Loading...

Follow Living Well Mom on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
Or

Valid


If you’re feeling discouraged and “down”, essential oils can be a great way to help lift your mood naturally. One of the simplest and easiest ways is to diffuse your essential oils. 

Today, I’ll show you two “Uplifting” essential oil diffuser blends that may help improve your mood, raise your spirits, and even combat depression.

One of the essential oil blends listed here is ideal for use during the day and may help improve concentration, while the other blend is perfect for relaxing in the evening.

Please note that essential oils are in no way a “cure” for depression. Please seek help from a healthcare professional if you are feeling depressed. You are not alone and there are many people who will come alongside you. This post is not meant to replace that care nor is it intended to be medical advice. Please read my post on essential oil common sense safety before using this blend or other essential oils.

We all have long days where might need a little encouragement. Maybe your child has autism and you haven’t had a break in a long time or your family caught the flu (read this post for essential oils for the flu).

Long winters with few hours of daylight may leave you feeling more tired than usual, discouraged and even depressed. This is sometimes called the “winter blues” or seasonal affective disorder (SAD.) You can read about my story with seasonal affective disorder and the surprising “remedy” I found here.

Whether you’ve had a long week or the cold winter has got you down, these uplifting essential oil blends can offer a simple way to support yourself naturally. 

You’ll need a diffuser, water, and 4-5 common essential oils listed below for this encouraging blend.

You can use any diffuser – it doesn’t need to be expensive or fancy.

This is my favorite diffuser and the one you see in the photos in this post. It’s my workhouse diffuser yet surprisingly pretty too. I’ve used it almost every day (sometimes day and night) for over a year. Unlike the expensive MLM diffuser I purchased only to have it quit working after a handful of uses, this one was inexpensive and still works just as well as the day I bought it.

The Essential Oils Orange essential oil

Latin name: citrus sinensis

Orange essential oil can lift your mood while relieving stress.

One study found that orange essential oil along with rose essential oil has the ability to relax the brain. Participants noted increases in feeling “relaxed” and “comfortable” when exposed to diffused orange and rose essential oils for 90 seconds. 

Where to Buy Orange Oil: Lemon essential oil

Latin name: citrus limon

Lemon may help lift your mood, fight depression, and even potentially improve concentration when diffused or applied topically.

A study found that lemon essential oil had strong “anti-stress” effects on mice. It concluded that “lemon oil possesses anxiolytic (anti-anxiety), antidepressant-like effects.” 

Where to Buy Lemon Oil: Bergamot essential oil

Latin name: Citrus Bergamia

Bergamot may help improve your mood and even potentially increase energy.

A 2011 study found that participants who were exposed to a blend of bergamot and lavender essential oils resulted in significant decreases in blood pressure and pulse rates, thus indicating these oils may have potential in treating depression or anxiety. 

Tip: for a quick potential mood-boost, add 1-2 drops of Bergamot essential oil directly into the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together then cup them over your nose and mouth. Breathe in deeply and slowly for a few breaths.

Where to Buy Bergamot Oil: Rosemary essential oil

Latin name: Rosmarinus officinalis

Rosemary may help improve alertness and cognitive performance.

A 2012 study found that participants had increased cognitive performance during test-taking when rosemary essential oil was inhaled at higher concentrations. “…inhalation of rosemary essential oil would possess the potential to impact on cognitive performance in a positive manner.” 

Where to Buy Rosemary Oil: Spikenard essential oil

Latin name: Nardostachys jatamansi

Spikenard can be relaxing and calming, plus it may be helpful for those with insomnia.

Spikenard is one of my favorite oils because I’ve experienced how calming and relaxing it can be and I’ve also used it to successfully help me fall asleep when I deal with occasional insomnia.

A 2008 study found that Spikenard essential oil had a sedative effect on mice. 

Where to Buy Spikenard Oil:

Note: Spikenard is a little pricier (though Eden’s Garden’s is still affordable) so feel free to substitute Vetiver if you don’t want to purchase it. However, if you can, I highly recommend Spikenard as it has many more benefits beyond what I’ve listed here and has become one of my personal favorite oils!

Vetiver essential oil

Latin name: Vetiveria Zizaniodes

Vetiver essential oil may help improve depression and anxiety while also improving energy levels, increasing levels of concentration, and even effectively help children who have ADHD and ADD. (Note: check out my DIY “Focus” essential oil blend that includes Vetiver.)

