When wildfires rage and smoke fills the skies, your body can pay the price! Learn 7 ways to support your body during this time (or any time!)
Hi! And welcome to the Cultivating Abundant Life Podcast! I’m Kait Palmer, and I am passionate about helping women cultivate better lives physically, mentally, and emotionally.
In the last episode I talked about identifying emotions and using the Aroma Freedom Technique to release emotions to allow us to reach our goals and intentions. In Episode 4 we talked about what emotions are, how they affect our bodies, and how essential oils can physically help us release those emotions. I highly recommend you go back and listen to those episodes to catch up!
This week we’re taking a little bit of a turn away from emotions, and into something that’s very practical and relevant to us in the Pacific Northwest right now, and that is–what do you do when the air quality outside is NOT the best?
Before we get started I want to talk about an oil I’ve been especially thankful for this week. A few days ago I was using a massage therapy gun–you know where it pounds very hard and releases your muscles? I was working on different areas of my body and all of the sudden there was more pain than what you’d normally feel with a sore muscle. I checked and there was an ingrown hair. I don’t know how I missed it but it was the size of a silver dollar and was hot and red, and I’m guessing it was an ingrown hair? Maybe it was a bite of some sort? I’m not sure but it was really sore, and so I started using tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) on it 3-4 times a day. Every time I remembered I would use tea tree oil on it. By the next morning it was half the size–it was drastically better and was not nearly as sore. That was on Sunday or Monday? Today is Thursday and it’s almost completely gone, so I am very very thankful for tea tree oil this week, because that was not a pleasant sensation!
Here in Southern Oregon we're dealing with smoke from fires in the area. So we have our apps where we watch our air quality apps to gauge how much time we spend outside (if at all!) because we know breathing poor quality air can have long-lasting effects on our lungs and worsen chronic heart problems and possibly even affect your brain and fertility.
So we’re trying to stay inside and breathe healthy air– “healthy air” we know often the air inside our homes can be 10x as polluted as the air outside our homes! What can we do to mitigate this?
After the Almeda fire here in the Ashland and Talent and Phoenix area of our city area, I started looking into what kind of affect can intense wildfire smoke have on you long term, and it was pretty scary! Not gonna lie! And with wildfires seeming to be increasing, I was wondering how can we really mitigate and support our bodies as they’re dealing with this extra stress.
So here are seven things you can do to help support your body when there’s bad air quality outside.
**Reminder: these statements have not been evaluated by the FDA (because they're SOOOOO trustworthy). This page is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Information on this page is not intended to replace proper medical help. Consult with the healthcare authority of your choice and remember--you always have a choice.**
1. Run a HEPA air purifier (or two if you have a large home) in your home and make sure your home air filters are no more than 3 months old. If you live where it's been smoky for a long time, consider changing it more frequently. In 2020 during the Almeda Fire, all air purifiers were out of stock so people used box fans with a home air filter duct taped to the front of it. People I knew who did this said they could see all the dust and particles building up on the filter as proof it was working! Even though that’s kind of janky-make-it-yourself, it’s better to have something inside filtering your air than nothing at all! We use Colzer air filter and what I like about ours is it gives a number rating of the air. It really works because when we’re cooking something and it gets smoky, the air filter reflects that and kicks into high gear. Even cooking releases particles that are not healthy to breathe. We run this all the time. And I’ve learned if you live in an area where there are often wildfires, always keep a backup filter –or two–on hand because when that smoke hits? Everyone goes out and buys filters! Two years ago when it was smokey I went to buy a new filter and they were out of stock everywhere online! We had to buy a completely new filter just to be able to have one in our house!
We now keep an extra 2-4 filters on hand at all times. This might seem obvious, but still worth mentioning.
2. Use your diffuser!
"It has been said that when essential oils are diffused in the home, they have the ability to increase the atmospheric oxygen. They do this by releasing oxygenating molecules into the atmosphere. Oils increase ozone and negative ions in the home .... Essential oils have the electrical magnetic attraction to fracture the molecular chain of chemicals and take them out of the air.
This process renders them non-toxic to the body. Scientists in European countries have found that essential oilS will BOND TO METALLICS & CHEMICALS and carry them OUT of the body! They do this by working as a natural chelator, inhibiting these toxic substances from staying in the tissues. These are all wonderful attributes of essential oils. Essential oils remove dust particles out of the air, and WHEN DIFFUSED IN THE HOME, CAN BE THE GREATEST AIR FILTRATION SYSTEM IN THE WORLD."
