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Don’t Be Scared; Be Prepared

By Lara DeHaven

One of my personal flaws is that I under-react.  When Hurricane Rita was heading our way a couple of years ago, I was not prepared at all.  Luckily, we only got a little taste of a storm.  When Hurricane Ike was rolling toward us like a freight train, I begrudgingly went out to the store and tried to purchase a few necessary items, but went home empty handed.  I was too late!  I am learning my lesson.  When disasters loom ahead, I am trying to be prepared.

Luckily the Texas coast went unscathed this hurricane season so far.  However, the speculation of a bad flu epidemic are rampant.  A  local school has shut down because of the flu.  Reports of swine flu are everywhere.  As a mom, I feel responsible for being prepared to cope with a potential virus.  But what exactly should one really do?

Well let me be clear, I am not a doctor nor do I have a medical background.  I am not giving medical advice.  I am only speaking on the need to prepare for a flu outbreak.  I have researched the subject to my satisfaction and I thought I would share how I am preparing my home.


  • I have purchased Vitamin D3.  It is an anti-viral powerhouse.  It helps your body avoid the flu and/or help treat someone with it.
  • I have Astragalus.  It is an herb that helps your body boost your immune system.  When any of us starts to feel bad at all or like we are getting something, we start taking Astragalus.  A pharmacist told my mom to take it instead of Airborne when traveling on a plane.  An important note is not to take it if a fever or infection is present.
  • Vitamin C is an old standby that helps prevent the flu and colds.


  • Garlic is an absolute must.  It is a natural antibiotic.  I use garlic in capsule form, but it is actually better to use raw cloves of garlic.  However for my family, the capsules do not taste bad or smell and are easier to use.  If my children ever have an ear ache, I squeeze the garlic capsule into their ear and plug the ear with a cotton ball.  You can squeeze it directly on your tonsils if they are inflamed.  You can also swallow the capsules.
  • Sea Salt dissolved in warm water makes a great mouth rinse.  Just gargle if you have a sore throat.  Snort it up your nostril to help relieve sinus congestion.
  • Oscillococcinum is a homeopathic remedy to be used at the first sign of flu.  Follow the instructions on the box and take as recommended.
  • Essential Oils offer a wide variety of remedies.  Breathing in the steam from boiling water with a few drops of peppermint oil and eucalyptus oil help clear nasal and chest congestion.  You can also add a few drops of eucalyptus or tea tree oil to olive oil and massage it in to the soles of someone’s feet or chest.  Oregano, tea tree, eucalyptus, peppermint oils are ones I use to fight an illness.

Not only do I have these on hand, but I also have ibuprofen, soup, and other fluids.  Who wants to run to the store when you feel sick?  If the flu is as widespread and bad as they are predicting, then there won’t be anything to buy when you get there.  Don’t over-react, but don’t under-react either.  Just try to be ready for whatever may come.  These are relatively inexpensive items that you will most likely use throughout the year.  I would love to throw away the oscillococcinum when it expires than not have it when I need it.  Wouldn’t you?

I am praying for the health of our families during this flu season made even more frightening with the presence of the swine flu strain.  Don’t be scared; be prepared.

For more information, you can read “Swine Flu: Prevention and Treatment.”  In this article, they have a dosing chart as well as other ideas and supplements.
I really recommend the book, Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child, by Janet Zand, Rachel Walton, and Bob Rountree.  It is a “practical A-to-Z reference to natural and conventional treatments for infants and children.”
Dr. Mercola has a website with tons of information and articles on health, but specifically the flu.

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2 Responses to “Don’t Be Scared; Be Prepared”

  1. Theresa Pohlman

    Hello Lara,

    Have you ever sat down at your computer to look at something and the next thing you know you are somewhere else entirely? Well, that is how I came upon your blog. This post is from Sept. 30th so I hope you still get the comment. I was interested in your blog because we live in Texas and are interested in homestead living. I am excited to have found you and will be back to read often.

    You didn’t have elderberry on your list and I wanted to suggest it. The owner of our local health and wellness store, who is a certified natural health professional, says it is especially good to have for the flu. We have a bottle of elderberry syrup and it tastes a lot like jam or jelly, great for kids. I just wanted to share that information in case you didn’t know.

    Theresa in TX

  2. Lara DeHaven

    Yes, thank you for mentioning the healing properties of elderberry. I have recently been looking into different berry brew and tinctures. I am also happy that you found me.


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