Archive for Feel Better


Healing Bone Broth

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When we are sick, we need a good healing broth that feeds us without making us digest much to get it into our body. It is a good idea to make one or more of these in advance and have them in the freezer ready to go. I recommend letting them defrost in a bowl of hot water or on the counter and heating them up in a pot rather than using a microwave. I don’t use microwaves due to the chance that they might change or reduce the healing qualities of the broth.

I use the old bones I have saved in the freezer from roasts, turkey and chicken carcasses, and other good bones. I try to get organic or at least humanely raised meats to use. For this purpose, maybe you can at least get good bones from the healthiest sources you can find. Using the best veggies and ingredients obviously will be the best for you when you and/or your family is sick, however some broth is better than none! You are looking for rich, condensed, unprocessed nutrition to feed you at a cellular level.

Put your bones and even some veggies in a roasting pan in the oven at a low temperatyre (250 degrees) for a few hours or until they are nicely browned and NOT scorched or BURNED! Add water or broth at the end to loosen up the lovely browned bits on the bottom of the roasting pan. Get out your biggest soup pot/stock pot and transfer everything from the roasting pan to the pot, cleaning out all the wonderful stuck bits with the liquid. Crack or break as many bones as you can since you want the marrow in the broth. Place on the stove burner.

Thoroughly wash some veggies of choice (carrots, potatoes, etc), an onion, and some garlic cloves. Roughly chop them and add to the pot. Throw in a handful of fresh parsley, a couple of bay leaves, some pepper corns, and other similar seasonings if you want to. Use just enough filtered water to cover the bones and veggies and after it has come to a boil, skim all the foam off (if any) and throw it away. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to very low. Simmer the pot of bones and veggies for a few hours until the bones are falling apart and the meat is falling off of them. I actually use a potato masher during the cooking process to help get all the goodness out of the bones, meat and vegetables.

When it is well cooked, place a large colander over another pot or heatproof bowl and with a slotted spoon, or strainer, scoop the bones and veggies into it to drain. Do not pour directly  into the colander or it will splash hot broth on you. When you have finished pouring all of it through the colander, drain the broth you gathered back into the soup pot through a finer strainer, cheese cloth or old thin dishtowel, to make sure all the bone bits are removed. Throw away, or compost, the remains in the colander after you have pushed on them to remove as much broth as possible.

When you place the broth in a container or two and put it in the refrigerator it should jelly completely. This tells you it is full of protein. This is a very good healing broth and can be eaten as is or vegetables can be added at will. It’s also good as a cooking broth for other dishes, of course.

For vegetarians who eat butter and eggs, use butter to roast some veggies, and use good tomatoes as a broth base. If you use fermented soy products, make sure they are organic or at least non GMO. Tomato broth will jelly all by itself when it is made with heirloom varieties, which is how we used to make tomato consume. There is nothing like having some (even small) amount of animal protein to help re-energize the body. (See Sally Fallon’s book “Nourishing Traditions” for more info on this.)

You can also make a ‘white’ broth by not roasting any of the bones or vegetables. It’s just not as rich tasting although equally nourishing.


It’s Spring! Fresh Wild Greens are Back!

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It’s that lovely season when the early Spring greens are up in abundance and are at their peak of nutritiousness. It is also the time when I start my wild edible walks and talks as the Urban Forager! This coming Saturday, April 12th, I will be opening the season with a foraging event at Denver Sustainability Park. We will focus on the Spring greens that our Grandmother’s knew were the best help in clearing the Winter ‘funk’ out of our bodies, gently and surely. These little greens will also nourish you with a super load of vitamins and minerals. So come join me for a two hour experience of learning, foraging, and asking any questions about wild edibles that you have. You can sign up for my walk or contact me for a tour of your own backyard and neighborhood! Remember, if you know your wild local edibles, you’ll never lack for food!


What Grandmother Knew About Colds & Flu

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We are experiencing one of the most serious widespread flu and cold seasons we have had in a long time. Colds have been holding on for weeks and the flu is totally debilitating. I have had that awful cold; family and friends are suffering with really profound flu symptoms. So I’ve been having many ask me what I do for each. Remembering what my Mother did puts me in touch with my Grandmother as well. Seems like these ways of handling colds and flu might be helpful to others, so here goes.

Colds and flu are different. So the very first thing is to take one of the homeopathic flu remedies since homeopathic remedies have been proven to lessen or stop flu when nothing else does. The remedy that is the most common is Oscillococinum (ah-sill-oh-co-sin-um). Don’t wait until you decide if it is the flu or a cold or it will be too late. Just take it! If it is a cold,  the effects will also be lessened by taking a homeopathic medicine.

Remember the old expression “Feed a cold; starve a fever”? This is not really the whole expression as I understand it. It was “If you feed a cold, you’ll have to starve a fever.”  So change your eating habits as soon as the first symptoms appear. For a cold, eat lightly of very healthy foods more often. Focus on broths with rice and a few veggies like winter squash and greens; pure juices with no added sugar (or worse yet artificial sweeteners); honey; herbal teas or green tea with ginseng and honey; and half your body weight in ounces of water to help flush out the germs. If there is a mucus build up, eliminate all dairy and wheat as these will increase the mucus secretions. [Yeah, I know it’s hard, just try it anyway. You can do anything for a week, right?]

The other supporters for your healing process are good for both colds and flu. I use zinc lozenges with vitamin C and/or echinacea and elderberry; fresh citrus fruits; traditional healing teas for the symptoms present; homeopathics that also address your symptoms; and a Neti pot with the special sea salt that doesn’t hurt your nose and sinuses. If you don’t use a Neti pot, use a saline spray; I particularly like the one with Xylitol. Rest, rest, rest even if you have to just let everything go, and use a hot or cold vaporizer next to your bed! Other good additions to this regime are garlic capsules 4x/day (600 mg per dose), high B 100 mg sustained release, and emergen-C.

For the flu, you have to be even more aware that you must take care of yourself!!! If the Oscillococinum didn’t nip it in the bud, get the homeopathic from Boiron (the blue tube) called influenzinum. It’s for the effects of flu or flu like symptoms, and it really works! Now is the time to fast. That means get containers of organic broths or have someone make good hardy broth (recipe in next blog), and don’t give your body anything it has to digest until you are good and truly hungry with stomach rumblings! Honey, herb teas, broths, barley water, and water!A liquid fast is a better way to put it. Consume as much as you want, as often as you want to. You won’t be hungry until your body is ready for actual food. Then have a really ripe banana, add rice and greens to the soup, have a boiled egg, eat live cultured products (yogurt, kefir, kombucha that say active, live culture on it) and stay away from processed foods, refined foods, and especially refined sugar! Want sweets? Have honey and pure maple syrup, pure fruit juices and coconut water. Refined sugar is known to suppress your immune system by up to 90% for 4 hours after you eat it. That lets the germs regain their foothold and can lead to a relapse.

Last, but not least, STAY HOME! No one else wants it, you will just prolong the agony, and it will be much more dangerous and costly for you to go out. Sleep all day except when you are drinking, peeing, or clearing out your head. Stay warm! And get someone to support you in this process. Yes, you do need help!

** One last thing – the differences between Western medicines and herbs, and homeopathic medicines is this (in terms of taking them): take the homeopathic medicine every 30 minutes until the symptoms diminish or are gone; then take them a couple of times a day or as soon as a symptom returns. With Western Medicines, follow what the prescription or pharmacist says. If this includes antibiotics, take lots of probiotics! **

Send me your other remedies and suggestions so we can post them here also. Thanks and be well!