All About Urinary Tract Infections

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Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary Anatomy

Medics in survival scenarios have to deal with major injuries and serious infections, Sometimes, infections aren’t serious to begin with, but worsen if not treated. Some of these infections involve the urinary tract.

Urine directly from the bladder is generally sterile, but most women have experienced a urinary tract infection (UTI) at one point or another.  The areas most commonly contaminated are the bladder, which holds the urine, and the urethra, the tube that drains the bladder.  Although men can also get bladder infections (called “cystitis”), their urethra is much longer and bacteria are much less likely to reach the bladder.

If untreated, bladder infections may ascend to the kidneys via tubes called ureters, causing an infection known as “pyelonephritis”.  Once in the kidneys, it can make its way to the bloodstream and lead to shock or worse.

Symptoms of UTIs


Each type of UTI manifests in more or less specific signs and symptoms, depending on which part of the urinary tract is infected.

Inflammation of the urethra (urethritis) may be caused by E.Coli, Gonorrhea, Herpes, and other bacteria and viruses. Sufferers will feel a burning sensation with urination; males may also have a urethral discharge, while women with certain sexually transmitted infections may notice a foul discharge from the vagina.

Bladder infections are characterized by pelvic pressure, lower abdominal pain, and frequency of urination. Some people may feel an urgent need to go without warning (urgency) but notice that the stream of urine is slow to start (hesitancy). The urine itself may be cloudy or red-tinged with blood and have a strong smell.

Kidney Infections signs include one-sided flank pain with fever

Once the infection reaches the kidney (pyelonephritis), other signs and symptoms will become apparent.  Fever and chills are common, with pain on the flank (the side of your back). Normally, it will be noticeable only on one side by tapping the flank lightly at the level of the lowest rib with the side of a closed first. This will elicit no response in a healthy patient, but someone with an infection will grimace and flinch. Kidney stones may be mistaken for a kidney infection, as they also cause tenderness in this region. They are, however, less likely to cause fever.

Treating a UTI

Treatment revolves around the vigorous administration of fluids.  Lots of water will help flush out the infection by decreasing the concentration of bacteria in the affected organs.  Some feel relief with a heating pad or compress in the area of discomfort.

various antibiotics work to treat UTIs

Antibiotics are another standard of therapy. The following are commonly used for UTIs (brand names and veterinary equivalents in parenthesis):

  • Sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim (Bactrim, Septra, Bird-Sulfa, Fish-Sulfa)
  • Amoxicillin (Amoxil, Fish-Mox)
  • Ampicillin (Fish-Cillin)
  • Cephalexin (Keflex, Fish-Flex)
  • Azithromycin (Zithromax, Z-Pak, Aquatic Azithromycin)
  • Doxycycline (Vibramycin, Bird-Biotic)
  • Ciprofloxacin (Cipro, Fish-Flox)

For dosages, days taken, side-effects, and warnings, use the search engine on this website for the particular antibiotic.

To eliminate the pain that occurs with urination in UTIs, stockpile over-the-counter medications like Phenazopyridine (also known as Pyridium, Uristat, Azo, etc.).  Don’t be alarmed if your patient’s urine turns a reddish-orange color; it is an effect of the drug and is only temporary.

Natural Remedies for UTIs

There are a number of natural remedies to treat someone with a urinary infection. Vitamin C supplements, for example, are thought to reduce the concentration of bacteria in the urine.

Others include:

  • Garlic or garlic oil (preferably in capsules).
  • Echinacea extract or tea.
  • Goldenrod tea with vinegar (1 to 2 tablespoons),
  • Uva Ursi (1 tablet).
  • Cranberry tablets (1 to 3 pills).

Take any one of the above remedies three times per day.

Another home remedy is to take one Alka-Seltzer tablet and dissolve it in 2 ounces of warm water. Pour directly over the urethral area.

One more alternative that may be helpful is to perform an external massage over the bladder area with 5 drops of lavender essential oil (mixed with castor oil) for a few minutes. Then, apply a gentle heat source over the area; repeat this 3 to 4 times daily. The combination of lavender/castor oil and warmth may help decrease bladder spasms and pain.

I’m sure you have a tried-and-true strategy of your own. As with many home remedies, however, your experience may vary. In normal times, consult your physician.

Preventing UTIs 

Preventative medicine plays a large role in decreasing the likelihood of urinary tract infections.  Basic hygienic method, such as wiping from front to back after urinating, is important for women.  Also, emptying the bladder right after an episode of sexual intercourse is a wise choice.

Wear cotton undergarments to allow better air circulation in areas that might otherwise encourage bacterial or fungal growth. Adequate fluid intake, especially cranberry juice if available, is also a key to flushing out bacteria and other organisms.  Lastly, never postpone urinating when you feel a strong urge to go.

Off-grid medics may have to deal with gunfights at the OK corral, but it’s how well they handle everyday problems like UTIs that gauges their day-to-day contributions to their community.

Joe Alton, MD

Joe Alton MD

Learn about UTIs and 150 other medical topics in the 700 page Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way.

Survival Medicine Hour: Dakin’s Sol’n, Shock, HPV, Garlic

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Survival Medicine Hour #344

Direct Pressure on Bleeding Wound

Bleeding wounds need long-term care. Are you ready?

In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour, Joe and Amy Alton, aka Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, tackles a number of tough topics like, what can you put in an open wound to prevent and treat infection if a disaster happens and all you have is household items? Here’s how to use bleach and baking soda to make Dakin’s solution, used for over 100 years to prevent death from infected wounds.

Also, Nurse Amy discusses the uses of garlic, it’s not just for cooking! It’s got great antibiotic properties and more…


Plus, there are a variety of types of shock, and we’re not talking about the emotional kinds. Dr. Bones discusses hypovolemic, hemorrhagic, and cardiogenic shock in this ongoing series about dealing with a life-threatening event.

Finally, Joe Alton MD answers a question for the Survival Podcast’s expert council about whether the HPV exam is worthwhile to give to preteens. Find out more about this virus and the controversy surrounding it.

All this and more on the Survival Medicine Hour! To listen in, click below:


Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,

Joe and Amy Alton

The Altons

Hey, fill those holes in your medical storage by checking out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at You’ll be glad you did!

Prep Blog Review: 7+ Reasons To Grow A Medicinal Garden

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In last week’s Prep Blog review I’ve told you about some good to have plants in your summer garden what led me to the topic of this week’s Prep Blog Review – reasons to grow a medicinal garden.

Knowing and growing your own medicinal herbs has many benefits. Using medicinal plants for healing purposes is as old as mankind itself. In search for cures for their ailments, our ancestors looked up for drugs in nature. Why not return to our roots?

And don’t worry if you don’t have enough space in your garden, you can easily grow medicinal herbs indoors, in small containers, so that you can enjoy the amazing benefits of fresh herbs no matter the season.

  1. 7 Reasons Why You Should Have A Medicinal Garden

“Growing medicinal plants are a great way to ensure garden sustainability and more notably, have access to natural medicine when you need it most. When I introduced more herbs in my garden, I noticed it had a profound impact on the vegetables and fruits I was growing. It also encouraged beneficial insects and birds to visit my garden and this helped cut down on plants being eaten.

Because of this observation, I changed my focus from solely growing to eat and, instead, worked to create a welcoming growing environment. Not only were my plants healthier, but I had access to natural herbs to use for making extracts and poultices. The following are reasons I feel gardeners should adopt adding medicinal herbs to the garden.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

  1. Growing a Medicinal Herb Garden

“Save time and money by stocking your backyard or windowsill gardens with five basic medicinal herbs. These superstars will treat common ailments such as colds and flu, inflammation, minor cuts, infections, pain, muscle spasms, anxiety, poor digestion and insomnia.

Growing medicinal herbs may seem difficult, and preparing teas or tinctures from them might appear complicated and time-consuming. But the truth is you don’t have to be a skilled gardener to grow a few basic medicinal herbs successfully or be a trained pharmacist to easily prepare them for use. In the process, you may save some money and enjoy yourself.”

Read more on Mother Earth Living.

  1. 12 Healing Herbs You Need To Grow In Your Medicinal Garden

“Medicinal plants grown in your own gardens can reduce your dependence on drugs, if not completely eliminate them. But growing random herbs with medicinal properties doesn’t help.

It is a common myth that all herbal preparations are safe by virtue of being natural. This is far from true. A typical example is foxglove or Digitalis purpurea. It has a positive effect on heart function, with the cardiac drug digitalin extracted from the plant. However, ingesting any part of the plant can induce nausea and vomiting, and can even lead to total collapse from digitalis intoxication and death.”

Read more on Mr. Healthy Planet.

  1. How to Start a Medicinal Herb Garden

“Herbal medicine has always been with us; in fact, humanity has survived for thousands and thousands of years — even prior to the advent of modern technologies and conventional medicine — because of it.

Today, the art and science of learning to heal with the use of plants is definitely gaining in popularity in large part due to it’s ease of use and affordability.

It’s no wonder that we all are eager to learn about these healing plants!”

Read more on Frugally Sustainable.

This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.


Survival Medicine Hour: Shock, Triage, Mosquito Plants

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Survival Medicine Hour #341


In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Joe Alton, MD and Amy Alton, ARNP, aka Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, the topic is shock: What types there are, the stages of shock, the signs and symptoms of shock, and a lot more that you might need to know in times of trouble. Also Dr.Bones discusses some examples of victims you might encounter in a mass casualty incident, plus the 30-2-Can Do paradigm for telling priority of need for immediate care.

People in shock lose heat quickly; make sure to keep them warm!

Also, Nurse Amy spends some time talking about what plants in your garden can give you some relief from disease-transmitting mosquitoes this summer.

All this and more from our show, remotely broadcast this week from Boston, Massachusetts while on the way to the Mother Earth News Fair event in Burlington, Vermont!

Joe and Amy Alton

Joe and Amy

Follow us on twitter: @preppershow

YouTube: DrBones NurseAmy

Facebook: Doom and Bloom

And for even more info on how to deal with medical issues in times of trouble, check out our Survival Medicine Handbook, now in its 700 page Third Edition!

8 Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Sleep Disorders

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Sleep is absolutely critical to your health, but many of us just can’t seem to get enough.

When you’re asleep, your body reboots. It focuses all of its energy on healing and revitalizing, because it doesn’t have to focus on walking, talking, thinking, eating, or any of the other myriad activities that it has to keep up with during the day.

Whether you can’t manage to get to sleep at all or you sleep lightly and/or wake up frequently, you’re likely not firing on all cylinders and your body is paying for it.

Fortunately, there are some truly effective natural remedies for sleep disorders out there, so you don’t have to depend on manmade sleep aides that are expensive, unhealthy, and may not be available if SHTF.

Health Effects of Not Sleeping

So you miss some sleep. No big deal – you’re just a little groggy, right? Well, not that trudging through your day feeling like crap isn’t bad enough, but it’s also not the worst thing that’s going on in your body, either.

Probably the two systems in your body that are most effected by lost sleep is your brain function and your immune system. Everybody’s had a sleepless night or two, so you know how you feel – your reflexes are much slower, you can’t concentrate, and your decision-making skills are impaired. And that’s just from one night of poor sleep!

If you experience chronic insomnia, or don’t get enough of the right kind of sleep regularly, these issues can become much more pronounced and can lead to conditions such as depression and anxiety. It obviously plays a huge role in your work performance, and can impact your overall mental health.

Your immune system takes a serious kick in the pants, too. You simply can’t fight off bacteria and viruses that lead to colds, the flu, and other illnesses. Long-term, your body can’t fight off the big boys such as cancer if you’re immune system isn’t health, either.

Risks of OTC Sleep Aids

And those are just two systems that sleeplessness impacts! So, what’s the answer? You can always take over-the-counter sleep aids, but there are a few problems with that choice.

First, they have side effects. OTC sleep medications make you groggy, dry up your sinuses, inhibit your cough relax, and cover up your immune system’s allergic response. Why do they do this? Easy – if you look at the ingredients of popular sleep aids and common cold, flu, sinus, and allergy medicines, they’re the same exact ones!

That’s right – Big Pharma realized that one of the major side effects of cold and allergy meds is … wait for it … drowsiness.

For example, Benadryl and Unisom contain the exact same ingredient: diphenhydramine HCL, 25 (or 50) mg. Huh. What a surprise – we’re being conned by pharmaceutical companies. Typically, the sleep aids are pricier than the exact same med that’s labeled as a cold or allergy med.

That’s not the only sleep med that’s like that, either. Just look at your labels.

So, we have side effects … or would that be we’re taking a cold med because we WANT its side effects? Either way, it’s a chemical and it messes with more than your sleep. Plus, they often leave you feeling groggy the next day, which means that you really shouldn’t drive or perform other dangerous tasks until the effects wear off. And your cognitive abilities will still be sluggish. Yay.

8 Natural Remedies that Make You Sleepy

Now, that’s not to say that all sleeping meds are that way, nor am I telling you that you shouldn’t take a medication if you’ve tried all other reasonable methods and still aren’t sleeping. You need to sleep. I’m just here to offer you a few alternative therapies that may help, that are time tested and proven to work.

Find out the secrets that helped our fathers survive in the old days!

Also, if you have problems sleeping and you worry that someday you may not have insurance to pay for it, or that something may happen and the meds won’t be available, you’ll have some back-up methods.

1. Chamomile

This one isn’t a myth or some new-age hooey, if that’s the way that you tend to view herbal treatments. It’s been extensively studied and has a ton of scientific research to back up the chemicals in it that make it effective as a sleep aid.

It’s also good for soothing aching muscles or calming muscle spasms, treating allergies, morning sickness, hay fever, and asthma, and easing indigestion.

If you’re allergic to ragweed, use cautiously until you determine whether or not chamomile will bother you, too.

2. Lavender

One of the common old-wives sayings is that you should plant lavender for luck. Well, it’s good for relaxing, too. One of the biggest problems that many occasional insomniacs have is stress. You simply can’t shut your mind down so that you can go to sleep. Both Chamomile and lavender are wonderful for this.

The effects are mild, but if all you need is a little boost to help you relax, this may be just what you need. It smells lovely, which is why it’s often used in sachets that are places under the pillow, perfumes, soaps, and lotions. It’s shown to be calming, soothing and sedating, which makes it great for insomnia, anxiety, fatigue, and depression, to name a few. You can make a tea with the flowers or rub a bit of the essential oil onto your skin or hands and sniff.

3. Milk

That warm glass of milk that grandma may have given you before bedtime actually has some science behind it. The chemical that makes us sleepy, melatonin needs calcium and magnesium – preferably consumed together – to convert the chemical tryptophan into melatonin.

Speaking of tryptophan, you need it in order for your body to make melatonin, and you get it from eating carbohydrates such as whole grain oats, corn, quinoa, and brown rice and some proteins, including turkey.

