Self Care Journal: How to Make a Self Care Journal (with Free Printables)

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Learn how to make a self care journal to set your healthy resolutions for the New Year with these printable journal pages that are all about self care! This printable self care journal contains not just inspiration blank journal pages for writing down your thoughts and dreams, it also has pages for setting goals, healthy food recipes, skin care recipes and face mask recipes that fit your skin type each season. So you can use this journal throughout the year and start at any time.

Printable self care journal. Learn how to make a self care journal to set your healthy resolutions for the New Year with these free printable self care journal pages that are all about self care! This printable self care journal contains inspirational blank journal pages for writing down your thoughts and dreams, as well as pages for setting goals, healthy food recipes, skin care recipes and face mask recipes that fit your skin type each season.

Additionally, there’s also a self care checklist so you remember to take time out for self care at least once a week. I’ve even included a printable front and back cover that you can print onto cardstock to make a completely handmade self care journal if desired.

Keep reading to discover 60 self care journal prompts and my printable self care journal pages. You’ll also learn how to make a self care journal using my free resources. Plus there’s information I received from licensed therapist, Corinne Phillips, on how to break unhealthy habits and addictions through journaling, along with some great ideas and projects you can implement for self care.

Free printable self care journal. Learn how to make a self care journal to set your healthy resolutions for the New Year with these free printable self care journal pages that are all about self care! This printable self care journal contains inspirational blank journal pages for writing down your thoughts and dreams, as well as pages for setting goals, healthy food recipes, skin care recipes and face mask recipes that fit your skin type each season.

DIY Self Care Journal

It’s a New Year and hopefully that means you’ve set your sights on some healthy resolutions to get you through the year. That means taking care not just of your physical health, but your emotional health as well. And what better way to learn how to put yourself first (so you can be there for others) than with a self care journal?

How to make a self care journal. Learn how to make a self care journal for inner reflection and emotional health with these free printable self care journal pages that are all about self care! This printable self care journal contains inspirational blank journal pages for writing down your thoughts and dreams, as well as pages for setting goals, healthy food recipes, skin care recipes and face mask recipes. Plus 60 self care journal prompts and easy self care ideas and projects. #selfcarejournal

Journal Prompts & Ideas

Not sure what to write in your self care journal. If need some direction to get started, then try one of these self care journal prompts for self care and inner reflection.

  • What makes me happy?
  • What goals do I aspire to?
  • Why do the people in my life make me happy?
  • When am I most confident?
  • What does my ideal day look like?
  • Who is someone in your life who should treat me better?
  • What do I want my legacy to be?
  • Today my self care mantra is…
  • How do I enrich the lives of others?
  • What inspires me?
  • I feel most energized when I do or experience these things.
  • What is causing me stress right now?
  • Is there a new craft or hobby I’d like to explore?
  • What actions or bad habits are holding me back from a happier, richer life?
  • What am I proud of myself for?
  • How can I change my morning routine to make it easier?
  • What is my favorite personality trait?
  • What things make me feel powerful?
  • How can I love myself today?
  • What is my best accomplishment?
  • Who is the person I want to become?
  • What advice would I give my teenage self?
  • The words I like to live by are…
  • What makes me unique?
  • How have I changed from the person I was five years ago?
  • What message do I most want to share with the world?
  • Ten reasons why I love myself.
  • What am I afraid of?
  • If I died tomorrow, how do I think I’d be remembered?
  • Who in my life means the world to me and why?
  • What changes can I make to slay my goals?
  • My life feels like magic when…
  • During difficult times, I’ve found that doing this helps the most.
  • What’s something I can do to make my life a delight every single day?
  • Make a list of twenty things that make me smile.
  • Write a list of things I’m grateful for today.
  • If I could take a vacation anywhere in the world, where would I go and who would go with me?
  • What does forgiveness mean to me?
  • How does journaling help me?
  • What love means to me…
  • On a scale of 1-10 my mental health is at…
  • What do I wish my parents had done differently when raising me?
  • Write a letter to my mom.
  • What is my biggest regret and what have I done to make amends?
  • I wish for….
  • The two most memorable moments of my life are…
  • What does unconditional love look like for me?
  • I practice self care because I want to feel…
  • Where is my happy space?
  • If my body could talk, this is what it would say.
  • What are three things I’m doing that no longer serve my best interests?
  • Make a list of everything I should say “no” to.
  • What do I love most about life?
  • How will making myself a priority positively impact my life?
  • What changes can I make to get a more restful night’s sleep?
  • When I’m really busy, what activities can I do in just ten minutes to practice self care?
  • How can I better balance my work and my personal life?
  • What is my favorite self care quote?
  • What are the things I truly, deeply need in my life?
  • If I had unlimited resources and zero obligations, what would I do with my life?

Don’t feel like you need to write paragraphs for these journal prompts. You can bullets instead. For best results, however, it’s best not to go more than two days without putting something down on paper.

How to make a self care journal. Learn how to make a self care journal for inner reflection and emotional health with these free printable self care journal pages that are all about self care! This printable self care journal contains inspirational blank journal pages for writing down your thoughts and dreams, as well as pages for setting goals, healthy food recipes, skin care recipes and face mask recipes. Plus 60 self care journal prompts and easy self care ideas and projects to make at home.

How to Make a Self Care Journal

Print the Journal Cover

Print the self care journal cover onto 8.5″ x 11″ cardstock. Then cut out the front and back cover. For best results, use a paper cutter to get straight, clean lines. Allow some white space around the black lines of the cover when cutting. (Download here.) I used my Epson Expression printer, which has been a dream to use.

printable skin care recipe and face mask recipe cards

Print the Journal Pages

This journal consists of 12 8.5″ x 11″ pages, each with two journal pages for a total of 24 pages for your self care journal. You can either print all of the pages or simply the pages you want. The pages include two each of the following:

  • Skin care recipe cards
  • Self care checklist pages
  • Healthy recipe cards (here’s one of my fave healthy recipes to try!)
  • Face mask recipe cards
  • Pages for setting healthy goals

printable self care journal pages

There are also fourteen lined journal pages featuring seven different motivational quotes and images.

Simply download the printable self care journal pages then print onto 8.5″ x 11″ paper. Then cut out the pages the same way you did the cover for the journal. (Download here.)

The pages are slightly smaller than the cover so they fit neatly inside. These printable self care journal pages will even fit inside your Happy Planner!

self care journal pages

Assemble Your Journal

To assemble your journal, use a hole punch to punch holes into both the cover of your journal, if using, as well as the free printable self care journal pages. If you you are using a Happy Planner, you can use those pages as a guide both for cutting out your pages as well as lining up the holes properly.

Once you’ve punched holes into your journal pages, you can either add them to an existing journal, such as a Happy planner, or create a self care journal using the printed journal cover.

To use the provided journal cover, simply position the journal pages between the printed front and back cover. Then loose leaf binder rings to hold the cover and pages together.

Alternately, you don’t have to punch holes into your self care journal pages. Instead, you can use binder clips to hold the pages together in book form. Both methods, however, allow you to remove or add pages as desired.

Printable self care weekly planner stickers

Want printable self care planner stickers for your new journal? Here are a few you might like including these printable self care weekly planner stickers (pictured) from Love2Plan92.

Need more guidance on your self care journey? Check out this amazing sacred self care workbook or this therapy journal for mental health struggles.

Journaling to Break Unhealthy Habits & Addictions

If you’ve been reading Soap Deli News for some time, then you’re probably aware that I started seeing a therapist after a rather difficult end to what was an incredibly short second marriage. She has been a dream with helping me overcome emotional distress and work toward healthy emotional goals.