Where to Buy Vetiver Oil: Uplifting Essential Oil Diffuser Blends Daytime “Uplifting” Essential Oil Diffuser Blend

This is a great blend to diffuse if you’re studying or working as well as want to boost your mood. I personally find it motivating along with noticing an improvement in my overall attitude.

Essential Oils:
  • 2 drops orange essential oil
  • 2 drops lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 2 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 2 drops vetiver essential oil

Add the oils above to your diffuser along with water and diffuse. Relax and enjoy.

Evening “Uplifting and Relaxing” Essential Oil Diffuser Blend

This diffuser blend can be relaxing as well as uplifting. I sometimes diffuse this all night in my bedroom while I sleep and I do notice I sleep deeper and more restfully as a result.

Essential Oils:
  • 2 drops orange essential oil
  • 2 drops lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 2 drops spikenard essential oil*
  • 2 drops vetiver essential oil

Add the oils above to your diffuser along with water and diffuse. Relax and enjoy.

*You can omit Spikenard and increase the Vetiver to 3-4 drops if desired.

Feel free to try different combinations if you don’t have one or more of the oils listed or simply don’t prefer one listed here. There are MANY more essential oils that are helpful for “uplifting.” 

You can also choose to increase the number of drops if you have a larger diffuser. 

Whichever way you prefer it, I hope you enjoy these uplifting essential oil diffuser blends as much as I have. 

The post 2 Mood-Uplifting Essential Oil Diffuser Blends appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Have you been exposed to the flu? It seems like everyone has this year, but it doesn’t mean you and your family are doomed to catch it.

There are many things you can do to naturally help boost your immune system and hopefully prevent catching it in the first place. And if you do begin to experience symptoms, there are ways to help your body fight it naturally and even possibly reduce the severity and duration of symptoms. 

One of my favorite ways to deal with the flu, both preventing and reducing the severity and duration of it, is using essential oils.

Read this post here about 12 Essential Oils for Fighting the Flu and a diffuser blend.

I’ve put together an easy recipe for a little DIY essential oil roller blend I like to call “Flu Fighter” and that’s what I’ll share with you here today. There are two versions you can choose from.

This essential oil roller blend is packed with essential oils that have antiviral properties and many more helpful benefits.

Note: Essential oils may help boost your immune system and have the potential to help reduce the duration and severity of symptoms, however, I make no claims that oils or any other natural options are a “cure” for the flu. DIY Essential Oil Roller Blend: “Flu Fighter” Note: This post is based on my research and personal experience using essential oils with myself and my family. Please read my Essential Oil Common Sense Safety page. You’ll need:
  • a 10ml glass roller bottle (I use this)
  • fractionated coconut oil or your preferred carrier oil (I use this)

Essential Oils used in this blend:

“Flu Fighter” Roller Blend #1

This version is perfect if you don’t have many of the oils on the list above and don’t wish to buy so many.

  • 8 drops Rocky Mountain Oil Immune Strength (this blend contains 5 of the “flu fighter oils” including eucalyptus, ginger, clove, thyme, and oregano)
  • 3 drops fir needle essential oil
  • 3 drops lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops Tea Tree (Melaleuca) essential oil 

Add the oils to your roller bottle and top with your carrier oil. Cap and shake to distribute the oils.

“Flu Fighter” Roller Blend #2:
  • 2 drops eucalyptus essential oil
  • 2 drops fir or balsam needle essential oil
  • 2 drops ginger essential oil
  • 2 drops clove essential oil
  • 2 drops lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops Tea Tree (Melaleuca) essential oil
  • 2 drops thyme essential oil
  • 2 drops oregano essential oil

Add the oils to your roller bottle and top with your carrier oil. Cap and shake to distribute the oils.

I recommend beginning with a higher dilution rate (less essential oils, more carrier oil), especially if you’re new to oils. Remember essential oils are very potent and a little goes a long way. If you don’t see benefits from this “Flu Fighter” roller blend, you may choose to slowly increase the number of drops. 

How to Use “Flu Fighter”:

For the best results, roll onto the soles of your feet particularly your middle toes and around the balls of your feet and across to the other side of the sole of your feet. See this reflexology chart:

You can also roll on your chest, back and front of your neck (outside of your throat) and/or lymph nodes. However, I recommend starting with your feet.

Tips:

Natural remedies, including essential oils, work the best when used at the very first sign of illness.