Just a note on magnesium – because only one percent of it is stored in your blood, it’s not commonly tested However, it’s estimated that as many as two thirds of us may be deficient in this vital mineral. Green leafy veggies, seeds (particularly pumpkin seeds), yogurt, almonds, black beans, and avocados are all good sources of magnesium.

4. Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm is often used in conjunction with the other herbs that I’ve listed here. It’s historically been used to increase mood, reduce stress, and improve appetite and digestion. When studied alone, which it very rarely has been, it did improve mood and significantly increased alertness and calmness. Since alertness is the opposite of what you’re going for, maybe that’s why it’s paired with the other herbs.

5. Bergamot

This bright, citrusy scent has been used for centuries as a calming agent and a mood elevator. It’s commonly used in perfumes and confectionary endeavors because of its sweetness, and when it’s diffused, it has powerful effects on clarity and mood stabilization so that you can relax. If you’re looking for something to help you turn off your brain and relax so that you can sleep, either diffuse bergamot or rub a drop or two in your hands and inhale.

6. Valerian Root

This one’s been used for centuries and has many scientific studies to back it up, too.

Valerian root, specifically the valerenic acid and valerenol found in it, work together to act to promote healthy sleep.

It helps increase the level if GABAs, the chemical that soothes anxiety and regulates nerve cells, in your brain. This is the exact function that both alprazolam (Xanax), and diazepam (Valium) perform to reduce anxiety and induce sleep. So, we have a root that works just like two of the top anti-anxiety sleep aids on the market? Hmm.

Oh, and studies are now showing that it also may keep your brain from reabsorbing GABA, which means there will be more available, and valerian may also inhibit an enzyme that destroys GABA. Sounds like a root worth trying, right?

7. Passion Flower

Passion flower was actually approved at one point for use as an OTC sleep aid but was pulled in the late 70s when they started cracking down and requiring that medicines be extensively studied before being approved. It acts in much the same way as the other supplements that we’ve discussed.

It’s also been used to help with asthma, high blood pressure, pain relief, ADHD, anxiety, and seizures.

8. St. John’s Wort

A decade or two ago, this plant was lauded as the homeopathic or poor man’s Prozac because it has such a wonderful effect on mood. Millions of people take this supplement as a replacement for chemical anti-depressants and to help with sleep.

Despite much studying the exact function of the active ingredient, Hypericum, is still a mystery; all researchers know is that it works. Since you can grow St. John’s Wort right in your back yard and it’s actually quite pretty with its yellow flowers, it would be a good medicinal herb to have on hand.

Insomnia is miserable even for one night, but if it’s a problem that you deal with chronically, you’re putting your health at serious risk. Remember that even though most of the herbs listed about have little to no side effects other than what they’re used for, and they’re not addictive, they still have medicinal properties and need to be respected for that.

Learn about your allergies and about what dosages may be right for you. Whatever you decide to try, I wish you sweet dreams!

If you have an herb to add, or would like to share your results or add more to what I’ve already written, please do so in the comments section below.

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

Survival Medicine Hour: Sulfa Drugs, Uva Ursi, Quicklime, More

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Sulfa Drugs

In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour, Joe Alton, MD (Dr. Bones) and Amy Alton, ARNP (Nurse Amy) examine Sulfa drug antibiotics as an option in survival settings. One of the first antibiotics, sulfa has been credited with saving the lives of tens of thousands in WWII, including Winston Churchill himself, and still has applications today in good or bad times.

Also, the herb Uva Ursi may have some use in urinary tract infections, one of the medical issues that sulfa drugs are effective for. Find out more about this herb in Nurse Amy’s segment on natural remedies.

Uva ursi

Uva Ursi

Plus, Dr. Bones discusses what disasters are most responsible for the most deaths in the U.S. over the last 40 years. The answers will definitely surprise you! Plus, some guidelines on disposal of dead bodies in post-apocalyptic times.

All this and more on the latest Survival Medicine Hour with Joe and Amy Alton!

To Listen in, click below:


Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,

Joe and Amy Alton

joe and amy radio

The Altons

Please follow us on Twitter @ Preppershow, and don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of medical kits at!

To Grow Or Not To Grow Marijuana For Medical Survival?

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OK, so this is a huge topic that seems to divide people.

Within the year prior to this post, Florida became one of the 28 states to legalize medical marijuana.

Do I think that’s a good thing? Yes, but this is an article about whether or not you should grow medical marijuana, not about what my (or anybody’s) political views are. Good thing, right? Lately, that’s a powder keg that will blow up any family reunion.

We’ll simply discuss whether or not marijuana is a good crop to grow for medicinal purposes in your survival garden. And to that end, I’m going to discuss it just like I do any other medicinal herb – does it have enough benefits to merit a spot in your garden?

Finally, it’s on you to decide what suits you!

7 Medical Conditions Medical Marijuana Can Address

Like many herbs, marijuana has been used as an alternative treatment for many different illnesses and diseases for centuries. It’s active biologically active components are called cannabinoids and perform several different functions in your body. The two that are the most highly studied are delta-9-tetrahydrocnniabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), though others are being studied, as well.

Nausea and Vomiting

This is the big one that most people think of when they think of medical marijuana from a serious perspective. Chemotherapy – and cancer in general – robs a person of their appetite and causes nausea.

The FDA has actually approved a drug called Dronabinol to treat nausea and vomiting caused by chemo and weight loss and poor appetite in AIDS patients. It’s a gel-cap that contains THC.

Get this lifesaving information about surviving when doctors and hospitals are shut down!

Cancer Treatment

You don’t often hear about marijuana being used to treat cancer – only the side effects of chemo. However, according to the American Cancer Society website, some studies have shown that THC, CBD and other cannabinoids slows growth and/or kill certain types of cancer cells and may slow or prevent the spread of the disease.

Of course, these studies are preliminary and research is ongoing, but it’s significant because so far, there’s not much out there that we could grow naturally that can claim this. That being said, it shouldn’t be used now, when more effective treatments are available, as your primary treatment. Does this make it worth growing in your survival garden? Maybe so.

Still, though cancer is a big thing, it may not be an issue that you have to deal with, so what else is medical marijuana good for?

Pain Management

Also according to the ACS and many other studies, patients with cancer, MS, fibromyalgia, and many other painful diseases often need less pharmaceutical pain medications when marijuana or cannabinoids are incorporated into their treatment plans. It’s been shown to relieve pain related to both muscles and nerves.

This is actually one of the primary uses for marijuana as an herbal treatment and it was widely used up until the 1800’s as a treatment for chronic pain. Studies have now shown that chemically, it does have a substantial analgesic effect.

As a matter of fact, there’s a cannabinoid drug being tested now for use as a pain treatment for people with cancer and multiple sclerosis. That’s likely to spread to other diseases if the drug continues to show results.

Anti-Inflammatory and Nervous System

Cannabinoids have also been clinically shown to have an anti-inflammatory effect. To get all scientific, our bodies actually have two types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2. CB1 is mostly expressed in the brain and, to a lesser extent, the cells in our immune system, and CB2 is primarily found on cells in the immune system.

This is where scientists are really studying cannabinoids right now because of the immune response that happens when THC is introduced. It gets a bit complicated, but basically what it does is cause an immune response that kills bad cells and results in decreased inflammation.

That’s why it’s being used as an alternative treatment (and now sometimes as an active part of many treatment plans) for inflammatory and autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, and inflammatory bowel diseases.

Video first seen on Ride with Larry


Yeah, this is the one that’s joked about the most – when somebody’s busted with pot, they protest – “But it’s for my glaucoma!” Well, that’s actually a thing. THC can lower the pressure on the optic nerve, which is what causes glaucoma, but as a warning, it can also lower blood pressure, which can make glaucoma worse, or increase your chances of getting it.

Once again, risks versus benefits according to your situation.


This is actually one of the areas where medical marijuana really struts its stuff. In early studies, medical marijuana extracts have shown that they can cause a 50% reduction in certain types of seizures. That’s pretty darned significant when you figure that epilepsy is one of those diseases where medication is absolutely required.

Personally, if I or a family member were a med-dependent epileptic, I’d be studying which strain of marijuana was the best to grow for my survival garden.

Anxiety and PTSD

Anxiety relief is another historical use of marijuana, and studies are now showing that it has positive effects on one of the hardest diseases on the planet to treat – PTSD. How did we discover this? Because doctors started noticing that patients who were tired of taking 5 or 6 or 10 drugs to sleep and function as they dealt with PTSD were starting to feel better as they gave up on the meds that were causing them to feel like zombies.

When a handful of doctors bothered to ask what was causing the positive changes, large numbers of patients reported that they were self-medicating with marijuana. It turns out that, according to studies, they were on the right track.

About Growing Medical Marijuana

Actually growing marijuana isn’t hard and if you give the plants some love, you can get quite a yield in just a little bit of space. And it’s a great container plant. The problem, just like when choosing tomatoes or beans, is that you want to grow the right strain for what you need it for.

There are thousands of strains of marijuana. Some strains have higher amounts of THC (the chemical that causes the high as well as provides health benefits), but lower amounts of other beneficial cannabinoids such as CBD. Some are better at relieving pain than others, and some are so strong that they may actually make your nausea worse just because you’re not used to the drug.

My word of advice here to you is this: do your own research. Maybe talk to your doctor. If he doesn’t agree with the concept, and many old-school Western practitioners won’t, then find another doctor or an alternative healthcare professional who will advise you.

One final disclaimer here – you need to know your state laws because the government is serious about this. If it’s illegal, they will take you to jail – sometimes for a LONG time – if they catch you growing it. There are some states, such as Oregon and Arizona, where you can grow a small number of plants as long as you have the proper medical documentation, but as with everything we preppers do, know your laws and be smart  about them.

This is a huge topic and I know that many of you have questions or can offer advice. Let’s avoid the politics of it and share your thoughts and experience about the benefits/risks of growing medical marijuana for survival purposes.

Remember that knowledge is the only doctor that can save you when there is no medical help around.

Click the banner below to find out more!

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 


Ancient Survival Medicine That We Lost To History

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Ancient Survival Medicine

Before Europeans discovered the Americas and introduced such diseases as chicken pox, the flu, smallpox, and measles, Native Americans were relatively disease-free and, for the most part, lived long, healthy lives, unless of course famine struck.

Native American remedies for existing illnesses were made of indigenous medicinal plants, many of which were highly effective.

Unlike modern medicine, sick patients weren’t just handed medicine until they either got better or died. Instead, Native Americans took care of their health holistically; it was strongly linked to spirituality.

The Native American ideal state of health and well-being was intrinsically linked to a close connection to the Earth and living in harmony with the environment.

In other words, they weren’t the “savages” that Europeans assumed that they were; I’m sure that, if they had the European desire for progress and financial gain, the Americas would have been vastly different than they were when Columbus found them. Instead, they believed that natural balance must be maintained. Life was about coexistence, not the almighty dollar.

But, if you take a look at what they actually did to maintain that balance, you may be surprised to find that their methods coincide with what modern medical practitioners preach on a daily basis.

Regular Cardio and Strength Training

Many tribes greeted the dawn with an early morning run to celebrate the arrival of a new day. How many people do you know that run in the mornings (or at some point during the day) as part of their exercise routine?

Of course, along with the physical exercise they also benefited from the release of stress-releasing hormones that we now know comes from physical exercise. Since running was, in large part, spiritual, there was also surely the clarity of mind that comes with meditation.

Oh, and we can’t forget that regularly carrying animal carcasses, curing hides, carrying water, setting up and tearing down camps, and participating in ceremonies and games that centered on acts of physical strength are all examples of strength training in its purest form.

Get this lifesaving information about surviving when doctors, pharmacies and hospitals are shut down!

Healthy Diets

The Native American concept of fast food was eating berries, fruits, and nuts as they picked them. They didn’t typically gorge themselves unless it was a celebratory feast and the only chips they had were possibly buffalo chips – depending on location – that they used to start a fire (or possibly create a home remedy).

Everybody now is preaching that free-range, organic, hormone-free meat is the only healthy option. Well guess what – the Native Americans were already following that diet. They treated sick animals in the same way that the treated sick people – herbally.

Either that or they just put them down and maybe ate them, depending on the illness or injury. Plus the animals weren’t ingesting grass poisoned with artificial pesticides and other chemicals.

Nuts and seeds were rich in Omega-3’s, high in good fats and low in bad fats, so they had that covered, and the berries that they ate, again, had no pesticides or chemicals. And lest we forget, they had to work for their food, so they were naturally exercising every day of their lives.

Until less than 100 years ago, diabetes was practically non-existent in the Native American population, until they began to adopt the eating habits of other Americans.

Mental Health

We now know that mental health is critical to physical health.

Native Americans regularly meditated and practiced acts of gratitude for everything that surrounded them.

As some modern philosophies teach, they were present and mindful. They celebrated the seasons and the bounty, and they were grateful and respectful to the animals that they killed to sustain themselves.

In a nutshell, Native Americans had a healthy outlook on life and worked regularly to maintain that. They knew, without an advanced medical degree, what it took to stay healthy.

Medicinal Herbs

For every illness, there’s a cure. At least in theory. Though Western Medicine hasn’t managed to find cures for many diseases, Native Americans had treatments for just about everything, and if you pay attention to early American writers, they often worked.

These treatments were entirely natural – no penicillin or opiates required. There are natural elements that provide the origins of these modern meds, such as soil and plants that contain natural antibiotics and plants such as willow bark that contain natural pain killers. In fact, willow bark was an original ingredient in aspirin.

Just because a cure is natural doesn’t mean that it doesn’t work as well as modern medications; in fact, the opposite is often true.

As preppers, we realize that we may not always have access to OTC and prescription meds so, considering that, we’ve put together a special report on Native American remedies that teaches you how to use the eight super-plants that treat more than thirty diseases. You’ll also learn how to help your body stay healthy and heal itself naturally, and how to preserve your food without refrigeration or electricity.

Click here to subscribe to Survivopedia’s newsletter and get this month’s FREE REPORT to find out more about our ancestors’ natural healing secrets. 

Native American Remedies

In general, their naturally healthy lifestyles prevented many diseases, but some did exist. Plus, you have to consider injuries such as broken bones, open wounds, and infections.

When treating any medical condition, the knowledge of the tribe healer often saved the day with a combination of treatments.

Throughout the generations, natural remedies were handed down from one healer to the next, and it seems pretty likely that the entire tribe knew how to use herbs, plants, seeds, and roots for healing, too.

These ingredients, alone or combined, were used to make poultices, teas, decoctions, salves, and oils that worked in conjunction with other holistic methods described above.

Sweat Lodges

Also known as medicine lodges, sweat lodges were often used for healing, prayer, introspection, and purification. Sweat sessions were required to be supervised by trained elders who were experienced with the process and could safely control the situation in case somebody became ill or uncomfortable.