Recently I started seeing her again to help me break unhealthy habits. Three of the most important tips she gave me to help me break unhealthy habits and addictions were to 1.) not shame myself for these habits and 2.) find something positive to replace the habit you want to stop and 3.) focus on the benefits of breaking that unhealthy happy or addiction and the positive things that come from not doing it. These work for any number of unhealthy habits or addictions including alcohol consumption as well as binge eating.

She also gave me an acronym to use with journaling. That acronym is TICES. TICES stands for:

  • Trigger
  • Image
  • Cognition
  • Emotions
  • Sensations

So basically, when you want to do whatever the unhealthy habit is you want to stop, you consider these five things and then write about them. For example, if you are trying to stop binge eating or give up alcohol (I chose these as examples as are they are so common) and you want to binge eat or drink, then stop and think about these five things. Then write down the following in your journal:

  • What triggered you to want to binge eat or drink
  • What images you see in your head when you are triggered
  • What happened to lead you to the point that you want to binge eat or drink
  • What emotions do you feel from being triggered
  • What sensations your body is experiencing

I also recommend keeping a running list of all the wonderful things you experience both physically and emotionally when you aren’t engaging in that unhealthy habit. For example, if you are trying to quit drinking, then positive results would be weight loss, a more restful night’s sleep, increased productivity, etc. Then think about these positive benefits (rather than the negative results of the unhealthy habit) and all that you gain from quitting whenever you are triggered to engage in that unhealthy habit.

More Ways to Practice Self Care

Looking for more ways to practice self care in your day-to-day life? Try one of these other self care ideas and projects.

free printable self care journal pages ideas prompts

If you love my free printable self care journal, then be sure to pin it to Pinterest for later.

For more great self care ideas as well as DIY bath and beauty recipes, be sure to follow Soap Deli News. You can follow me now on facebooktwitterpinterest and instagram. Or find me on Blog Lovin’. To receive an email whenever I share a new post, sign up via feedburner here.

Mushroom Bacon Risotto Recipe: A Warming Winter Dinner Idea (Plus Heart Healthy Bacon Alternatives)

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I may receive compensation from links on this site. As an Amazon Associate I also earn from qualifying purchases. See my disclosure policy.

Need a warming winter dinner idea? This easy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is perfect for weeknight dinners with family or a weekend dinner with friends. Plus easy and healthy alternatives to using bacon if you’ve made heart health a priority!

Winter Dinner Ideas: Mushroom and Bacon Risotto Recipe (Plus Heart Healthy Bacon Alternatives) Need a warming winter dinner idea? This easy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is perfect for weeknight dinners with family or a weekend dinner with friends. Plus easy and healthy alternatives to using bacon if you've made heart health a priority! This creamy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is accented with the flavor of grated parmesan and fresh thyme. You can make this winter dinner idea healthier by either omitting the bacon called for in the recipe or by substituting it with one of the healthy alternatives to bacon.

I’ve really been trying to eat healthier the past few months. My dad somehow miraculously avoid a heart attack at 72. However, he also had three heart surgeries over the course of a year. He’d been tired a lot and had been falling asleep when he’d sit down. Not being one to talk the doctor about his concerns, on top of having a super shitty primary care doctor, when he finally addressed what was going on, it wasn’t good. Tests revealed that one artery was completely blocked and another wasn’t far behind. When clearing out his arteries roto-rooter style at UVA didn’t fix the issues, he went back for stints. My parents didn’t even tell me about the third surgery. (My mom somehow thinks I’m fragile.) I heard about it, much later, through an off handed comment my brother made.

My family, on both sides, have a history of high blood pressure and high cholesterol. So it’s a real concern for me, especially as I’m headed through my mid-forties. Luckily, I’m doing okay on both counts. However, I’ve tried to eat healthy and take care of myself. Unfortunately, the past two years were rather tumultuous for me emotionally. Like most things, this affected not just my emotional health, but my physical health as well. My energy levels and my weight both took a hit. 

Not only did I change the situation I was in (and more than once) I also changed my eating habits. I stopped drinking gin and (high fructose corn syrup) tonic on the reg (to deal with chronic pain) and found a supplement regimen that worked for my fibromyalgia. I gave up the muscle relaxers I’ve used for years to cope after going cold turkey off pain killers and started taking valerian instead. Then I started eating better. I moved toward (or rather closer than I’ve ever been) a more vegetarian diet with fish, seafood and eggs – with meat only occasionally and very much in moderation. I started doing push ups and going dancing again. Basically I started living with intent rather than just existing. 

Since doing these things, I’ve gone down 16 lbs. I look great and I feel better. My emotional state is much improved and my focus, though still wildly ADHD a few days a week, is better.

Sauteed onions with mushrooms, olive oil and thyme for risotto

And yet, here I am, sharing a freaking mushroom risotto recipe – with bacon. 

Bacon is delicious. Healthwise I’m totally okay with indulging every now and then. Friends and family make that practically a must on special occasions, holidays and dinner dates they host. Intellectually, I realize that pigs are pretty smart animals. As someone with a dog who I consider family, it does bother me that I enjoy pork as much as I do. So I try not to think about it for too long. But then, I remember that pigs can eat people and leave zero trace behind. That helps ease the guilt. 

In the end, I’ve found there are more reasons not to eat pork than there are to gorge myself on a plate of baby back ribs. However, food, like most things in our lives, is a personal choice. Therefore, because I enjoy treating myself from time to time, this recipe has bacon. If, however, you’d like a healthier approach to my mushroom bacon risotto recipe, feel free to substitute the bacon for a healthier alternative. 

Heart healthy alternatives to bacon in mushroom bacon risotto. Bacon is delicious. Like all things, however, too much of anything can be a bad thing. Especially where heart health is concerned. So if you've given up beef and pork, have gone totally vegetarian, or are simply taking a break from bacon because it's impossible not to overindulge, here are a few healthy alternatives for the bacon in my mushroom bacon risotto recipe. Try my warming winter dinner idea for mushroom bacon risotto now.

Healthy Alternatives to Bacon for Mushroom Bacon Risotto

Bacon is delicious. Like all things, however, too much of anything can be a bad thing. Especially where heart health is concerned. So if you’ve given up beef and pork, have gone totally vegetarian, or are simply taking a break from bacon because it’s impossible not to overindulge, here are a few healthy alternatives for the bacon in my mushroom bacon risotto recipe.

Tempeh Bacon for Vegetarian Bacon Mushroom Risotto

Tempeh bacon is a vegetarian alternative to bacon. It contains less fat and has zero cholesterol. While traditionally made from slightly fermented soybeans, tempeh bacon can be made using any type of bean including black-eyed peas, black beans and chickpeas. Not only is tempeh bacon a good source of fiber, it’s also high in both vitamin B6 and magnesium. To prepare, simply slice then cook in oil over medium-high heat about four minutes each side.

Turkey Bacon for Healthier Bacon Mushroom Risotto

Turkey bacon is most definitely not bacon, but it’s not a bad substitute if you’re still eating meat. While still not totally healthy – I mean it IS still processed meat – it’s white meat rather than red meat. It also has HALF the amount of saturated fat as the real deal.

A similar alternative to turkey bacon is duck bacon. Just be aware that duck bacon doesn’t get quite as crispy as the real deal.

