All Natural Tips For Naturally-Minded Parents
While it seems that there’s a medication for nearly every ailment under the sun, sometimes you might want to try a holistic remedy first because of the unwanted side effects, preservatives, and even the sourcing and production practices of big pharma. Of course, you should always check with your doctor before trying anything new—holistic or otherwise. But here are a few go-tos that naturally-minded parents love.
Probiotics have been our go-to for proactively keep our little one healthy from the inside out, but we also use them to help his body fight off colds and tummy troubles, too. We love that BioGaia has robust sustainability programs and a commitment to both the health of people and our planet.
Natural Teething Cures
We’ve been fortunate to avoid pain reliever thus far, which is being studied for its potential harm on our microbiomes. Instead, we've relied on all natural Camilia homeopathic medicine, as well as chamomile tea or breastmilk that’s been frozen in mini popsicle trays to help alleviate discomfort. Some people also swear by amber beaded necklaces, but the potential choking hazard made me a little nervous, so I opted out of that.
Not every parent can give their child breastmilk, and there are increasingly great options for formula-feeding your baby. But if you're able and decide to breastfeed, it’s often called “liquid gold” because of its antibacterial qualities. Breastmilk can also help prevent babies from getting sick during a flight when a few drops are placed in their nose and eyes. (Bonus: this works for parents, too!)
Breastmilk also helps hydrate and heal sick babies, and if you happen to get a cold, your milk will produce the antibodies for your babe before they have a chance to fall ill.
Have a skin rash or a cut? Put some milk on it for faster healing! And this is just the tip of the iceberg, as breastmilk has been shown to reduce the chances of countless illnesses in both breastfeeding mamas and their babies. The longer you feed, the greater those results!
Mullein Garlic Oil
Very early on, our pediatrician told us to make Mullein Garlic Oil a permanent fixture in our homeopathic medicine cabinet so that we had it on hand should an ear infection arise. This blend has antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and pain-relieving qualities. Some doctors think that the remedy works just as effectively for alleviating the pain associated with an ear infection as antibiotics do. Still, you should always check with your doctor to see what is right for your child.
Detox baths are great for diaper rash, hives, or other skin irritations, and we take them weekly. I love this recipe from The Gentle Nursery, which includes Epsom salt, baking soda, and bentonite clay.
Nutrition-Forward Baby Recipes
Recommended to me by a friend and celebrity nutritionist Kelly LeVeque, ‘Supernutrition for Babies’ was my favorite baby food book I read. It goes far beyond ideas for baby food recipes and discusses food as medicine to combat many of the ailments and toxicities we are facing today. It leaves readers feeling empowered and explains the what, when, and why to feed your baby.
When food and natural remedies just aren’t enough, Genexa is a holistic medicine company making organic, non-GMO products without preservatives or fillers. The brand even features a line of kid-safe formulas. And while these products are formulated exclusively for adults, Hilma is another new company offering natural remedies for parents.
Find a Community
With the rise of the nuclear family and the loss of the tight-knit communities in which we used to raise children collaboratively, we find ourselves lacking a place to turn to for remedies that work. This can sometimes leave us relying on the marketing messages from major brands for education.
But there are communities for parents out there: HeyMama, where working mamas can turn to one another for details on everything from how to get funding to how to fight a fever; Raised Good, which empowers parents to make consciously-minded decisions; and Peanut, which connects you with other moms in your neighborhood at your current stage of parenting. These platforms are bringing parents together to learn from each other—because it does, after all, take a village.
Read, Read, Read
Mama Natural and The Gentle Nursery have been my go-to for natural and conscious alternatives throughout pregnancy and motherhood. The authors feel like old friends now because of all the ways they have supported my parenting journey with their in-depth research distilled into helpful information for my family.
What remedies and resources have you relied on for your little one? 👶 Share in the comments below!
Danielle Finck is the founder and CEO of Elle Communications, a conscious communications agency with offices in Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco that represents mission-centered brands, nonprofits, social enterprises, CSR teams, sustainably made products, activists, and leaders who are making the world a better place through their ideas and endeavors. She lives in Venice, CA with her son, Weston, and her husband, Adam. Connect with her on Instagram here.