[ from "Aromatherapy; The Essential Beginning" by D. Gary Young ]
How cool is that?!
If you have not yet ditched the synthetic fragrance warming trays, hot pots, plug-in's and synthetic fragrance candles that may have lead in their wicks, let this please serve as the impetus needed to propel you to move on and find a different way to make your house smell JUST as incredible and without overburdening your endocrine system.
What you breathe in plays a critical role in your overall well-being. Both emotional AND physical well-being! And we know, the air inside your home has been found to be more toxic than the air outside of your home.
So what do you look for when you are ditching synthetic stuff? Look for:
▪︎ candles with fragrance (if you do use candles, use beeswax candles that actually help clean your air and purify it in a way a paraffin candle cannot)
▪︎ wax Pods with fragrance
▪︎ room sprays with fragrance (ANYTHING with fragrance for that matter!)
▪︎ room sprays with phenoxyethanol (ANYTHING with phenoxyethanol for that matter!)
▪︎ room sprays with isopropyl alcohol (ANYTHING (you guessed it) with isopropyl alcohol for that matter!)
Just get rid of it–your body doesn’t need it, your kids don’t need it, your pets don’t need it! There are other ways to make your home smell delicious and yummy AND that are beneficial to you as well!
So get that diffuser, and by the way Young Living just lowered the price of two of their diffusers!
The Ember Diffuser and the Haven diffuser are both now $31 as opposed to $63 and $51! Young Living diffusers have a one year guarantee.
We have a diffuser in every room of our house, and we actually got another Feather the Owl diffuser because my EIGHT year old diffuser finally bit the dust! So we have a diffuser in every room so everyone can benefit!
So what can you use on those bad air quality days? Throw in some Raven, R.C., Eucalyptus (any type!), Lavender, Ravintsara, or Pine into your diffuser and breathe deep. Throw in some Breathe Again which is another great one, and you can get it in a bottle or a roller! Myrtle and Roman chamomile are other great oils to diffuse (and smell so yummy–especially combined, and with lavender!). Inhaling those oil molecules deep into your lungs can provide a lot of support.
We also like to rub Breathe Again, R.C., or Raven on our upper chest and backs or on the Vitaflex points for lungs on the soles of our feet.
AND, did you know this month (September 2022) with qualifying purchases you can get R.C., Thieves, Breathe Again, AND Snifflease for FREE this month!!! Drop me a line to figure out how!
*I do recommend turning your air purifier off while diffusing or using it in a different room--no need for those oils to go to waste!*
3. Take a detox bath. Regardless of wildfire smoke, our bodies are constantly accumulating toxins from our environment, products, food, and water. Regular detox baths help your body out.
I follow a detox bath recipe from a friend who is trained in lymphatic detox release, and this is her recipe:
4 cups Epsom Salts
4 cups Baking Soda
4 cups Hydrogen Peroxide
I add a few drops of lavender, cypress, or eucalyptus to the epsom salts before stirring them into the water. Soak for 20-30 minutes and drink a LOT of water--just go ahead a take a glass in there with you!
Why these ingredients?
Epsom Salt: It is rich in magnesium and sulfate, which are easily absorbed through the skin and aid in detoxification. It acts as a broad spectrum cleanser, clearing lymphatic congestion, removing some heavy metals and helping remove residual radiation and chemical exposures. Of course, it’s a smooth muscle relaxant and helps with muscle strain and pain. Epsom salts help replenish the body’s magnesium levels, which combats hypertension. It also induces sweating! They create a dense bathwater, and osmotic pressure pulls toxin-laden fluids out of the body.
Baking Soda: It’s a drawing agent that’s known for its cleansing abilities, and even has antifungal properties. It helps neutralize chemicals like chlorine, and increases mineral absorption. It also naturally alkaline, which aids in removing toxins. (ALL disease needs an acidic environment to live!)
Hydrogen Peroxide: Of all the ways to oxygenate the body, this is the easiest and cheapest. By cleansing and purifying our skin, our bodies are more equipped to better eliminate toxins. Peroxide can help destroy toxins, organisms and even pulls out the residue left by soaps and other (toxic) body products. It’s also antibacterial and antiviral.
If you feel lightheaded, its time to get out of the bath and rinse off with a lukewarm or cool shower.