Many holistic healers believe that sweating purifies the body by flushing toxins from the body and may help kill disease by raising the body temperature to a point that bacteria and viruses can’t survive. That is, of course, theoretical, but it makes a certain amount of sense.

Remember that knowledge is the only doctor that can save you when there is no medical help around you.

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

10 Medical Resources You Can Get from Nature

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Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Your list of home remedies is about to get even more interesting and spicier. Although these natural herbs are have been used hundreds of years, doctors and scientists are now recommending them to be used for healing purposes. These natural medical resources can be easily substituted as traditional methods of medication. The plants have capabilities to heal and reduce cholesterol, high blood pressure and arthritis pain to name a few. Some of the best healing herbs even have the ability to treat cancer cells and also help alcoholics to curb their drinking habit.

The natural medical resources or herbs and other natural remedies are as effective as traditional treatments. In some cases they are even more effective without any side effects. Here are some of the best medical resources that you can get from nature. These super-healers can be added into your natural medicine or herbal products cabinet along with your favorite recipes. Fitting a few of them in your daily routine can be beneficial for the body.


Turmeric is a rhizomatous herbaceous perennial plant of the ginger family, Zingiberaceae. It is native to southern Asia

Turmeric contains anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancerous properties. Who ever thought an ingredient used for taste in curry can help to relieve pain? This spice which is popular for its use in curry contains curcumin that helps to treat arthritis. Curcumin is a powerful anti-inflammatory and an important element that works just like Cox-2 inhibitors drugs to reduce the Cox-2 enzyme which results in the swelling of arthritis.

The herb is known for doing wonders. Another reason why turmeric is popular because it reduces precancerous lesions when taken with quercetin which is found in apples, onions and cabbage. Turmeric also helps to clear plaques in the brain that are important characteristic of the disease.


A recent study on type 2 diabetics showed that taking cinnamon extract everyday reduces the blood sugar level in the body by 10%. It reduces risks related to heart and slash cholesterol by about 13%.

1 g capsules of cinnamon extract everyday helps to tame blood sugar while 1 to 6 g capsules reduce cholesterol. However, a large amount of actual spice in not good for health. Thus, it’s better to stick to water-soluble extract.


Heterocyclic amines or HCAs are some vital carcinogens that are present in several types of cancers. These amines are created after grilling, frying and broiling meat at high temperatures. Rosemary extract which is a common powder mixed in beef after cooking reduces HCA levels in the body.

Rosemary extract also prevents carcinogens from binding with DNA and stops them from entering in the body. It is the first step of the formation of tumor and rosemary extracts helps to prevent cancer at an initial stage. Thus, taking rosemary extract will kill carcinogens before they turn into a tumor. This research has been only carried out on animals but the extract has a tendency to prevent cancer.

In order to reduce HCAs in the body, make sure that you add rosemary extract in any spice mix. It will also enhance the taste, making the dish stronger in flavors. You can mix the herb with oregano, parsley, thyme and onions for a perfect mix.


Ginger can protect your stomach from various sources including motion sickness, pregnancy and chemotherapy. This is an old home remedy that we often hear from our mothers and grandmothers. They are right because it really works!

Ginger is a powerful anti-oxidant that blocks the effects of serotonin in the body. It is a chemical that the stomach and body produces when you feel nausea by stopping the production of free radicals which is also another cause of an upset stomach.


High consumption of garlic have cured colorectal and ovarian cancers. People have also experienced reduction in the number and size of precancerous growths. The benefits of garlic are not only limited to lowering risks of cancer, but it also decreases high blood pressure. There are about 70 active phytochemicals in garlic including allicin that deceases blood pressure by 30 points.

Garlic in your diet slows down the arterial blockages and prevent strokes. Fresh and crushed garlic offers the best cancer-fighting and cardiovascular benefits. However, one should have at least five crushed garlic cloves to enjoy maximum benefits.

Holy Basil

Several animal studies back holy basil, a special variety of the plant you use in your pesto sauce, Holy basil is effective in reducing stress by increasing the noradrenaline and adrenaline along with decreasing serotonin in the body. The herb is also popular to relieve headaches and indigestion. Tea leaves of the holy basil is a great natural resource which is more effective than traditional methods of relieving pain.

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera was used in traditional medicine for treating skin disease, constipation, infections, worm infestation and colic. In Chinese medicine, it is popular for treating various fungal diseases. In today’s modern times, the herb is used in various cosmetics to make skin softer.

Surprisingly, Aloe Vera consists of more than 78 active components. Studies have shown that the herb also contains antiviral, anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties. It builds up the immune system and does not cause any allergic reaction.


FeverFew is a natural herb that has been used over centuries to ease headaches, toothaches, stomach-ache, infertility, menstruation problems and labor during childbirth. The healing effect comes from a biochemical present in the herb known as parthenolides. It fights against the widening of blood vessels during migraines. The herb also prevents blood clots, dizziness, relieve allergies and reduces arthritis pain.

St. John’s Wort

St. Johns Wort herbs are not used to treat the physical symptoms but also used for relieving anxiety and mild to moderate depression. The best thing about it is it works effectively as any other drug without any side-effects.

Saw Palmetto

Saw palmetto is used as a supplement consumed by men to treat prostate cancer. It also contributes to several health issues related to men such as hair loss, libido and enlarged prostate. Other than that, it is said to promote relaxation, treat respiratory conditions and boost immune function.

Author Bio: Saqib Khan, is an inquisitive blogger and loves to spread his knowledge. With a penchant for medical innovations and developments, Saqib’s new field of interest is herbal medicines. He is currently associated with a top online medical pharmacy in Pakistan offering variety of Pathological & Herbal Medicines such as flu medicine, first aid kits, cough medicine, etc.

If you liked this article, please rate it.

The post 10 Medical Resources You Can Get from Nature appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Prep Blog Review: 50+ Natural Heal-Anything Cures

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Heal Anything

Without access to modern pharmaceuticals and medical care, your own life and the lives of your loved ones will be at risk in the aftermath of a disaster.

Your health should be number one priority in a survival situation, and when it comes to medical preparation for a post-disaster scenario, natural remedies are the safest way to go.

For this week’s Prep blog Review I’ve gathered five articles on this topic. From plants and herbs you can grow in your own garden, or even indoors, to natural ingredients you stockpile in your pantry I present you 50+ natural heal-anything remedies.

1. 7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors


“There is absolutely nothing like having fresh medicinal plants that you can pick and use right on the spot, when you need them.

Plus, you can dry them, and then use a mortise and pestle to grind them and encapsulate your own medicinal plants. You know they were never sprayed with pesticides. And you know all about the nutrients that were fed to them.

You can grow them in decorative planters in the kitchen if you have the lighting for it.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

2. 5 More Useful Plants for Herbal First Aid

“Mullein (Verbascum Thapsus) – Mullein is well known as an ingredient in topical oils meant for the ears, but it’s a good plant to have on hand for a number of other things. For respiratory support, it’s traditionally used for dry, irritated coughs where there may be a feeling of tightness in the lungs. It’s also very useful as a muscular and skeletal support herb! Part of this is because mullein has a reputation for being very lubricating for joints and tissues, and it was traditionally thought of as a pain relief herb especially suited for cramps, spasms, and physical injuries. It’s a lymphatic herb that supports the immune system.
Herbal Actions: expectorant, demulcent, antispasmodic, vulnerary, lymphatic”

Read more on Indie Herbalist.

3. 5 Emergency Toothache Remedies From Wild Plants

oregon_grape_forage“The crippling pain of a toothache can occur at inconvenient times – perhaps when far from your dentist or even your emergency first aid kit.

Because of the potentially intense pain and potentially critical health concerns associated with a tooth infection, wild herbs to treat toothache is an important category of medicinals to become familiar with in preparation for emergencies in the bush.”

Read more on Survival Cache.

4. 46 Effective Home Remedies and Natural Cures for UTI


“Here’s a sad health fact: Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is the 2nd most common infection in the body. According to NIDDK, there are at least 8 MILLION cases of UTI every year!

This inspired me to come up with this MASSIVE and IN-DEPTH article about Urinary Tract Infection which includes a visual how-to guide about 46+ home remedies for UTI.

I encourage you to learn about UTI, know its causes and symptoms, then dive right into the comprehensive and informative list of remedies that you can definitely apply at home!”

Read more on Ultimate Home Remedies.

5. Emergency Wound Care: When All You Have Is In Your Pantry


“Without access to hospitals and emergency medical care during off-grid emergencies, a simply infection from wounds can become life-threatening. Having knowledge of alternative medical treatments using natural wound therapies could save a life.

Years ago, the Mrs. and I made a major move.  We had a specific timetable to adhere to, and as we were moving ourselves, efficiency was the word that exemplified our overall goals.

About an hour before we were going to batten down the hatches and hit the road, she slipped and slammed her shin on the edge of the moving van’s bumper: a combination of a laceration and abrasion, as well as potential for a broken bone.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.


This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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Allergies: What You Need To Know, Pt. 1

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allergies: What You Need To Know

Allergies are reactions caused by a hypersensitivity of the immune system to a substance ingested or in the environment (an “allergen”). These substances may cause little or no effect in most people, but a percentage of the population may experience significant symptoms that can affect quality of life, or even threaten life itself.


If you told a doctor a little more than a hundred years ago that you had an allergy, he/she wouldn’t recognize the word. “Allergy” was coined in 1906 by an Austrian pediatrician and immunologist named Clemens Von Pirquet. The word is derived from the Greek allos meaning “other” and ergon meaning “reaction”.


Von Pirquet and his associates noted that certain people who received a variety of smallpox vaccine had more severe reactions than most. Another scientist, Charles Mantoux, used this knowledge to develop a test for tuberculosis where an allergic skin reaction to a substance isolated from the microbe revealed previous exposure. A form of this test is still used today.

The worst allergic reaction, known as anaphylactic shock, was discovered by a french physiologist Charles Richet, who with his partner Dr. Paul Portier, injected the venom of a sea anemone into a number of dogs. Hoping to find some substance that would protect humans (called prophylaxis) from jellyfish stings, they instead found that a second injection killed many of the dogs. Since this was the opposite of protection, they termed it anaphylaxis.


Common allergens to which people are exposed include pollens, metals, insect stings, medications, and certain foods. There are also internal factors such as age, sex, race, and family history. How do these all combine to cause the physical symptoms of an allergy?

Put simply, an immune reaction against an allergen occurs when it’s encountered for the first time; let’s say it’s a bee sting. Cells in the body called “T-cells” identify the bee venom and interact with other cells called “B cells”. The B cells, in turn, produce certain antibodies called “IgE”. IgE attaches to the surface of cells called “basophils” and “mast cells”. These cells are now “sensitized” to the venom. No physical effects are usually noticed at the time by the victim beyond the sting itself.

When a second exposure to the allergen occurs, however, it’s a different story. The sensitized mast cells and basophils are activated and produce a large amount of histamine and other inflammatory chemicals. The flood of these into the system can cause possibly severe physical reactions.



Toxin Allergies

Allergies may appear in various forms, from mild to life-threatening. These conditions include hay fever, food allergies, local skin reactions (called “atopic dermatitis”), drug/toxin reactions, and allergic asthma. Common symptoms include red eyes, itching, nasal congestion, difficulty breathing, and swelling. In the worst situations, a body-wide reaction called “anaphylaxis” causes rashes, major swelling, and difficulty breathing to the point of suffocation.

Hay Fever:  Hay fever is a (usually) seasonal reaction to high pollen counts in the air from certain plants. People with hay fever won’t likely have a fever, but they will have sneezing from a runny, clogged nose, red, itchy, watery eyes and “postnasal drip”, a condition where a cough is caused when mucus runs down the throat from the back of the nose.

Different grasses, trees, and flowering plants will release pollens at different times of the year, and it is often difficult to identify what allergen is causing the symptoms.  Skin “patch”, scratch, or blood tests may determine if a particular substance is causing the sensitivity.

Atopic Dermatitis: Most people who have atopic dermatitis have had allergies before or a family member with similar problems such as hay fever or asthma. Common allergens include animal dander, dust mites, exposure to certain foods, stress, and dry, cold weather.

The condition usually starts with itchy, dry skin.. Scratching causes inflammation, swelling, and redness, and may initiate an infection in the area. Small, oozy blisters sometimes occur that crust over with time. Although mild versions cover small areas and are improved with lotions, severe versions require more intense therapy.

Rashes may recur over the same area time and again, leading to toughened, thick skin that appears darker than other areas. These areas are usually on the scalp and cheeks of infants but may be seen on the baby’s knees or elbows. Other areas may be affected with age, such as the ankles, wrists, legs, the buttocks, and the nape of the neck.

Food Allergies: Four or five percent of the population is allergic to some kind of food. In children, eggs, milk and peanuts are often responsible; in adults, shellfish, nuts from trees (for example, walnuts), milk and eggs are common triggers to a reaction. It should be noted that an allergy to milk is different that intolerance caused by a deficiency of the enzyme needed to digest it (otherwise known as “lactose intolerance”.

Drug Allergies: A drug allergy is caused after repeated exposure to a medicine. Some of the most common include Penicillins, Sulfa Drugs, non-synthetic Insulins, seizure meds, and those containing iodine.

Drug allergies are often confused with what are called “adverse reactions”. An adverse reaction is a known ill effect that can occur with the use of a medication. For example, if a drug is known to cause nausea in some patients, that is considered an adverse reaction as opposed to an allergy.

Despite this, many will report an allergy to a particular drug to their healthcare provider. Some of the reasons that people will write “allergic” on their medical interview sheet include:

  • The drug causes symptoms that makes them feel unwell.
  • A family member has a history of an allergy to the drug, and they assume that the same goes for them.
  • An incident in their childhood resembled an allergic reaction, so better safe than sorry.
  • Negative comments online or elsewhere cause reluctance to take the medicine.
  • Philosophically opposed to a particular type of drug (antibiotics, psychotropics).
  • An actual allergy.

Note that a true allergy is placed last on this list; the World Allergy Association reports that less than 10% of reactions to medications are actually allergies caused by an immune response. Most symptoms that people get after taking medicine are, instead, adverse or “side” effects. It may not always be easy to tell the difference, but a true drug allergy will show immune-mediated symptoms such as hives, itchy skin or eyes, rashes, lip and tongue swelling, and wheezing. Blood pressure may drop precipitously in some cases.

Toxin Allergies: It’s common to have local redness, discomfort, itching and swelling when a toxin, such as bee venom, is introduced into the body. Your immune system, however, may respond strongly in the form of an allergy. Common insects involved are bees, wasps, hornets, and fire ants.

When the immune system gets involved, the reactions may be more severe, with hives, redness and swelling affecting large areas of skin. Swelling may extend to the tongue, throat, lips, and elsewhere. Stomach upset, nausea and vomiting, and diarrhea are common. The effects may take days to completely resolve.


Allergies, when mild, are treated with medications that help relieve the specific symptoms.

