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A Herbal and Natural Approach to the Coronavirus

This is a guide to ways you can self help and keep yourself well and thisarticle is not suggesting you don’t seek orthodox medical advice or help if you become seriously sick . It is designed as a self-help and provide awareness of alternative solutions to help us through this unknown and difficult time . This advice sheet is influenced by many weeks of reading along with notes from Pip Waller and from the late Christopher Hedley & Non Shaw on how to approach treatment for influenza type illnesses.

  • Viruses and Immunity

  • Coronavirus is worse than the ordinary seasonal flu as it appears that 15-20% of people require hospital care and generally through the population it is highly contagious as we are witnessing the way it is sweeping around the world and presently throughout Europe. This is the reason why it has become so social advertised to wash hand and sneeze into tissues and then flush or get rid of the tissues. Hand sanitizers are another recommended product . Personally I find they ok but are not totally effective but do help and some essential oils added will give increased protection eg (thyme, lavender, marjoram tea tree) .

  • A good old fashioned hand soap does kill the virus so washing your hands with soap is great. You could actually carry your own in a little travel container while the virus is prevalent. Hand washing helps stop the ingestion of the virus. We can never guarantee that a person won't catch something, but we can take care of our immune systems. Many colds and Viruses are caught by ingesting droplets that contain the virus, and by ingesting I mean they get down into the digestive system. Our digestive systems are actually not classed as being inside of us , the digestive tract is more like a channel or tube that runs right through from mouth to anus. This tube absorbs nutrients from our food and waste is passed back from our inner organs back out into the digestive tube as waste. Due to so much passing through the walls of the intestines there needs to be a defense system built in , and this is created by the lining of the intestines being skin just like we have protected all body outer surfaces and these outer surfaces are coated with healthy bacteria that protect us from external invasions, we call these bacteria in the gut our good flora or microbiome. Keeping our stress levels in balance, getting plenty of sleep and eating a healthy diet all help to keep the immune system healthy. keeping the microbiome healthy is also very important, we can top this up by taking probiotics and prebiotic. If your digestive system is in a poor condition please don't go and instantly take high levels of probiotic. See your local medical herbalist, either myself or one close to you , which can be found at:

https://rootsofthyme.co.uk

I will be available for Skype or phone consultations

If you require either please text or phone me on 07986312365

Or email on: lynn@rootsofthyme.co.uk

Or alternatively you could find your local herbalist at:

https://nimh.org.uk/find-a-herbalist/

As already stated looking after your gut health a flora and here are a few examples of how to do this:

Fermented Probiotic foods and supplements and prebiotic

Some examples of common probiotics to take as part of a balanced diet are;

bio live yogurt

sour cream (crème fraiche)

kefir

water kefir or coconut kefir

nut or seed butter

fermented nut milk

fermented drink from beetroot called kvass

sauerkraut

kombucha tea

probiotic capsules

organic brown rice

rice bran

Oats and Oat bran

Sour dough bread

other ways to help the gut is to heal the lining with foods like

bone broth

fish broth

mushroom broth made with oriental mushrooms

have plenty of fresh vegetables and a little fresh fruit with a balanced diet avoiding processed food and refined sugars. Try and eat organic as much as possible and pasture fed meats where possible too.

here is a link to a few good recipes ;

https://theherbalacademy.com/diy-herbal-infused-broth/?ap_id=nourishedmedia#

https://nourishedkitchen.com/bone-broth-minerals/#


there are many other good foods that are good to add in with your cooking

spices and condiments, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, garlic, parsley, chilies, horse radish, cloves, thyme, rosemary, aniseed, fennel cider vinegar, Honey etc. (see recipes at the end)

plenty of fresh fruit and veg

have warm drink , and herbal teas

kombucha,

These are just a few and we must not forget to add a little high quality Honey and drink herbal teas as a quality herbal tea always have health benefits . Your local Medical Herbalist could make you a Herbal Tea or other herbal medicines to suit you and any ailments you may suffer.