Don’t wait until you’re passed out in bed with a 104-degree fever to start. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t use any natural remedies if you’re already down-and-out sick – you absolutely should – however, it’s much easier if you arm your body with natural options to help fight off illness before the virus has had time to settle in.

Pay attention to your body and if you notice something amiss, particularly if there’s a good chance you’ve been exposed to the flu recently, use this essential oil flu fighter roller blend right away. Roll it on every 1-2 hours for a few hours or until symptoms have decreased.

Get plenty of rest, stay hydrated (ginger tea is especially helpful), and avoid sugar as that decreases your immune system, the last thing you want!

For me, I pay attention to my body and increase any immune-boosting, flu-fighting measures at the first sign of illness. That includes a hint of a scratchy throat, a “frog” in my throat, I start sneezing or my nose turns slightly runny.

Your symptoms might be different, so pay attention to your body.

If you do have flu symptoms, I recommend using this flu fighter blend every hour and particularly roll it on the soles of your feet as directed above.

How “Flu Fighter” Helped Me:

I was exposed to the flu recently (my sister had a confirmed case of the flu and I had been with her for HOURS while she was coughing, sneezing, had a high fever, etc. ) and 2 days later, I noticed what felt like a frog in my throat. It definitely wasn’t normal. I have no way to say for sure whether it was the flu trying to creep in or simply a common cold, but regardless, I didn’t want any part of it!

I increased the number of drops in this Flu Fighter roller blend to: 6 drops eucalyptus, 6 drops fir needle, 5 drops ginger, 4 drops clove, 4 drops lemon, 4 drops melaleuca, 4 drops thyme, and I also added 4 drops Manuka essential oil. (Read this post – essential oils for the flu – to learn about the benefits of this interesting oil.) Yes, that’s a lot and I don’t recommend that for everyone straight away. In my case, I have used essential oils extensively and knew my body was fine with a higher quantity of oils for the short time I used it. And it did work.

After applying this DIY flu fighter essential oil roller blend every couple of hours, particularly on the soles of my feet, I went to bed and woke up feeling 100% the next morning with no further symptoms.

I have not used this blend on my children, however, I wouldn’t hesitate to do so using a higher dilution rate (fewer drops of oils) if they were to show signs of illness.

Stay healthy, friends!

The post DIY Essential Oil Roller Blend: Flu Fighter appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

With delicious maple honey turkey slices, spinach, tomatoes, hummus, mayo, and Dijon mustard layered in a wrap, this Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap is as satisfying and filling as it is tasty. It’s a delicious, good-for-you alternative to the boring sandwiches or other common lunches we often eat.

I get bored eating the same things over and over, which makes it harder to eat healthier if I don’t regularly “mix it up.” Do you get stuck with the same ol’ meals too? 

One of the simplest and smartest ways to stick to a diet, whether you’re eating Paleo, counting calories or following a more general healthy lifestyle approach, is to make sure you have easy-to-make food on hand. If you have a delicious, good-for-you option already waiting for you or something that a quick minute to put together, you’ll be less likely to reach for the snacks or junk food or whatever your temptation may be.

This Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap recipe will only take you a minute or two to put together and is loaded with wholesome ingredients you’ll feel good about eating.

I have to say that my favorite part of this healthy turkey wrap is the deli meat. Deli meat can pretty much make or break a wrap or sandwich.

That’s why I highly recommend McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli, which offers handcrafted, all-natural meats and cheeses since 1907.

My family follows a gluten-free diet and we avoid most processed foods, refined sugars, meat with hormones, steroids, antibiotics, etc. So when I tell you that I absolutely LOVE McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli and my family does too, it’s not just because their food tastes amazing.

What Makes McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli so good? With McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli, you’ll find:
  • turkey, chicken, pork, and beef raised without antibiotics EVER
  • no growth hormones
  • no nitrates or nitrites added*
  • gluten-free
  • vegetarian fed
  • 100% natural
  • no MSG
  • sourced and crafted in America
*except for those naturally occurring in sea salt and celery powder

I am thrilled to find an affordable deli meat with all those pluses. So many deli meats are loaded with nitrates and nitrites or are sourced from animals loaded with hormones or antibiotics and it’s great that McKenzie deli meat is not one of those.

McKenzie offers the highest quality whole muscle meat and crafts meats and cheeses with delicious flavors using clean, wholesome, recognizable ingredients. The company was founded in rural Burlington, Vermont in 1907 with the simple mission: to put quality above all else. and now distributes to stores throughout Vermont, New York, and other New England locations, including New Hampshire (where I live.)

McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli offers:

Buffalo Style Chicken, Rotisserie Seasoned Chicken, Oven Roasted Turkey, Hickory Smoked Turkey, Roasted Peppercorn Turkey, Herb Roasted Turkey, Maple Honey Turkey, Rotisserie Seasoned Turkey, Naturally Smoked Ham, Petit Naturally Smoked Ham, Black Forest Ham, Honey Ham, Rosemary Herb Ham, American Angus Roast Beef, and Non-GMO American Angus Roast Beef.

Plus, Uncured Cob-Smoked Bacon, Uncured Franks, Dinner Ham and 4 varieties of natural artisan cheese, made in small batches from small family farms – Provolone, Swiss, Maple Smoked Cheddar, and Vermont Raw Milk Cheddar.

See their full product listing here: McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli Products

We tried 6 different varieties of McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli, including 4 turkey and 2 ham, and each one tasted delicious.

You can find McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli at Shaw’s Supermarkets at the deli counter. Just ask for McKenzie Artisan Deli Meat.

My whole family, from my husband down to my 7-year-old, loves McKenzie Artisan Deli Meat. In fact, we made a special trip to a different store when our normal Shaw’s grocery store was out of stock.

My husband was so excited, he wanted to make Healthy Spinach Turkey Wraps for dinner for the whole family, which I gladly agreed to. (Talk about an easy supper!)

Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap

You’ll need:

  • your favorite sandwich wrap (use a gluten-free wrap if needed)
  • about 1 Tbsp mayonnaise or however much you prefer
  • about 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard or however much you prefer
  • 1-2 Tbsp hummus or however much you prefer
  • baby spinach leaves stems removed
  • 6 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved (or a large tomato sliced)
  • 2-3 slices McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli Maple Honey Turkey meat

All the ingredients listed here are approximate. This spinach turkey wrap is easy and you can make it to your preference. Don’t like mustard? Leave it out. Or use less. Your choice. 

Begin by spreading the mayo, Dijon mustard, and hummus over the wrap.

Place the spinach leaves with stems removed over the hummus layer.

Add the halved small tomatoes…

Place the sliced McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli turkey on top…

…and roll up your wrap. Cut it in half if you desire.

Enjoy your delicious Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap!

Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap
 
Prep time
2 mins
Total time
2 mins
 
Author: Erika Bragdon
Serves: 1 wrap
Ingredients
  • 1 wrap (use gluten-free if necessary)
  • approx. 1 Tbsp mayo
  • approx ½ tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1-2 Tbsp hummus (I use regular original)
  • Baby spinach leaves, stems removed
  • 6 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2-3 slices McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli Maple Honey Turkey
Instructions
  1. Spread the mayo and mustard over the wrap. Add the hummus and spread over the mayo mixture.
  2. Place ½ dozen or so baby spinach leaves with the stems removed over the hummus, along with the halved small tomatoes.
  3. Put the turkey on top and roll up the wrap. Cut in half if desired.
  4. Enjoy!
3.5.3208

 

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by McKenzie Natural Artisan Deli and Shaw’s. All opinions are my own.

The post Healthy Spinach Turkey Wrap appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

The flu appears to be a particularly virulent strain this year and a lot of people are getting knocked down longer than usual. But that doesn’t mean you and your family are doomed to get sick too.

Essential oils can be helpful in not only boosting your immune system which may help prevent you from getting sick in the first place but may also help you get well faster if you do get sick.

First, let’s talk about the flu itself. 

The flu or influenza is a viral infection that affects the nose, throat, and lungs. It has similar symptoms to a common cold but is generally more severe. Flu symptoms typically appear much faster than a cold and involve a fever, chills, body aches, headache, fatigue, cough or a sore throat, stuffy or a runny nose, nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea.

So how can you help prevent and even potentially reduce flu symptoms using essential oils? 

Essential Oils for Fighting the Flu Naturally Note: This post is based on my research and personal experience using essential oils with myself and my family. Please read my Essential Oil Common Sense Safety page.
  1. Clove
  2. Eucalyptus
  3. Fir Needle (also referred to as Fir Balsam)
  4. Ginger
  5. Frankincense
  6. Lemon
  7. Lime
  8. Manuka
  9. Melaleuca (Tea Tree)
  10. Oregano
  11. Peppermint
  12. Thyme

1) Clove Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin name: Eugenia Caryophyllata

Clove essential oil has antibacterial and antiviral properties and can help boost the immune system.