Antihistamines in oral, intranasal and ophthalmic (eye drop) form are useful to deal with the sneezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes associated with hay fever. Nasal decongestants like oral pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) and the nasal spray oxymetazoline (Afrin, Dristan) are useful drugs to have in the medicine cabinet. It should be noted, however, that the nasal sprays are addictive when used for more than three days. That is, if you stop using them, your nose will become stuffy again.

Others like diphenhydramine (Benadryl) may help, but are prone to causing drowsiness in higher doses. Longer term therapy with intranasal steroids like Atrovent (ipratropium) or NasalCrom (cromolyn sodium) is another option. These drugs are best for long term therapy, however, as the effects are not felt immediately.

In the worst cases, epinephrine (also known as adrenaline) is necessary as an injectable to improve symptoms that affect the entire body. A future article will discuss this type of event in detail.



Neti Pot

Many experience relief from allergies when they use an item known as a “Neti pot” to relieve congestion and pressure. The Neti pot essentially looks like a version of Alladin’s lamp, and allows the delivery of sterile solutions into the nasal cavity.

Neti pots work by thinning out mucus. The hairs in the nose, called “cilia” are aided in their attempts to eliminate mucus and allergens by the flushing action of the sterile saline solution delivered by the Neti Pot.

Some may have doubts about the effectiveness of the Neti Pot, but research backs up the benefits of nasal “irrigation” to relieve some allergy symptoms. Nasal irrigation via a Neti Pot may help decrease the need for drugs.

One concern related to Neti pots, however, is the importance of ensuring that you are using sterile solution when you irrigate. Non-sterile solutions, even tap water, may transmit infections directly into the body; two deaths in Louisiana were attributed to Neti pot use of contaminated water. Neti pots also must be washed after every use, as you would wash your dishes after every meal.

A natural remedy getting some serious attention lately is Butterbur. In a recent British Medical Joural study, butterbur extract (ZE 339) four times daily equaled the effects of a popular antihistamine–without causing drowsiness!

Goldenseal, Nettles, Resveratrol, Quercetin, and Vitamin C as well as saline spray may be helpful. Ragweed sufferers, however, should realize that some plants commonly used in herbal remedies, like Chamomile and Echinacea, might cross-react in hay fever sufferers to make symptoms worse.

You might be surprised to know that acupuncture has some evidence for effectiveness against certain allergies. acupuncture. Based on the idea that stimulating certain points on the body can cause effects inside, a study of 26 hay fever patients found in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine and described in WebMD appeared to improve symptoms in all without adverse effects. Another experiment eliminated allergic symptoms in half the patients studied.

Allergies can be nuisances or they can be life-threatening. In situations where we might spend a larger part of our day outdoors, as in survival, it’s important to know the signs, symptoms, and treatments when our immune systems go into overload.

Joe Alton MD


Joe Alton, MD

Hey, Find out more about allergies and over 150 other medical topics in times of trouble with our 700 page third edition of The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way. And for your medical storage, there’s no better place to get a good medical kit than at Nurse Amy’s store!


Guest Article: Homeopathy and Preparedness

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homeopathic meds

Nurse Amy and I are conventionally trained medical professionals that incorporate an integrative philosophy into our writings. We don’t know everything, however (far from it), and sometimes find writers on specific topics that are outside of our wheelhouse and cannot speak to authoritatively. Here’s an article by Becky Rupert, a board-certified homeopath, to introduce you to her field:


When preparing for any emergency, we all know it is a good idea to have basic things on hand such as first aid kits, bandages, extra medications, analgesics, essential oils, herbs, wraps, blood stop powder, and all of those things to help us when we have minor injuries or emergencies.  It is also a good idea to have extra skills such as how to make tinctures, or herbal products, or the many wonderful first aid skills taught at organizations such as the Red Cross.  Suturing skills are a plus, as well as classes in nursing or EMT classes.  These are wonderful adjuncts to your preparedness portfolio!


However, I think there is one more thing that is incredibly useful to add to your “tool kit”.


What I am going to teach you about today is a form of alternative medicine that is easy, safe and very effective in an emergency when you have no access to standard medical care.  You can use this method with little cost input to start, and you can use it right now for your family in acute situations such as:


  • colds
  • flu
  • sprain
  • strain
  • injuries

You can start learning now to give remedies in acute situations so that you can understand how to give remedies in situations where there is a dire need, so you can help family and friends with a safe, holistic healing method.  It is not difficult to do, and it is very rewarding.  It can require a shift in how you think about healthcare. Homeopathy is quite different from what you may be used to.


First, some background:


Let’s first talk a bit about what homeopathy is, what it is not, and how it can help your family!  Homeopathy is a 200 year old system of medicine created by a physician and chemist, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann.  In his time, physicians used toxic crude substances which had many side effects and harmed more than healed.  Dr. Hahnemann devised a way of using dilutions of substances to help the body heal without the toxic effects, even if the original substance was toxic.


Homeopathy means “similar suffering”.   Remedies are made from just about anything from plants, to animals, to minerals and each has a specific pattern of symptoms associated with it.  Right now there are about 5,000 remedies and more are being made every day.  They are sustainably sourced and they are “FDA approved drugs”.  Some are over the counter, and some are prescription based.  In fact, Samuel Hahnemann wrote the good manufacturing practices that are still in use today.


Homeopathy is not herbalism, although we may start with an herbal “mother” tincture at the base of the remedy, we often use the entire plant, something that herbalists rarely do because at times the parts of a plant may not have therapeutic value or may be toxic.  In the homeopathic remedy, there are  no molecules of the original substance left once you go above 12c (explained below), which renders them non toxic and safe for infants, animals, or the elderly.


Homeopaths don’t use machines, muscle testing, herbs or supplements.  We (generally) don’t make remedies ourselves (there are special pharmacies for that).  Constitutional Homeopaths also don’t give you more than one remedy at a time, and we don’t use machines to figure out what remedies you need (with the exception of a computer program to go through all of your symptoms).  The pellets we use are small, pleasant tasting and dissolve under the tongue.  Children readily take them and usually respond quickly, as do animals.


What do the numbers and letters mean on a homeopathic remedy package?


The remedies all have latin names, such as apis mellifica (honey bee) and the number tells you how many times the remedy was diluted, the “C” stands for the amount of water it was diluted in, in this case, 99:1=100 (99 parts alcohol and water to one part mother tincture).  If you remember your roman numerals, you will see they are common in homeopathy.  There are also “X” potencies, that is 1 in 9=10.


C potencies last longer than X potencies, but all you really need to know is to stick with 12c or 30c if you  can, for best results.  There are situations that 6c, or 200c is much more preferred, and if that’s the case, I will let you know.  Generally, you can’t go wrong with a 12 or 30c.  That is a great potency for beginners and they are readily available, and in the common remedy kits for home use.


How does it work?


We don’t know the exact mechanism of action of the remedies.  We know they are not placebo, because they work on infants and animals very well.  If you have the wrong remedy, nothing happens and there are no side effects or unwanted symptoms.  There are instances when people can be sensitive to remedies and if you are the type that is very sensitive to everything around you, then I would consider having someone walk you through the process so you know how to take remedies.  Sensitive folks can aggravate which means that the symptoms they already have get worse before they get better.  This is rather unusual but does happen on occasion, and usually sensitive people are sensitive to so many other things such as medications, perfumes, everything sets them off.  This is not to say that chemically sensitive people shouldn’t use homeopathy, I have lots of clients who are environmentally sensitive and they are often fine with remedies. We often need to dilute them a bit in about 4 oz of water.


The wonderful thing about homeopathy is that it works to heal the entire person, mentally, emotionally, physically, all at the same time.  We do not have one remedy for asthma and one for headaches, and one for eczema and one for autism, we see the person as a whole and give a remedy and potency based on that person’s unique set of symptoms.  Homeopathy is so safe, you can give it during labor and delivery.


We recommend that home prescribers use remedies for acute situations (self limiting situations such as colds, flu, injuries, sunburn), and leave the chronic situations to the professionals.  Chronic symptoms are symptoms such as PMS, fatigue, headache, asthma, autism, eczema, etc.


My clients come from all over the US and abroad and I teach them to be able to care for themselves during acute situations.  I see people for acute situations and chronic ones and some people want to learn everything they can and some just want me to fix it!  Either way is fine, but here we’ll get your feet wet so you can learn more.  Even if the only thing you do is use arnica for bumps and bruises, that’s a step in the right direction.  Carry arnica with you wherever you go and you’ll be amazed at how it stops pain fast!  Learn to give some remedies in a few situations and soon you’ll be learning more and more.


Homeopathy is a wonderful addition to your medical kit or bug out bag.  Remedies are easy to use and pretty forgiving.  Dosing depends on the individual, the amount of pellets is not based on body weight or age.  In homeopathy, frequency of dose is what is important.


The most important thing to remember is:


  • Give the remedy as needed, not on a schedule. If you have an aggravation from a remedy DO NOT REPEAT, wait and watch, usually this is minor and improvement will follow; then repeat as needed by putting a pellet in 4 oz of water and sip only as needed.
  • Give the remedy 2 doses before moving on to the next remedy if nothing happens… unless you are very sensitive.
  • Most people in an acute situation will know how often to take the dose, their symptoms relapse after improvement. If you have hit yourself with a hammer, and you take hypericum, the pain will come back and you will know when to repeat, more is not better!
  • In a situation like a cold, you may need 3 doses in one day to determine if you should switch to another remedy.
  • Remedies come in different pellet sizes, large pellets like the decorating balls for cookies – you can use one at a time, tiny, poppy-seed sized pellets, the dose is about 5 pellets. Generally, the amount of pellets is not important, the frequency of dose is.
  • In critical situations such as shock, you may need a stronger dose or the remedy may be needed more frequently then you expect, don’t be surprised if the remedy lasts for minutes or a half hour and you need to repeat. The doses should start lasting longer and longer until the problem resolves or you get help
  • Try to get help if the situation is beyond your skills or training
  • If there is a very high fever (104 or above), you may need to seek out care or diagnosis. Obviously, use your judgement, but some of the scenarios in this article are for those who can’t get to medical care.  Medical care is important in a critical situation, if you are having a heart attack, get help if you are able.  It sounds silly but people have called me in the middle of a heart attack!


Bumps, Bruises, Head injuries, Fractures, etc.


Arnica Montana:

Everyone should have arnica on hand for emergencies, it a wonderful first aid remedy and often the one that people pick up whenever there is an injury.  Especially useful for bruising and head injuries, I use 200c for head injuries and 30c for minor bruising.  This remedy is often useful to help heal damage from surgery.


(Dr. Bones says: I don’t have a lot of experience with some of the substances mentioned in Becky’s article, but can vouch, from personal experience, for the effectiveness of Arnica in alleviating pain from injuries.)


Bellis Perennis:

Bellis is in the same family as arnica and is useful for deep muscle trauma, deep incisions or heav blows when arnica doesn’t offer much help.  I use 6c three times a day until it is no longer needed.


Ruta Graveolens:

Ruta is wonderful for ligament and tendon injuries or sprains and strains.  I use 200c followed by 6c three times a day until unnecessary.  I found that sprains heal in half the time with ruta.


Symphytum Officionales:

The best remedy for fractures, It is used after being set to knit bones quickly.  I use 200c for pain if arnica doesn’t help and then 6c three times daily for 3-6 weeks.  Also very useful for eye injuries at the same potencies.



Useful for healing cuts and knife wounds after stitching or approximating wounds.  For a deep wound may need 200c one dose or 30c three times a day for 2 days.


Calendula Officionales:

Used in tincture or potency this is excellent for skin abrasions and can also be used diluted 1:10 parts water in eye infections, abrasions, or as eyewash.  This can be also used as an antibacterial for wounds or lacerations, but some homeopaths also like Echinacea tincture for this purpose as well.



This remedy is often used to expel splinters or foreign material embedded in skin.  I use 6c or 30c three times a day for 2 days.



This remedy (like all others) has many uses, but is very useful for burns and scalds, and can also be used for urinary tract infections with a great amount of burning with urination.  I use 30c as needed for pain control.  For sunburn I prefer sol 30, but it can also be used for sunburn.


Apis Mellifica:

One of the best remedies for bee or wasp stings or even anaphylactic shock, apis has redness, edematous swelling and heat.  It is also used for cellulitis.  If you have severe allergies it is a good idea to have epi pen around but if you don’t have one, apis may be a lifesaver.  It is always a good idea to have other alternatives such as Benadryl just in case!  A 30c of apis may not be strong enough of a dose, so I recommend having a 30c and 200 on hand.





I have used pyrogen 1M potency for tooth infections with great results, it is also generally used for septicemia.  At this high of a dose, it is given only as needed for fever or pain control.



The most used homeopathic remedy for fever, it is useful in high fevers of many kinds.  The skin is usually hot and dry, and it has been used for decades for scarlet fever.  Useful in situations where there are delusions or hallucinations with fever.  Belladonna is very violent and sudden and is also used in heat stroke or heat exhaustion.  Symptoms tend to be hot red and violent and tend to be right sided.  Aggravation time is often 3 AM or PM and can be used for childhood ear infections of sudden onset when these symptoms match.


Ferrum Phos:

Often useful in situations where there are mild symptoms and you aren’t sure which remedy to give, ferrum phos has vague symptoms and is often given at the beginning of an illness to stop it before it starts.


Aconitum Napellus:

Aconite is incredibly useful in shock and there can be fright or anxiety and restlessness.  There is a sudden onset of symptoms like in belladonna.



This is a remedy that is often useful in hemorrhaging, and nosebleeds, which are often left sided.  I usually use 30c in minor cases and would use 200c in severe cases.


(Dr. Bones says: With regards to significant hemorrhage, it’s always important to know appropriate first aid techniques like you’ll find in many of my articles on this website.)


I hope this helps you get your feet wet with what homeopathy can do.  I recommend that people use Homeopathy in every day acute illness such as colds, flu, or minor injuries to see how remedies are used.  Don’t keep them on a shelf, becoming proficient with their use helps so when you really need them you will know how to use them.  A side benefit is that they last forever unless they are exposed to extreme heat so you can store them long term without expiration.  These are the remedies that are very useful for a bug out bag or emergency kit and can be used for the barnyard or home.  We offer kits with 40 remedies for those who are interested.  I hope you never have to use a kit in an extreme emergency, but I personally feel better knowing they are around if I need them!


I wish you good fortune on your journey to health…


Becky Rupert, ND, CCH

Board Certified Homeopath

Becky has been homesteading for 20 years while practicing and teaching homeopathy to laypeople to help themselves, their families and their animals.  She consults with people all over the US and abroad and can be reached at or by phone EST at (419) 853-3805. Please address any of your questions to Becky.


