For sure its the most wonderful time of the year, BUT, it can also be fraught with illness, exhaustion, anxiety or just a general collapse after it all which is really common and why the whole January detox market is flexing its muscles to clean up on everyone's malaise.
So, I much prefer to arm myself right now with a few trusty saviours that get me through and steel my children for however many late nights and veg free days that happen. Because you don't want to be dealing with sick kids, sniffling partners or being ill and missing the fun yourself.
EVERY DAMN DAY
These are imbibed on the regular, to offset the chocolate, crisps and shirking of green vegetables that is inevitable right now. Check the dosage on the bottle as you can double dose in winter or at the first signs of coughs and colds.
This has really kept us snot free, and I am utterly sold on the magic of the elderberry.
- IMMUNE KICKER
Sambucol Black Elderberry for Kids
For older children and grown ups:
If you would rather make your own, this is delicious
and a lovely tonic to have in the fridge, although obviously you can't be sure of exact vitamin levels etc.
Do also try and get some easy wins in like fresh pesto
, a green smoothie
with a handful of spinach or the failsafe One Pot Chicken Wonder
which has been used since before recipes were in books to soothe and heal. Do not underestimate ether power of foods, and how key they are once you are under the weather.
2. SUNSHINE VITAMIN
Vitamin D is crucial, and we don't get enough in the winter months to keep our levels at the optimal level. There just isn't enough in our food so I take this every day and give to my kids religiously, its a devious minty spray they love and has been shown to strengthen immune systems and ward of the lurgies at large:
Babies: Vitamin D3 Minty Spray for Infants
Children: Junior Daily Oral D3 Spray
And you: Vitamin D Oral Spray for adults
3. MULTI VIT
Food is clearly the best way of getting your A B C's in, but with young children, fussy eaters, school food not always on point, I like to have a back up policy to make sure we've got the crucial ones covered, and I like this one from fertility guru Zita West and My Baba. It also has probiotics
Childrens Multivitamin 3 month supply
I take a an all round "anti-ageing" supplement called Lumity
, that you take morning and evening, it's a heath, wellness and skin supplement with a generous serving of essentials as well as anti-inflammatory and fish oils for joints, bones, immune support and skin, and I love it.
4. CALM & QUIET
A lot of nerves feeling frazzled, trouble falling asleep, waking up or just not quite as calm, there are some things I add in every day, and others to add at times of trouble!
This magnesium rich powder
has become a staple, and is a great addition to your bedtime routine if you have trouble changing down gears.
30 individual sachets perfect for travelling.
And then if it's a sudden shift and sleep is elusive to your kids, or you, I automatically get out the hugely effective cherry number
. I wrote a whole post on how amazing this is and added a delicious smoothie recipe
that my kids wolf.
5. CHEER UP
If you need a spirit lift, as is often the case with less sunlight around it could be a case of SAD:
Tips for the Winter Blues or SAD
6. SKIN AND HAIR GLOW + BONE + JOINT REPAIR
To keep your glow on despite the lack of sleep and extra drinks you may be getting through, adding some of this collagen powder
to any smoothies, drinks or coffee
I've found makes a huge difference to hair, skin and nails. At times of injury, joint pain or healing it is particularly useful.
I take it daily and have heard from so many of you that its made a huge difference to hair, menopausal skin and joint issues and nails as well as the glow skin thing. Read more on collagen here.
FIGHTING THE FLU / SNIFFLES / COUGHS
If you've already succumbed and are feeling terrible there are some things you can still do to make yourself / your children feel a lot better and speed up recovery time so you can get back to the festive fun.
for the full post I wrote on this earlier. It has all the bath soaks and goodies included already.
My first port of call always when anything feels off (throat, head, aches, sniffs) but also at times of muscle, bone or joint pains. The active component in turmeric - curcumin - has been found to drastically increase the bodies anti-inflammatory response and has helped me, anecdotally, with many bouts of illness, physical repairs and more.
BUG BEATER EXTRAORDINAIRE
A really super charged, 95% curcumin, dose of 2,500 mg turmeric in a pill form
, this particular brand has been shown to perform incredibly well, antioxidant, anti inflammatory and digestive supportand makes an impact, I give this 1,000mg dose of the same brand to my children
as they don't tolerate the shots!
If you have fresh and you can stomach it this is a good hit up:
- 4 inches fresh turmeric
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp honey
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- 1 apple
Put turmeric and apple through the juicer, combine other ingredients and drink in one go as a shot.
If you ache all over and are in need of a recharge, this deliciously therapeutic eucalyptus salt soak
will enliven and relax you whilst helping your tubes unblock at the same time.
You can make your own version too:
- 2 cups Epsom salts
- 10 drops eucalyptus oil
- 1 tsp baking powder
- a camomile tea bag opened (omit if you'd rather a less messy clear up after!)
Mix ingredients together and pour under hot tap as water is running. Soak for at least 20 minutes.
: If you've got razor blades when you swallow or are just feeling it there, this is a nice easy to make tonic that you can do twice a day to put some instant, topical goodness on the problem. It should provide some relief and help recovery time too.
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 lemon squeezed
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 inch ginger minced
- 1/4 cup warm water
- (if you're feeling bold add a minced clove of garlic)
Mix all ingredients together and gargle for 10 seconds each time,, as many times as needed to finish mixture.
UNBLOCKING and SLEEPING EASY
If you have small ones with blocked noses nighttime can be sheer hell for everyone. I've tried a few things, from rubbing things on and around etc but diffusing this wonderful vapour oil has been the most effective way for me of keeping them breathing more freely and ensuring more sleep all round.
Bamboo Essential Oil Diffuser
has lights and
Snuffle Babe has been road tested on tinies as well and works wonders:
Snufflebabe 10 ml Vapour Oil
this Albas Oil is lovely and works a treat:
Olbas oil for children 10ml
EMERGENCY TOOL KIT
I have these on hand wherever I go in case of vomitting, bugs, sleep issues when away, bumps and bruises as per. Not used daily, but I don't like to be without them as they sort everyone out so fast it's key to have them to hand.
If I could prescribe three things to every parent it would be these:
NO MORE VOM
My Charcoal dream
My Charcoal dream for vomit
- This sleep magic cherry number
- For all accidents and bumps this powerful gel
that has been such a life-saver for me and so many of you to date, I just don't know what I did without it. Read the full details on charcoal, all its uses and how it works and the recipe here
It is used in emergency rooms in cases of poisoning, and it is equally effective at keeping tap water clean and filtered. I have many variants of charcoal in my house now as described above.
GO TO SLEEP
Sleep aid extraordinaire, this cherry number
, at times of high excitement is a must for my children to ensure some sleep. The full info here
It's particularly useful over holidays and when moving around and changing bedrooms, I can't tell you how many nights it has turned around for me.
BUMPS N BRUISES
For those inevitable bashes and bumps. They can be soothed, and your mind eased, so quickly with some of this powerful gel
cream, which is an amazing healer for contusions, bruises and hemotomas. It smells delicious, absorbs easily and is incredibly effective.
Using a unique ultrasound extraction and made in Italy this is the best version of this I have found and it really works.
Also really useful for muscular and joint pain.
+I am not a doctor, please consult your GP for any medical concerns