colds and flus

Fire Cider Kristin-style

Need an extra kick to get you through the season?

It’s that time of year when most of us are nursing our second or

maybe even third winter cold (or dare I say flu).

We’re sick, we’re tired, and we’re kinda done with this

whole thing of being sick and tired.

I’ve shared my all-time favorite cold buster here before.

And, it works like a charm. [Get it right here.]

But, if you’re really feeling run down and you need a little more zing to get you

through a cold (or even just the day), then I’ve got a two-word secret for you.

It begins with “F” and ends with “-ider.”

And, it’s one of my favorite drinks.

It’s…Fire Cider.

kick winter in the tush
kick winter in the tush

What the hay is Fire Cider?

Fire Cider is one of those magical tonics handed down over the course of time.

Your grandma might have made it because her grandma swore by it. It’s a decongesting,

immune boosting, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-viral, apple cider vinegar infusion

that simple kicks major booty in the infection department.

Here’s the Best Part

Fire Cider is one of the easiest tonics to make. Simply:

1. Get the ingredients

2. Chop the ingredients

3. Put the ingredients in a jar and let them soak in apple cider vinegar for a week (or longer).

There’s no baking, no broiling. There’s no fancy mixing or mashing.

We’re talking chopping and soaking. That’s it.

How Should I Use It?

Fire cider sounds like it’s going to be a hot and spicy number.

Sure, it has a kick. But, I’ll be the first to tell you- good fire cider is mostly sweet

and spicy thanks to the cider soaked onions.

This sweet and sour special sauce is good in so many ways,

but here are a few of my go-to ways to use it:

1. A Splash in Water: Take is as a tonic any old day and put a splash of fire cider in water.

2. Spike Your Tea: If there’s a bug in the house and you’re feeling a little vulnerable,

a dash of fire cider in some garlic tea is the answer. This anti-microbial concoction is just the thing

to boost immunity and keep you hummin’ along.

3. Over Greens: Don’t let Fire Cider fool you. It’s not just an immune booster,

it’s a special sauce. Saute your favorite greens in butter and add a TBSP of fire cider

with a pinch of salt and you will be in heaven….guaranteed.

4. Cough Syrup for Kiddos: Just add 1Tbsp honey to 1-2 Tbsp fire cider.

Stir and serve on a spoon. The honey totally works to tone down the fire cider

spice so that your little one’s can go cough free.

Pass the Cider, Please

Holy canoli, I absolutely love sharing these health secrets with you.

It feels so good to give you the concrete steps so that you can take fabulous care of yourself.

Go ahead and pass this recipe on to a good friend or two, because everyone deserves to feel their best.

Here's to being sniffle-free any old time of the year!

~ Kristin

Your Thyroid and Your Immune System: {plus, FIVE tricks to get you through cold and flu season}

This time of year is a challenging on the thyroid. Oh, yes it is.

Nothing like flip-flopping temperatures to put a big, strain on your thyroid and put a damper on your immune system.

sniffle free
sniffle free

Tidbits About Your Thyroid [that you might not know]

Your thyroid is that sweet, butterfly shaped gland just below your Adam’s apple.

It’s got four lobes that mirror each other and it’s extremely sensitive to internal and external stressors.

To keep it simple, you can think of your thyroid as a control tower of sorts,

constantly adjusting and reacting to different input.

Internally, your thyroid is sensitive to stress that comes from within us.

It reacts to things like amount of sleep, thought patterns, nutritional status, and infections.

Externally, your thyroid will be affected by factors outside of us.

Environmental toxins, relationship stress, even parental stress can be a contributing factor.

Fall’s fluctuating temps challenge your thyroid and can be a just one more reason why up-and-down weather brings on nasty bugs.

Your Thyroid and Your Immune System

There’s a lot of talk about your thyroid being important for immunity, but do you know why?

1. It’s all about calcium.

Now I’m guessing that this might be a new consideration for a lot of folks.