These may vary depending on any underlying conditions you may have if you suffer from lung disease or are elderly or have serious underlying conditions, you will require a consultation to receive herbal medicine, but all existing patients will be able to contact and have a short consultation to receive herbal medicines and or teas, supplements and probiotics while available.



More ways to optimize your immune system

Reduce or stop having refined sugar and processed foods if possible

try not to be stressed or fearful

reduce / stop smoking this includes vaping and recreational drugs

don’t drink excessive quantities of alcohol

avoid lots of chemical products on the body as you will kill off you natural protective bacteria , like the ones mentioned in your gut.

Get plenty of sleep

Rest and take relaxing out door exercise in the garden or with social distancing in mind.

Meditate , do yoga, Thai chi, and if in isolation there are increasing amounts of activities on you tube and on social media platforms etc. So if your classes have stopped look on line.

Stay happy and touch with friends and family, be kind it actually improves the immune response.

If you start to become ill DO NOT take Ibuprofen it will interfere with your immune response.



What you may want to have available and in your self-help chest

a thermometer

a flask to keep your teas warm if you don’t feel well

vitamin C 1000mg daily while well on the onset of symptoms you can increase the dose and if you get diarrhea you have reach the peek amount for your body and will need to reduce quantity a little.

vitamin D3

Zinc

Take a multivitamin

Good quality probiotic , good quantities of live yoghurt , kefir etc.

Herbal medicines

Some home made recipes that will help with immune support and with cold and early stage flu symptoms and mucous etc. see recipes section.

Herbal Teas , decoctions, and herbal tinctures can be prescribed and dispensed to suit your needs and pre-existing conditions.


Children would need consultation and medicines making separately for them.



HIGH DOSES ARE NEEDED FOR ACUTE CONDITIONS so take the herbs every 2 hours day and night – you can make up the teas in large flasks for the day and add tinctures to that. Keep by your bed so you can easily keep drinking it. Try to line up people to make it for you in case of need. If you are alone with no one to care for you, make sure everything is organised/measured up etc so you can most easily make up your teas, or even make up a large batch of teas early on in the illness. They keep for 3 days, and it’s better to have them cold but not at all (in case you have time when you are too ill to boil the kettle).



PAY CLOSE ATTENTION TO YOUR HEALTH so that you don’t miss the first signs of illness– you will be infectious therefore a danger to others before your fever starts. You may feel weaker or more tired than usual, cold, achy, sneezing and dry cough. Unlike a cold, it is common in flu not to have a sore throat and runny nose as early sign (though you may have these, and having these doesn’t mean you haven’t got Corona virus CV – it is safest to assume that ANY cold/flu/malaise symptoms could be coronavirus and act accordingly)

Learn to check pulse – feel this using your fingers, on the wrist, palm side, on the side of the thumb. Don’t press too soft or too hard. Count the pulse for a full minute. Make sure you know yours and your family’s usual resting pulse in health.

STAY AT HOME AND REST – If you suspect you are ill and are self-isolating, DON’T go crazy overdoing it with all the jobs you haven’t had time for …. REST is an essential activity to allow your body to mount the best immune response


UNDERSTAND FEVER

Fever is NOT the disease, it is the healing response. Avoid suppressing it as long as the temperature is not over 40C / 104F – the fever is your body killing off the virus. Normal oral temperature varies between 36-37C usually rising during the day. Some people are generally hotter or colder – so take your temperature while you are well to find out your normal.

DRINK LOTS OF WATER to stay fully hydrated. Hot is best, herbal teas (see above) are ideal. When you have a fever, even if you aren’t sweating you will be losing fluids and dehydrating. If you have any question that you may be dehydrated, make and take rehydration drink: 1 litre water, 1 tsp salt, 8tsp sugar, juice of lemon –

NOTE: DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANY SUGAR WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THIS REHYDRATION DRINK IF IT IS NEEDED/INDICATED. SUGAR LOWERS IMMUNITY.

