Antibiotics allow you to treat infections and viruses that invade your body and cause any number of illnesses or infections. For the cold and flu season, there are some natural antibiotics that can help fight these illnesses and keep you feeling well throughout the season.
The first natural antibiotic that can help you when cold and flu season arrives is garlic. Garlic is a type of spice that many people are familiar with, as it is often used in cooking. But you might not realize it has a long list of health benefits, including being able to give your immune system a little natural boost. Garlic has been used for medicinal purposes for many years. It contains a lot of natural properties to make it a great healing spice, including being a natural antibiotic, antiviral, and antifungal spice. You are able to help get rid of bad bacteria that enters your body by adding more garlic to your foods. There are also garlic supplements you can take.
This might seem like an odd suggestion, but don’t count it out just yet. Cayenne pepper has many natural healing properties, just like other herbs and spices. Not only does it have natural antibiotic properties, but hot spices can really help to clear your congestion when you have a head cold. Cayenne pepper can simply be used in soups and other hearty dishes you are able to keep down while you are sick, or you can try making a tea or tonic with it if you aren’t quite ready to eat anything.
If you have a need for sweetening up foods or beverages, why not choose something natural like manuka honey? This not only allows you to only have natural sugars, which is great for overall health and dieting, but it also has other health benefits as well. Among the various medicinal benefits, manuka honey is a natural antibiotic. It is one of the healthiest types of honey you can get, which is only from bees that are pollinating Manuka bushes. You also get antimicrobial properties in this type of honey. Use it on your skin for skin infections and to fight bacteria, or consume it for your immune system benefits.
Naturally, echinacea is going to be on the list, as it is on many ‘top’ lists when talking about your immunity and illnesses like the common cold or flu influenza virus. Echinacea is a type of herb that helps to treat and prevent infections, including for the cold and flu. Historically, it was used to treat more severe diseases like blood poisoning and open wounds.
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In the last couple of decades, mostly from the work of Michael Merzenich, neuroresearchers have begun to understand that the brain is not rigid, rather is plastic and capable of change until the day we die. In fact, back in 1949, Donald Hebb was the first to propose that learning linked neurons. He suggested that “when two neurons fire at the same time repeatedly, chemical changes occur in both, so that the two tend to connect more strongly,” (Doidge, 2007, p. 63). Michael Merzenich, one of this country’s most renoun neuroscientist today, expanded on this by saying that strong connections are made when they are activated at the same time.
He explains that when “we perform an activity that requires specific neurons to fire together, they release BDNF” (p. 80), (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) a growth factor which helps neurons to wire together so they fire together in the future. BDNF also helps with the mylenization of the neurons to speed up the impulses (Doidge, 2007).
The brain does not like change. Therefore, in order for changes to take place in the structure of the brain, we need to have access through all the senses, including the proprioceptive receptors of the muscles. In addition, the brain needs to be engaged, there needs to be repetition, or rehearsal of activity, and feedback to the brain is necessary. It is said that it takes exactly 3 weeks, 21 days, for connections to be made in the brain (Gold, 2008), so consistent repetition is necessary until the appropriate connections are made.
Cognitive and motor exercises are both extremely useful in changing the brain’s structure and thus improving learning, however younger children will make much faster progress than adolescents or adults because “the number of connections among neurons, or synapses, is 50 percent greater than in the adult brain” (Doidge, 2007, p. 42). The younger the child, the quicker the response and the better chance for a more complete recovery.
--From my book: Movement Makes math Meaningful: Away from the Desk Math Lessons Aligned with the Common Core.
Shown below is Dr. Doidge's book, The Brain that Changes Itself, which is considered a fundamental book explaining and demonstrating neuroplasticity of the brain.
The functions of the body and brain cannot be separated (Kokot, 2010). “When we are born, all parts of the brain have been established, however are not yet working well together. In order for all parts to function, they must be linked together” (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011 p. 17). Our entire brain structure is connected to and grown by the movement mechanisms within our bodies (Dennison, 2006).