When there’s talk about boosting the immune system, most people give a big shout out to remedies like Echinacea or zinc. And while there’s nothing wrong with those immune builders, they’re not the “King Pin.”

Calcium (and how it’s transported in the body) is the real deal.

Calcium- the most abundant mineral in your bod- tags germs so that your immune system knows what to attack.

In fact, tissue calcium saturation is the sole determining factor whether an acutely ill person will get better. Poor calcium levels equals poor prognosis. Here’s the study so you can take a look.

Your thyroid and parathyroid are big players in calcium metabolism and regulation. If they’re not functioning up to par, then you’ll have a harder time metabolizing calcium, and your immune system will have a harder time tagging germs.

Improve your calcium metabolism, and you’ll ace cold and flu season.

2. Your blood circulates through your thyroid every 7 minutes.

In Folk Medicine, DC. Jarvis writes about the connection between your thyroid, iodine and immunity.

He notes that all the blood in your body circulates through your thyroid every 7 minutes.

Your thyroid is soaking up iodine so that it can make hormones, and it also uses iodine as a handy antiseptic “wash”.

The iodine in your thyroid literally sterilizes your blood.

Boost your iodine status and you’ll be more likely to fend off any old bug.

What Can You Do About It?

Taking a little bit of time and effort during the fall to support your thyroid is so worth it.

I like to say, “less sneezing is more pleasing.” Here’s what YOU can do:

1. Get more rest: Nothing helps your thyroid more than rest.

I wrote about the thyroid-adrenal connection in my most popular post yet.

Click here and check out the ONE habit can help your hormones for good (and put it into action).

2. Eat your sea veggies: Iodine is 100% essential for your thyroid to be able to make

hormones (T3, T4, and calcitonin). Boost your “antiseptic” status by loading up on sea veggies.

Sprinkle a “sea veggie shake” like gomasio over eggs, soup or salad. Or, go for the gusto with this simple seaweed salad.

3. Dress for the season {not for the weather}: It can be tricky dressing for fall.

Mornings are chilly, afternoons are hot and all too often you can get caught in a brief sprinkle of rain.

Layer up and make sure that you’re dressing for the season and not for the weather. A light scarf around

your neck will help take a chill off your thyroid and keep your body temps more stable.

4. Consider taking calcium. It’s not called the “King Pin” for nothing, and not all forms of calcium are made the same.

Bottom line: Calcium lactate (made from beets) takes only 1 biochemical step to be usable for your body.

~ Kristin

Carbonates take a dozen steps. Ditch the carbonate, reach for calcium lactate, and you’ll be good to go.

5. Drink garlic tea: When worse comes to worse and you feel like you’re coming

down with something, garlic tea is your go-to remedy. It works like a charm- Every. Single. Time.

Just add a couple of cloves of chopped garlic to your favorite tea and sip on it throughout the day.

Sharing is Caring

Let’s face it, no one likes being sick. So, make sure to take a second and click on the social share buttons to the bottom left.

Your support is so important to me and I bet your friends will thank you for helping them go bug-free this season.

Aaand...I'd love to hear some of your favorite cold and flu remedies in the comments section. What do you go tucked up your sleeve?

Now, let’s get out there and be in the magic of this season (without all the sniffles and sneezes).

Wishing you a Kleenex-free Fall~


How's Your Rebound Factor?

The other day a colleague of mine asked me, “How are your clients holding up through this cold and flu season?” It took me a minute as I went through my mental file (yes, I have this uncanny way of recording my clients in my mind), and I said “You know, we’ve made it through pretty darn good so far.”

Sure a few of my clients have caught a cold here or there, but I couldn’t think of anyone who had a knock-down, drag-out flu. You know, the kind of flu that I’m talking about. The kind where you’re sick for weeks on end and you just can’t kick it.

Yep, my clients' have built up their “rebound factor”.

pulling hair with frame
pulling hair with frame

Good health isn’t about not getting sick. We’re all going to fall under the weather from time to time. Good health is about your “rebound factor”. It’s when you get sick, but your body is able to bounce back. Colds don’t last as long, they’re not as intense and they certainly don’t come back to haunt you once you’ve finally made it through the woods.

