During my recent visit to Austin, I had the privilege of taking several classes with Craig Williams. Craig is among many other things an Oriental Medicine Doctor and Ayurvedic Practitioner who offers a wide range of classes and workshops related to physical, mental, and spiritual health. Here are a few takeaways from his recent class Natural Solutions For the Cold and Flu Seasons:

Prevention: Protect Yourself From The Common Cold

· Decrease or eliminate sugar and alcohol for the winter
· Frequently wash your hands with warm soapy water
· Consume Probiotics to maintain GI health (70-80% of your immune system lives here)
· Use essential oils in diffuser, ceramic lamp rings, shower tablets, or rooms sprays (examples include tea tree, eucalyptus, and/or lavender) to clean the air you breath
· Take Epsom salt baths with essential oils
· Sleep a lot

Herbal Remedies For Cold Prevention Or Immune Boosting:
(Check with your healthcare practitioner if any are contraindicated for you.)
· Echinacea + Elderberry (at onset of cold – read labels for dosage) *best in syrup form
· Osho Root + Reishi (great if you often have regular upper respiratory issues)
· American Ginseng (if you have deficient Qi)
· Andrographis (gargle to clear a sore throat)
· Chyavanprash (Ayurvedic formula to boost the immune system and body)
· Triphala (Ayurvedic formula to promote elimination and digestive track health)

A Few Food Recommendations:
· Steamed broccoli
· Dandelion greens
· Kale
· Other dark green leafy vegetables
· Onions sautéed with ghee (tonic food – contains butyric acid that promotes large intestine health)
· Gogi berries
· Garlic
· Spices: cumin, coriander, turmeric, and fennel