As an herbalist, I always have my "winter cold & flu preventive herbal pantry" stocked for the season - ready for the attempted assault on my immune system. Here's what I keep on hand for fortification - all homemade: echinacea root/flower tincture; elderberry tonic w/ cloves and brandy; usnea tincture; "Be Clear Sinus Vapor Rub" - see recipe below; an antibacterial/antiviral essential oil blend of cloves, cinnamon bark, lemon, and orange that I use by the drop in my hot tea and diffuse into my home environment with my ultrasonic aromatherapy essential oil diffuser (which you can get by going to my NYR Organic website: www.us.nyrorganic/shop/herbs ); sage-infused body oil; plus I drink plenty of ginger root/lemon tea; take Juice Plus capsules (go to http://stourles.juiceplus.com); sleep a lot; get plenty of fresh air and exercise; and don't allow myself to get overly chilled or stressed out.
Today, I'm going to share my recipe for the amazingly aromatic and effective herbal vapor rub mentioned above, and if you are "into" essential oils, as I am, then you will probably have most of the required essential oils on hand. For more topically-applied herbal medicine recipes, you can find them in my best-selling book, "Hands-On Healing Remedies: 150 Recipes for Herbal Balms, Salves, Oils, Liniments & Other Topical Therapies". Here's to a healthy fall/winter season!!
Be Clear Sinus Vapor Rub
This vapor rub is an essential oil blend that contains strong respiratory antiseptics to help fight infection and mucolytics to aid in dissolving and loosening mucous congestion. Antiviral, decongestant, and analgesic properties help heal the source of your stuffiness, shrink swollen mucous membranes, and alleviate tightness in your chest.
This particular remedy calls for a wide variety of essential oils, but they can be used in many other recipes in this book and I recommend having them all.
NOTE: This is an aromatherapeutically concentrated formula, so use only as directed.
- 25 drops cajeput essential oil
- 20 drops eucalyptus (species "radiata") essential oil
- 10 drops balsam fir essential oil
- 10 drops lavender essential oil
- 10 drops peppermint essential oil
- 10 drops sage essential oil
- 5 drops clove essential oil
- 5 drops tea tree essential oil
- 5 drops thyme (chemotype "linalool") essential oil
- 1/2 cup jojoba base oil
Equipment: Glass dropper, dark glass 4-ounce storage bottle with dropper top or screw cap
Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus 24 hours to synergize
Yield: Approximately 1/2 cup
Storage: Store at room temperature, away from heat and light; use within 2 years
Application: 2 or 3 times per day
Add the cajeput, eucalyptus, balsam fir, lavender, peppermint, sage, clove, tea tree, and thyme essential oils drop by drop directly into a 4-ounce storage bottle. Add the jojoba base oil. Screw the top on the bottle and shake vigorously for 2 minutes to blend. Label the bottle and place it in a dark location that's between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit for 24 hours so that the oils can synergize, becoming a more potent blend.
Shake well before using. Apply a drop or two of this aromatic oil under your hose, on your throat, on your temples, and behind your ears. If your skin is not too sensitive, place a drop on each cheekbone as well. Spread several drops on your chest and even on the soles of your feet so they can be absorbed via all those sweat glands. Be sure to massage the oil drops in well, until they are totally absorbed into your skin with nary an oil slick in sight.
After you've rubbed the oil into the skin, inhale the essences from your hands by cupping them over your mouth and nose. Close your eyes and breathe deeply.
BONUS: This formula acts as an aid in fighting athlete's foot and nail fungus. Simply massage into your clean feet and nails twice daily. It also acts as an antiseptic for minor to moderate skin ailments and as a spot treatment for blemishes!