Catching a Cold? Warming Socks to the Rescue

immune health and warming socks

The warming sock treatment is best if repeated for three nights in a row, or as instructed by your physician.


  • Sore throat or any inflammation or infection of the throat
  • neck pain
  • ear infections
  • headaches
  • migraines
  • nasal congestion
  • upper respiratory infections
  • coughs
  • bronchitis
  • sinus infections


Use with caution in diabetes, Raynaud’s phenomenon or syndrome, arterial insufficiency or advanced intermittent claudication. The warming phase is especially important for these patients. Please consult your physician.


  • 1 pair white cotton socks
  • 1 pair thick wool socks
  • Towel
  • Warm bath or warm foot bath


  1. Take a pair of cotton socks and soak them completely with cold water (as cold as you can tolerate). Be sure to wring the socks out thoroughly so they do not drip.
  2. Warm your feet first. This is very important as the treatment will not be as effective and could be harmful if your feet are not warmed first. Soaking your feet in warm water for at least 5-10 minutes or taking a warm bath/shower for 5-10 minutes can accomplish warming
  3. Dry off feet and body with a dry towel.
  4. Place cold wet socks on feet. Cover with thick wool socks. Go directly to bed. Avoid getting chilled.
  5. Keep the socks on overnight. You will find that the wet cotton socks will be dry in the morning.

Effects of the Warming Sock Treatment

This treatment acts to reflexively increase the circulation and decrease congestion in the upper respiratory passages, head, and throat. It has a sedating action and many patients report that they sleep much better during the treatment. This treatment is also effective for pain relief and increases the healing response during acute infections.

5 Flu-Busting Strategies to Keep You Healthy this Fall

sick teddyA recent CBC report stated that last year’s flu vaccine had an effectiveness rate of around 50%, up from “essentially zero” the year before.  Earlier this year, a Canadian study showed that people who were vaccinated consecutively from 2012-2014 appeared to have a higher risk of infection.  The article also states, “Canadians who had received a flu shot in late 2008 were between 1.4 and 2.5 times more likely to contract an H1N1 infection,” compared with those who did not.

Yet every year, the flu vaccine is advertised as the best (& only) prevention strategy.  Is this truly the best we can do?

The flu can be a very serious illness- especially in the very young, the very old and people who have any compromise to their immunity.  However, our current shot in the dark strategy of  vaccine production based on “our best guess” principle falls radically short of offering real protection for Canadians.

The state of your immune system is the strongest predictor of whether or not you will get sick this winter.  The good news is that there are sound yet simple immune-boosting strategies that need not be expensive, require no injections, come with no questionable fillers and actually will improve your resistance to all viruses and bacteria. So try some of these suggestions to keep your immune system supported and strong for a healthy winter season.

  1. Ensure your have adequate levels of Vitamin D.

    As the weather gets colder, we need to ensure adequate vitamin D status.  In one study, children taking just 1,200 IUs of vitamin D3 per day, were 42 percent less likely to come down with the flu.

  2. Eat well. 

    Focus on eating good quality fats (think coconut oil, nuts, avocado), lean protein, vegetables (frozen is the next best to fresh) and whole grains and fruit sparingly (due to their sugar content) for a well-balanced whole foods diet that promotes healthy immune function. Add fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut and/or kombucha to provide sources of probiotics, or supplement a good probiotic as well.  One study of 3 to 5 year olds indicated that ingestion of probiotics 1-2x/day resulted in:

  • Reduced fever by 53 percent and 73 percent respectively
  • Decreased coughing by 41 percent and 62 percent
  • Reduced runny noses by 28 percent and 59 percent
  • Reduced antibiotic use by 68 percent and 84 percent (which is a major gain in and of itself because antibiotics are vastly overused in children and also devastate your gut flora)

Adding garlic, onion and honey into your daily foods can help ease symptoms of congestion, sore throat and cough.  Warm foods like soups and stews are always easier to digest in the winter months.

  1. Limit contact.

    Washing your hands frequently is perhaps the simplest measure we can do to stop the spread of the virus.  Just plain soap and water will do.  Take the time to wash thoroughly, between fingers and under nails.  Make a point to limit contact at the office/classroom by staying at home for much needed rest if you do get sick.

  2. Increase your body temperature.

    A warm body temperature is less likely to harbour the virus that causes the flu.  Short, intense bursts of exercise (like running in place as fast as you can for a minute) several times a day are enough to stimulate your metabolism and your immunity. Another option would be to perform warming socks – a wonderful,simple and effective method to use in both prevention and treatment of acute flu/cold.  Or sit in a sauna regularly to enjoy its immune-boosting benefits (and warmth).

  3. Manage stress.

    In a recent cold study, participants who had reported being under stress were twice as likely to get sick. Prolonged stress will, over time, decrease your immune response.  Conversely, skilled relaxation results in a corresponding increase in protective antibody production.  Balance your life between work and play, spend quality time with loved ones, practice deep breathing/yoga/meditation/prayer, exercise, and/or journal to help keep stress in check.

There is no guaranteed way to prevent the flu.  The best approach for staying well this winter is to have a robust and well-functioning immune system.  I hope these tips help you and your families stay well this upcoming season.