Safety: Always dilute clove oil for topical use. Clove oil is a “hot” oil meaning it may cause red, burning skin irritation if you use it neat (aka don’t dilute it.)

How to Use Clove Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with your favorite carrier oil (I use fractionated coconut oil) and apply it topically to the soles of your feet, back of neck, and/or wrists.
Where to Buy Clove Oil: 2) Eucalyptus Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Eucalyptus radiata

Eucalyptus has antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties and can be especially helpful in relieving respiratory issues, including sinus congestion.

A 2015 study concluded that using 1,8-cineole (the primary compound in Eucalyptus oil) may result in decreased mucus secretions from bacterial infections. 

Safety – Dilute before topical use, especially when using on people with sensitive skin or children. Use caution with young children. Don’t apply near their faces.

How to Use Eucalyptus Essential Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to your chest and neck
Where to Buy Eucalyptus Oil: 3) Fir Needle Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Abies Balsamea

Fir Needle essential oil has powerful infection-fighting abilities and may be helpful in relieving symptoms from respiratory issues. Plus, Fir Needle is a natural analgesic (pain reliever) so it may help soothe a sore throat.

Safety: Dilute with topical use; skin may be sensitive.

How to use Fir Needle Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to the neck area for a sore throat
Where to Buy Fir Needle Oil: 4) Frankincense Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Names: Boswellia Sacra, Boswellia carterii, or Boswellia serrata

Frankincense oil has amazing anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce inflammation in nasal passages. It may also help boost the immune system.

Safety: Because Frankincense may have a blood-thinning effect, check with your doctor if you have any blood clotting issues before using Frankincense.

How to use Frankincense Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • apply topically with a carrier oil. (Note: Frankincense is a gentler oil and may be used without dilution in most cases, however, remember it is very potent and diluting will help it go even further with just as much benefit.)
Where to Buy Frankincense Oil:

My favorite brand for Frankincense oil is Ancient Apothecary (Dr Axe) – it’s organic, contains all three species of Frankincense plant so you’ll receive the most benefits and one of the more affordable brands for Frankincense. I’ve used several different brands, including a popular MLM company, Rocky Mountain Oils, and Eden’s Garden and this is my favorite.

Buy it here: Amazon.

5) Ginger Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: zingiber officinale

Ginger essential oil has antiseptic properties and may also help reduce mucus while relieving cough and bronchitis symptoms.

Safety: Dilute with topical use; skin may be sensitive.

How to use Ginger Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to the chest, back of the neck, and/or throat.
  • add a drop to a warm cup of green tea
  • Tip: Add a couple drops of ginger essential oil to your favorite chicken soup. I love doing this when my family needs an extra immune boost toward fighting the flu or any other illnesses.
Buy Ginger Essential Oil: 6) Lemon Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Citrus Limon

Lemon essential oil may help cleanse toxins from the body, stimulate lymph system drainage, and boosting the immune system. It may also reduce mucus and clear congestion.

Safety: If you use lemon oil topically, avoid direct sunlight for up to 12 hours as the lemon oil may cause increased sun sensitivity.

How to Use Lemon Essential Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • To clear congestion/mucus, inhale directly from the bottle (open the bottle and breathe in deeply a few times as you smell the aroma)
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to your chest and neck. You can also apply it topically on lymph nodes.
Buy Lemon Essential Oil: 7) Lime Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Citrus Aurantifolia

Lime essential oil has strong antiviral, antibacterial, and antiseptic properties and may help boost the immune system. It may also help prevent and ease a sore throat. It can also remove toxins from the body and support the lymph system.

How to Use Lime Essential Oil:
  • Apply topically to the throat &/or lymph nodes
Buy Lime Essential Oil: 8) Manuka Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Leptospermum Scoparium

Manuka can help fight infection with its anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. It may be particularly helpful in treating respiratory issues including congestion and cold and flu symptoms. Plus, Manuka can act as a natural fever reducer.

Note: Manuka essential oil is not the same thing as Manuka honey, however it does come from the same shrub.

A 2014 in vitro study concluded that Manuka oil has “potent antimicroorganism and anti-inflammation properties” making it a strong candidate “for use in treating infections and immune-related disease.”

Safety: Avoid use during pregnancy.