Mushroom Bacon Risotto Recipe: A Warming Winter Dinner Idea (Plus Heart Healthy Bacon Alternatives) Need a warming winter dinner idea? This easy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is perfect for weeknight dinners with family or a weekend dinner with friends. Plus easy and healthy alternatives to using bacon if you've made heart health a priority! This creamy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is accented with the flavor of grated parmesan and fresh thyme. You can make this winter dinner idea healthier by either omitting the bacon called for in the recipe or by substituting it with one of the healthy alternatives to bacon.

Vegetable Bacon for Heart Healthy Bacon Mushroom Risotto

Eggplant, and other veggies properly seasoned, can take on that smokey flavor you get from bacon. Simply add some smoked paprika, dried Chipotle chili peppers or a savory sweet sauce to your vegetable of choice then grill, smoke or roast. Additions such as fresh, grated parmesan cheese as garnish once the dish is plated can make up for the loss of the “beefier” bacon texture. To prepare a healthy alternative to bacon using eggplant, simply slice the eggplant then roast at 225°F for 20 to 30 minutes, or until crispy.

Tofu Bacon for Vegetarian Bacon Mushroom Risotto

Tofu bacon is another healthy alternative to bacon. It’s processed a bit more than tempeh bacon, however it’s high in protein. In addition, tofu bacon also contains all eight essential amino acids, and a notable amount of both calcium and iron.

To make it, you’ll need to start with really thin slices of tofu. (Otherwise you won’t get that bacon-like crunch.) Then marinate the tofu in a blend of 1 cup soy sauce, 2 Tablespoons tomato paste (you can freeze the rest in Tablespoon portions in an ice cube tray), 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (Annie’s makes a vegan alternative), 2 Tablespoons maple syrup, 2 Tablespoons liquid smoke and 2 cups water. Mix to combine than marinate thinly sliced tofu at least four hours to overnight.

Once you’re ready to cook your bacon tofu, simply strain the tofu slices from the marinade. Then fry the tofu in a skillet over medium high heat until crispy. If desired, you can reserve the marinade for another veggie dish later.

Now that you know you can make substitutions for the bacon if desired, here’s my mushroom bacon risotto recipe. I hope you enjoy it in your very favorite way as an easy, warming winter dinner idea.

Mushroom bacon risotto recipe. Need a warming winter dinner idea? This easy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is perfect for weeknight dinners with family or a weekend dinner with friends. Plus easy and healthy alternatives to using bacon if you've made heart health a priority! This creamy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is accented with the flavor of grated parmesan and fresh thyme. You can make this winter dinner idea healthier by omitting the bacon or by substituting it a bacon alternative.

Mushroom Bacon Risotto Recipe

This creamy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is accented with the flavor of grated parmesan and fresh thyme. You can make this winter dinner idea healthier by either omitting the bacon called for in the recipe or by substituting it with one of the healthy alternatives to bacon, mentioned above.

Ingredients:

1 ⅔ cup arborio rice
7 cups of warmed chicken or vegetable broth
1 large onion, finely chopped
2-4 Tablespoons of olive oil or avocado oil, divided
½ to ¾ cup of finely grated parmesan cheese, divided
1.5 cups freshly chopped mushrooms of your choice
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons quality salt
Fresh sage
Fresh thyme
5 pieces of very crispy (but not burnt) bacon (or bacon alternative)
2 Tablespoons of bacon fat to cook the mushrooms (or heart healthy olive oil)
Fresh ground black peppercorns

Ingredients for making mushroom bacon risotto

Instructions:

Begin by warming the chicken or vegetable broth in a medium sized pot. While the broth is warming, you’ll start a second pot on the stove. 

In a separate medium-large pot, heat one tablespoon of either avocado or olive oil over medium heat. Then sauté the onions in the oil until fragrant. (Alternately you can also Continue to cook until the onions have browned.

Next, add two additional Tablespoons of oil to the pot with the sautéed onions. Then stir the rice into the pot of sautéd onions and oil.

Cooking Risotto Rice in Broth

Stir the rice for about a minute in the oil. (It will seem like a lot of oil to start, but it will help the rice cook.) After a minute, ladle in one cup of warm broth.

While the rice cooks, stir often. The more you stir the risotto, the creamier the final version of the mushroom bacon risotto dish you serve will end up being.

Once the rice shows signs of having absorbed the liquid, add a second cup of broth. Continue stirring the onion and risotto mixture, as in the previous step.

Sauteed mushrooms with thyme

As the risotto is cooking, sauté the mushrooms in a nonstick pan with either bacon fat or olive oil and a couple sprigs of thyme. Once sautéed, set aside.

Continue adding more broth to the rice, stirring often. Partway through stir in the salt and add some fresh sage to the pot. I used one small sprig of fresh sage with about eight leaves on it.

Creamy cooked risotto rice.

The risotto is done cooking when the rice grains are plump, creamy and completely cooked through. At this point you no longer need to add additional broth. Instead, stir in most of the freshly grated parmesan cheese, while reserving the rest for plating.

Spoon the mushroom bacon risotto into bowls or plates for serving. The top the risotto with the crispy bacon or bacon alternative, sautéd mushrooms and additional parmesan cheese. Serve immediately, while stir warm.

If desired, you can serve this warming winter dish of mushroom bacon risotto with a light bodied glass of pinot noir. Enjoy!

Yield: Serves 5-6

Mushroom Bacon Risotto Recipe

Mushroom Bacon Risotto Recipe

This creamy mushroom bacon risotto recipe is the perfect warming, winter dinner idea. Accented with the flavor of grated parmesan and fresh thyme, you can make risotto dinner recipe hearty healthy by either omitting the bacon or by substituting it with one of the healthy alternatives to bacon.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 ⅔ cup arborio rice
  • 7 cups of warmed chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2-4 Tablespoons of olive oil or avocado oil, divided
  • ½ to ¾ cup of finely grated parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1.5 cups freshly chopped mushrooms of your choice
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons quality salt
  • Fresh sage
  • Fresh thyme
  • 5 pieces of crispy bacon (or bacon alternative)
  • 2 Tablespoons of bacon fat to cook the mushrooms (or heart healthy olive oil)
  • Fresh ground black peppercorns

Instructions

  1. Warm your broth of choice in a medium sized pot on the stove. Set aside.
  2. Heat one Tablespoon of either avocado or olive oil over medium heat in a medium-large pot. Sauté the chopped onions in the oil until fragrant, then continue to cook until the onions have browned.
  3. Add two additional Tablespoons of oil to the pot of sautéed onions. Then stir in the rice.
  4. Stir the rice for about a minute in the oil. After a minute, ladle in one cup of warm broth.
  5. Stir the rice often to ensure a creamy risotto.
  6. Once the rice has absorbed most of the liquid, add a second cup of broth. Continue stirring the onion and risotto mixture occasionally.
  7. While the rice cooks, sauté the mushrooms in a nonstick pan with either bacon fat or olive oil and a couple sprigs of thyme. Then set aside.
  8. Continue adding more broth to the rice as it cooks. Partway through stir in the salt and about eight leaves of fresh sage.
  9. Once the rice grains are plump, creamy and completely cooked through it's ready. Stir in the bulk of the freshly grated parmesan cheese.
  10. Spoon the mushroom bacon risotto onto plates or into bowls for serving. Top with the crispy bacon, sautéd mushrooms and remaining parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 650Total Fat: 42gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 167mgSodium: 1210mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 45g

Warming winter dinner ideas.

More Warming Winter Dinner Ideas

If you enjoyed my mushroom bacon risotto recipe, then you may also like these other warming winter dinner ideas.