How To Make Your Own Aspirin For Survival

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How To Make Aspirin

Knowing how to make a natural pain reliever if you’re stuck in the wild can be a life-saver. Because aspirin is a pain reliever, anti-inflammatory, blood thinner, and fever reducer, it has many uses. Fortunately, most of the United States hosts a tree or three that has salicylic acid – the active ingredient in aspirin. We’re going to tell you how to make your own, sort of!

First, remember the rule – “natural” doesn’t equal “safe.” Arsenic is natural but you wouldn’t eat it. Well, you might, but the results would be less than desirable! Anyway, now that you’ve been warned, apply the rule to aspirin.

Some people are allergic, so it’s important, especially in a survival situation, to know whether or not you can safely take it.

Side Effects of Aspirin

Aside from the results of being allergic, there are some common side effects that you may experience even if you can take it. These include:

  • nausea
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • drop in blood pressure
  • excess bleeding from wounds
  • kidney irritation
  • respiratory depression.

Consuming too much can be fatal, so take only what you need to do the trick.

Plants that Contain Salicylic Acid

Willow barkThough willow tree bark is by far the most common source of salicylic acid because it’s so rich in it, there are several other plants that contain the acid, or its base, salicin.

For instance, birch trees and poplar trees contain salicylic acid in their barks, and berries are a decent source of it, too.

Medicinal use of willow bark dates back to the days of Hippocrates, when it was used to reduce fever and treat inflammation.

It’s been used throughout the centuries across the world, and is still used today, to treat pain (particularly back pain and arthritis pain), menstrual cramps, headaches, stroke prevention, high blood pressure, and inflammatory conditions such as tendonitis and bursitis.

Topically, white willow bark tincture or birch bark tincture is good for treating skin conditions such as acne, warts, psoriasis, or eczema. Though all willow trees contain salicin, the bark of the white willow has the most.

Other good sources are the purple willow, black or pussy willow, and the crack willow. You should research your area so that you know which, of any, of these trees are local to you.

If you don’t live in an area that has willow trees, birch trees, particularly white and yellow birch trees, contain methyl salicylate, the forerunner to synthetic aspirin. The white birch is also called canoe birch, sweet birch, silver birch, or lady of the woods.

Cottonwoods, poplars, meadowsweet, and black haw also contain salicosides. In all of these trees, the inner bark is the medicinal part. That’s the papery part of the bark that you find when you peel the bark away from the tree.

If you don’t have any of those trees around (which would be rare in the US), many fruits and vegetables, including blackberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, grapes, dates, kiwis, guavas, apricots, olives, green peppers, radishes, tomatoes, chicory and mushrooms, also contain significant amounts of salicin.

For today, we’re going to focus on how to make aspirin from willow bark and birch bark. Both white birch and willow trees grow in zones 2-9, which includes almost the entire US except for the southernmost part of Florida, and maybe a few southern parts of California, Texas, and Arizona.

Get this lifesaving information about surviving when doctors, pharmacies and hospitals are shut down!

Both trees like moisture and are typically found growing wild in forests and around a water source. Look up your area, determine which types of trees you have around you, then scout them out. For that matter, it won’t hurt to have some willow or birch bark on hand at all times if you prefer natural treatments.

How to Make Aspirin from Willow Bark or Birch Bark

Remember that dosage is important because willow bark, in too high a dose, can make you really sick. Same thing with birch or any other source. If you’re new to the game, it’s probably best to start with a smaller dose and take a bit more if you don’t see results in 45 minutes or so.

A white willow has a rough, furrowed, grayish bark, smaller branches that are golden brown, slender, and flexible, and long, slender, finely serrated leaves. The tops of the leaves are shiny and green, and the undersides are silky and white. They alternate instead of being opposite each other on the branch.

To find physical descriptions of other willows, check your local guides. A good test, though, is to look at the leaves. Willow tree leaves share the same characteristics regardless of species.

After you’ve found the tree, it’s time to harvest the bark. This is easy – just peel away a piece of the bark, making sure to get the papery part between the hard bark and the meat of the tree. It’s much easier to peel the bark from smaller branches than from the trunk of the tree.

At this point, the bark can actually be chewed to achieve local anesthetic benefits as well as systemic ones, especially if you have a toothache. You can also make a tea, tincture, or powder from it.

Video first seen on Howcast.

Willow Bark or Birch Bark Tea

To make the tea, let the bark dry for a few hours if you can. You don’t have to, but it’s recommended for best results.

Bring about 3 cups of water to a boil, if you have that much to spare. If not, use what you have. Put the bark in and continue to simmer. This serves two purposes – you’re making the tea and purifying the water at the same time.

If you’re using heat to purify the water, make sure to boil it for at least 10 minutes, with or without the bark. Use about 1 tablespoon of bark for each cup of water. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes and remove from the fire.

After removing your tea from the fire, let it steep for 10-20 minutes. By that time, it will have cooled enough to drink. Drink a cup of the tea every few hours. Watch out for side effects and adjust the dose accordingly.

You can also make a decoction by boiling for a bit longer – 15-20 min – and letting it steep as directed for the tea.

Making Willow Bark or Birch Bark Powder

Without a doubt, the powder form of willow bark is the easiest to carry with you. If you have it on hand, you can quickly make a tea. To dry the willow or birch bark, simply separate out the paper parts and allow them to dry completely. Grind. Add a teaspoon to a cup of boiling water and make your tea as described above. Store excess in a dry, airtight container.

Make Willow Bark or Birch Bark Tincture

As we’ve described in another article, tinctures are great for long-term storage, or for use with plants that don’t have a high degree of solubility. It’s easy to make a tincture from willow bark or birch bark as long as you have some alcohol. Vodka will do nicely as long as it’s at least 80 proof. Simply add 1 tablespoon of bark per cup of vodka, cover, shake, and let it steep for at least 2-4 days. Take 1 tsp of tincture 2-3 times daily.

Now you know how to make aspirin tea from a willow tree or a birch tree. The upside to these treatments is that you know exactly what’s in it, but make sure that you know what you’re doing and remember that it’s better to start with too little that too much.

The dosage amounts that I’ve listed here are for adults. You can also use aspirin for kids and pets, but the dosage needs to be adjusted accordingly. Just as with all natural remedies, don’t use them if you don’t know what you’re doing.

If you’ve ever made your own aspirin or used willow bark or birch bark for natural pain relief or to reduce a fever, please tell us about your experience in the comments section below. And remember that knowledge is the only doctor that can save you when there is no medical help around you.


This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

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11 Reasons To Stockpile Castor Oil For Survival

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Castor Oil For survival

Old timers used castor oil for everything from colds to parasitical worms, but recent generations have pretty much forgotten about it. That’s a shame because, if our elders are to be believed, it’s one of those multi-purpose items that deserve a place in your stockpile.

Read the following article, and you will see why our ancestors were so right about this natural cure!

Castor oil is made by cold-pressing the seeds of the castor plant and is composed mostly of the fatty acid ricinoleic acid. That’s the ingredient that is responsible for the healing, analgesic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties associated with the oil.

Though most of us don’t keep it at home any more, it’s still a common ingredient in cosmetics, soaps, massage oils and even textiles.

I’ve done some research and, though there isn’t a ton of formal research available to support its effectiveness as a home remedy, there’s usually something to be said for centuries of use by entire civilizations.

As you probably know, in order to garner our attention, an item has to do more than treat constipation or hydrate dry skin in order to make our list. We need products that can be used for everything from treating sunburn to sharpening scissors, and castor oil fits the bill.

Note: The treatments outlined here can also be used on your pets.

1. Skin Care

We’ll start with this one because, in addition to keeping your skin soft and youthful, it’s also used to ease the pain of severely dried and cracked skin and lips. In a survival situation, this is a condition that can quickly lead to gangrene, so it’s a big deal.

Castor oil is also a good base ingredient for soaps, lotions, and cosmetics because of its hydrating properties. It has omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids, both of which are often used to promote healthy hair, skin, and nail growth. Some claim that it has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties that can help get rid dandruff and possibly athlete’s foot.

It has been shown to have analgesic properties, so it’s good to treat sunburn, rashes, bug bites and other minor skin conditions. It’ also used to treat ringworm. Just rub it directly on the skin.

Finally, the anti-inflammatory properties are great for treating cystic acne. The best thing is that it works fairly quickly. Swab it onto your clean face at night and you should notice improvement by morning.

2. Digestive Issues and Parasites

This is one of the most commonly-known uses for castor oil. It helps your bowels move. Be careful that you don’t use too much because it works remarkably well for this condition. You don’t want to become dehydrated, so start with a tablespoon and give it a few hours. Take more if needed.

If you want to just “take your medicine” and get it over with, just swallow it straight. If not, you can mix it with juice or a food. Apple juice would be good, because it also helps relieve constipation.

Castor oil is also a common home remedy for intestinal parasites.

3. Arthritis, Muscle, and Joint Pain

This is another common reason that it was used by our elders because of its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Some say to make a poultice with other herbs and rub it into aching joints for relief. You can also take a tablespoon internally. If you have diarrhea, you may want to try the rub.

Video first seen on Ancient Current

4. Gets Rid of Corns, Moles, and Warts

The fatty acids in the oil are purported to dissolve these conditions. For corns, simply dip a cotton ball in castor oil and tape it over the blemish. Change it out once a day, but in a week, the corn will be gone. For moles and warts, add a bit of baking soda to the cotton ball, too. It may take a couple of weeks for this method to work. You can also try just dabbing it on regularly.

5. Get Rid of Yard Pests

Apparently, moles and other yard pests find the smell of castor oil as repugnant as people do because if you mix 1/2 cup of castor oil with a couple of gallons of water and sprinkle it around your garden or yard. It won’t kill them, but it definitely encourages them to find a better place to live.

The upside to this is that ferns and other greenery respond well to castor oil. It helps them look greener and lusher.

6. Hemorrhoids

Because of the anti-inflammatory properties, castor oil is often used to treat external hemorrhoids. Dip a cotton ball in the oil and apply it over your hemorrhoids. Leave it on for 15 or 20 minutes a few times a day if possible. If not, just applying daily will provide relief.

7. Lubricate Just About Anything

Because of its viscosity, castor oil doesn’t freeze, so it’s great to use to lubricate hinges, scissors, meat grinders, motor parts, and anything else that gets sticky.

8. Boosts Immunity

Because of the fatty acids in it, castor oil has been shown to boost your immune system by increasing white blood cell production. The odd part about this, though, is that it does it when you apply it topically. That’s right – just rub it on your skin and, according to the study, your white blood cells may increase by as much as 20 percent.

9. Treat Infected Cuts or Rashes

The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties may be helpful in healing a mild infection. Just dab it on with a cotton swab or dribble it directly onto the wound a few times daily until the infection heals. There are also many herbs that you can add to it to help even more.

Along the same lines, you can use it to help treat vaginal infections.

10. Treat Aching Feet

This is a treatment that waitresses have been using since, well, since before they were called waitresses. Just warm a bit between your hands and rub directly into your feet. You can also help lessen the pain throughout the day by rubbing some on your feet before you go to work, then wear cotton socks.

If you have extreme pain, you may want to try generously applying castor oil then wrapping the effected body part in plastic wrap before you go to sleep.

11. Pilonidal Cysts

I’ve read several testaments where people swear that a gauze coated in castor oil works to get rid of the pain and inflammation of pilonidal cysts. It may also help draw out the infection so that the cyst opens, drains, and can heal. Lay the gauze over the cysts, then place a heating pad over it and keep it there for an hour. People reported tremendous improvement just after the first treatment or two.

There are many uses for castor oil – these are just a few of the big ones. I’ve combined several of them under the skin care and digestive issues section because there are so many different uses for it for those particular areas.

Click the banner below to discover more natural survival remedies that helped our forefathers survive harsh times!


This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

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Survival Medicine Hour: Pneumonia, Natural Remedies

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survival medicine

The Survival Medicine Hour, with Joe Alton, MD aka Dr. Bones and Amy Alton, ARNP aka Nurse Amy, bring you a tremendous amount of information today. Are you going to be the medic or caretaker in a disaster or survival situation?  Our mission is to help put a medically prepared person in every family for any disaster.

Pneumonia is an infection affecting the aprt of the lungs that absorbs oxygen from the atmosphere. Pneumonia may be viral, bacterial or fungal infection. The infection usually starts by affecting a portion of one lung (a “lobe”) before spreading to the entire organ. If enough fluid clogs the air clogs the air sacs (alveoli), it’s possible, while listening to lung sounds, you actually won’t hear any sounds at all.

Natural remedies are available for help with respiratory infections to reduce symptoms and build a person’s immunity. Antioxidants, like Vitamin C and Vitamin E and other antioxidants taken regularly are supposed to decrease the frequency and severity of respiratory infections.

Some of the best essential oils for symptoms are Lavender, Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Peppermint and Geranium. Herbal teas such as Stinging Nettle, Licorice Root, Peppermint, Anise Sage and Dandelion are all made better with a bit of raw, unprocessed honey and fresh squeezed lemon.

Joe Alton, MD


Joe Alton MD

Survival Pharmacy: 9 Ways To Use Ginger For Your Health

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How To Use Ginger For Your Health

Ginger has been used for centuries for medicinal and culinary purposes. Though we don’t use it commonly in much American cooking, you’re likely familiar with pickled ginger when you eat sushi and it’s also becoming a popular dried and candied product.

The medicinal properties and ease of growth make ginger a plant that you should definitely be growing for your survival garden!

I’ve been growing ginger in a potted plant inside, which is the best way to grow it if you live in a small space or a region that gets cold. It doesn’t like the cold, so if you live in a cooler area, you need to grow it indoors or outdoors in pots so that you can bring it inside before the frost.

The actual growing part is easy but first, let’s clarify something. Ginger isn’t a root; it’s a rhizome. It does have roots, which are the long, hairy-looking parts that draw in moisture just like roots do for any other plant. Rhizomes are actually underground parts of the stem. They grow horizontally under the ground, with roots on the bottom. New stems grow from the top to the surface.

It’s the rhizome part that we eat, but most people refer to it as ginger root, so we’ll still do the same. Ginger rhizomes grow buds, or eyes, similar to potatoes. Those are the parts that will grow.

What Part do you Plant?

Planting ginger is similar to planting potatoes; you plant the buds that grow off of the rhizome. On a potato, we call them eyes. You can buy the rhizome at your local garden store or order from a seed store. Another option is to just allow a ginger root that you buy from the grocery store to bud, then plant it.

One problem with using one from a grocery store is that they’re often sprayed with growth inhibitors to keep them from budding while they’re on the shelf. You can soak the ginger to get as much of this off as possible, but you still may have problems getting it to bud. If you can, then go for it!

Another problem with using a store-bought one is that it may have pesticides or herbicides on it. To resolve both problems you could buy organic. It’s a bit more expensive but if you can’t find anything at your local stores, then this is a good option.