How to Use Manuka Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to your chest and neck.
  • Add a few drops to a pot of boiling water. Breathe in the steam, being careful not to burn yourself.
Buy Manuka Essential Oil: 9) Melaleuca (Tea Tree) Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Melaleuca Alternifolia

Melaleuca has strong antiseptic properties and can fight bacteria, particularly respiratory infection. It may also help reduce congestion.

A 2009 in vitro (cellular) study reported that melaleuca (tea tree oil) showed anti-viral activity against influenza virus H1N1 and concluded that tea tree is a promising treatment for the flu. 

How to Use Melaleuca:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with a carrier oil and apply topically to your chest and neck.
Buy Melaleuca (Tea Tree) Essential Oil: 10) Oregano Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Origanum Vulgare

Oregano essential oil has powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties. It can be particularly helpful in fighting pneumonia and bronchitis, which sometimes occur with the flu.

A 2014 study found that oregano oil is a highly effective antiviral, in this case, a strain of norovirus. 

Another study determined that oregano oil is also highly effective against 22 different strains of bacteria and is an effective means for the prevention of antibiotic-resistant strain development. 

Safety: Avoid during pregnancy. Avoid using on babies and small children. Always dilute Oregano oil before using topically as it’s very strong and will almost certainly cause skin irritation if used neat (without diluting.)

How to Use Oregano Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • dilute with a carrier oil and apply to the soles of your feet and/or back of neck.
Buy Oregano Essential Oil: 11) Peppermint Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Mentha Piperita

Peppermint essential oil may help relieve respiratory issues and even work as an expectorant.

Safety: Peppermint may interact with certain medications. Check with your doctor about any drug interaction concerns. Avoid using near the eyes; the strong menthol compound may bother your eyes. Use caution with young children and don’t use it near faces.

How to use Peppermint Oil:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • dilute with a carrier oil and apply to the soles of your feet, chest, and back of neck.
  • add 2 drops to a pot of boiling water. Breathe in the steam, being careful not to burn yourself. This may help clear the nasal passages and release “junk” from your lungs.
Buy Peppermint Essential Oil: 12) Thyme Essential Oil and the Flu:

Latin Name: Thymus Vulgaris

Thyme essential oil has antiseptic properties, meaning it can help fight infection, including viral, bacterial, and fungal, and is especially helpful for respiratory conditions, like chest and throat infections (common symptoms of the flu.) It can also help boost the immune system.

Thyme also has expectorant properties so it may be helpful in calming a cough and potentially reducing the effects of bronchitis (a complication of the flu).

A 2011 human study revealed that thyme oil was effective against respiratory infections, among others. It even “demonstrated a good efficacy against antibiotics resistant strains of the tested bacteria.”

Safety: Thyme is best avoided during pregnancy. You should also be cautious with using high doses of thyme if you have high blood pressure or epilepsy. Talk to your medical professional to be safe.

How to Use Thyme Essential Oil with the Flu:
  • Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse
  • Dilute with your favorite carrier oil and apply it topically to your chest and neck.
  • Tip: Add a couple drops of Thyme essential oil to your favorite chicken soup. I love doing this when my family needs an extra immune boost toward fighting the flu or any other illnesses.
Buy Thyme Essential Oil: Ready-Made Immune Boosting Blends

Don’t want to buy 12 different essential oils? Start with a ready-made essential oil blend! 

Here are my favorite proven (by my family) immune-boosting essential oil blends: 

#1 Immune Strength by Rocky Mountain Oils << this is my favorite

Contains – Clove Bud, Cinnamon Bark, Lemon, Orange, Oregano, Mandarin, Thyme, Rosemary, Nutmeg, Ginger Root, and Eucalyptus citriodora essential oils. That’s SIX oils from our “Fighting the Flu” list above! 

Buy it here.

#2 Ancient Fortress by Ancient Apothecary (Dr Axe)

This blend contains Clove, Orange, Ginger, Thyme, and Cinnamon, including 3 from the “flu-fighting” list above. 

Buy it from Amazon

#3 Immunity by Eden’s Garden

Contains – Sweet Orange, Lemon, Eucalyptus, Moroccan Rosemary, Tea Tree and Frankincense, including 4 of the oils listed above.

Buy it here: Amazon or Eden’s Garden

#4..
Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Making this easy homemade Valentine’s Day slime is a wonderful sensory activity that is beneficial for kids and could be even more beneficial for children with special needs. Many kids who are sensory seekers love the feel of stretchy, soft, and squishy slime.

Easy homemade Valentine’s Day slime is a fun seasonal sensory activity, and it makes a great non-candy Valentine treat. You can even make a big batch to share with your child’s class or use as party favors.