For more warming winter dinner ideas, be sure to visit my Food Recipes Pinterest board. You can also find and follow me on Blog Lovin‘, facebooktwitter and instagram. Or sign up for my newsletter. 

Homemade Cold Remedy Drink for Natural Relief of Colds and Flu

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I may receive compensation from links on this site. As an Amazon Associate I also earn from qualifying purchases. See my disclosure policy.

Support your immune system with this homemade cold remedy drink. Ginger, honey, lemon and optional whiskey combine for a natural cold remedy tea that will help you feel better quickly and help shorten the duration of a cold or the flu.

Homemade Cold Remedy Drink for Natural Relief of Colds and Flu. Support your immune system with this homemade cold remedy drink. Ginger, honey, lemon and optional whiskey combine for a natural cold remedy tea that will help you feel better quickly and help shorten the duration of a cold or the flu. Life doesn’t stop when you wake up with a sore throat or a stuffy nose. At the first sign of a cold, I make this homemade cold remedy drink to give my immune system natural support.

Life doesn’t stop when you wake up with a sore throat or a stuffy nose. I still have to get up, take Jasper on a walk and keep on working. When I don’t feel good, I prefer to use natural home remedies at my first line of defense. While I’m a huge believe in fire cider vinegar, sometimes my throat isn’t always up for the task of drinking a garlic, horseradish and pepper infused apple cider vinegar tonic. This homemade cold remedy drink is easy on my throat for the days I want something warm and soothing to drink.

At the first sign of a cold, I make this homemade cold remedy drink to give my immune system natural support. It only has three ingredients plus whiskey if you want to add it, so it’s easy to make, even if you don’t feel good. For really bad colds – or even the flu – I alternate taking this natural cold remedy tea with fire cider vinegar – assuming I don’t have a sore throat. Alternately, you can also add a tablespoon of fire cider to my homemade cold remedy drink. As always, however, it is important to seek medical advice or assistance if your cold gets worse or doesn’t improve within seven days.

Natural Cold Remedy Tea for natural cold and flu relief. Support your immune system with this homemade cold and flu drink. Ginger, honey, lemon and optional whiskey combine for an easy homemade tea for cold and flu that will help you feel better quickly and help shorten the duration of a cold or the flu. Life doesn’t stop when you wake up with a sore throat or a stuffy nose. At the first sign of a cold, I make this homemade cold remedy drink to give my immune system natural support.

Homemade Cold Remedy Drink

This homemade cold and flu tea isn’t just for cold symptoms like a sore throat or runny nose; it’s also great for an upset stomach. When you were a kid, your mom probably gave you ginger ale to sip on if you weren’t feeling well.

While drinking soda probably isn’t the best thing to drink when you’re sick due to the sugars, there is some truth in that old home remedy. Ginger, in the right quantities, can help relieve an upset stomach by increasing bile production and kill some microbes so you feel better quicker. This makes it suitable for not just colds, but also the flu. (You can also learn how to make your own custom herbal tea blends for common ailments here.)

Raw honey benefits for cold and flu relief. Raw honey is a natural cold and flu remedy full of enzymes and nutrients that help support a healthy immune system. I only use local raw honey for relief of cold and flu symptoms. Most honey on the grocery store shelf can barely pass as honey. It’s been process and pasteurized. By the time it hits the shelf, most of the nutrients and enzymes have been killed by the processing it.

Benefits of Natural Cold Remedy Tea Ingredients

The Benefits of Raw Honey

Raw honey is added to this homemade cold remedy drink both for taste and for it’s natural benefits. While some people like drinking lemon water, a ginger and lemon drink is very sour drink and not very palatable for many people.

You could use white sugar to sweeten this drink, but white sugar has a lot of empty calories and little nutritional value. Raw honey, however, is full of enzymes and nutrients that help support a healthy immune system. Therefore it makes a much better alternative over sugar as a sweetener for a natural cold remedy tea.

I only use local raw honey in my homemade cold remedy drink. Most honey on the grocery store shelf can barely pass as honey. It’s been process and pasteurized. By the time it hits the shelf, most of the nutrients and enzymes have been killed by the processing it.

Raw honey isn’t pasteurized or processed. Sometimes it’s filtered to remove debris, but it keeps the nutrients and enzymes to promote better health.

Raw honey is naturally antibacterial and can even kill some types of fungi. When you eat or drink raw honey, it can help kill germs inside your body.

Honey is also high in antioxidants. Antioxidants protect healthy cells in the body by reducing free radicals. This helps support your immune system over time.

For immediate relief, honey can help reduce mucus and reduce coughing. It also coats the throat, which can soothe a sore throat for almost immediate relief. In fact, I eat raw honey by the spoonful at night if I’m coughing and can’t get to sleep. It really works incredibly well at soothing irritation in my throat.

I always recommend buying local honey. This helps support your local economy, and there is some evidence that eating local raw honey can help reduce allergies by exposing your body to pollen from your area.

Don’t forget that children under one-year-old should not eat any honey either alone or in a drink like this one.

Ginger benefits for cold and flu relief. I add ginger to my homemade cold and flu tea because it can help relieve a stomach ache and reduce nausea. Two compounds in ginger, gingerols and shaogals, are anti-inflammatories. They can help reduce inflammation from a sore throat so you feel better quickly. Ginger is also naturally antimicrobial. It can kill bacteria and some viruses, including the rhinovirus that causes colds.

The Benefits of Ginger

I add ginger to my homemade cold and flu tea because it can help relieve a stomach ache and reduce nausea.

Two compounds in ginger, gingerols and shaogals, are anti-inflammatories. They can help reduce inflammation from a sore throat so you feel better quickly.

Ginger is also naturally antimicrobial. It can kill bacteria and some viruses, including the rhinovirus that causes colds.

Over the counter cold medication can relieve your symptoms, but it can’t kill the virus that caused your cold. However, ginger may be able to kill the virus naturally. This can help shorten the duration of your cold. (Source.)

Although ginger is most known for relieving a stomach ache, it can cause an upset stomach if you take too much. If you get an upset stomach, limit this natural cold remedy tea to once a day.

Natural alternatives for cold and flu symptom relief. Naturally relieve the symptoms of cold and flu with this natural cold remedy tea recipe. Made with lemon, ginger and honey, this easy homemade cold remedy drink helps to support your immune system and give your immunity a boost so you recover faster while also relieving symptoms of cold and flu. Natural cold and flu relief with a simple homemade tea for cold and flu. Make this homemade cold remedy tea for your colds this winter.

The Benefits of Lemon

Lemon, like all citrus fruits, is high in vitamin C. Boosting vitamin C can help reduce the duration of a cold and help you feel better. Several studies have mixed results about the benefits of vitamin C for colds, but many people swear that taking extra vitamin C helps them feel better.

Lemon juice can also help reduce phlegm so you feel better right away. Drinking this homemade cold remedy drink before bed can help you sleep better by reducing phlegm help stop coughing temporarily.

For long term benefits, lemons are high in antioxidants that can help reduce free radicals in the body.

Like honey and ginger, lemons are also antimicrobial. They can help kill both bacteria and viruses in the body. This can also help shorten the duration of colds.

Make this homemade cold remedy tea for your colds this winter. A natural alternative for cold and flu symptom relief. Naturally relieve the symptoms of cold and flu with this natural cold remedy tea recipe. Made with lemon, ginger and honey, this easy homemade cold remedy drink helps to support your immune system and give your immunity a boost so you recover faster while also relieving symptoms of cold and flu. Natural cold and flu relief with a simple homemade tea for cold and flu.

