In the grand scheme of things, I’ve been incredibly healthy in my lifetime. Sure, I’ve had some sprained ankles, lower back injuries, a tonsillectomy, wisdom teeth extraction, a major bout of depression, and an arthroscopic surgery on my hip. And still, I’ve never so much as had a debilitating disease, a broken bone, or even a cavity (heyyyy).
Yet for the health woes I do experience, they can cause a significant daily interference, when gone untreated (or left to the standard American diet & lifestyle) and can absolutely alter my mood. For someone who strongly believes in the “gut as a second brain” philosophy, when I have canker sores or my digestive system ain’t happy, I ain’t happy.
Personally, I’ve never responded very well to modern medicines, nor seen much of an improvement with them (if you have, that’s great!). At best, I feel they treat some of the symptoms but seem to miss going deeper into the root cause of it all. Not to mention the side effects…like no, thank you.
So, if you’re anything like me, you may appreciate some of the all-natural health remedies I’ve discovered over the past few years that have been absolute game-changers for me. Most notably, for said canker sores, overall GI discomfort (IBS, gluten sensitivity, etc.), and other inflammation issues.
[Note: I’m by no means saying that in a lot of instances modern medicine is not only necessary but life-saving. These are just not one of those instances.]
Here’s what’s on tap…err in my ‘medicine cabinet’…
For Treating Canker Sores
–All-natural toothpaste – like TOM’s, Arbonne, or any other brand without SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate). // Find it on/at: Amazon, Target, Whole Foods, or directly on Arbonne‘s website
–Wild Oregano Oil – This stuff has saved me from some of the worst canker sores I’ve ever had. I apply 1-2 drops 2x/day to the affected areas in my mouth and it significantly reduces their discomfort and speeds healing. // Find it on/at: DoTerra, Young Living, Amazon (that’s where I got mine!)
Disclaimer: This stuff is strong. Like do a little dance/run in place for about 5 seconds, strong. I won’t lie, it doesn’t taste or smell that awesome unless you love smelling like a pizza(?), but it works and I mean, do you want the sore gone or not?
–Baking Soda – Mix 1-2 tbsp. with a glass of warm water. Swish for a while, gargle, spit out. Rinse out mouth. Do not, I repeat, do not swallow. Great for a quick fix and to balance the acidity issue that might be going on in your mouth. // Find it on/at: Your pantry, the grocery store…everywhere.
- Multi, &/or
- Folic Acid,
- Bee Propolis
Whenever I’ve taken that morning medley, I don’t come close to getting one! Disclaimer: Talk to your doctor about what you might be deficient in, although these ones are typical for people who experience a lot of canker sores. Find it on/at: Amazon, Target, the grocery store…everywhere.
–A Clean Diet – For me that means, low acidity and higher alkaline foods, no gluten, limiting sugar, limited alcohol, etc. Trust me, I always wonder why I come back from vacay with my mouth lit up with these suckers, but since a lot of canker sores can be related to and caused by GI disorders or a gluten sensitivity, it makes complete sense. [More on this below…]
(i.e: bloated, heaviness, indigestion, not hungry in the mornings, intestinal spasms, ate too heavy over the weekend, slow metabolism, food sensitivities, nausea, etc.)
–An Apple Cider Vinegar Mocktail – 4 oz. cold water, splash of a favorite juice (apple or a citrus juice works best), 1 oz apple cider vinegar, dash of cayenne pepper. Stir & sip it down! More on the benefits/uses of ACV here and here. I like to drink mine before/with breakfast. It honestly helps wake ya right up and jump start your metabolism! // Find it on/at: Any grocery store. I prefer the Bragg’s brand, but just make sure you get one “with the mother”.
–Probiotic Supplement – like Arbonne’s Digestion Plus, taken daily. Not only is it packed with probiotics but it has the help of added good-for-you digestive enzymes. It comes in powdered form. Mix with 4 oz. of water and chug it down. It also doesn’t need to be refrigerated, making it great for travel.// Find it on/at: There are also plenty of good ones readily available at Whole Foods. I’d recommend buying it at the store (vs. online) and ensuring it has remained refrigerated.
–Cold-Pressed Juice – They’re great to give your digestive system a little rest and rebalancing, cleanse the liver & blood, enhance overall vibrancy, and even clearer skin. I drink them occasionally (they can be pricey!) and prefer a real food cleanse to a juice fast. Locally, this is my favorite juice bar.
image via Naturalee
–Aloe Vera Juice/Water – I’m not talking about the green gel you’re used to rubbing on after a bad sunburn. This is the juice from an aloe vera plant, and is actually great for helping the digestive system with nutrient absorption. It’s a great smoothie addition (especially when you’re mixing lots of fibrous ingredients) or can be added directly to your drinking water. // Find it on/at: A capful of this concentrate tastes like liquid gold. You can also find it for cheap at Trader Joe’s, as well as a aloe/coconut water combo. So good.