Now, I bet you’re wondering, “What does the rebound factor have to do with hormones?”

One of those hidden little signs of a poor functioning thyroid is your immune system. People with dysfunctional thyroids tend to get sick and stay sick. It can be a serious drag in more ways than one.

You see, all the blood in your body passes through your thyroid every 7 minutes. A super, happy, high-functioning thyroid is able to make use of one potent mineral: iodine. [For those of you who may not know, iodine is a natural antiseptic. Western doctors still use it as a prep agent for most surgeries.]

So here’s how it goes. With all the blood circulating through the thyroid gland every 7 minutes, your body is able to spritz a little antiseptic spray on any bugs, germs, or yucky stuff that may be already trapped in your blood. And iodine is known to kill that stuff on the spot.

Admittedly, there are more ways than one to get a microbe in your system. Often airborne pathogens sneak right in. This is why even those of us in the fittest of conditions will still “go under”. But, rarely do these illnesses just stay locked in your respiratory system.

When an illness goes deeper and starts to affect more of your body, this is when a healthy thyroid makes all the difference in the world. A healthy thyroid will sling that iodine around like it’s no one’s business. It will actually clean and sanitize your blood. But, a sluggish thyroid just can’t mobilize iodine efficiently enough to knock the bug out.

Ever since I started supporting my client’s hormones, this “rebound factor” has gone through the roof. Yes, the people that see me get sick from time to time. But, rarely do they stay sick.

So, now it’s time to take a moment and a deep breath. Every now and again it’s helpful to do a little check-in with yourself. When’s the last time that you got run down and wiped out? Were you in the “really sick” category or were you able to “beat” it? How would you rate your rebound factor?

There’s no need to stay sick and tired. No way, there’s just way too much life out there waiting for us. If you're feeling like your "rebound" needs a "reboot", then it just might be your time to make the leap and say “bye bye” to your hormonal blues.

As always, I want to know. Is your "rebound factor" a boon or a bust? Leave a comment and tell me, how have you bumped up your "rebound factor"?

~ Kristin

What's the weather got to do with it?

Ever wonder why you catch a cold when the weather starts to turn? Believe it or not, your thyroid can be a big factor.

Your thyroid is known to be one of the glands involved in regulating body temperature. It’s one of the reasons why low body temperature is often correlated to a lower functioning thyroid gland.

When the external temperature goes up and down- one day hot and one day cold- it puts a great deal of extra stress on your thyroid gland. Think about it for a minute. Your thyroid has to work harder in these conditions to keep your body temperature at its ideal set point. It's kinda like “stop and go traffic” for your thyroid.

D.C. Jarvis writes in Folk Medicine- that all the blood in the human body circulates through the thyroid gland every 7 minutes. And that it is the iodine that is concentrated within the thyroid tissue that acts as an antiseptic bath for the blood. When your thyroid is stressed due to internal or external factors, this germ cleansing action just doesn’t happen efficiently.

Here are a few of my top tips to help your thyroid when the weather feels a bit chill.

garlic tea
garlic tea

1. Layer up. It’s far better to overdress than underdress. Take a load off your thyroid when the temps go down just by adding some extra layers. You’ll be able to better regulate your body temperature and that will help take a load off your thyroid. Wearing a light scarf can really be helpful for a struggling thyroid.

2. Drink garlic tea. This is my all-time favorite cold buster. Just add a couple of cloves of chopped garlic to your tea. I usually make my tea in a quart jar so that I have plenty to sip on all day.

3. Rest. It may not be easy to get every night of the week, but rest really is your best medicine. Your body is designed to rebuild and repair with each and every hour of sleep that you get. The hours before midnight tend to be bonus hours. If you’re feeling a little scratchy throat, then throw out your “to-do” list and hit the hay. You’ll be so glad that you did.

Now it's your turn. I wonder, how do you keep your thyroid toasty when the chill comes on? Let me know in the comment section.

~ Kristin