The Benefits of Warm Water

It’s important to drink this homemade cold remedy drink warm because the warm water also has benefits for your body.

The warmth can help open nasal passages, which helps reduce a stuffy nose and helps you sleep. It also helps lubricate your throat to make your sore throat feel better.

It’s important to stay hydrated when you are sick. Drinking plenty of water will help you feel better.

The Benefits of Whiskey

Adding whiskey to this natural cold remedy tea is optional. Alcohol can help dilate blood vessels in your body. This helps thin mucus, which can help you breathe better. However, you need to make sure you increase your water intake so your body stays hydrated. Otherwise, including alcohol in your homemade cold remedy drink can actually have opposite the intended effect. 

Also, if you do add whiskey to your homemade cold remedy drink, be responsible. Don’t add it if you may be driving. 

Natural Cold Remedy Tea for natural cold and flu relief. Support your immune system and soothe symptoms with this natural cold remedy tea. Ginger, honey, lemon and optional whiskey combine for an easy homemade tea for cold and flu that will help you feel better quickly and help shorten the duration of a cold or the flu. Life doesn’t stop when you wake up with a sore throat or a stuffy nose. At the first sign of a cold, I make this homemade cold and flu drink to give my immune system natural support.

Homemade Cold Remedy Drink Recipe

Ingredients:

1 cup boiling water
1 inch fresh ginger root
1 tablespoon raw honey
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 ounce whiskey (optional)

Directions:

To make my homemade cold remedy drink, grate the ginger or slice into thin slices and then mince. (For best results, you want the ginger to be in very small pieces.)

Then place the grated or minced ginger inside a teapot or medium sized bowl.

Pour the boiling water over the grated or minced ginger. Let this steep for three minutes.

While the ginger is steeping, place the lemon juice and raw honey in a mug.

Strain the ginger out of the water and pour over the lemon juice and honey. Then stir well until the honey is dissolved.

You can add more honey to taste, if desired.

Next, add whiskey if you’re using it.

How to Use My Homemade Cold Remedy Drink

You can drink this homemade cold and flu tea three or four times a day to relieve your cold symptoms naturally. If your stomach gets upset from the ginger, just use ginger tea once a day and drink warm water, honey, and lemon the rest of the day.

Tips for Reusing Your Ginger

You can reuse the grated or minced ginger you used for your first cup of homemade cold and flu tea. I reuse mine two or three more times before I discard it. Just steep the ginger for a few extra minutes for the second and third steep to get more ginger out of it. 

Natural Cold and Flu Remedies: Fire Cider Vinegar Recipe. Learn how to make a homemade fire cider vinegar as a natural cold and flu remedy. This traditional, warming apple cider vinegar tonic acts as a holistic decongestant while also supporting immune health.

More Natural Cold and Flu Remedies

If you like my recipe for making a homemade cold remedy drink, then you may also enjoy some of my other natural cold and flu remedies.

For more natural ways to care for your body throughout cold and flu season, be sure to visit my Home Remedies Pinterest board. You can also find and follow me on Blog Lovin‘, facebooktwitter and instagram. Or sign up for my newsletter. 

This article is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment or medical advice and is provided for informational purposes only. Information on products mentioned are based on my own personal experience or research and have not been evaluated by the FDA. Please consult a physician prior to making any changes that may impact your health.

Natural Alternatives for Symptom Relief of Fibromyalgia & Perimenopause

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Learn about the best vitamins and herbal supplements you can take for emotional & physical symptom relief of fibromyalgia & perimenopause for women over 40.

Natural Alternatives for Symptom Relief of Fibromyalgia & Perimenopause. Learn about the best vitamins and herbal supplements you can take for emotional & physical symptom relief of fibromyalgia & perimenopause for women over 40 for natural holistic health and wellness. Natural pain relief for fibromyalgia. Plus how to reduce fibro fog and trouble sleeping while also naturally reducing stress, depression, anxiety and mood swings cause by both fibromyalgia and perimenopause.

I sometimes like to refer to it as the “Princess and the Pea Complex.” Because there are days when a wrinkle on a sheet feels like a rock that’s dug into my skin and left a bruise behind. Days a tickle feels like a punch. Sometimes I even feel like I’ve pulled the muscles in my shoulders from simply pulling a shirt off over my head. And that pain lasts for days to weeks. When perimenopause rolled around, it all got worse. Pain and emotion become even more intertwined. I felt miserable all the time. And it wore on me.

Whether you have fibromyalgia or perimenopause – or even both! – there are natural remedies that offer significant relief. Keep reading to learn how more about how one affects the other. As well as the best supplements you can take to put you back on top and in charge of your physical and emotional health.

Finding Symptom Relief from Fibro & Perimenopause

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now. However, I was always afraid I’d leave something out. And considering how well these products work for me personally, I wanted to cover how beneficial they are in case they can help you as well. Juggling both fibromyalgia AND perimenopause in my forties has proven to be a challenge. However, as many of the natural supplements that reduce symptoms of perimenopause also help with my fibromyalgia, I decided to share them in a post together.

If suffer with chronic pain from fibromyalgia, you’ve likely found that stress and hormones are the two biggest contributing factors to fibro flare ups. And that’s why the same treatment I use for fibro works so well for both the symptom relief of fibromyalgia and perimenopause.

You may recall my post from last year in which I covered the supplements I using then to manage my fibromyalgia. However, this is a revised list of vitamins and supplements that not only work better at providing symptom relief of fibromyalgia pain, fatigue and fibro fog, but also help with perimenopausal symptoms.

Natural alternatives to prescription drugs for pain relief of fibromyalgia symptoms.

Why You Shouldn’t Take Painkillers for Fibromyalgia

There is no cure for fibromyalgia. However, from personal experience, I quickly realized that opioid (and synthetic opioid) painkillers are one of the worst treatments. Not only do they worsen fibro pain over time, they also lead to addiction. With that, in addition to the pain caused by fibromyalgia, you’ll also quickly start to experience withdrawal symptoms as the time for your next dose nears.

Unfortunately, my experience has shown me that doctors just do not know how to treat fibromyalgia symptoms. Aside from recommending SSRI drugs or drugs used to treat nerve pain such as gabapentin – both of which can cause considerable unhealthy weight gain – as well as painkillers and muscle relaxers, there really are no other prescription treatment options.

The Cost of Natural Remedies Vs. Prescription Drugs

It’s also unfortunate that herbal supplements are nowhere near as cheap as generic prescription drugs. However, when those drugs do more harm than good over time, you really have to consider your priorities. Do you find a way to give your body what it needs to be healthy? Or do you spend less to mask the symptoms of your illness?

Therefore, I made the choice to put my health first. I work my butt off – and go without things – to afford my vitamin and herbal supplement regimen. Without them, I can’t function normally. Which in turn means I’m unable to work. While I still have days that challenge me, I now feel better overall. And my focus is sharper than it has been in the past.

Working to discover an affordable supplement regimen to ease the symptoms of fibromyalgia has been a challenge. However, I have learned a lot throughout the process. You really need to try natural supplements for at least three to four months before giving up on them. I found this especially true for (THC free) CBD oil. (For fibromyalgia I recommend medical grade CBD oil if your state offers medical marijuana which is more powerful and more cost effective.) While other supplements, like those I take for perimenopausal hot flashes and mood, require a 90-day minimum before they start working.

An investment of time and money is required to find the right solution to help ease your symptoms. So some patience is required before throwing in the towel.

The Emotional Monkey Wrench: Perimenopause

Treating my fibromyalgia symptoms has become more trying since I developed perimenopause. The symptoms of fibro, when combined with my body’s changes from perimenopause, has been an incredible challenge.