FAST – ‘feed a cold, starve a fever’ – temperatures above 37.5 shut down digestion. Eating during fevers increases discomfort and prolongs the fever.



First stage – you feel weak, tired after minimal exercise, look pale, ‘flush’ feelings. Temperature NORMAL or can be 1 degree lower than normal. Skin feels cool, pulse usually weak. STAY WARM, WRAP UP WELL, AVOID EXERCISE. Drink cold and flu tea with garlic, ginger, cayenne and honey if you like. Drink a cup or more every 2 hours. Take echinacea or baical with elderberry syrup or rob. START TO INCREASE VITAMIN C

[VITAMIN C is best taken to ‘bowel tolerance’ – that means, you take it just below the point you get diarrhoea – take 10g every hour until you get diarrhoea, then stop. that is your daily dose.

Prevention:

I suggest that healthy individuals at low risk and without contact with vulnerable people, start with 10g daily as preventative – I suggest you take 5g in water in the morning and 5g in water at night. (lessen this if you get diarrhoea)

Vulnerable people – take to bowel tolerance. 10g every hour until you get diarrhoea, then use this as a guide for your daily dose.

IF SICK: you take 10g EVERY HOUR until you get diarrhoea. Ordinary colds/coughs you might take 30-50g daily. a more serious infection like pneumonia, you might take up to 100g daily.]

See also Fire Cider in Recipes could to take before and through this stage, but stop if temperature reaches 40˚ in the second stage.



Second stage -feeling sleepy, skin hot and dry, pulse steady and on the surface. Don’t eat, and keep room well aired. Keep drinking herb teas frequently. If temperature rises to 40 or over, sponge body using LUKEWARM/TEPID water with a few drops of lavender or rosemary oil in it, and or a tbs of cider vinegar – NEVER USE ICED OR VERY COLD WATER AS IT CLOSES THE PORES AND CAN EVEN INCREASE THE TEMPERATURE. Take BONESET with elderberry every 2 hours. Increase the garlic and continue cold and flu tea with vervain added.



Third stage – this is sweating, which lowers the temperature. Prolonged sweating is debilitating, take advice. Usually fevers go between second and third stages a few times. Keep fluid intake up and stay off food until the temperature goes below 37.5C/99.5



LOOK OUT FOR DANGER

Check temperature, pulse and breathing rate regularly – respiratory rate, is how many breathes per minute. This is especially important for people with heart problems, lung problems, or the very old and in children (remembering that children are much less at risk from covid19, though ordinary seasonal flu can be fatal to very young ones). A RISING RESPIRATORY RATE CAN BE AN EARLY SIGN OF PNEUMONIA.

An old-fashioned herbal physician’s technique was to check the ratio of pulse to respiration – in a healthy person it is 4:1. If the respiratory rate edges up, it indicates that disease is moving deeper into the lungs. If the pulse is edging up, it indicates that disease is moving into the blood. This technique requires regular monitoring, and works well with children and healthy adults, but is harder to apply for people with underlying heart or lung disease.

AIR YOUR ROOMS in your home every day a couple of times. I am also using an essential oil diffuser and adding basil oil, Ravensara, eucalyptus, rosemary, lemongrass.

Remind yourself frequently that YOUR BODY IS AMAZING AND KNOWS JUST WHAT TO DO to bring you back to health. Fear will not help you, relaxing as much as possible will. That said, if in doubt call help in.



RECOVERY

Even after the fever, you are still unwell – and if you overdo it you can make yourself ill again. Pneumonia can come about from not resting enough and allowing enough recovery time. Allow at least as long in recovery time as you had the fever for. Now you must eat and build yourself up – not sugar and carbs though, except a little quality dark chocolate (this is low in sugar). You need protein (you will have lost some muscle during your illness) – if vegetarian, eat very soft, long cooked brown rice and mung beans. If not veggie, chicken soup is ideal (homemade, from boiling a long time older birds including the bones. Make it up and freeze in portion sized amounts)

Iron and zinc are used up in fever, so you may need a supplement – ask me if you want a recommendation but it is also the perfect time for nettle and dandelion soup which will provide many nutrients.