Follow these guidelines to make your own version of this easy homemade Valentine’s Day slime for sensory play. 

 
 
What you need to make Valentine slime: 

For the valentines you will need:

Making the Slime

Mix one part water and one part glue in a container. We like using jars, because it helps the slime mix well and doesn’t splash. 

Add a few drops of pink food coloring and some glitter. Stir to mix everything together. 

Add one part starch to the glue mixture. It should start to form slime right away. Use a fork to stir the slime and keep stirring until the slime sticks to the fork and starts to climb the handle. 

Once that happens, remove the slime. It will still be sticky. Stretch and pull the slime until it smooths out and is no longer sticky. It’s ready to play with!

Making the Valentines
If you are using plastic zipper baggies, cut off the zipper part before adding the slime. Use string or the ribbon to tie the bag up tightly so the slime can’t escape.
 
Fill each bag with 1/4 cup of slime. Tie the bags tightly with ribbon. 
 
Cut out some hearts from the red paper and punch a hole in one side of each heart. String the hearts around the ribbon and tie into a pretty bow. 
 
Write a fun message on the heart for your recipient. We’re fans of “Happy Valen-slime’s Day!”

The post Easy Homemade Valentine’s Day Slime appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Next time you, or a friend, or family member is fighting off a cold, you may want to pamper them a bit and help speed up healing with this essential oil diffused tissues.

I’m going to show you two different ways to add the scent of cold symptom fighting essential oils into tissues in a way that it is not overbearing on your nose.

It should be soothing and helpful while your immune system is in overdrive fending off the virus.

Each way of making essential oil diffused tissues takes only about 5 minutes to do – so this is a quick way to use some of your oils this winter!

Materials Needed To Make Your Own Essential Oil Infused Tissues:

For essential oil diffused tissues in a box, you will first want to open your tissue box and pull out one tissue that you will use as the “diffuser”.  Fold it into a square and add 2-3 drops each of peppermint…

eucalyptus, and lavender essential oils.

Peppermint essential oil is used to soothe and cool skin.  This essential oil can also aid in your respiratory system by decreasing inflammation.  

Eucalyptus essential oil is an anti-bacterial, anti-viral, an expectorant, decreases inflammation of the nasal mucous membrane, and can bring quick sinus relief.  Those are all great reasons to infuse your tissue with this oil when fighting cold symptoms!

Lavender is soothing on your skin – so when you have a raw or red nose from blowing your nose often, the lavender will help!

Now the secret to this is to open the side of your tissue box.  You will want to take your folded diffuser tissue with the oils on it, and place it flat up against the layer of tissues inside the box.

This way, the tissue with oils on it will be in contact with the rest of the stack, and the oils will continuously diffuse throughout the box.

You will need a glue stick because you will want to glue your tissue box back together again so that you can use it normally.  

I tipped mine up and left it sitting its side for a couple of hours while I waited for the glue to dry.

Now when you pull out a tissue from this box, you get a delicate aroma of peppermint, eucalyptus, and lavender to help open up your breathing and soothe your skin.

The second way to create essential oil diffused tissues to make a “travel pack” of them.  This time, instead of putting drops of oils on a folded tissue, grab a cotton ball or two and add 2-3 drops each of eucalyptus, peppermint, and lavender to those instead.  

Then you will want to take out about 10 tissues and put them in a flat, folded pile.  Place them inside a sealable plastic bag along with the cotton ball diffuser.  

I like to keep the travel tissue pack in my purse and have the tissue box on hand in any room where a cold sufferer is located.  This little trick will help the healing while they recover.

Looking for more natural ways to fight the cold or flu this winter season using essential oils?  Here are a few more ideas you can incorporate and reach your goal of a healthy cold and flu season:

15+ Natural Cold and Flu Remedies That Really Work

DIY Immune Boost Foaming Hand Soap

DIY Essential Oil Bracelet for Cold Relief

Easy Homemade Natural Hand Sanitizer

DIY Essential Oil Roller for Immune Support

The post Essential Oil Diffused Tissues appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

During the winter months, kids are obsessed with ice and all things snow. But sometimes, it’s just too cold to go outside and play or learn. But you don’t have to put on a coat to enjoy the great outdoors this winter!

Try this fun instant ice winter science experiment and wow your kids, neighbors, classroom, and anyone else who will pay attention with this easy science experiment that looks just like magic!

Follow these guidelines to make your own version of instant ice. It’s science that is just like magic!