I’ve been struggling with perimenopause for several years now. Much of that time, I really didn’t know that I had perimenopause. (No one talks about it!) When coupled with the fibromyalgia, the symptoms of perimenopause left my body in a whirlwood. I’d have weeks where I felt okay. Then other times I felt like the world just dropped out from under me.

Not knowing I was going through perimenopause, I didn’t really understand why I was having mood swings. Or that my hot flashes were hot flashes. Why I couldn’t sleep or why I was having night sweats. No one ever talked to me about it.

I finally gained some insight into the mystery toward the end of last year. My 44th birthday was just around the corner, and an understanding (finally!) of why my body (and brain) were acting the way they were, gave me the insight I needed to take control of body – and mental health – back.

Natural alternatives for treatment of fibromyalgia for pain relief, fatigue, anxiety and depression.

Natural Support for Symptom Relief of Fibromyalgia & Perimenopause

I’ve since taken a second look at my health and the supplements I take to stay healthy and support emotional wellness. The cost of vitamins and supplements, however, was and continues to be a factor. So, for a time, I was constantly tweaking strategies and looking for the best natural alternative that worked for both the perimenopause AND the fibromyalgia – at a price I could manage. After many many months, I think I finally found it.

Everyday Tips for Better Mental Health & Pain Relief

Before I share my vitamin and herbal supplement regimen with you, however, I first want to share a few tips to give you days a positive boost.

  • Exercise. Whether walking for heart health or doing yoga to build muscle strength, both of these activities naturally boost serotonin in the brain, increase energy and help to reduce pain caused by fibromyalgia.
  • Nutrition. Cutting processed foods, sugar and other foods from your diet that cause inflammation will help your body feel better and can also reduce bloating.
  • Meditation. Meditation or mindful breathing exercises are an easy, cost free way to reduce stress that triggers and worsens symptoms.
  • Nutritional and herbal supplements. As we age, our bodies lose vital vitamins and minerals. Supplements are an easy way to replenish things like D3, B-vitamins and magnesium. While GLA and herbs can support perimenopause relief, reduce inflammation and boost mood.

For more ways on dealing with chronic pain, I also recommend these tips from the American Psychological Association. They include managing stress, constructive positive thinking, staying actively engaged socially and seeking out additional support. I also like these easy ideas for “exercise snacks” throughout the day.

Natural alternatives to prescription pain medications for the relief of fibromyalgia symptoms.

Turning to Herbal Supplements for Symptom Relief of Fibromyalgia & Perimenopause

It’s important to remember that herbal remedies can take up to 3 months to start working and see benefits. Therefore, starting and stopping prior to that is a disservice to both your health and your pocketbook. So be sure you’re ready to commit to the time and cost of discovering the best solutions for symptom relief of fibromyalgia and/or perimenopause. It’s also important to note that herbal supplements may interact with medications you may be taking. Therefore, as with all herbal supplements, it’s important to talk to your doctor before starting any new supplements so you are aware of possible interactions and symptoms.

Following is a list of the herbal supplements and vitamins that I take daily, why I take them and how they help.

SAM-E Complete

S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAMe) is a naturally occuring compound in our bodies that helps produce and regulate hormones as well as maintain cell membranes. As we age, the amount of SAMe our body produce decreases. Fortunately, we can replenish those lower levels in the same way we replenish low levels of other vitamins and minerals.

While there is no naturally occuring form of SAMe outside of our own bodies, thanks to modern science there is a synthetic version available that works the very same way. A clinically researched supplement, SAMe supports a healthy mood and offers joint comfort. Studies have shown that SAMe can help with depression, is beneficial for people with liver disease and helps with symptoms of osteoarthritis.

Here’s why SAMe is my #1 recommendation for symptom relief of fibromyalgia and perimenopause.

  • As women we are more prone to developing osteoarthritis as we age. SAMe offers similar pain relief and improvement in joint function as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. This can also help with fibromyalgia pain.
  • When I was taking celexa – an SSRI drug that reduces anxiety and boosts mood – my fibromyalgia pain was significantly reduced. However, I did experience a number of side effects. These included simply not giving a shit, lack of judgment and poor impulse control, and weight gain. SAMe has tackled my anxiety and in turn helped with stress levels and pain without any of those side effects. This reduction of anxiety and stress has in turn has also relieved my tension headaches, conquered my recurrent TMJ and helped with depression and better stress management.
  • As you experience spikes and sharp drops in serotonin as hormone levels change throughout perimenopause, you also experience drastic shifts in mood. These include those “crazy mood swings” as well as depression. To treat this, my gynecologist actually recommended I take an SSRI drug for symptom relief. Since I’ve been there and done that, I decided to try SAMe instead. It does everything an SSRI drug does and more.
  • While SAMe boosts serotonin in your brain and acts like an SSRI drug, there are none of the unwanted side effects that come with taking a prescription SSRI medication.

Unfortunately, if you have ever had serotonin syndrome, you can’t take SAMe. Otherwise, I recommend 800mg of Nature Made SAM-e Complete daily for symptom relief of fibromyalgia. If you don’t have fibromyalgia, and simply need emotional support for perimenopause, I recommend starting at 200mg per day then increasing your dose to 400mg (on up to 800mg if needed or to treat fibro symptoms) after two weeks at the initial dose.

Best multivitamin for perimenopause. As many of tend to be deficient in necessary vitamins and minerals as we age, a multivitamin is a must. New Chapter Every Woman’s 40+ One Daily Multi is my by far my favorite vitamin. Specially formulated for women in their 40s, this multivitamin not only offers necessary vitamins and minerals, it also offer bone, energy, stress and hormone support.

New Chapter Every Woman’s 40+ One Daily Multi

As many of tend to be deficient in necessary vitamins and minerals as we age, a multivitamin is a must. New Chapter Every Woman’s 40+ One Daily Multi is my by far my favorite vitamin. (This from the girl who used to take two chewable Flintstones +Iron a day.) Specially formulated for women in their 40s, this multivitamin not only offers necessary vitamins and minerals, it also offer bone, energy, stress and hormone support.

This #1-selling fermented multivitamin brand, this clean, whole-food fermented multivitamin delivers superfoods like ginger, organic turmeric & fenugreek and is made with certified organic vegetables and herbs. Many of the key ingredients I find especially beneficial not just for nutritional support but also for symptom relief of fibromyalgia and perimenopause.

Because this vitamin contains D3, it not only helps support bone health, but it also can help with pain. Low levels of D3 are linked to higher levels of pain. When I was first diagnosed with fibromyalgia, I had extremely low levels of vitamin D. In turn, my mother’s arthritis had grown increasingly worse about two years back. She too, had low levels of vitamin D as well as low bone density that can lead to osteoporosis.

This multivitamin also contains B6. The mineral B6 offers a number of health benefits that are backed by science. It can help to improve mood, promote brain health, aid in hemoglobin production to reduce symptoms of anemia, minimize the risk of heart disease, promote eye health and decrease inflammation caused by arthritis.

When combined with magnesium, B6 can help reduce symptoms of PMS including mood swings, irritability and anxiety. It’s also been show that low levels of B6 in older women can double our risk of depression. Therefore, by maintaining healthy B6 levels, it’s possible it can improve mood and reduce symptoms of depression associated with both perimenopause and fibromyalgia. (You can learn more about vitamin B6 here.)