Perfect Growing Conditions

Ginger likes rich, moist soil, partial or full shade, humidity, and warm weather. The soil needs to drain well in order for the rhizomes to develop. They grow horizontally, so they’re one of the few plants that flourish in shallow containers. I live in Florida, so my soil is sandy and the weather is, of course, temperate so I could plant outside if I wanted to.

I just scoop soil right out of the ground for my dirt, then mix it half and half with compost. Since I use a pot (actually a rectangular box) and rich soil I don’t add any type of fertilizer. The plant will only grow 2-3 feet tall and it smells great.

If you plant it outside in soil that’s less than ideal, or if you get a lot of rain, give it a drink of the fertilizer or compost teaof your choice every couple of weeks or so. The reason for this is that when it rains, the water washes all the nutrients out of the soil.

Put mulch around it too. That helps keep the moisture in and it nourishes the plant as the mulch decomposes. It also helps keep out weeds because ginger is pretty delicate and other plants will plow it right over. It doesn’t like wind, either.

So … to recount, no wind, no cold, no full sun, and not too much water. Instead, it likes rich, well-draining soil, moderate moisture, and partial sun or shade.

Preparing and Planting

If your rhizome has more than one bud, you can cut it into pieces, leaving a bud on each piece, then plant them. You can also just plant the entire thing. Let the rhizomes soak overnight, then bury them 3-6 inches deep and water sparingly, just enough to moisten the soil. Some people prefer to let them sit in water until the grow roots before they plant them, but I haven’t found that to be necessary.

Best time to plant is late winter/early spring as long as you’re not planting outside in a cold zone. If you live in a tropical zone, plant it at the end of the dry season/beginning of rainy season.

You don’t need much space to plant enough ginger to get you through the year. Each rhizome will only produce a few leaves the first year and they don’t mind living in close quarters. Plant them 6-8 inches apart and they’ll be fine.

Video first seen on DIY Home and Garden.

Harvesting Ginger

This is the best part! Once your ginger has been growing for three or four months, you can trim pieces of the rhizome off of it simply by digging through the soil to the side of the plant and just nipping a piece off the end, then covering it back up. This green ginger won’t be quite as flavorful as ripe ginger, but it’s still good.

You can also wait until the end of the season and harvest the ginger when the plant starts to die off. This takes about ten months to happen. If the temperature allows (or if you’re growing inside), you can replant right away. Harvest all of the ginger, break the rhizomes apart, and separate out a few that have good buds.

Toss those back in the ground or pot and use the rest. Ginger freezes well. You can also store it for several months in a root cellar, slice it thinly and dehydrate it, candy it, or pickle it. If you dry it, you can grind it into ginger powder that is great for baking or medicinal use.

Medicinal Uses for Ginger

Now we’re down the heart of the matter – why growing ginger is a good thing for a prepper to do. The active ingredient in ginger – gingerol – is an antibiotic, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant. It’s also an anti-coagulant. There’s a reason ginger is considered a superfood!

1. Heart Disease and Stroke

Since it’s an anti-coagulant, which means it prevents your blood from clotting, it can help you avoid heart attacks and strokes. Its antioxidant properties also help fight free radicals that cause heart disease, so it’s a double whammy.

2. Stomach Upset, Heartburn, and other GI problems

Ginger has been used in holistic medicine for centuries to treat all sorts of upper gastrointestinal problems. It’s good for stomach upset, heartburn, constipation, bloating, and even morning sickness during pregnancy. That’s because it helps induce the stomach to release its contents into the small intestine.

It’s also effective at treating ulcers.

This is now officially backed by science. I actually use it to get rid of heartburn by eating a slice or two of candied ginger. You can also drink it in a tea for quick relief.

3. Motion Sickness

Though this is going to be a short section, it’s well warranted because ginger has actually been shown in at least one study to treat motion sickness, especially seasickness, more effectively than Dramamine! Ginger doesn’t just ease the nausea; it treats ALL of the symptoms: nausea, cold sweats, and dizziness.

4. Strengthens Immune System

Interestingly enough, ginger’s beneficial effect on digestion also helps your immune system because, in addition to the antioxidants, a healthy digestive tract is required for proper nutrient absorption.

Not only that, gingerol has the effect of boosting your body temperature – maybe that’s why gingerbread is so great in the winter! –which may help remove toxins that prevent your immune system from functioning properly.

5. Arthritis, Muscle Soreness, and Joint Pain

Since gingerol is an anti-inflammatory, it’s extremely effective at relieving the pain and swelling of arthritis. People with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis report noticeable relief of pain as well as increased mobility when they consume ginger regularly.

Have you had a rough workout? Eat some ginger or drink ginger tea. You’ll feel better shortly!

This isn’t just something that “people say”. It’s been quantitatively measured in studies where arthritic inflammation was measurably decreased. In other words – it works!!

About Ginger

6. Fight Staph and Strep

Again, science prevails. Recent studies have shown that ginger essential oil was more effective than traditional antibiotics at treating staph and strep infections. If nothing else, it won’t hurt to take it if you’re going to be in a hospital or round somebody who’s sick.

And if you’re sick, ginger doesn’t interact with other medications so you can’t do any harm! Oh, and other studies have shown that it’s just as effective on other types of bacteria.

7. Diabetes

This is extremely new research, but it’s big, especially since we, as preppers, don’t have any way to prepare for life without access to many life-saving medications. Insulin is one of those drugs that are absolutely critical for survival but doesn’t have an effective natural alternative – at least until (hopefully) now.

Two grams of ginger powder per day was shown to decrease resting blood sugar by 12 percent. Instead of getting really scientific here, I’m just going to give you a link to the research findings so that you can see the details and additional results.

8. Menstrual Pain

One gram of ginger powder per day works as well for many women to relieve menstrual cramps and pain as ibuprofen.

9. Enhance Brain Function and Prevent Alzheimer’s

Because of the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger, studies have shown that it can help prevent cognitive decline. It can also help prevent disorders such as Alzheimer’s, which wasn’t’ actually a surprise to me once I read the results of the diabetes study – Alzheimer’s has actually been commonly referred to in many circles in recent years as Type 3 diabetes.

You can reap any of these benefits by eating ginger raw, candied, or by making a tea with it. You can also juice it, but I’ve found that to be ineffective in a manual juicer. Even in an electric juicer, you don’t get much juice from ginger and it requires a high-power juicer because it’s so hard.

There’s also the option of making an essential oil, which isn’t as difficult as you may think.

Ginger is an amazing food that’s easy to grow, doesn’t take up much space, and has medicinal properties that could very well save lives if SHTF.

I hope that this information has helped. I seriously drink this particular Kool-Aid so I know for a fact that it works, at least for stomach problems and joint pain, so I’m happy to vouch for it from a personal standpoint. There are many other benefits – I just touched on a few of the most important ones here.

I’ve discussed the health benefits of garlic and other plants for the same reason – grow them, too!

If you’ve grown ginger or have any health benefits or personal success (or report of a tall-tale), please share it with us in the comments section below.

Knowledge is the most important survival skill. Discover how our ancestors grew, harvested and used survival plants during harsh times.


This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Prep Blog Review: 18+ Tips For Healthy Preppers

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Healthy Preppers

The true challenge nowadays is to stay healthy in a toxic environment. Today we have access to medication and doctors, but what if we are in post SHTF environment and there is no way to get help?

One thing’s for sure: when SHTF health becomes your first concern and to stay healthy in a survival situation requires a proper diet, hygiene and sleep. Of course, there are many other skills required, but those make the subjects of other articles.

For this week’s Prep Blog Review I’ve gathered five articles with useful tips, most of them simple home remedies, for healthy preppers.

1. 10 Home Remedies For Oral Thrush


“Scientifically referred to as orophangeal Candidiasis, oral thrush is basically a yeast infection that tends to develop on the tongue. It’s unpleasant to look at, and even painful when you have it. The frustrating thing about this condition is that it might be drug-resistant, especially if the Candida rejects anti-fungal medication.

But guess what? I will provide you with top 10 home remedies for oral thrush, all of which are safe and proven to treat the condition. But before we look at these remedies, it’s only wise you know what causes oral thrush. After all, that’s where the treatment starts!”

Read more on I Keep Healthy.

2. 17 Uses For Listerine In A Survival Situation

lmw-ad-cuts-and-scrapes“Many of us are familiar with the distinctive taste of Listerine. Whether it’s in the morning or before bed, the extreme tingle of Listerine is a familiar part of our daily routine.

But did you know that Listerine has many other uses besides a mouthwash? Listerine’s unique antiseptic properties lend well to many other applications, especially in survival situations.

Topical antiseptic

Listerine does such as great job of helping clean the mouth, it shouldn’t be surprising that it also works great for disinfecting minor cuts and wounds. This is due to Listerine’s high alcohol content.

Listerine may not work as well as dedicated antiseptics, nor be as comfortable to use (alcohol can really sting!), but it definitely works in a pinch to kill bacteria, reduce the chance of infection and speed up the rate of healing.”

Read more in Ask A Prepper.

3. 4 Natural Steps To Rebuilding Your Gums


“It’s common for people these days to have issues with their gums. Many people have been told that their gums are “withering away” or thinning, and even have tooth loss as a result. One young woman I spoke with in the past few months was only in her 20s, and yet her dentist told her she would need three implants and would eventually lose all of her teeth.

Others have periodontal disease and can’t seem to make any progress. They do what the dentist and hygienist says, and yet their mouth never improves.

The teeth weren’t constructed in such a way that missing a day or more of brushing or flossing would be the entire cause of these gum diseases. Instead, you have to look at what is happening in the entire body. The gums are made from tissues synthesized in the body from all the appropriate building materials – protein, silica, vitamin C, copper, zinc and other nutrients.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

4. Why You Need Sunlight Everywhere You Go

“With the apparent elimination of rickets at the turn of 20th century, following the discovery of the role that vitamin D plays in the elimination of this disease, most may think that vitamin D sunlightdeficiency is a problem of the past. While vitamin D deficiency is not often found in North America, insufficiency is still very common.

This should not be surprising, being that there has been an unprecedented increase of indoor computer use as social media and remote-access work continue to rise in popularity. The acclimatization of modern people to a lifestyle that is primarily indoors is a recipe for disaster when considering the importance of vitamin D and bone health.

The following will discuss some of the major reasons why you need as much sunlight exposure as you can obtain within reasonable limits and how you can remove the primary obstacles that could be in your way.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

5. 18 Natural Home Remedies For Acne

acne-feature-image-300x225“Before learning about the home remedies for acne, let us first define what acne is. Acne is a superficial skin condition that starts when pores are clogged with oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria. It may come in several forms like pimples, cysts, whiteheads and blackheads.

It may be caused by a combination of several factors but is commonly present during adolescence due to excessive oil production.

There are many acne solutions in the market today, mostly artificial in nature. But why not try these natural ways to clear the stubborn acne in our faces. We’ve included an infographic to serve as a cheat sheet for you to download or pin for later at the end of this article.”

Read more on Ultimate Home Remedies.


This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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3 Remedies From Medieval Europe To Heal The Common Cold

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Remedies For Common Cold

I think it was Hippocrates who said something along these lines: “let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food”.

Today’s article is about trying to find a cure for the common cold or, more precisely, reviving ancient remedies from medieval Europe.

And speaking of cures for cold, there’s another saying in my neck of the woods: if you take cold medicine, you’ll get better in seven days, otherwise you’ll be sick for a week.

Do you see where this is going?

Let me tell you another interesting little story: despite the fact that there are only a small number of basic ingredients to be found in OTC (over the counter) cold-medicine—around ten, give or take (ephedrine, ibuprofen, paracetamol, aspirin, pseudo-ephedrine etc.)—the number of cold-related drugs in your pharmacy is in the hundreds.

Each major pharmaceutical company that has a hand in the cold industry typically has at least 10 different types. Many have 20 or 30 or even more.

That’s pretty confusing, especially when you’re knocked out by a bad case of flu or cold, you can’t think straight, and you just want something to get you out of your misery. You’ll gladly spend a bunch of money to feel better.

Little do you know you’re wasting it on pure crap. Do you think I am exaggerating?

Basically, in the cold medicine racket, the name of the game is making money via marketing and brainwashing. Have you noticed the huge number of drug-ads on TV? 70% of the money a television is making outside an election is from Big Pharma, so let that sink in really well.

I am writing this article because last week I suffered from a bad case of cold, which rendered me pretty much useless until I started making and drinking an old cold/cough remedy that I learned from my grandmother.

Onion tea

It worked from day one, put me back on my feet, allowed me to think straight, to breathe and to write; you know what I mean.

And then I realized that for us preppers, knowing ancient remedies for a disease that is wreaking havoc this time of the year would make for an interesting article. So, if you’re into staying healthy without taking drugs, keep reading.

Let me tell you how it all began: awake at 4 AM. Can’t think, can’t write, can’t breathe, stuffy nose, sore throat. Does it sound familiar?

Well, I managed to crawl to my car and hit a local pharmacy. I bought some stuff pompously titled “cold medicine”, got home, medicated myself, hit the bed, and woke up 3 hours later still feeling horrible.

Then, it hit me: my grandmother used to make onion tea when I was little and I had a bad case of cold. I remember it smelled awful and tasted like rotten pig guts, but if I was a good boy and drank a lot of it, it worked.

With these things in mind, I went to the kitchen, gathered 3 onions, washed’em up pretty good, and put them in the kettle to boil.

The idea is to take 2-3 small onions and boil them slowly in a full kettle until the water is reduced by half via evaporation, then drink the tea as hot as you can stand it.

Trust me folks, it really works: sore throat-gone, stuffy nose-gone, I was alive again. It does taste hideous, unless you’re a die-hard onion lover, but it’s a small cost to pay.

Basically, with this magic potion you’ll be able to function, to be active: to be alive, so to speak, from day 1.

You must drink two 3/4 cups of tea per day, essentially one in the morning and one before bed, that’s important.

If you manage to squeeze 3 more in during the day, it will work like a Swiss watch.

If all you have in the house are big-fat onions, you’ll just have to cut them in half before boiling it, but remember: don’t remove the peel. That’s essential; just wash the onion thoroughly.

How does onion tea work? I really don’t know. There aren’t any “official” studies that I know of, probably because you can’t patent onions and sell them for 5 bucks a pop. It just does, provided you drink it hot as hell and you follow the recipe above.

Vitamin C

Besides onion tea, supplementing with vitamin C and D3 is also very important when it comes to mitigating colds and flu (these vitamins play an essential role in immunity overall), but it’s important to take big doses. The RDA is a joke.

For example, I am talking about 2-3 grams of vitamin C per day, together with eating lots of fruit: oranges, grapefruits, lemons, kiwis, apples and, again very important, raw onions and garlic (natural antibiotics).

The RDA is the minimal amount of Vitamin C (or whatever) to be taken daily in order to avoid getting scurvy (speaking of vitamin C). To be healthy, it takes for much more than that; remember that.