Paul MacLean describes the brain as being in layers like an onion. The most inner part of the brain is the brain stem, commonly known as the “fish brain.” The function of this part of the brain is to receive signals from our senses and to relay them to the motor organs. All of our automatic functions are controlled by the brain stem.
The basal Ganglia, part of the brainstem, is “responsible for the organization of involuntary and semi-voluntary activity, upon which consciously willed movements are superimposed” (Goddard, 2005, p. 44). It “connects and orchestrates impulses between the cerebellum and frontal lobe, thus helping to control body movement” (Hannaford, 1995, p. 60).
The brain stem also has a net of nerve cells called the Reticular Activating System (RAS). The job of the RAS is to receive impulses from all our senses, except for the sense of smell, and then to transmit them to the cortex, which improves attention and alertness. If the cortex is insufficiently stimulated by the RAS, then the child will be passive and will be unable to pay attention.
Another job of the brain stem is to regulate muscle tone after receiving sufficient stimulation from the vestibular, proprioceptive and tactile senses (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011).
The cerebellum, which contains ½ of the brain’s neurons, receives signals from receptors for the kinesthetic and tactile senses that transmit information regarding touch and pressure (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011). It is involved in various aspects of planning and monitoring movements and regulates muscle tone, including saccadic eye movements. Its job is to make our movements coordinated and smooth. Apart from motor control, it also is involved in attention, long-term memory, spatial perception, impulse control, abstract thinking and other cognitive functions (Lengel & Kuczala, 2010), therefore, movement has a direct affect on the latter, including eye movements, reading comprehension, speed of information processing, working memory, learning and speech development.
Impulses to the brain via the different senses and the cerebellum activate the RAS and are then finally sent to and processed by the higher areas of the brain in the cortex. In order for the cortex to process, absorb, and comprehend material, the brain stem must be able to perform its own tasks, such as move the eyes from left to right across a page, adjust visual focus between the desk and board, sound out letters to form words.
The The pre-frontal cortex is located on the frontal lobes of the brain. Elkhonen Goldberg refers to it as the “executive brain” which “gives us our interpersonal abilities and plain old common sense; for example, the ability to ‘read’ situations, discern the meanings of facial expressions, and anticipate the consequences of various actions,” (Dennison, 2006, p. 57).
The Pre-frontal cortex is the decision making part of our brain and is involved in making plans, judgments, motivation, and impulse control. It “enables our conceptual and abstract thinking and our ability to reason and change our conscious concepts and ideas” (Blomberg & Dempsey p. 107), and is the part of the brain that is last to develop. It is also the part that is the most susceptible to damage in adolescents who engage in smoking marijuana. Like other parts of our brain, the pre-frontal cortex develops via our movement and sensory skills. It is also closely connected to the cerebellum and to the limbic system, which controls our emotions.
From my book: Movement Makes Math Meaningfuil: Away from the Desk Math Lessons Aligned with the Common core.
Natural remedies for your immune system range from using essential oils to changing your daily habits. Another great way to give your immunities a nice boost is with certain herbs. Here are some of the top healing herbs that can help you fight off the cold and flu.
This recommendation is probably not that surprising, as echinacea has long since been associated with boosting your immune system and helping to prevent the cold and flu. Echinacea is a type of herb that contains natural antibacterial and antiviral properties. It is these properties that help you to fight viruses and illnesses, as they are able to boost the white blood cell production in your body. These blood cells are needed to help fight infections you come into contact with.
Another herb that can be really healing for your body and help to boost your immune system at the same time is elderberry. Elderberry is a unique herb that is very healing, helping to fight off different types of infections, including the influenza (flu) virus, bacterial infections, and viral infections. There have been numerous studies looking at its effectiveness for your immune system. You can use different parts of this herb, from the flowers to the leaves and even the bark.
The next herb to be aware of is called calendula. This is one of those herbs where the name sounds familiar, but people aren’t fully aware of what it is or how it can be beneficial. Calendula is a type of plant with healing flower petals that look similar to marigold flowers. These have been used for many medicinal purposes, as they naturally reduce inflammation, fight bacteria, and contain natural antioxidants. This can help prevent your body from free radical damage, which can also in turn help to improve your immune system.