This multivitamin also contains schizandra berry, maca root and chamomile for energy and stress support. While a natural herbal blend with chaste tree berry, red clover flower and raspberry leaf offers hormone support that I found help ease hot flashes and night sweats.

If you aren’t yet 40, you can try New Chapter Every Woman’s One Daily Multi. Or they also offer a women’s multivitamin for 55+.

Estroven

When I finally figured out I was going through “the change” (and WTF do you mean perimenopause can last up to 7 years?!) I knew I did not want to take hormone supplements. My mom actually got cervical cancer from taking hormone pills that were over prescribed for a period of 15 years. And I have a friend who developed breast cancer when she turned 40. As it turned out my gynecologist actually suggested I try herbal remedies for perimenopause relief before I even considered hormone treatment.

Estroven is common, over-the-counter product for natural menopause relief. It contains clinically proven soy isoflavones for hot flash relief and increased energy as well as twice as much as black cohosh as other leading brands. In addition, it also contains magnolia bark which helps you manage stress, offers relief from menopausal anxiety and aids with digestion. However, you do have to take this product for three months to notice a difference.

I FINALLY passed that 3-month mark of taking Estroven for it to work. And while my daily New Chapter multivitamin helped with hot flashes and night sweats, this product significantly reduced hormone fueled food cravings, reduced bloating, helped with irritability and mood swings and provided additional support for hot flashes and night sweats. As I take Estroven Maximum Strength + Energy, this product also helps with fatigue caused by both the perimenopause and the fibromyalgia.

While I don’t recommend this product if you aren’t going through perimenopause, it does help with the hormone changes that often cause fibro flare ups. (Just as a side note I did take the New Chapter Every Woman’s 40+ One Daily Multi for several months prior to starting this product. I did not start them at the same time.)

Evening Primrose with 10% GLA

Evening primrose oil is a fatty acid that also offers hormone support. This cold pressed oil is comprised of Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA), an essential omega-6 fatty acid that our bodies use to to produce eicosanoids, known as “local hormones.” Additionally, evening primrose also supports skin health and offers immune support. It’s taken for a variety of health concerns including eczema and psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis, diabetic nerve damage and chronic fatigue, acne, PMS, breast pain, endometriosis and hot flashes and hot flushes cause by perimenopause.

Studies show that the GLA found in evening primrose oil not only reduces hot flashes, it can also improve heart health and reduce blood pressure. Additionally, older research has indicated that the linolenic acid  in evening primrose can also ease symptoms of peripheral neuropathy, such as tingling and weakness caused by diabetes. In turn it’s possible it can also help with the pain symptoms and weakness you experience with fibromyalgia.

I am one of those unlucky people that experiences not hot flashes, but hot flushes. Similar to a hot flash in that there’s a sudden feeling of heat that spreads throughout the body, with hot flushes you also experience sweating, palpitations and flushing of the face. It’s not fun. Evening primrose really helped with my own hot flushes when I first started taking it prior to my use of Estroven. I recommend taking Nature’s Way EfaGold Evening Primrose with 10% GLA twice daily in addition to your daily multivitamin for additional hormone support if you are allergic to the soy Estroven. You can learn more about hot flushes here.

Irwin Naturals Sunny Mood

Anxiety, tension and pain are my jam where fibromyalgia is concerned. However, Irwin Naturals Sunny Mood helps to further reduce my anxiety even in those uncomfortable social situations. This unique blend contains D3 and magnesium along with fish oil (DHA), rhodiola extract, L-Theanine, lemon balm and passionflower. Brought together, this combination of adaptogenic botanicals, soothing nerve relaxants and harmonizing nutrients help to maintain mental balance during times of heightened emotional stress. This supplement if perfect for anyone with temporary depressed mood, occasional anxiety, emotional reactivity, temporary stress-related exhaustion and mental fatigue. ie. All the symptoms of fibromyalgia and perimenopause.

Sunny Mood can be taken either as needed or for daily maintenance depending on your emotional health needs.

While I already covered the benefits of D3 and magnesium, here’s a brief overview of the other ingredients, which were actually recommended by my licensed holistic therapist for symptom relief of fibromyalgia.

  • An omega-3 fatty acid, DHA is linked to improved heart health, better vision, and reduced inflammatory response. Studies also show that it can help with ADHD symptoms, improve focus and help protect against depression.
  • Like CBD oil, Rhodiola Rosea is an adaptogenic herb. In short, adaptogens are herbal supplements that have to the ability to help stabilize physiological processes and promote homeostasis. As such, Rhodiola extract specifically promotes overall physical and emotional wellbeing by reducing stress, combating fatigue, increase mental performance and improving physical and mental fitness.
  • L-Theanine is an amino acid that is naturally found in both green and black tea that naturally improves mental focus and cognitive performance as well as contribute to relaxation and improve sleep quality. It’s believed that L-theanine affects the levels of certain chemicals in the brain including serotonin and dopamine. Both of which influence mood, sleep and emotion. Additionally, it also affects cortisol which helps the body deal with stress.
  • Lemon balm is common culinary herb that’s often used in traditional medicine to treat both anxiety and insomnia. Also popular as an essential oil, lemon balm essential oil is used in aromatherapy to promote calmness and ease stress.
  • Like lemon balm, passionflower is another herb traditionally used to relieve symptoms of anxiety and insomnia in addition to certain forms of pain. While there are several types of passionflower, only the variety known as Passiflora incarnata, is used medicinally. This strain in particular increases levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (or GABA) in the brain – a chemical the brain makes to help regulate mood. As GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter, it counters the neurotransmitters that cause excitement, which in turn can provide a calming effect.

Natural herbal supplements for insomnia to support rest and relaxation. As both fibromyalgia and perimenopause can result in trouble sleeping, I often have to take something to help me rest. Otherwise I not only have trouble falling asleep, I literally wake up every two hours. While melatonin does help to an extent, I've found it works best when used in conjunction with an herbal supplement.

Sleep Supplements

As both fibromyalgia and perimenopause can result in trouble sleeping, I often have to take something to help me rest. Otherwise I not only have trouble falling asleep, I literally wake up every two hours. While melatonin does help to an extent, I’ve found it works best when used in conjunction with an herbal supplement.

Currently I’m taking a store brand herbal supplement from Earth Fare. It combines 6 mg of melatonin with a blend of valerian root, hops strobiles, skullcap, passionflower and California poppy. I simply take two capsules about a half hour before I’m ready to go to bed to help promote rest and relaxation. If you don’t have an Earth Fare near you, you can easily find a similar herbal supplement across other health and wellness brands.

Otherwise, an essential oil blend comprised of 3 drops vetiver essential oil, 2 drops lavender essential oil and 2 drops ylang ylang essential oil in an essential oil diffuser at bedtime helps with insomnia and other general sleep issues. (If you’d like to learn how to get started using essential oils, be sure to check out my article on essential oils for home, health and beauty.)

Do you struggle with fibromyalgia, perimenopause – or even both as I do? I’d love to hear your thoughts on natural supplements you use for symptom relief of fibromyalgia and perimenopause that have worked for you! After all. Everyone is unique in their own body chemistry. And helping one another find solutions to live our best lives through the exchange of information is what it’s all about.

For more natural health and wellness alternatives to incorporate into every aspect of your life, be sure to visit my natural health and wellness Pinterest board.

You can also find me on your favorite social media platforms including Blog Lovin‘, facebooktwitter and instagram. Or sign up to receive my newsletter to stay in the loop.

This article is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment or medical advice and is provided for informational purposes only. Information on products mentioned are based on my own personal experience and have not been evaluated by the FDA. Please consult a physician prior to making any changes that may impact your health.