4. Drink your water and add some lemon vitality. Water seems like a no-brainer but we often need a reminder to keep sipping through the day to stay hydrated and keep flushing our systems.
Adding lemon or another citrus vitality essential oil to your water can help support your lymphatic system which clears away toxins and waste and is part of your immune system. Lemon Vitality also happens to be great for pulmonary function!
5. Pulmonary Rehabilitation. Sounds fancy, but basically--it's exercise! A quick search or looking on YouTube will yield lots of articles and videos on specifics for this. But exercise--both aerobic and anaerobic--aid in conditioning your diaphragm and making your lungs more efficient.
I started running again regularly back in January and I felt like I could not breathe–I couldn’t go a mile without walking and felt like I could not catch my breath! It’s been really fascinating to me over the months how much more capacity my body has to get oxygen in. It’s like what used to wind me is not a problem at all! You can train your body to be more efficient!
This seems like common sense but exercise in clean air--not where it's smokey. I’m not going to go do a run when the particulate matter is in the red zone!
6. Herbal teas can also offer support. Some herbal teas that can offer support are slippery elm, marshmallow root, licorice root, peppermint, or lobelia. Chamomile also makes a soothing tea to drink and an eyewash for irritated eyes.
Mushrooms like turkey tail and ashwagandha are also great for supporting your immune system.
7. Take care of your liver. Those particles that you inhale and are small enough to pass through your lungs and into your bloodstream will be filtered by your liver. Eating fresh, whole foods--particularly those that are not inflammatory--provides your body with the tools it needs to eliminate toxins and regenerate itself. Foods like garlic, onions, and broccoli help increase enzyme activity--refined sugars can lower it.
Essential oils that can help support the liver are JuvaFlex Vitality, JuvaCleanse Vitality, GLF (gallbladder/liver function) Vitality, Orange Vitality, Ledum Vitality, Celery Seed Vitality, Lemon Vitality, Carrot Seed Vitality, Citrus Fresh Vitality, and Cardamom Vitality.
We’ve gone over this before but the difference between a regular bottle of lemon and a bottle of Lemon Vitality? The label. That is the only difference between the two! We just have to specify the difference thanks to the FDA. These can be taken in a vegetable capsule or drank in water--I love lemon in my water or you can put it in hot water with lemon to make a tea.
Supplements that are fantastic at supporting a healthy liver are JuvaTone Tablets, JuvaPower, Longetivity Softgels, and Sulfurzyme.
These are some foundational ways to help support your body on ANY day, but especially during prolonged exposure to wildfire smoke. Your body is constantly regenerating itself--it's important to provide it with the best building blocks to do so.
I hope this was helpful to you, and I hope that you have clear skies wherever you are or at least soon in the future!
Also, starting today–September 1–we are doing a live group challenge called 28 to Elevate. It is about your mind+body transformation, and you can do this anytime–go to my website cultivatingabundantlife.com and click on 28 to Elevate and start whenever you want. It’s free, it’s open to anyone, you can download the workbook and all of the recipes and everything right there! If you like some accountability then join our live group–even if you’re a few days late you can catch up! I’ll be doing live Zoom calls every Thursday night at 7 Pacific Time where you can ask questions and get more personalized help, there’s the class online and you can even download the AttractWell app to get access to everything right there on your phone! And of course, I’m always here to answer any questions!
Thanks for taking time out of your busy life to learn and grow with me. I feel honored to serve you in this way and I hope you grab an oil right now and take some deep inhales!
If you’re new to oils and don’t really know how to use them, head to cultivatingabundantlife.com and click on the Essential Oils tab to access the free class, or if you’re ready click that Place an Order button at the top!
You can also do me a solid and click that Subscribe button and give me a rating if you feel so inclined!
Until next time, continue cultivating your abundant life! Bye!
Resources I used included The Essential Oils Desk Reference, 6th Edition by Life Science Publishing, Ultimate Balance: Infusing Vibrational Energy of Essential Oils into Chakras, Meridians and Organs by LeAnne Deardeuff, DC, Natural Detoxification: A Practical Encyclopedia, The Complete Guide to Clearing Your Body of Toxins by Jacqueline Krohn, MD, & Frances Taylor, MA, and The Lost Book of Herbal Remedies: The Healing Power of Plant Medicine by Nicole Apelian, Ph.D, and Claude Davis.