ache from arthritis or overuse? Does the rainy weather remind you of an old injury? If you prefer to soothe your pain naturally, here's a remedy for you...

Combine one-half teaspoon of eucalyptus oil (available at health-food stores or online) with one tablespoon of pure olive oil, and massage the mixture onto your painful areas. You should feel an immediate warmth from the eucalyptus that will help to relieve your pain.

Note: Eucalyptus is strong and can cause local redness and temporary burning to sensitive skin. Always blend the pure oil with a carrier oil (such as olive oil) and discontinue use if you notice an allergic reaction.

More natural pain healers...


Tuesday, November 04 , 2014

Healthful Hair Thickener

Did you know that you can thicken your hair from the inside out? A deficiency in mineral salts is believed to be a common cause of thinning hair. Studies show that mineral-rich apple cider vinegar improves the overall health and volume of hair. Here's what to do...

Drink one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in an eight-ounce glass of water right before a meal or first thing in the morning. Do this daily for a few months, and you should see your hair thicken up.

More natural hair care...



Tuesday, October 28 , 2014

A Pinch of This Cures Heartburn

When you think of all the things you eat or drink that can cause heartburn, isn't it amazing that you don't get it more often? Here's a surprising remedy that barely costs a dime...

Take a pinch of ground coffee, no more than one-quarter teaspoon...put it in your mouth...let your saliva mix with it for a minute or two...and spit it out. Your heartburn should dissipate within minutes.

We would have thought that coffee would cause heartburn rather than cure it, but after a woman told us about it, we asked some coffee-crazy friends to try it, and they said it worked.

More cures from your pantry...

Monday, October 27 , 2014

Kiss Your Relatives with Fresh Breath

Nice job. You just tasted that garlicky Caesar-salad dressing for seasoning, and here come the relatives! Do this before you give them each a big kiss...

To remove the smell of garlic from your breath, mix a touch of sugar (one-quarter teaspoon) with a little lemon juice (about two tablespoons) and swirl it around your mouth, then swallow it. Now you can pucker up!

More help with bad breath...


Thursday, October 23 , 2014

Homemade Mouthwash

Don't you love the smell of cinnamon? Cinnamic aldehyde—the naturally occurring compound that's responsible for its wonderful smell—can also help eliminate odor-causing bacteria in the mouth. Here's what to do...

Boil two cups of water, then add five or six pieces of cinnamon stick (available at supermarkets) and let it simmer for five minutes.

Once it's cool, strain out the sticks and pour the liquid into a sealable bottle. Use it as you would use any commercial mouthwash. Unlike some store-bought brands, it's alcohol-free!

More natural cures...

Tuesday, October 14 , 2014

This Weird Juice Relieves Constipation

Raw sauerkraut and its juice have friendly bacteria that can aid digestion. In a related story, sauerkraut can also help your system as an excellent laxative! Eat one-half to one cup a day to relieve symptoms of constipation. Heat destroys the important enzymes in sauerkraut, so make sure you eat it raw. Raw sauerkraut is available at health-food stores, or here's a recipe to make your own:

Homemade Sauerkraut

More help with digestive disorders...


Friday, October 10 , 2014

Ulcer-Soothing Soup

Did you know that about 80% of all ulcers can be blamed on the bacteria Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)? It is estimated that half of the American adult population has H. pylori present but dormant in their stomachs. Why do some people develop ulcers and others don't? One theory is that emotional upsets, fatigue, nervous anxiety...you know, all that stress-related stuff...devitalize the immune system, lowering one's resistance to the H. pylori. If this includes you (and your ulcer is not caused by medications or some other condition described by your doctor), we have a remedy for your ulcer, but you also have to focus on fixing the obnoxious stresses in your life. Change jobs, meditate...do whatever is appropriate to transform your specific problem into something that is positive and healthy. Now, for that remedy...

Barley and barley water are soothing and help rebuild the stomach lining. Boil two ounces of pearled barley in six cups of water until there's about half the water—three cups—left in the pot. Strain. If necessary, add honey and lemon to taste. Drink this barley water throughout the day. Eat the leftover barley in soup, stew or by itself.

More help for heartburn and ulcers...