Best Essential Oil Blend for Colds and Flu

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Enjoy all of the wonderful health and wellness benefits of essential oils by starting with this practical (and less expensive) best essential oil blend for colds and flu. Saving you money so you can breathe easy in more ways than one!

Best Essential Oil Blend for Colds and Flu. Essential oils have wonderful aromatherapeutic benefits for health and wellness uses throughout the winter season. However, essential oils can also be expensive to start using. You can enjoy all of the aromatherapy benefits of essential oils by starting with a practical (and less expensive) essential oil blend that targets colds and flu. Saving you money so you breathe easy in more ways than one! #essentialoils

Essential oils don’t have to be expensive.

If you love the idea of essential oils and their potential aromatherapeutic benefits, but aren’t sure where to start, read this! I know many of us have wanted to purchase essential oils in the past. Especially for practical uses throughout the winter season. However, essential oils can be expensive when buying several at one time. Or, you may not want to make a huge investment on essential oils that end up going to waste. You can easily solve this dilemma by purchasing a single essential oil blend. And, as it’s cold and flu season, I’m sharing with you the best essential oil blend for colds and flu to get you started!

I’m SO sick.

We’ve all had those days. Those days where you’re so sick it feels like it will never end. You’ve caught some virus that’s in the midst of throwing down seriously bad voodoo. You can’t breathe. And when you talk, your friends think you’re using a voice changing app to sound like Darth Vader.

The next thing you know you find yourself on Facebook out of sheer boredom. Moments away from pulling the “I’m dying over here” card for sympathy. But you don’t. Because even though you are way sicker than your significant other has ever been in his life, you know that to say that would mean sinking down to that man level cry for sympathy. And you’re a strong badass woman. (Most of the time.)

This is exactly how I’ve felt since Christmas. I’ve had a cough for days. One of those body wrenching coughs that leaves your back sore and your throat raw.

And I’ve been fighting this illness with cough medicine that’s somehow supposed to suppress my cough while also helping me expel mucous at the same time. (How does that work exactly?) Not to mention cough medicine makes me loopy AF. So when my friend and fellow blogger, Cari, suggested that I diffuse essential oils to help, I was blown away by how easy it is to miss the obvious when you’re completely out of it.

Diffusing essential oils for an illness – without a diffuser.

Somehow, however, I’ve managed to make it 43 years on earth without ever once owning an essential oil diffuser. Which, considering my occupation, seems dubious, I know. Of course, I’m not about to make shower steamers when standing is a challenge. So Cari suggested I add a few drops of essential oil to my shower. Now that I could swing. (I mean if all else fails, sitting in the shower is completely plausible.)

So I chose to go with eucalyptus and tea tree essential oils for my (very late) morning shower. I turned the shower head on, let the water get hot then added a few drops of tea tree oil to end of the tub. Next, I followed with some eucalyptus essential oil. Except, oops. I’d taken the dropper out of that bottle and didn’t check before the pour. Therefore, instead of a few drops of eucalyptus to open up my airways, I ended up with more like a teaspoon of eo swimming in the bottom of my tub.

Of course, like any other completely normal totally sick person, I figured it couldn’t hurt. I could barely smell it anyway.

So I showered and inhaled and rinsed and inhaled and at some point I started to actually breathe normally again.

Then Greg came home.

Now the apartment we live in is crazy small. It’s basically the size of a studio apartment but with actual rooms. So my shower basically turned into a giant essential oil diffuser for the entire pad. And when Greg walked through the door he literally took a step back.

Where my overkill of eucalyptus oil had helped to open up my sinuses, it had the opposite effect on him. Greg kept saying “he couldn’t breathe” over and over again. He then went out to the truck to wait for me.

Wait. What?!

Yep. We took a trip to BJ’s Wholesale so the apartment could air out.

So where Greg’s version of events is that I tried to suffocate him. My version is that I was simply disinfecting the entire apartment. Naturally, of course. In one easy step.

Best Essential Oil Blend for Colds and Flu. Essential oils have wonderful aromatherapeutic benefits for health and wellness uses throughout the winter season. However, essential oils can also be expensive to start using. You can enjoy all of the aromatherapy benefits of essential oils by starting with a practical (and less expensive) essential oil blend that targets colds and flu. Saving you money so you breathe easy in more ways than one! #healthandwellness

The Best Essential Oil Blend for Colds & Flu

There are a number of common essential oils you can diffuse for colds and flu. These include eucalyptus essential oil (obviously) ravintsara essential oil, peppermint essential oil, rosemary essential oil,  tea tree essential oil, clove bud essential oil and white fir essential oil. However, buying all of these essential oils at once, or even additional essential oils to create a pleasing essential oil blend for your diffuser, isn’t always cost effective for most people. Therefore, if you only dabble in aromatherapy from time to time, or if you are just starting out, sometimes the easiest and most affordable option is to start with a ready made essential oil blend.

The best essential oil blend for colds and flu is from Spark Naturals. Trusted for their quality and purity, Spark Naturals sells an amazing essential oil blend for colds and flu called Respire. Spark Naturals Respire essential oil blend offers protection against cold and flu germs during flu season as well as congestion in general.

Because so many of us are forced indoors during the winter months, we are more likely to become exposed to these germs by our close proximity with others who may be sick. Therefore, Spark Naturals formulated their proprietary best essential oil blend for colds and flu to offer some protection against common germs. Made using a combination of peppermint, tea tree, eucalyptus, rosemary, lemon and clove essential oils, their Respire essential oil blend also helps with both cold and flu symptoms in addition to common respiratory issues such as congestion.

How to use an essential oil blend for colds and flu.

You can use 5-10 drops of this essential oil blend for colds and flu in an essential oil diffuser in your home. Or try about 10 drops in a bowl of steaming water with a towel draped over your head. Alternately, you can also add around 10 drops of this essential oil to your shower to enjoy the benefits. (Just don’t make the same mistake I did!)

You can also make a simple essential oil salve for chest congestion using this blend. Simply weigh, combine and melt .5 oz. beeswax pastilles in a double boiler with 1 oz. of your preferred carrier oil. Once melted, remove from heat. Then mix in 15-18 drops of the Respire essential oil blend. Pour into metal tins and allow to cool prior to use. Or try Spark Naturals ready made Respire Stix multi-purpose balm.

Spark Naturals also offers a base salve that’s already premade for adding in your choice of essential oils. This is especially useful if you don’t have the space or funds to purchase extra ingredients in bulk. In addition, you can also purchase several pre-made essential oil salves containing the same high quality essential oils for a variety of other health ailments including anxiety and trouble sleeping. Their 8-pack salve sampler is a super affordable way to explore the health benefits of essential oils.

The end result.

Truth be told, I feel a LOT better today after flooding our apartment with tea tree and eucalyptus essential oils. And while Greg may not be quite as thrilled about how I handled my own sick care, he’s pleasantly surprised that my shower diffuser experiment eradicated the dog smell from my aging (super stinky) dachshund, Jasper, from the apartment.

If you’re looking for more ways to help combat those nasty cold and flu germs, be sure to check out these 5 must have products to boost immunity as well as this collection of natural ways to fight colds and flu. Or try Cari’s DIY breathe easy wax melts. You can also learn how to use eucalyptus and tea tree essential oils to make your own natural deodorizing candle.

Do you have a favorite recipe for an essential oil blend that you love using in your home? I’d love for you to share it with me and my readers in the comments! (It’s always so wonderful to be able to learn from one another, don’t you think?)

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