Preparing For Cold and Flu Season

We started this post last November, but then we spent most of winter fighting off the colds and flues we should have been preparing for!  The winter storm we got last week reminded us that the season isn’t over yet!  If anything, it can be even harder on the immune system to go from snow pants to shorts in the span of a few days.

Here’s what we’ve been keeping on hand to help us through cold and flu season!


chyawanprashThe best way to make it through cold and flu season is to not get sick in the first place!  That’s why we love products like this Chyawanprash from Organic India that provide a daily immunity boost.

This 100% organic herbal jam is traditionally known as the “Elixir of Life” because it is made with 36 traditional Indian herbs and aids in digestion, metabolism, liver function, memory and skin complexion. The herbs are based in a jam made from cane juice, raw honey, ghee and sesame oil.  The list of ingredients includes alma fruit, cardamom, long pepper, cassia leaves, cinnamon bark, waterlily flower, bamboo resin and a whole bunch of other stuff we’ve never heard of.

We haven’t tried other Chyawanprash jams, but this one seems to get really good reviews for taste, texture and formulation.  We like that all the ingredients are organic and that our kids like it enough to ask for a teaspoon every day.

Turmeric Formula

turmeric-formulaWe recommended Turmeric to help with inflammation during pregnancy. We also make sure to keep it on hand during Cold and Flu season, since the curcumin in Turmeric has been proven to have powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that boost the immune system.

Turmeric also supports digestive function and heart health, which is probably why we’ve been seeing Turmeric trend among our healthy living colleagues. Check out 6 Health Benefits of Turmeric for more information.

Organic India has easy to take gel caps of their Turmeric Formula that contain Turmeric and ginger (another root great for immunity and pregnancy).


Xlear Nasal Spray

xlearIt seems like our kids go through phases of being OK with Nasal Spray and doing everything in their power to prevent Saline Drops from entering their nasal cavity.  We know first hand how beneficial loosening the mucus is for comfort and speedy recovery, which is why we try so hard to get our kids to let us administer the nasal spray.

Xlear Nasal Spray has Xylitol in it, so it is slightly sweet.  When we use it on our kids, they don’t mind as much because instead of being a little salty if it drips into their mouth, it’s sweet.  It still contains saline, of course, and grapefruit seed extract.  This combination not only hydrates the sinuses and nasal passages, but also washes away airborne contaminants and allergens.  Which is why we keep it on hand year round, especially when traveling and during allergy season.

So far we’ve been using the Xlear Nasal Drops, since our kids are still young, but will switch to the Pump-style Spray when they are a little older and better and sniffing.  Xlear has a whole line of adult and kids sinus care products, so the whole family is covered.

Mommy’s Bliss Probiotic Drops

mommys-bliss-probiotic-dropsWe try and make sure that our kids have probiotics every day, and products like Probiotic Drops by Mommy’s Bliss make this easier than ever.  Especially when they aren’t in the mood for yogurt, it’s so easy to add probiotic drops to a smoothie, glass of milk or even cereal.

For infants, we especially like the drops.  It’s easier to deal with than powder if your baby is less than 6 months, since you can just drop a few drops in their mouth while changing a diaper.

If your child ended up taking antibiotics this winter, be sure you are helping them restore the balance of healthy bacteria in their digestive tract.  It can take years to return to normal, but probiotic supplements are a good way to promote digestion and reduce gas in the meantime.

Even if your child is healthy, we recommend probiotics because they support immune function and can help combat diarrhea, heart burn and constipation.

Maty’s Healthy Products

matys-cough-syrup-childrenWe try our best to avoid conventional medicines for our kids’ colds that are full of dyes, corn syrup and pharmaceuticals.  This is why we like the all natural cold remedies from Maty’s.

We have tried almost every natural kid’s cough syrup on the market this winter, and we liked some more than others.  One in particular ended up being simply honey and water (that taught me not to shop while sleep deprived!).

Maty’s Cough Syrup for Children may have honey in it, but it also contains other ingredients that clear out phlegm and boost the immune system such as cinnamon, apple cider vinegar and cayenne pepper.  It also contains zinc for immune support and lemon peel, clove and marjoram because they are antioxidants.  The Children’s Cough Syrup is safe for kids one year and up.

If you’re looking for something for the whole family (1+ years), or that is certified organic, try Maty’s Organic Cough Syrup.  It also honey based and contains 10 immune boosters, but the proportions are different (more zinc, for example).

matys-chest-rubRattling chests, stuffy noses, phlegmmy coughs: these are the most common ailments in our house.  We’re pretty sure our kids already associate the smell of the chest rub with comfort, because they continue to ask for it after their symptoms are gone.

We like Maty’s Baby Chest Rub best, because it is petroleum free and contains eucalyptus, lavender, and chamomile so it’s calming as well as soothing. Plus, it’s safe for babies as young as three months. We always rub it on the soles of their feet for extra relief.


The Honest Co. Immunity Plus Powder Supplement

We’ve had a serious winter this year, and along with it has been some serious colds and flues.  We’ve been spreading illnesses around our house since November, so I was excited to discover Immunity Plus by The Honest Company a few weeks ago.  I wish I had tried it out months ago!

Like other powder supplements, you add it to liquid (or food) and mix well.   Unlike other powder supplements, it contains Echinacea, Green Tea, Elderberry, Turmeric and Ginger in addition to the usual blend of Vitamins (C, D, B6 and B12) and Zinc. It doesn’t contains organic cane sugar instead of Stevia, which I prefer.

To be clear, this is definitely an immunity supplement and not a daily multivitamin.  I doesn’t contain the complete list of recommended vitamins and minerals, instead focusing on those proven to help you boost your immune system.  If you are looking for a daily multivitamin, check out their Women’s Complete Once Daily or Men’s Complete Once Daily.

I think the Immunity Plus tastes best mixed in with a can of fizzy water, and I like the Wild Berry Flavor better than the flavors of powdered supplements I used to use.  Unfortunately for my kids, it’s recommended for ages 4 and up.  Maybe their Baby & Toddler Multi Powder would be a good alternative.


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