 
What you need to make the instant ice winter science experiment: 

The secret to this experiment is in how ice freezes. In this experiment, you lower the temperature of the water to just below freezing, but not cold enough to actually freeze.

When the water molecules start to move when the water is shaken or poured, they instantly freeze, making it look like you can pour ice directly from a water bottle!

There are a few tricks to this experiment. It took us about an hour in the freezer to get our bottles to the right temperature. You can tell it’s the right temperature when you hit the bottle on the counter and ice particles form inside the bottle.

Wait much longer though, and your water will become ice, making the experiment impossible. 

Cool the water bottles in the freezer for about an hour. Check every 30 minutes by hitting one bottle on the counter to see if ice forms (it will look like this when it’s ready).

Place a couple of ice cubes on your upside down container. This will help form the ice tower. 

Carefully pour the water slowly onto the ice. It should start to form an ice tower right away. If it doesn’t, your water is too warm. 

Keep pouring gently until the ice tower stops forming. You can use other bottles from the freezer to make the ice sculpture even bigger.

Once the water warms up though, it will start to destroy the tower, so watch out when you’re pouring. 

The post Instant Ice Winter Science Experiment appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Here is a gluten-free, homemade instant pot mac and cheese, and it’s kid-friendly! Your kids will love this easy instant pot recipe, and moms love that it’s homemade and ready in under 15 minutes!

This gluten-free, homemade Instant Pot Mac and Cheese is a favorite kid-approved meal. And you’ll love that it’s ready from start to finish in 20 minutes!

If you’re trying to get your family eating healthier, more homemade meals, it doesn’t mean your kids have to give up their favorite mac and cheese.

This delicious instant pot recipe is kid-tested and approved.

It’s based on my wildly popular Kid-Friendly Easy Homemade Mac and Cheese recipe thousands of moms and kids have given a two-thumbs up. Except this version is gluten-free and you can make it in your instant pot!

Seriously, homemade mac and cheese is quicker and easier than ever!

How to Make Gluten-Free Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

You’ll start by making the pretzel topping. (Yup, kids LOVE it!)

Crush 10-12 large gluten-free pretzels in a large zipped bag with a rolling pin. Stir in 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning.

Put 1 Tablespoon butter in your Instant Pot and select “Saute.” Once the butter is melted, add the pretzel mixture and stir occasionally while you’re pulling out the remaining ingredients – about 3-5 minutes.

Remove the pretzels from the instant pot, cover, and set aside. Rinse out and dry off your instant pot.

Pour 4 cups of water, 4 cups gluten-free elbow macaroni, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and 1/2 cup butter (1 stick) into the instant pot.

Secure the lid of your instant pot and select “manual” for 4 minutes.

When the instant pot beeps done, do quick-release.

Open the lid when the pressure is released and immediately stir in 12 ounces cheese (you can use cheddar or any combination you/your kids prefer) along with 1 cup of milk. 

It will melt quickly.

Spoon your gluten-free instant pot mac and cheese into bowls…

..and serve with the pretzel crumb topping sprinkled on top.

Print
Gluten-Free Homemade Instant Pot Mac and Cheese (Kid-Friendly)
Gluten-free, kid-friendly mac and cheese in the instant pot – homemade macaroni and cheese doesn’t get any easier! 
 
  • Author: Erika Bragdon with LivingWellMom.com
  • Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 minutes + pressurizing
  • Total Time: about 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings
Ingredients
Instructions

To make the pretzel “breadcrumb” topping, crush the gluten-free pretzels in a large zipped bag with a rolling pin. Stir in the talian seasoning. 

Put 1 Tablespoon butter in your Instant Pot and select “Saute.” Once the butter is melted, add the pretzel mixture and stir occasionally while you’re pulling out the remaining ingredients – about 3-5 minutes.

Remove the pretzels from the instant pot, cover, and set aside. Rinse out and dry off your instant pot.

Pour the water, macaroni noodles, salt, pepper, and butter in the instant pot. Secure the lid of your instant pot and select “manual” for 4 minutes. When the instant pot beeps done, do quick-release.

Open the lid when the pressure is released and immediately stir in the cheese and milk. It will melt quickly.

Serve your gluten-free instant pot mac and cheese with the pretzel crumb topping sprinkled on top.

The post Gluten-Free Homemade Instant Pot Mac and Cheese (Kid-Friendly) appeared first on Living Well Mom.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free year
Free Preview