Vitamin C

Tomato Tea

Another way of naturally treating a stuffy nose/nasal congestion is tomato tea.

The recipe is:

  • 1 cup of tomato juice, (but I’d use 2-3 tomatoes cut in half instead of tomato juice)
  • a teaspoon of fresh garlic (basically a clove)
  • half a teaspoon of chili sauce (I’d use a small red hot chilli pepper instead)
  • one teaspoon of lemon juice (again, I’d use a whole fruit instead).

Add a pinch of salt into the mix and heat them together in the kettle until they start boiling, then drink the tea as hot as you can take it.

During the day, you can drink a mix of green tea and ginger tea with honey, as these ingredients boost the immune system and they break up phlegm naturally (the drugs are called expectorants).

Streptococcal pharyngitis or strep throat is a common occurrence when it comes to seasonal colds and flu, and besides my aforementioned magic onion tea recipe, you should try 2 additional tricks if you want to get better ASAP: first, gargle with apple cider vinegar after you dilute it in a glass of warm water (1-3 teaspoons of vinegar in 8 oz of water).

Second, gargle with salt-water and if you’re hardcore, you can try rubbing your infected tonsils with salt (using your finger that is). It’s not a pleasant experience, but it works amazingly well. You can boost the recipe’s effectiveness by adding powdered cayenne pepper into the mix.

Add one teaspoon of cayenne pepper plus one teaspoon of salt in an 8 oz. glass, and mix well together, obviously. Gargle vigorously with this formula until you get better. It will definitely break up the bacteria coating in your throat so expect to spit profusely for a couple of minutes afterwards.

It’s very important to use high-quality, organic salt; not refined/processed stuff. I would recommend Himalayan salt (the pink variety), or salt-mine salt (the one that looks dirty). Processed, refined, snow white salt doesn’t work too great as it’s stripped of its essential trace elements.

I hope the article helped and I can’t wait to see your comments in the dedicated sections below, AFTER trying my onion tea, obviously.

Stay healthy folks and click the banner below to discover more ancient secrets that helped our ancestors survive harsh times.


This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia.

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Top 20 Home Remedies For Stuffy Nose

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Stuffy Nose

A clogged nose is always annoying. Your head feels heavy, you can’t breathe and when you blow your nose hoping you will finally breathe again, you realize nothing comes out.

Regardless of the reason for your stuffy nose, there are many natural home remedies you can try right now to breathe better and to feel better.

What is Stuffy Nose?

Stuffy nose is also referred to as clogged nose, blocked nose, congested nose or nasal congestion. Contrary to wrong assumptions, a running nose is not the same as a stuffy nose; they are different nasal problems.

Having a stuffy nose is quite uncomfortable as it causes great difficulty in breathing. You will constantly get the urge to blow your nasal, which seems to bear no fruit in correcting the situation.

Nasal congestion can be caused by a number of things, with the main cause being the blood vessels in your sinuses by inflamed. Having too much sputum or mucus in your sinuses may also cause blockage in your nasal cavity.

What Causes a Stuffy Nose?

While we have established that inflammation of the blood vessels in sinus is main the main cause of a congested nose, the cause of the inflammation may vary. Some of the effects that cause inflammation include allergies, sinus infection flu and cold. This will ultimately cause irritation and swelling of the blood vessels.

In some instances, you will find that a stuffy nose is just an underlying symptom of another condition. In rare cases, it may be triggered by anatomical disorders, tumors in the nasal cavities as well as other terminal medical issues.

Top 20 Home Remedies for Stuffy Nose

There are a number of home remedies that can be used for a stuffy nose and I will share with you the top 20 that I discovered through the years.

  1. Steam

This is a common remedy for various respiratory conditions like frosty, sinus blockage and influenza among others. Ideally, when you use this method, the objective is to reduce the thickness of the fluids in your sinuses. Ultimately, this will help in regaining normal breathing activities.

  • Start by boiling water in a dish until it gets to the boiling point.
  • Turn the heat off and then place your face over the dish with the hot water. Ensure that you cover your head with a towel so as to get all the steam coming your way.
  • Inhale and exhale the steam progressively, until the nasal cavity is clear.
  • Repeat this Direction at least twice a day, in the morning and at night.


The alternative direction that works in the same manner is taking steamy showers. This will help reduce the inflammation of your sinuses and restore your normal breathing.

  1. Antiseptic Herbs Steam

Thyme and menthol are medicinal herbs, which will be an effective remedy for stuffy noses.

You will need:

  • 3 teaspoons of dried peppermint
  • 3 teaspoons of dry thyme
  • Boiling water

Boil water and pour it in a small bowl. Add the peppermint and the dried thyme to the boiling water and mix thoroughly. Place a towel over your head and tilt your face over your bowl, while maintaining a safe distance of about 10 inches. Inhale and exhale for about 10 minutes and do this 2 to 3 times in a day, until your nose is unclogged.

  1. Eucalyptus Aroma

Eucalyptus oil is quite useful as a remedy for a stuffy nose that has been caused by nasal congestion.

Boil water to its boiling point and pour it into a small bowl. Add some drops of eucalyptus oil to the boiled water. Inhale the steam gradually, for about 15 minutes.

Please note that if you do not have eucalyptus oil, you can use peppermint oil for the same procedure.

  1. Soup

SoupThe good news with this remedy is the fact that you can use any type of soup, as long as the soup is hot. Some of the best soups that you can opt to use include vegetable soup, chicken and lentil soup.

Just prepare the soup and take it twice or thrice in a day, and it will help relieve the stuffy nose.

  1. Proper Diet

You can make some adjustments in your diet as a remedy for stuffy nose. Nonetheless, you should ensure that you maintain a proper diet that will enhance your overall well-being.

You can make a habit of taking spicy foods, when you are down with this condition of a stuffy nose. Generally, at the end of the meal you will have a running nose, which means that your nose is unblocking. The foods to avoid include wheat, grains, milk and other dairy items, for this period.

Always make sure that you take warm or hot water when you have a stuffy nose, this will also facilitate unblocking of the sinuses.

  1. Spicy Food

We have already talked about taking spicy foods as a home remedy for stuffy nose. This is an emphasis that you should increase the intake so as to make the most of this remedy.

Some of the best spices include red chilies, garlic, ginger and onions. The spices in the food will make it easier for the mucus to flow from the nasal entries. As a result, this will remedy the stuffy nose.

  1. Chicken Soup

In one of the remedies above, we highlighted chicken soup as one of the most effective remedies for stuffy nose. You can take as much soup as you prefer and you can also choose to add some spices like ginger and garlic to enhance the efficiency of the remedy.

Prepare your chicken soup using your favorite recipe. Add spices that you prefer like chilies, ginger or garlic. You can also add lemon juice to the soup.

We recommend taking 2 to 3 cups in a given day to cure the stuffy nose. We have also emphasized the need to add spices so as to help in clearing your nasal passage in a short while.

  1. Mustard Oil

Mustard oil is extracted from mustard seeds and this is an effective home remedy for a stuffy nose. You are required to apply the oil into your nose so as to clear the congested nose.

  • Place a little mustard oil on your fingers and ensure that the fingers are clean.
  • Insert the fingers with the oil in your nostrils and repeat the operation two or three times a day.

Alternatively, you may use mustard oil for preparing meals and it will still help relieve stuffy nose.

  1. Honey

If you have been following the various home remedies that I provide, you will realize honey appears frequently. This Honeyis due to its properties, which make it a remedy for various medical conditions like stuffy nose.

Take 2 teaspoons of honey twice a day to cure stuffy nose. If you want better results, you can add the honey to a glass of warm water and take the same dose of twice a day.

Mixing honey with milk is also an effective solution to unblocking your nose.

  1. Neti Pot

This is one of the most unique remedies of all times in clearing a stuffy nose. The Neti pot will be used to clear secretions that come from your nostrils, by removing the blockage.

You will need:

  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • Warm water
  • A Neti pot

Start with the preparation of a saline mixture or salty water. This is done by adding a teaspoon of water to the warm water in a glass.

Pour the saline mixture into your Neti pot and tilt your head, with a sink below you. Hold the spout of the Neti pot and pour the saline solution into your nostrils.

The solution will stream out and hereby clearing any fluids that may be causing nasal blockages. Repeat this procedure for a few minutes, while toggling between the two nasal entries.

The critical thing is to ensure that the saline solution comes out from the nostrils; otherwise this may cause more complications. In the event that you do not have a Neti pot, you may use any other irrigation device available.

Video first seen on AshleysGreenLife.

  1. Basil

Besides being a great cure for stuffy nose, frequent use of basil is known to be an effective measure to prevent nasal problems. You should make it a habit to use as often as you can.

All you need for this remedy are basil leaves. Once you get the basil leaves, chew them two or three times in a day. I highly recommend chewing of the leaves early in the morning before taking your breakfast and late at night just before retiring to bed.

If you find that chewing is difficult for you, then prepare tea using the basil leaves and it will give you better results.

  1. Fenugreek Seeds

Fenugreek seeds are known to make the mucus thin and lighter and thereby opening your sinus activities. When the mucus is thin and the inflammation of the sinuses is reduced, it becomes easier to have a clear nose.

You will need:

  • A glass of water
  • Fenugreek seeds

Start by having fenugreek seeds crashed or blended, and add them to the glass of water. Heat the water with the blended fenugreek seeds for a couple of minutes and then remove from the heat.

Sieve the liquid and drink it while still relatively hot. You can take the concoction a number of times in a day, until the nose is unblocked.

There is an alternative direction whereby you can use fenugreek seeds as an ingredient in making soup. Remember, we have already established that soup is a great remedy for stuffy nose; take fenugreek soup and have a clear nose.

  1. Herbal Tea

TeaSince time immemorial, herbal tea has been rated as one of the best remedies for various conditions. It is also ideal for the overall well-being of your health and this makes it an ideal remedy for stuffy nose.

There are so many different herbs that have been identified to have medicinal value. Peppermint, chamomile and blackberry are some of the best herbs that I would recommend for making herbal tea.

You should use these herbs in your regular tea and they will gradually help you have a clear nose. You may also include ginger and rosemary leaves in your tea for better results.

  1. Garlic

The nasal cavity is seriously affected when you have a cold. In as much as you will feel uncomfortable when you have seasonal influenza, the American Academy for Otolaryngology says that your body is engaged in a serious battle with various micro-organisms.

Sadly, the battle will often culminate in inflammation of your sinuses, thereby causing blockage in your nostrils.

Garlic is one of the best remedies for cold and stuffy nose. You should pick the garlic in the knob, which will be in a band of cloves and use it for this remedy.

There are several compounds that you will find inside garlic like allins, fructosans and saponins, among others. These are the components that allow garlic to have antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral properties. These are claims that have been verified by the Herbal Medicines Organization.

Garlic has the capacity to help in the management of hypertension and cholesterol as it will lower the blood levels. Over and above, we can safely conclude that this is one of the most useful herbs in medicinal practices.

Furthermore, it is also used in the treatment of general respiratory conditions, intestinal gas, PMS and stoppage among others.

To use garlic as the remedy for stuffy nose, chew one of two cloves two times in a day. Alternatively, you can use garlic as an ingredient in any type of soup that you wish to prepare.

You may also opt to take pure garlic soup for speedy results.

  1. Hot Ginger Compress

Ginger contains powerful anti-inflammatory components, which is why I consider it to be a valuable remedy for stuffy nose.

Get the ginger root and cut into small slices. Put the ginger in your saucepan and add two cups of boiling water. Allow the mixture to boil for about 20 minutes, in low heat. Soak a piece of cloth in the mixture and place it over your head and face for about 15 minutes.

The other option would be making ginger tea, which is a great solution for clogged nasal cavities. You should repeat the Direction severally to ensure total recovery and prevention of recurrence.

  1. Tomato Juice

Tomatoes have a high level of anti-oxidants and vitamin C, which is essential in enhancing the immunity in your body. The tomatoes will unclog your mucus by reducing inflammation in the sinuses and eliminating mucus.

You will need:

  • A glass of tomato juice
  • 1 tablespoon of cleaved garlic

When you have your glass of tomato juice, add a tablespoon of cleaved garlic and a pinch of salt. Blend the mixture properly and place in a pot to bubble for a few minutes.

Drink up the tomato juice to clear the stuffy nose. Adding lemon juice to the mixture will increase the effectiveness of this remedy. Take it at least twice a day, until your nostrils are clear.

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a common ingredient in most homes and as such, it is readily available. This is an essential remedy for stuffy nose and can also be used to cure other sinus problem.

If you do not have cider vinegar in your home, buy one and keep it for a rainy day.

If you are suffering from stuffy nose, mix two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with a glass of warm water. Drink this mixture 2-4 times in a day so as to treat your stuffy nose.

  1. Lemon

Lemon can be used as a remedy on its own to treat stuffy nose, but can also be added to other remedies to make them more effective, as indicated above.

If you opt to use the fruit, you need to apply it around the nasal area so as to clear the blocked nose.

You will need:

  • 2 teaspoons of lemon juice
  • Black pepper powder
  • Salt

Blend all the ingredients properly and then apply the mixture around the nasal area. When applying the mixture, you should take precaution so as to ensure you do not rub your eyes, as it can be quite irritating.

  1. Peppermint Tea

Peppermint is very rich in menthol and this will make it easier to clear your nasal passages. It will do this by acting as a thinner to the mucus, thereby unclogging your nose.

Peppermint tea has a therapeutic effect when combined with menthol, steam and warm liquids. Each of the components can serve as a great remedy for stuffy nose.

  1. Acupressure

Acupressure is also an amazing remedy for stuffy nose. The Direction is some form of acupuncture and will entail apply some pressure to some strategic points on the body. This will eventually relieve any medical issues, including a stuffy nose.

As far as being a remedy in nasal congestion, acupressure will reduce the pressure on the sinuses.

  1. Place both index fingers on both sides of the eye cavity and begin to massage the sinuses. You should follow the outward circle motion and repeat this for about 30 seconds.
  2. The next step would be placing your index fingers on the outside and below the eyes. Repeat the massaging Direction for about 30 seconds in the same manner.
  3. The final stage is using your thumbs on your cheek bones. Massage outwards for about 30 seconds as well.

You should repeat the 3 steps 3-4 times in a day, until you can feel the relief of the pressure of your sinuses.

These are the top 20 home remedies for stuffy nose and they will work without causing any serious side effects.

If you know other home remedies that worked for you, share your experience in the comment section below! And click the banner to learn how our ancestor healed their wounds and diseases using old forgotten remedies!


This article has been written by Mandy Wong from I Keep Healthy for Survivopedia.

