News — DIY
So what is Fire cider? It's a herbal tonic made by brewing apple cider vinegar in a variety of herbs and spices for about 4-6 weeks. I first learned about it in one of my recipe books by Rosemary Gladstar, who has been making it and sharing the recipe since the 1970s. It's a wonderful winter tonic that helps fight off colds and flus and help add natural probiotics to your gut to keep you healthy. The recipe or I should say recipes have been around for ages with variations here and there based on local flora and herbal inclinations.
Elderberry Syrup Recipe
Elderberries have been touted for years by herbalists to help the immune system fight off a cold a bit faster and reduce the symptoms you feel during a cold or a flu.
Why does it work? Elderberries contain a flavonoid called anthocyanin, which has antioxidant and immune boosting properties. They’re also a good source of vitamin C, betacarotene, vitamin B6, and iron. All important nutrients needed by the body especially during an illness.
Check out the rest of the blog post about more amazing properties of elderberries and a recipe for Elderberry Syrup.
Edmonton's river valleys and parks are blessed with lots of wild rose bushes. I take joy in going into the valleys in the fall to collect rosehips.
What are rosehips? Seen here, they are the bulb of the rosebud essentially. They have been used for centuries by aboriginal populations for this reason. It's interesting to note that During World War II, there was a public campaign started by registered dietitian, Claire Loewenfeld, who was working for Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children encouraged people to collect wild rose hips and make a rose hip syrup for children (2). The topic even made it into the British Medical Journal (BMJ)! (1). Citrus fruits imported during this period came on ships and like many other ships with various goods heading to Britain, they were a target, resulting in a shortage of imported citrus fruits during the war. Rosehips have been used for medicinal and therapeutic properties for centuries. Rosehips contain more vitamin C than many citrus fruits, which is great to know for wild foraging and for those wanting to live local. No need to buy citrus fruits to get your vitamin C, you have a plentiful source in your backyard.
I'll admit a natural spray isn't as effective in deterring the bugs as a DEET based repellent, but i'd much rather have a couple bites and know that what I put on my skin is healthy and won't build up toxins in my body. I was turned off commercial bug repellent years ago, when a bottle of muskol from a camping trip had leaked on to our hardwood floor and ACTUALLY took the finish off the floor! It peeled it off like I had applied paint remover or taken a heat gun to it. YIKES! Insane that we put this on our skin, no wonder that stuff kills bugs on contact!
People everywhere are starting to ditch 'Shampoo", which is the poo in the 'no poo' movement! Why go 'no poo'? It's no secret that shampoos as well as many cosmetics are laced with lots of synthetic ingredients which have been found to be hormone disruptors, harsh on the environment with ingredients such as surfuctants, SLS, triclosan to name a few, and some products even have known carcinogens in some cases. If you are wondering what's lurking in your shampoo, check out the Environmental Working Groups SkinDeep database. It's pretty thorough and is backed by top notch independent research. You...