WRITTEN BY Debra Yergen SPONSORED BY The Wellness Center, PDX

Nature’s Antibiotic 

You’ve heard the warnings about antibiotics, especially during cold and flu season. According to the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) antibiotics are prescribed, on average, a mind-blowing 833 times for every 1000 people. The great news: most wintertime crud can be successfully treated with natural remedies you already have in your kitchen.

Honey is more than a sweet treat. Raw honey is a natural antibiotic that fights infections without creating resistant bacteria like most conventional Rx antibiotics. Turmeric also has a natural ability to bolster the immune system by increasing the immuno-modulating capacity of the body. Combine them and you have one of nature’s strongest natural antibiotics. This power couple’s anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties give winter bugs the one-two-three punch. 

Sleep Like a Baby 

Coughing, sneezing, running nose, a pounding headache and achy joints. They hang around the rhinovirus like an entourage. Now you can sleep, with a simple but powerful recipe, sans side effects. Ginger + lemon + honey. 

Ginger does more than ease headaches, sore throats and ward off the rhinovirus. It contains sesquiterpenes, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory chemicals that ease achy knees and temperamental tennis elbow along with the winter bug. The anti-inflammatory properties of both ginger and lemon naturally reduce the pressure, inflammation and pain in your joints, your respiratory system and everywhere else tightness makes you feel blah. 

Start with a cup of water in a pan. Add a grated teaspoon of fresh ginger root, one tablespoon of squeezed lemon juice, and one tablespoon of raw honey. Bring to a boil and strain into a cup. If you’re feeling daring, or looking for a nightcap, add a shot of whiskey to the strained concoction.  

Beat the Blues 

This time of year, everyone is anxious for spring. You may have already started spring cleaning your home or office in an effort to rush through the last weeks of winter. Doctors say this is one time of the year when many patients can benefit from acupuncture and other natural remedies to manage the symptoms of seasonal blues.

Acupuncture, an ancient Chinese remedy, has continued to grow in popularity over the past two decades. Using micro needles to access specific points throughout the body, practitioners isolate treatment areas. By choosing acupuncture to treat a specific form of depression called seasonal affective disorder (SAD) many patients report experiencing relief without the side-effects frequently associated with prescription medication.