Ward off Germs with Garlic Honey

Garlic honey is super easy to make and ready almost immediately to treat sore throats, colds, the flu, lung congestion, and sinus problems.

Use a small jar (4-8 ounces/125-250ml) with a good lid. Fill it with unpeeled garlic cloves (you can peel and chop the cloves if you prefer), then pour honey over it all, using a chop stick to poke the honey down into the garlic. After screwing on the lid, label the jar with the contents and date.  Overnight, so it seems, the garlic and honey combine to create a divine elixir that may be taken by the spoonful right out of the jar.

As it ages, both the honey and the garlic darken. After a couple of months, the garlic is suffused with honey and is lovely to eat.  Garlic honey keeps indefinitely at room temperature, but should not be given to children less than one year old (as per any honey).

Guidelines to Improve Health for You & Your Family

Improve your family’s health by following the guidelines below:

  1. Make sure you get the best nutrition available, i.e., organic, whole foods. Avoid processed foods. By doing this you will prevent an increase of further toxicity with heavy metals, pesticides, flavour enhancers like MSG, color additives, GMOs, preservatives and chemicals.
  2. If you are going to eat bread, choose sourdough bread over yeast bread to prevent the binding of zinc and magnesium to an insoluble complex with phytic acid and to enable the assimilation of nutritional zinc and magnesium. Since whole wheat sourdough bread is often very heavy, it would be better to start with lighter sourdough bread.
  3. Drink pure filtered water without copper or other toxins.
  4. Avoid the use of the microwave for all food and drinks; avoid also as much as possible plastic containers and packages.
  5. Avoid sugar as much as possible, sweets in general and artificial sweeteners. It is poisonous to the intestines and pancreas and several other tissues. Sugar also inhibits the production of EPA and DHA , both omega-3 fatty acids that are of crucial importance to the brain tissue.
  6. Provide a quiet and peaceful environment for you and your family, eliminating excess stimuli such as TV, gaming systems and computers.
  7. Make sure you are well grounded to the earth. Static electricity may give rise to both emotional/mental disorders and physical complaints. Synthetic clothing, insulating shoes (rubber or plastic soles) and synthetic floor coverings should therefore be avoided. Walk barefoot as much as possible. Eliminate all electric appliances in the bedroom such as electric alarm clocks, TV, computers or audio equipment. Turn off Wi-Fi during the night (and day).
  8. Ensure a healthy sleeping environment for you & your family.       A healthy bed should not contain any metal. If possible, have your child sleep facing north or east. A dark room is important for the production of melatonin (sleep hormone).
  9. Avoid antibiotics since they impair intestinal flora and consequently increase underlying problems. In case of infection, opt for naturopathic solutions.

How to Go Gluten Free

gluten free

For many people, part of their health journey requires healing the digestive tract, which can mean avoid gluten for periods of time. Going gluten-free can be a challenge at first…stick to simple choices at the beginning, until you start to navigate the ins & outs of gluten containing food. It is always best to focus on eating whole foods that are found in nature (as opposed to processed foods). Continue reading

Are you Itching for Spring? – Natural Solutions for Allergy Season

The flowers are starting to bloom…and the birds are singing once again, finally! Slowly, as the temperatures rise, we transition into the new season with recurrent optimism of a long winter’s end.

Aaaah-aaaah-CHOO…that’s the common sound we hear of springtime allergies interrupting our enjoyment of the warming season. Allergies are commonly associated with hayfever with its typical symptoms including cough, fatigue, headache, itchy eyes, nose, throat, skin, runny nose, sneezing, congestion, watery eyes. In addition, allergies include chronic afflictions such as sinusitis, food allergies, eczema, post-nasal drip, asthma and the list goes on. Continue reading

The Importance of Vitamin D

What is vitamin D? Originally credited with helping the body with calcium and bone metabolism, more recent studies show that vitamin D has many other influences on keeping the body healthy. It is thought of as a prohormone more than just a vitamin because it is only after D3 is metabolized in the liver and then into other forms in the kidneys that the active forms are produced. To date, some thirty-seven forms of Vitamin D3 have been isolated and chemically characterized. Continue reading

The Many Benefits of Far Infrared Sauna Therapy

What is sauna therapy?
Sauna therapy has been a part of healing practices for centuries as part of many different traditions – the Greeks and Romans historically used bathhouses to both cleanse and detoxify, and many indigenous peoples use sweat lodges as a means of both spiritual and physical purification. Continue reading

Kick Start the School Year with Probiotics

I remember being excited as a kid, every September meant new clothes, school supplies, teachers and classes…a fresh start to a new year. The more I learn about health and wellness, the more I realize that one of the most important factors to success in school starts with the our humble microbe populations that live in our digestive tracts.

It is said we are 10% human, and 90% microbe…a healthy gut houses over 100 trillion friendly bacteria, which is a ratio of 10:1 to the number of cells in your body. Why are these critters so important? The reality is that without these friendly bugs, your digestion, brain health and immune function would simply not function. At any given time, you have around 160 bacterial species (types) in your gut out of over 1000 species of bacteria. The digestive tract is one of the most complex eco systems to understand and study. The individualized bacteria composition found in each body play a vital role in keeping us healthy. Having the right strains, in the right amount and in the right part of the digestive tract are critical to our overall sense of well-being, and should therefore, be a part of our daily health practice. Continue reading