Under the weather? 13 healing tonics for sipping your way back to health
07/01/2019 // Lance D Johanson // Views

Weaknesses in the body present an opportunity for self care and strengthening. If you feel under the weather, you might be tempted to lie around and pout, but these initial symptoms are there to alert you to take action and strengthen the body with phyto-nutrients. When your body is feeling weak and achy; if you have a headache, congestion, or perhaps even some soreness in your throat, get ready to sip your way back to health. The following tonics can help shorten the duration of sickness, stave off severe illness, and ease the nasty symptoms that may come along with bacterial and viral infections.

Hydration and nutrition is essential for efficient recovery

Water helps your body clear out toxins because it hydrates the mucous membranes, helping the body release trapped dust and bacteria. Water also helps thin out mucus, allowing it to flow more readily and carry out waste. Proper hydration with purified water is essential for recovery from any infection.

Fresh juices and smoothies are a great way to introduce significant amounts of vitamins and antioxidants to the body. Pineapple juice helps relieve congestion and sore throat. Oranges and mangoes increase vitamin C uptake. Blueberries contain anthocyanins, a type of antioxidant flavonoid that helps protect the cells.

Amalaki, hibiscus, and rose hip teas

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that calls the innate immune system into action, boosting the B-cell response. Add lemons to water to stay hydrated because they provide a boost of Vitamin C. Lemons are also high in pectin, which feeds healthy gut bacteria, allowing commensal microbes to respond to infections with greater resolve. Hibiscus and rose hip tea is a delicious yet bitter blend packed with vitamin C. Amalaki berry and stevia leaf tea also provides significant amounts of vitamin C. Hibiscus and amalaki contain bitter compounds and various antioxidants that bolster immunity in the face of weakness. Additionally, a high dose vitamin D supplement can be added to a child's tea or a juice to strengthen their T-cell response.


Echinacea and elderberry

Echinacea purpurea leaf, echinacea angustifolia root, and elderberry contain specific compounds that halt viral and bacterial infections. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial found that echinacea preparations can reduce the severity and duration of sickness when taken at the onset of symptoms. Similarly, elderberry contains bioflavonoids with anti-inflammatory and expectorant properties, helping the body eliminate phlegm. The anti-viral compounds in elderberry make it a powerful tonic at the onset of infection, to shorten the duration of illness. Its magnesium, zinc, and quercetin content helps fortify the body. Add elderberry juice or extract to any tea at the first sign of weakness to give your body a strong boost against aches, pains, and lethargy.

Ginger, thyme, peppermint, and cinnamon

A cup of warm ginger tea will soothe the stomach. Ginger acts as an anti-emetic, preventing vomiting and helping detox the body. An application of ginger oil to the temples helps relieve headache. Because ginger contains chromium, it can help prevent chills and make a fever more productive. You can push some fresh ginger root through your juicer, you can add ginger oil to your drink, or you can add a tablespoon of organic ground ginger to a cup of warm water with honey. Ginger helps the body manage symptoms of illness.

If you’re looking to break up congestion and speed up recovery, add thyme, peppermint, and cinnamon to your tea kettle. Add one tablespoon of both herbs to hot water and let steep for twenty minutes. Add a teaspoon of cinnamon and a dash of stevia and cayenne. Strain the liquid from the plant material and enjoy this natural decongestant and sore throat-reliever.

Green tea and cacao

Boost your mood and fortify the body with antioxidants by drinking green tea or hot cocoa. Both of these delicious beverages flood the body with nutrients to help you recuperate and gain energy. Green tea contains a powerful antioxidant known as EGCG, which goes to work against free radicals, protecting the cells. Cacao is rich in minerals, which help the body assimilate the vitamins present in the other herbal drinks. Raw cacao powder can be added to a plant-based “milk” and warmed up over the stove to make a delicious, mood and energy-boosting hot cacao tonic.

This list is just the beginning. There are hundreds of amazing herbs that can be simmered into a tea to provide demulcent, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antibacterial properties that are greatly needed at the first signs of weakness.

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