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Tired of Being Sick? Get Well Already!

Updated on February 2, 2011

Every time I log onto my facebook account I see someone complaining about being sick. "My children are still sick!" My husband is sick, and can't go to work today." And the most pathetic, "I'm sick. I hurt all over! ;("

Yes, it happens to everyone. But do you really need to wallow in self pity, with multiple trips the the doctor's office? I don't think so!

For example, if you are throwing up, and can't keep anything down, make a cup of very mild black tea. Sweeten it with a little bit of white sugar. The black tea is lighter on the stomach than water, and the sugar will help prevent dehydration. I have often found after a cup or two that I (or any member of my family, for that matter) am well enough to sleep the rest of it off.

If you are sick with a fever, aches and pains, get up off your butt, head out to the nearest pine tree (not cedar), and peel a small branch off. While you are out there, gather a few leaves of yarrow.

What are you going to do with it? You are going to make tea! That's right. Pine needle tea is not just for starving pioneers. It is for everyday aches, pains, and illnesses.

Pine oil, which is released when the needles are crushed and steeped in hot water, is a known source of tamiflu, a powerful virus killer. It is also anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. In Sweden, pine needles are made into mattresses for those suffering from arthritis. Besides that, it tastes good. You don't believe me? Try it. You'll see. Even children like it's mild, sweet flavor.

A few needles and flowers from a ponderosa pine.
A few needles and flowers from a ponderosa pine.
A pine branch from a spruce tree.
A pine branch from a spruce tree.

How To Make Pine Tea

Once you have picked a small branch off of your pine tree (or the one in the park), rinse it in warm water with a little bit of white vinegar added. This will get rid of dust and pollution that might be clinging to the needles. If you've got yarrow leaves, rinse them too. While you are rinsing the herbs, start your kettle.

When the herbs are clean, crush a few needles into your favorite cup. For an adult, I'd recommend about 6" worth of needles. Take a bit of the branch and crush it too. How to crush the needles and branch? Either bend it back and forth in your fingers until it is well bruised or lay it on a cutting board and smoosh it the handle of a heavy knife. I prefer to use my hands, because then the oils from the plants can be absorbed through my fingers. Pour boiling water over your pine needles, cover the cup and let steep for about 10 minutes.

Why add the branch to the tea? When pine needles and bark are combine, they make a wonderful source of vitamin C.

Yarrow.  The leaves and flowers are both useful.  They can be collected at any time, dried and stored for future use.
Yarrow. The leaves and flowers are both useful. They can be collected at any time, dried and stored for future use.

Reducing Fever, Naturally

To reduce a fever right now, head to your silverware drawer and grab two metal spoons. That's right, any two regular eating spoons. Now carefully run these along either side of the spine, from neck to tailbone. Repeat until the spoons are warm. If the person still has a high fever, repeat with cool spoons.

  • I don't know why this works, but I know that it does. If a child wakes up at night with a fever, this is my first remedy. It often reduces the fever enough so that the child can sleep until morning.

Now get those yarrow leaves you collected. They are going to make a fever fighting tea. Steep a 2 teaspoons of crushed leaves in hot water for 5-10 minutes. Strain out, add a bit of honey and a drop or two of peppermint extract. This tea is strongly flavored.

Taking Care of a Sick Infant

So it is your baby that is sick, and he refuse to swallow the teas. You can take the same herbs and steep them in hot olive oil to make an infused massage oil.

To do this, pour 1/2 a cup of pure olive oil in a small pan. Add the herbs and heat over a low heat. The oil needs to get hot, but not simmer. You'll want to steep the herbs, not fry them. Keep the oil and herbs hot for 15 minutes, then remove from the heat source and allow to cool. When the oil is cool, strain into a glass jar. Use the oil to massage your baby's abdomen, chest and back.

  • If you have a candle warmer, you can infuse the oil by heating it in a glass jar with the herbs for an hour or so.

Olive oil is a natural liver cleanser, so using it for the base of the massage oil will help to keep your baby's body functioning at its well and help prevent jaundice.

P.S. A spoon full of pure olive oil wouldn't hurt you either.

If you have been sick for a while...

If you have been sick for a while, or what you have seems very stubborn, you may need something stronger.

For viruses, such as German Measles, the Amish use vodka, honey and lemon juice in hot water. To make up a tonic, mix a 1/4 cup each of vodka, honey and lemon juice (preferably freshly squeezed), in a large mug. Add hot water to fill the cup, mix and drink immediately -- the hotter the better. Repeat every 4 hours.