While not technically an herb, the leaves used in green tea are also amazing for your immunities and helping to avoid the cold and flu. Green tea is also a good source of antioxidants, as well as boosting your immune system to keep away infections and viruses. Try to drink 2-3 cups of green tea a day. The good news here is that green tea has a lot of other health benefits as an added bonus, from aiding in your weight loss efforts, to improving your skin.
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The brain of a child with autism is highly aroused and not comfortable in its own resting state (Othmer, 2012). One theory is that there is an overproduction of BDNF, the growth factor that helps neurons to wire together. Areas of the cerebellum, on the on the right hemisphere, which are linked to the speech areas of the left hemisphere, tend to be smaller than normal in children with autism (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011). There is also an area on the brainstem, which visual control, vestibular input, and proprioceptive information come together, when not functioning properly causes paralysis of gaze, common in children with autism (Gold, 2008).
World-known researchers and practitioners, such as Sally Goddard-Blythe, Dr. Harald Blomberg, and Svetlana Masgutova, just to name a few, have spent many years investigating the role movement has in neurological development and learning. According to Goddard-Blythe (2005), “attention, balance and coordination are the primary A, B, and C upon which all later academic learning depends” (p. xvi). Reading, for example, depends upon smooth eye movements across the page, which is developed by the balance system. These, and others, have found that children labeled as “learning disabled” were able to more effectively learn when they spent a few minutes before a lesson with simple, whole body integrative movements. This is why Brain Gym™ is so successful. It is a way to help the body prepare for learning.
Shirley Kokot (2010) explains that body movements are responsible for the development of the brain structure and they contribute to the proper functioning of the brain. Roger Spery, a Nobel Laureate neurobiologist said that, “90% of stimulation and nutrition to the brain is generated by movement of the spine.”
Movement is involved in each of the senses. For example, sound moves in sound waves, touch is perceived by movement air or pressure over the skin. Movement helps by enhancing functioning of the nervous system and causes chemicals in the brain to be created that allow the neurons to communicate with one another and to make general processing faster (Kokot, 2010).
When you observe a baby, you will notice that when awake, it is never still. The movements of the infant are rapidly growing the brain. It is estimated that in the first year of life, every minute there are more than 4 million new nerve cell branches created in the brain (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011). Babies who are, for whatever reason, unable to move much are certain to have developmental delays. These children need to be moved passively, such as by rocking and touch, to stimulate their brains (Blomberg & Dempsey, 2011).
These examples demonstrate how critically interconnected movement and learning are. It is no wonder that in this modern day of computer and video games that there is such a surge of students with learning and attention difficulties. If young children are no longer spending hours on end outdoors exploring and working on developing and integrating their sensory systems, then I argue that it is incumbent upon us, as educators, to provide supplemental experiences that allow them to do so.
Children, and many adults, have short attention spans and need to have frequent learning breaks. The average attention span for a child is said to be their age +2 minutes. That means after that many minutes, teachers need to stop for a break to allow children to process the information. Elementary schools in Japan teach for 50 minutes and provide a 15 minute recess after each 50 minute learning session. Schools in Finland now recognize the value of periodic movement for both students and teachers. As adults, we typically will push through the day working, thinking and preparing during all of our breaks. Rest is just as important for us as for the young ones.
--From my book: Movement Makes Math Meaningful: Away from the Desk math Lessons Aligned with the Common Core, pages 14-15.
The lessons in this book are designed to benefit all students, not just those that struggle. Movement helps everyone access their whole brain while learning, and besides, it is fun and motivating. Students need to move before they are able to sit still, so if it feels like the classroom is getting out of control and everyone is tuning you out, get them up and (with well-defined parameters) move!
Believe it or not, one of the top ways to treat a head cold naturally is to look at what you are eating. Many foods, herbs, and spices can help to heal your body and help you to recover from the cold more quickly, while other foods are bad for you and tend to make your symptoms worse.
