A perspective on pursuing natural health and homeopathy on the journey towards good health for the whole family.
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Moving Away from Conventional Medicine
My daughters have had a cold 2 weeks out of each month for 2 years. I have tried every type of medicine and vitamin in hope that they would recover more quickly than simply letting it run its course, but nothing seemed to speed things along. It’s hard to watch young kids suffer through two weeks at a time of head cold, so I just kept trying the next thing and the next thing.
Over the course of a few years we’ve learned more and more about some of the side effects of the ingredients in children’s (and adult) over the counter and prescription medication. So eventually I did simply stop buying any over the counter medications, and when we would get sick I would simply supplement extra with vitamins and electrolytes and hunker down with tissues until the storm passed.
Using Vitamin Supplements for Natural Health
When it comes to vitamins for my husband and myself, swallowable capsules are fine. We regularly take vitamin C and D3 now. But I also needed something my kids could and would supplement with. I found liquid form of Vitamin C and D3 and ordered a ton. My 1.5 and 3 year old girls will both willingly take it, and it seems to perk them up a bit, but I’m not sure how much it helps the recovery speed up. It does seem to help prevent illnesses if we give it to them very promptly at any exposure to illness.
But, in my opinion, it still isn’t enough. Especially for my husband.
It’s one thing for toddlers to spend a week or two with runny noses, rasping coughs, and ill tempers, or even for me to be ill while I’m at home looking after them. But for my husband, being sick regularly and for an extended period is really prohibitive of his work in the trades. We needed to find something more.
Looking into natural health and homeopathy
When I began to do all the research I could into natural health options I found homeopathy. I also found nutrition, herbalism, and many other time-tested forms of boosting your natural health and immune system.
There was so much information it was hard to wade through, but I knew I’d made some progress once my Google search query had changed from “best decongestant medication for 2 year old” to “natural decongestant for toddlers” or “home remedies for child congestion.”
Finding a balance between natural health remedies and homeopathy
We began with garlic cloves and honey. We didn’t even ferment it, we just took a whole clove of garlic on a spoon and poured honey over the spoon to make it go down easier, or ate the garlic with a saltine cracker and then washed it down with honey.
We only did this for ourselves (can you imagine trying to get a 2 and 3 year old to chew and swallow a whole clove of garlic several times per day?) but we were blown away by the results.
If we were starting to get cold symptoms and did this 3 times in a day, most often we were in teh clear by the next morning. If we missed the opportunity and didn’t try it until we were already sick, then it took doing it two and occasionally 3 days in a row. But it knocked the cold away completely and even when it didn’t work immediately it toned down the effects of the head cold tremendously even within a few hours.
We recently went further and began to ferment the garlic in the honey for an extended period before consuming it. We are still in the early stages of using garlic in this form of remedy, so it’s hard to say if it works more effectively than fresh garlic cloves, but it sure has prevented my husband from getting the head cold my kids and I are currently sharing.
Fermented garlic is easy to make. Simply fill a small glass jar with peeled garlic cloves whole or chopped and cover them in raw organic honey. Wait two weeks before consuming in order for them to really ferment. My understanding is that they’re good forever after that. Some people do huge batches and consume one piece of garlic per day for years to come and enjoy the health benefits for years.
The Deep Dive into Homeopathy
Eventually I’d done enough poking around that I stumbled into someone who teaches Joette Calabrese’s course on Homeopathy. I wasn’t able to do the deep dive I wanted to immediately and need to go back to it, but I did read the course material for the first book and learned a lot about how homeopathy works and what the distinctions are from the rest of the “natural medicine” world.
Over time I began to pick up the Boiron’s brand homeopathic pellets from my local “natural” store and even found the same brand on Amazon in a pinch. They cost the same as they do at my local store but my store only carries 6C and 30C of any remedies and there were some I wanted or needed in a higher potency like 200C.
These remedies are easy for my kids to take. They’re relatively descriptive of what sort of ailments they help with, though each one has warranted further research than just reading the main symptom printed on the bottle. They each have far more than one ailment they remedy so I’m really not sure why that isn’t adertized.
You can also pick up homeopathic blends that include several remedies in each pellet. Right now my girls are taking a remedy for their colds that has quite a few individual remedies rolled into one pellet.
The first day after buying these and administering them to my willing children, I was disappointed that they weren’t helping. I felt like I’d lost money and made a poor choice. But the next day my oldest who had been the sickest was so much improved it was astounding to me. It is still taking us some time to get through this cold, as we have passed it one person to the next, but the lifespan of the illness is already far shorter than any cold my girls have had in the past.
Doubling down on natural health and homeopathy
For now we are in a stage of learning about how these remedies work, the best ways to use them, and what other immunity boosting options are out there. It is rather amazing that in this day and age of technology and pervasive information that you really have to go down a rabbit hold to find ways to improve your own health without pharmaceuticals.
Blending the immune-boosting functions of vitamin supplementation, garlic consumption, and the new (to us) world of homeopathy may be the sweet spot for keeping our family in good health.
As we learn and grow I am sure we will be exposed to more ideologies on natural medicne and natural health than any we have encountered so far, but it’s okay that we’re pacing ourselves for now so that we don’t get too overwhelmed.
I know that I want to learn more about tinctures and salves that can be made from plants, foraged or gardened, and reap those benefits eventually as well. But in the mean time, learning when to take Aconite versus Belladonna is going to consume plenty of my mental space.
Let it suffice to say that my pursuit of learning about natural health and homeopathy is only just beginning.