–Peppermint Oil – This stuff calms nausea, soothes headaches, relaxes, alleviates allergies, freshens breath, etc. I have a rollerball one that I apply to my temples when I had one too many glasses of red wine (oops), have a headache coming on, or feel generally foggy. // Find it on/at: DoTerra, Young Living, Amazon, etc.
–Ginger – Whether in teas, pickled ginger like at a sushi restaurant, fresh ginger with warm water and lemon, chews, hard candies, dried, spices, etc. There’s a ton of different ways to get it! Ginger is more commonly known for sootheing nausea, an upset stomach, cleansing the palate and aiding in digestion. // Find it on/at: Pretty much anywhere!
–Kombucha. If I was a millionaire, cases of this stuff would be in my fridge at all times. It’s a carbonated, fermented tea that serves as a powerful, raw food supplement. It’s abounding with probiotics, and is actually made from a cultured mushroom. It aids digestion, speeds metabolism; provides antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and is low in sugar yet tastes like soda. Miracle drink? I sure think so. [And I mean, it better be at $3.50/bottle.] Find it on/at: Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Target, Harris Teeter, etc.
image via Easy College Coupons
(i.e: headaches, mosquito bites/poison ivy, swollen gland/acne, injuries, allergies, sunburn, etc.)
-First make sure you’re not allergic to bees in any way, and then try some Bee Propolis. I like the capsules and you can take 1-3 daily, based on symptoms. I incorporate 1/day with my other vitamins. More on the benefits of propolis and bee pollen, here.
–Lycopene – Eat your heart out of watermelon, tomatoes, etc.
–Aloe vera – Apply topically like you’re used to, or as stated above, drink the juice of it.
–Turmeric – I add this orange-colored spice to my food, apple cider vinegar drink, etc. It’s known for it’s anti-inflammatory qualities.
–Tea Tree Oil – Apply topically [in moderation] to the skin for things like poison ivy, acne, burns, etc. Do not ingest it, and I would avoid applying to an open wound. It’s also a natural home cleaning substitute.
–Herbal Teas (rooibos, ginger, decaf green, kombucha, etc.) If you’ve ever been to the tea section in your local health store, you already know there’s millions. Literally, there’s one for everything. Break out that tea kettle!
All-Around Health Helpers
–Essential Oils – As I’ve mentioned some above already, I prefer this company’s. Nonetheless, oils work so beautifully because they are able to penetrate the tough, outer cell membrane to get at the root cause of the issue and solve, rather than just treat it.
–Biotin – Take a daily supplement for overall hair, nail, and skin health.
–Coconut Oil – It mixes well with other essential oils as a “carrier oil”, as a hair conditioner, food/cooking oil, and some swear by oil pulling & bulletproof coffee, but I’ve yet to get into either of those. This list goes on and on and on for coconut oil uses. You might as well strap a bottle of it to you in case you ever find yourself on a deserted island. Oh wait, there’s already coconuts on those…
–Eat Real Food – Giving up modified low fat/low sugar foods & artificial sweeteners was one of the best habits I ever kicked. They are straight chemicals. You’re body doesn’t recognize them and rejects them, that’s why they have “no calories”. They’re addicting and actually sweeter than sugar itself, so when you eat real sugar, it barely even tastes sweet enough anymore. It’s a bad road to start going down that can ultimately cause cycles of binge eating, stomach issues, and even mental instability. Pay more attention to ingredients over nutrition facts. Eat in moderation & just enjoy a little bit of the real stuff already!
In need of a major reset or detox? Arbonne’s Clean Eating Challenge is one of the best things I’ve ever done for my health. Check out my experience here, &/or get in touch to learn more and join the next group!
Movement + Meditation
-It’s amazing what a little movement + fresh air can do for you. Seriously. get up, get outside and start with a walk. See how you feel after even just 10 minutes of activity. Ready for more? Keep going!
-Destress with yin-style yoga classes &/or quiet meditation. Check the schedules of your local studio, fire up a video, or lead your own mini-practice at home.
–Foam rolling &/or using a lacrosse ball for rolling out sore muscles & joints. I’m also a big fan of DoTerra’s Deep Blue or Arbonne’s Herbal Muscle Massage Pain Relieving Gel.
–Sleep – Because sometimes you just need a nap or a solid 8-9 hours night’s rest. Am I right?
There you have it! Let me know what you think! What are some of your favorite all-natural solutions? What did I miss?
In good health,
P.S//Disclaimer: I am a registered Independent Consultant with Arbonne International. However, I would never recommend something I didn’t wholeheartedly love, believe in, and use myself. I am not a doctor, nutritionist, or registered dietician. I speak from personal experience and years of self-study. No other links contained within this post are affiliate links or for monetary gain. I wish you all the best in your health & happiness and am always happy to serve as a resource in any way.