Return to exercise very gradually. Drink sage and vervain teas. Ginseng can be helpful – or better still, consult your herbalist and go get some plant spirit medicine, acupuncture, or other balancing holistic treatment.



Recipes

Coconut curry fish stew (has many good for immune system properties)

Serves 8 – 10

2 tbsp coconut oil

2 onions

3 inch fresh ginger root minced

2-4 chili peppers optional (seeds removed) minced

3 garlic cloves minced 3 tbsp curry powder

2tsp turmeric

½ tsp fresh ground black pepper

8 cups of fish broth

2 cups of coconut milk

1 can of organic tomatoes

1 red pepper diced

3 sticks of lemongrass

2 1b cod or Haddock

Lime zest to garnish

Avocado diced

Heat the oil in saucepan and saute the onions until soft. Add the ginger , chillies, and garlic, for another few minutes. Add the spices, and mix in for last couple of minutes. Add the stock, coconut milk, tomatoes, bell pepper, lemongrass. , bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer for 25mins. Add the fish and cook for an additional 10 mins.

Garnish with lime zest, and diced avocado.

This recipe is slightly altered from one in “the heal your gut cookbook” by Hillary Boynton & Mary G. Brackett … Not sure the serving suggestion is accurate , but the recipe seemed to have many of the ingredients that have been recommended above.

This book is also recommended as contains recipes for coconut milk, coconut butter and coconut kefir


ONION SYRUP , for cough and mucous

Large onion

1 lb Honey or brown /white granulated sugar

Cut up the onion, get a clean jar and put a 2 inch layer of onion in the bottom, then add a 2 inch layer of sugar or honey. Keep creating these layers, pressing each layer down before adding the next. Cover the last layer of onion with the remaining sugar or honey (you could add some cider vinegar too if like). Put the lid on and put in the fridge overnight. In the morning the sugar or honey will have extracted the properties out of the onion, so if you strain the mix through a sieve you will be left with onion syrup.

DOSE

Adults 2 teaspoons every 2 hours to help fight off a cold.

Childen over the age of 3 ½ - 1 teaspoon 3- 6 times daily (not under 3 yrs of age)



CATARRAL CONGESTION STEAM INHALATION

2 tsp dried 3 tsp fresh thyme

2 tsp dried 3tsp fresh peppermint

2 tsp dried 3 tsp fresh lavender



Rosemary Gladstars original Fire Cider

You will need

Organic Apple Cider with Mother

¼ - 1 cup of quality Honey

¼ cup onion chopped

(if you don’t have all these below then use what you do have or leave out anything that your digestive system might not tolerate)

¼ cup of Horse Radish root chopped

¼ cup fresh Ginger root

1/8th cup turmeric

1 cup pot marigold petals

4 -5 sprigs Rosemary

¼ cup of chopped garlic

1-3 chopped chillies

Pop all these chopped ingredients into a kilner jar or some form of sterile jar, and cover with the Apple Cider Vinegar. Pop a piece of greaseproof paper over top of jar before popping on lid. Shake a little, then place in dark warm place for 4 weeks to infuse. After 4 weeks strain and pop waste plant material in compost and add the honey to the infused vinegar.

You could do the above as a second but , take another batch of ingredients and simmer them in a pan of water for 20 mins or so strain (pop waste in compost), and add cider vinegar and Honey to the remaining liquid.

Or we can fast make in a electronic instant pot pressure cooker with yoghurt setting.

Take 1 tsp daily as a preventative dose

Or on for onset of cold or flu symptoms 1 tablespoon every 3-4 hours


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