For bacterial infections, heat 1/4 cup black pepper in 1 cup of milk, and drink. You don't need to choke down all of the pepper, but do get as much of the milk as possible. This is an old Norwegian remedy that I have used many times -- especially for my husband, when he wakes up not feeling well.

Another black pepper remedy that we have used with success calls for 1 teaspoon of black pepper mixed in one shot of whiskey. Let the pepper soak in the whiskey for about 5 minutes, then swallow it all. Chase with lots of water! When I use this right before bed, I wake up feeling great.

Ivorwen, 2009.

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FDA Disclaimer

 I have not checked to see if any of these statements are approved by the FDA. 

If you are on a drug already, check with your doctor, before using any herbal remedy.  There are a few things that will react badly to each other.


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    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I'm pleased that you mentioned common yarrow, which is a great herbal remedy for many ailments. The flowers and leaves can be dried and used as a medicinal tea to treat colds and flu. Yarrow is also known as "soldier's herb" because it can be used as a dressing for wounds. Thanks for outlining some simple home remedies in this hub. Voted up and shared.

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Thanks Ghomefitness. I do believe you are the first person I have met who uses the black pepper already.

    • ghomefitness profile image


      7 years ago from Chicago,IL

      A lot of cool stuff. I use black pepper but I will have to try pine needles and the spoons. Thanks!

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      I have used Aloe Vera before, for several things. I think it really does speed healing of tissues.

      I have never herd of Braggs Vinegar, I'll have to look it up, but I do use Apple Cider vinegar when necessary. Lately, I found out it is good for cleansing lymph nodes, then had the opportunity to experiment on myself and most family members. I have no idea what we are fighting, but everyone is getting better, including the dog.

    • dugger62 profile image

      Deborah Dugger 

      8 years ago from Colorado

      Wow, I know I will be around here in this area. I know this may sound what my older kids say "mom- your gross" and I will admit it tastes nasty but it works--->Aloe vera plant. It isn't just for burns.

      One time my mother was really sick and I gave her half a cup or less of Braggs Vinegar- lol I told her to drink it but not down it (like she did)- she doesn't cuss but she came mighty close to doing so after she drank it. But the next day she was 100% better! The stuff stinks and it also major tastes nasty- but it does kick it!

      Love your Hub, you might save me from having to taste nasty tasting stuff - lol.

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Thank you Frogyfish. I know that the fire meridian is said to be along the spinal column, so figured it had something to do with cooling and relaxing that. I really don't know.

    • frogyfish profile image


      8 years ago from Central United States of America

      Very interesting and unique hub. I just must make some of that pine tea. It must be delightful and besides that, good for what ails you. And that two-spoons deal - wow! It is stimulating the spinal root nerves but don't know how that might relate to reducing fever. Great adventure!

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Thanks Scourtney.

    • scourtney profile image


      8 years ago

      Very interesting and informative article, definitely a keeper!

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Thank you Hugo Diaz. Wishing you a healthy winter.

    • Hugo Diaz profile image

      Hugo Diaz 

      8 years ago from Minnesota

      Lots of good information. Thanks.

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Your welcome, Ladybird. I hope you stay healthy and well this winter.

    • Ladybird33 profile image


      8 years ago from Fabulous USA

      I am going to use some of these ideas. thanks for the info, it is very good.

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      The thing I love most about black pepper, besides how well it works, is that it is a staple in every home.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      8 years ago from south Florida

      Learned something about black pepper as a remedy - thank you for the interesting info.

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Doc, your safe. I just want to eliminate the common cold and speedily recover from the flu. You can take care of the real problems, like broken bones.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Oi are you trying to take over my Doctors job ; )

    • Rose West profile image

      Rose West 

      8 years ago from Michigan

      Wow, interesting! I've never heard of pine needle tea. Do you think it would work with palm fronds? j/k

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      Glad to be of service!

    • Mary Moon profile image

      Lilly the Pink 

      8 years ago

      Very informative I will be using these suggestions this winter on my family, thanks. x

    • Frugal Fanny profile image

      Frugal Fanny 

      8 years ago from BC

      Good to know. :)

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      I love using flax seed and flax seed oil in my food preparation, so that my family has a constant supply of it. I am always amazed at the variety of things it is helpful for!

      Thanks debugs.

    • debugs profile image


      8 years ago from Odessey777, Umbris

      Flax seed oil REALLY works.. I agree, it's one of the best natural cures and it works on almost every malady!

    • Ivorwen profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Hither and Yonder

      And work, they do. I have used all of them with my family more than once, and know others who also use them.

      Thanks Sarra.

    • profile image

      Sarra Garrett 

      8 years ago

      Great hub. Nothing like good old Mother Nature cures. You are right, if they worked for the pioneers and indians they'll still work today.


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