It's the same old story every year. We return to school, to routines and structures, to early starts and rushes out the door, to earlier nights and cooler weather and without fail, within a week, we'll be battling some attack on our immune system. Whether it be a sick bug, a cold or a sore throat, the changing seasons seem to invite those viruses and infections as part and parcel of the Autumn.
And September was no different.
Within a week of school restarting, all of us, bar David, had succumbed to some sore throat and nasty cough bug. Poor little Elias suffered the most, and I was frustrated with myself for not being prepared... summer just seemed to disappear so suddenly, don't you think?
It's been a timely reminder that we can't stop bugs and illness, infections and disease... we live in a broken world, and sadly those things are part and parcel of it (bring on heaven - no sickness, death or pain!!)... but I do believe God has given us some natural resources in the world he created to help strengthen our bodies and immune systems so we're ready to do battle when they come!
So I thought I'd share a little of our routines round here to get our bodies in top working order as the colder seasons roll in...
Allowing our Bodies to Rest
We all know that this is one of the BEST ways to support our immune systems, and yet it seems to be one of the things we are worst at (well, I am anyway!) Getting decent sleep is vital for our bodies to perform to their best abilities. I find I am so good at the "bedtime routine" for our children... following certain rituals and routines to wind them down slowly for bed, but I don't show myself the same kindness. Instead I push myself to my limits, staying up long past the time I should do, and then find myself up in the night, and super early, with our baby. Wisdom would send me to bed earlier, and much as that doesn't come naturally to me, I do find it easier when the nights start to close in, and the weather starts to turn. I'm determined to have some kind of bedtime routine for myself this year... and seriously, how can I expect to fend off those little bugs if my body is exhausted? Its a no-brainer really... So if you have any little routines that help you wind down for the evening... wing them my way! I need a little help here!
Supporting our Immune Systems
Supporting our immune systems with essential oils is a valuable part of our preparation for the Autumn. Thieves oil (renowned for its Bubonic Plague fame - ask me that story if you don't know it!) is our go-to the minute the season starts to change. It's a powerful combination of clove, lemon, cinnamon and eucalyptus and smells incredible to boot. We diffuse it overnight in the girls bedroom to give their immune systems the boost it needs if I see the slightest sign of something started to pop up... we would diffuse it in ours too, but I'm still careful about diffusing too much around Elias. The minute he's in his own room, our room will be diffusing too! Alternatively you can throw 3-4 drops in a roller diluted with some carrier oil and roll it on those kiddies feet before school every morning! If you're interested in Essential Oils, I'm recording everything I'm discovering on my new Instagram account @peppermintpine.essentials ... pop over and take a look!
Supporting the Respiratory System
Autumn is the season of coughs and colds and stuffy noses, and Eucalyptus will forever be my best buddy through those under-the-weather evenings (not for the children though!) We use RC (a Young Living eucalyptus blend) to diffuse once the kids are in bed, or I can roller it on my chest, feet or back of neck to respiratory support. For the children I tend to stick to a combination of lemon and purification, or thieves to do the job for me... a little diffusion, or a bedtime roller on the feet and we're good to go!
Drinking Endless Cups of Water
It's dull and boring, isn't it? But it's so true... and it works! It's that simple! I think I find this one trickier at this time of year... a hot cup of tea just seems so much more inviting on these cooler mornings, but it just won't have the same detox effect!
Eat Healthy, Wholesome Food
We all know its true that if we fill our bodies with the right diet, we're going to be in a better and stronger position... and yet as winter rolls round, my sugar intake inevitably increases... why are chocolate and biscuits so much harder to resist at this time of year?! Filling our bodies with fruit and veg, with plenty of vitamin C and a good, wholesome, balanced diet is vital to entering into this season with the front foot forward.
It seems that however strong and ready our bodies are, some viruses and bacterial infections are just determined... I thought I'd write up a little post next week for some of the natural ways we've fought off ear infections, sore throats and coughs and colds when they do hit... but in the meantime, we're seeking to work with our bodies to try and get us off to a good start this autumn... its all about the mountains of veg, whole grains and balanced diet!
I'd love to hear if you have any other ideas for getting your body in tip-top condition for fighting off those seasonal sniffles! Just leave a comment below!