Avoid Dairy Foods
The first thing you should do if you want to eat a diet that helps with your head cold is to know what to avoid. This begins with your dairy products. Dairy isn’t necessarily going to make your cold worse, but it can worsen some of the symptoms of having a head cold. If you are getting a lot of congestion, phlegm, or ear infections, the dairy can actually make these side effects worse, even if you don’t necessarily have a dairy allergy. When you get a cold, try cutting out dairy and see what the difference is.
Don’t Forget the Leafy Greens
When you have a cold, eating might not be your favorite thing to do, but it is still important to eat nutritious foods with lots of vitamins and minerals. This includes making sure you get enough leafy greens each day. Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and collard greens contain a lot of fiber and nutrients that your body needs to heal more quickly. Make a simple salad or if you aren’t too hungry, just blend up a smoothie with greens and fruits to get the added vitamin C as well.
Add More Garlic
When you are cooking meals or snacks while you have a head cold, don’t miss out on the chance to add a little garlic. This is one of the best spices to have when you are sick, since garlic has natural antibacterials and antimicrobials. These properties can actually help to get rid of bacteria and viruses in your body that lead to both head colds and the flu. While it isn’t a one-stop shop as far as treating a cold, it definitely makes a big difference.
Eat Your Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken noodle soup isn’t just good for a head cold because it is a classic comfort food, but it often contains ingredients that can help detox your body, give you nutrients, and allow you to keep something down that is gentle on your body. Try to eat more chicken noodle soup when you have a cold so that you are eating something warm and satisfying, while getting nutrients from the chicken and veggies.
Want more information on how to stay healthy and boost your immune system? Then click here to access your free Immune Boosting Workshop bundle! https://ldegarci.builderall.net/Natural-Remedies
Sally Goddard Blythe, in her book The Well Balanced Child explains that many of the symptoms that are expressed in disorders, such as dyslexia, attention deficit, or anxiety disorders are actually caused by a “treatable signal-scrambling dysfunction” within the inner ear and cerebellum (Goddard, 2007). These are the same symptoms that can be ”triggered in normal individuals following excessive spinning and dizziness.” Studies have found that participating in martial arts, due to its demand on focus in combination with aerobic activity, twice a week improves behavior and performance of children suffering from this disorder.
Someone with dyspraxia has a disorganization of movement, particularly unfamiliar movement and those involving multiple steps. Deficit in motor planning and sequencing is often a leading factor in a variety of developmental and motor deficits, including speech. Motor development progresses from head to toes and from the core outward. Therefore, there may be little connection to the feet, although the upper body may appear well-coordinated. Dr. Blomberg (2011) explains that movement ability and speech are linked and that stimulating the cerebellum to improve motor abilities need to happen before speech can be improved.
Dyscalculia, a disorder in calculation, is defined by the National Center for Learning Disabilitites (2006) as “a wide range of life long disabilities involving math.” Specific areas in the left hemisphere used in counting, calculating, and using basic arithmetic number symbols are located mostly in regions of the left parietal lobe and motor cortex. Areas in the prefrontal cortex are used in analyzing a problem and retrieval of facts. Regions in the right parietal lobe are used in spatial reasoning and visual-spatial tasks, like being able to generate a mental number line, and estimating. Students with dyscalculia have significant weaknesses in areas on the left hemisphere that effect their ability to compute or recall basic facts (Sousa 2008). They may equally have difficulty in reading, or dyslexia, since decoding and phonemic awareness are also located on the left side.
Source: How the Brain Learns Mathematics, by David Sousa (2008)
Although not as commonly known as dyslexia, there is actually a significant number of students, between 20% - 60%, who have both (Butterworth & Yeo, 2004; Hannell, 2005). This means that many students with language related issues struggle with math as well, and that these students also experience motor skill deficits. Their right side areas are generally functioning properly or may even be well above average. If these children are not in an environment that embraces understanding and conceptual thinking, they will have limited access to understanding mathematics, even though they may very well be destined to be great mathematical thinkers. Movement helps encourage the use of both sides of the brain during math, increasing assess of the weaker side and communication between both hemispheres.
---From my book: Movement Makes math Meaningful: Away from the Desk Math Lessons Aligned with the Common Core, pages 13-14
Lisa Ann de Garcia, MA, MEd.