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Survival Medicine Hour: Epipens, Hurricanes, Kratom, Chamomile

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The Survival Medicine Hour hosted by Joe Alton, MD aka Dr. Bones and Amy Alton, ARNP, aka Nurse Amy, are bringing you another episode of exciting and thrilling (well very entertaining and useful at least) survival information. Don’t miss out! Folks we have another hurricane on the horizon, Matthew is churning up the seas and is now a level 3 Hurricane with the possibility of hitting the USA in a few days time. Get prepared and learn what you need to do now to stay safe. Storm safety for all kinds of storms is vital knowledge.
What’s up with the Epipen crisis? What will you do if you don’t have or can’t afford the epipen, or even the still expensive ($606 for 2 pack) generic version? Dr. Bones shares a method of administering an alternative in the face of an emergency.
Kratom is being made into a schedule 1 drug, which is the same level as Heroin. This herb is blamed for 15 deaths, but only one of those deaths was the person found with only Kratom onboard. Many Kratom users herald it as the reason they were able to stop using other drugs, like heroin and pain meds. The users and their families contacted their congress members and a call to delay the change of Kratom to a schedule 1 drug has been made by the supportive congress members. More research should be done to accurately determine the effects of Kratom before a hastily decision is made. We discuss this issue and give you the 411.
Chamomile is a wonderful herbal medicine. It has been used safely for thousands of years. It is know to calm digestive issues and calm nervous disorders. Nurse Amy discusses this awesome herbal remedy and how to use it.
To listen in, click below:
Joe and Amy Alton
Amy Alton Everglades Close up 400 x 600

Amy Alton, MD


Find out how to deal with medical issues in disaster/survival settings with the brand new 700 page Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The essential guide for when medical help is not on the way.

50 Congressmen Ask DEA To Hold Off On Kratom Ban

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Mitragyna speciosa (Kratom)

In a rare bipartisan effort, 50 members of Congress have asked the DEA to hold off on the upcoming ban on the active ingredients in the plant Kratom (Mitragyna speciose). Kratom, a member of the coffee family, is used by many Americans as a substitute for opiates.  A plethora of testimonials exist online by former users of Heroin and other drugs that the plant has “saved their life”. 130,000 people signed a recent White House petition to protest the DEA’s actions.

Politicians aren’t the only officials that suggest that the DEA’s decision might have been arrived hastily. Academicians at Sloan Kettering and Columbia suggest that the plant may have properties that could be harnessed into useful non-opioid painkillers.

On August 30th, the DEA banned, for a period of two years, the two active ingredients mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, categorizing them as Schedule I drugs, the same category as Heroin and LSD. The ban is effective September 30th, 2016. Schedule I drugs are thought to have no medical use and present a major risk of addiction. This action means that even possession of the plant may be considered illegal and subject to prosecution.

The DEA considers Kratom to be an imminent public hazard, but some members of Congress disagree. In a recent letter to all representatives, Congressmen Mark Pocan (D- Wisconin) and Matt Salmon (R- Arizona) wrote “It (Kratom) binds to some of the same receptors as opioids, providing some pain relief and a calming effect, but not the same high. And the chemical doesn’t cause the same, sometimes deadly side effects as opioids, such as respiratory depression.”

This statement from the DEA: “… Kratom is abused for its ability to produce opioid-like effects and is often marketed as a legal alternative to controlled substances. Law enforcement nationwide has seized more kratom in the first half of 2016 than any previous year and easily accounts for millions of dosages intended for the recreational market, according to DEA findings. In addition, kratom has a high potential for abuse, has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and has a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision. These three factors constitute a schedule I controlled substance according to the Controlled Substances Act passed by Congress in 1970.”

DEA statistics show more than 600 poison control calls relating to Kratom in the five year period from 2010 to 2015. Fifteen deaths have been attributed to Kratom use, although closer inspection reveals that fourteen of those deaths were also associated with other drugs. In contrast, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports 8,257 heroin-related deaths in 2013 alone.

Having said that, some countries where Kratom grows naturally have imposed a ban on export and, sometimes, use. This includes nations like Thailand and Malaysia.

Kratom is, indeed, a drug and should be regulated, but abruptly naming it a Schedule I substance similar to Heroin will discourage research into its properties and potential for use in cases of drug addiction, depression, PTSD, and chronic pain.

Once Kratom is off the market, will users return to opiates like Heroin? If they do, how many deaths will occur as a result? More than one, I would guess. Kratom may have addictive potential, but so do cigarettes and alcohol, which are responsible for many more deaths.

Should Kratom be regulated? Absolutely. As things stand now, there is no accepted dosage amount of Kratom and commercially-available products are widely variable in the amount of mitragynine and 7-hydroxy-mitragynine in them. Find and standardize an appropriate amount for safe use. This is a better option than taking it off the market altogether.

It’s a stretch to argue that Kratom is as bad as Heroin; the last thing we want is users to switch to substances that are more clearly associated with death.



Joe Alton, MD


Dr. Joe Alton

Joe Alton MD is a medical preparedness writer for disasters and epidemics, and looks for ways to use both conventional and alternative methods to deal with scenarios where help may not be on the way. Check out his brand new 700 page Third Edition of The Survival Medicine Handbook for over 150 medical issues that you might encounter in disaster situations.

Kratom, Natural Pain Reliever, Lost to FDA Actions

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Mitragyna speciose (Kratom)

One of the questions we’re often asked is what to do about chronic pain and drug addiction if some disaster occurs that knocks you off the grid, maybe for good. Certainly, pharmaceuticals would cease to be manufactured and whatever pain med you use or opiate drug you may be addicted to will become, very likely, unavailable, leaving you or members of your group high and dry. In these circumstances, you have to look toward natural sources of compounds that could help; things that you might even be able to grow in your survival garden.

Some states approve the possession and sale of marijuana  for medical and recreational use, but there is little true opioid effect to it, and recent studies show that it has a slight effect against pain, but mostly has a sedative effect that makes the pain more bearable. the Canadian Medical Association journal tested marijuana on a number of people who had chronic pain, and compared it to people who took a placebo, essentially a sugar pill. Those on the placebo rated their pain as a 6.1 out of 10 and the marijuana group rated their pain as 5.4.  A small difference, but a difference nonetheless, so it’s an option.

Another plant that has promise for chronic pain is called Kratom. Kratom is a herb that has been in widespread use in Southeast Asia for centuries; it is chewed for to increase stamina, induce gentle euphoria and relaxation, and relieve pain. Many testimonials exist as to its success helping people kick their addictions to opioid painkillers. On the other side of the coin, Kratom appears to have addictive potential itself, and several hundred cases of poisoning have been recorded, although many of the most severe cases seem to have mixed it with other recreational drugs. Use and/or export of Kratom has been outlawed in some countries where it grows naturally.

The chemical compounds in Kratom, (scientific name Mitragyna speciosa) are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine . These substances act on opioid receptors in the brain, just like heroin and morphine do. Kratom, however, is not an opiate. It’s actually a member of the coffee family. In any case, Kratom has been used by many people who swear by its effect on pain or used it to replace heroin and other street drugs.

Now, in a recent decision, the FDA has (abruptly) chosen to classify the active compounds in Kratom as Schedule I substances. Schedule 1 drugs include heroin and LSD, things determined to have no acceptable medical use and/or high addictive properties. Kratom now joins their ranks. The Drug Enforcement Administration announced that it would, for a period of two years, effectively ban Kratom,. By prohibiting the possession and use of mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, the DEA can make it illegal to even have the plant on your property.

This action probably stems from a report by the CDC that Kratom “intoxication” caused 600 calls to poison control centers over the last five years. This despite the claim from proponents of the plant that the number of “poisonings” are small compared to the number of people damaged by many other, even legal, substances. I found little scientific evidence of any lethal effects from using Kratom.

In any case, the FDA has taken up an anti-Kratom stance after several states banned the plant.

In the end, the Department of Health and Human Services is involved in studies on Kratom and its final determination will decide if the plant is banned forever.  

What does this mean? Well, that outlawing Kratom may turn its users to things like heroin. Results might be an increase in opiate overdose deaths, something already at epidemic proportions throughout various parts of the country. Secondly, it takes away an natural alternative for the homesteader or off-grid medic to deal with addiction issues or with significant chronic pain in austere settings.

It seems to me that there has been a rush to judgement when it comes to Kratom. Hopefully, the DEA will see the light as to the realistic uses and potential risks of the plant, and allow at least limited access to what might be a very valuable survival medical tool. Don’t hold your breath, though; it’s not likely that, once a substance is controlled by the government, that you’ll be able to get or grow it in the future (marijuana being the rare exception).

You still have until the end of September 2016 to get some plants or supplements. The plants are going out of stock quickly, but there are still supplements available at various online sites. Check out the American Kratom Association for more information. I’m not telling you to break the law, just to do your own research and reach your own conclusions.

Joe Alton, MD

AuthorJoeFind out more about natural alternatives for pain and other medical issues in the brand new Third Edition of The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way.


Survival Medicine Hour: Kratom Ban, Dental Trauma, Medical Uses for Rosemary

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In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy (Joe Alton MD and Amy Alton ARNP), Dr. Bones discusses the upcoming ban on the useful but, perhaps, addictive herb Kratom, a Southeast Asian herb used for centuries to treat chronic pain and depression, and used by some today to replace addictions to opiates. Also, Nurse Amy discusses the many medical uses of Rosemary, and Dr. Bones discusses dental trauma, and what to do about that loose or knocked-out tooth in a survival setting.


To listen in, click below:

Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,


Joe and Amy Alton

batman and robin

The Dynamic Duo

Survival Medicine Hour: Natural Pain Relief, Super Lice, Floods

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car driving in flood

Flood Safety

In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour, Joe and Amy Alton, aka Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, tell you about the recent deadly floods in Louisiana and offer some tips on how to keep your family safe during and in the aftermath of the disaster. Also, Dr.Alton tells you about some mutant lice that seem to have replaced normal head lice in most parts of the country. The downside: They’re resistant to most over-the-counter lice shampoos and lotions. What to do? You’ll find out here.


Nit (Lice Egg)

Also, Nurse Amy continues her series on alternative pain relief, with a number of natural substances you might not know have analgesic action!


All this and more on Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy’s Survival Medicine Hour!

To Listen in, click below:


Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,


Joe and Amy Alton

joe and amy radio

Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy

The Formula For Penicillin

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The Penicillin Formula

As you might know, I write mostly about how to deal with medical issues in situations where modern medical facilities and care don’t exist. Accumulating medications for disaster settings may be simple when it comes to finding aspirin and other non-prescription drugs, but prescription drugs will be hard to get for those who can’t write their own prescriptions or don’t have a relationship with an understanding physician.  Antibiotics are a case in point.

I consider this a major issue because there will be a much larger incidence of infections when people have to fend for themselves. In a long-term survival setting, they will perform activities to which they are not accustomed and injuries are likely.  Simple cuts and scratches from, say, chopping wood can begin to show infection, in the form of redness, heat, and swelling, within a relatively short time.

The History Channel, some years ago, aired a special called “After Armageddon”, where a family gets out of Dodge after a collapse-level catastrophe and eventually makes their way to a village of survivors. Integrating into the community, the father (a paramedic) takes to gardening and other survival-type activities. He suffers a cut which quickly becomes infected. Unfortunately, no antibiotics are available and he slowly succumbs to the infection despite knowing exactly what’s happening to him.

Treatment of infections at an early stage improves the chance that they will heal quickly and completely.  However, many rugged individualists would most likely ignore the problem until it gets worse. This is unwise, as an infection can become life threatening if not treated. Having antibiotics readily available would allow them to deal with the issue until medical help (if available at all) arrives.


Years ago, I wrote the first physician article about aquarium and avian antibiotics as a way to stockpile medications for the uncertain future.  Since the only ingredient in certain of these medications is the antibiotic itself, it’s a reasonable alternative. There are some veterinary antibiotics, like Fish-Mox, that are only produced in human dosages and appear identical to human pharmaceuticals, down to the identification numbers on the capsules. For more information, see my series of articles on the subject.

This is not to say you should treat yourself in normal times. When modern medical care is available, seek it out. The practice of medicine without a license is illegal and punishable by law.

Once in a while, I get someone who wants to know how to make penicillin (isn’t it just bread mold?).  It’s true that penicillin is a by-product of a fungus known as penicillium, which, indeed, grows on bread and fruit.  It was originally discovered by Alexander Fleming in 1929. In 1942, a moldy cantaloupe in Peoria, Illinois was found to have a strong version of it.  Most of the world’s supply of penicillin in the 1940s came from cultures of the fungus on that cantaloupe.

There is a formula for making penicillin at home. It’s next to impossible, honestly, to get all the chemicals needed to produce it safely. Besides the legal issues, home laboratories are dicey at best (just ask a local Meth dealer). To illustrate a point, however, here it is:


penicillin mold

Penicillium Notatum mold

Penicillin is a by-product of the Penicillium fungus, but the thing is, it’s a by-product of a Penicillium fungus that’s under stress.  So you have to grow the fungus, and then expose it to stresses that will make it produce Penicillin.

First you need to produce a “culture” of the penicillium fungus. – A microbiological culture is a method of multiplying microscopic organisms by letting them reproduce in a certain environment under controlled conditions.

One of the most important things to know is that it is easy for other microbes to contaminate your penicillium culture, so use sterile techniques at all times or you will likely wind up with something entirely different (and, possibly, harmful).

NIH penicillin process

general penicillin production process (from NIH)


Expose a slice of bread or citrus peel or a cantaloupe rind to the air in a dark place at 70 deg. F until a bluish-green mold develops.

Cut two fresh slices of whole wheat bread into ½ inch cubes and place in a 750ml Erlenmeyer flask with a non-absorbent plug. One thing you might not know is that a lot of bakeries put a substance called a mold inhibitor on bread.  This suppresses fungal growth so you should probably use bread that you baked yourself.

Sterilize the flask and contents in a pressure cooker for at least 15 minutes at 15 psi. An alternate method is to place in an oven at 315 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour.

In a sterile fashion, transfer the fungus from the bread or fruit peel into the flask containing the bread cubes. Allow the cubes to sit in the dark at 70 degrees for 5 days. This is called incubation.  That’s the easy part.


This is where it gets complicated. Prepare one liter of the following solution:

Lactose Monohydrate                    44.0 gm

Corn Starch                                      25.0 gm

Sodium Nitrate                                3.0 gm

Magnesium Sulfate                         0.25 gm

Potassium MonoPhosphate          0.50 gm

Glucose Monohydrate                   2.75 gm

Zinc Sulfate                                      0.044 gm

Manganese Sulfate                        0.044 gm

You’ll obviously need a scale that measures very small amounts. These are called gram scales and you can find them online.  The above ingredients can be found at chemical supply houses, but you’ll have to buy a significant amount.

Dissolve the ingredients in the order listed in 500ml of cold tap water and then add more cold water to complete a liter (1000 ml).

Adjust the pH to 5.0-5.5 using HCL (hydrochloric acid). You’ll need a pH test kit like those found at pet shops and garden supply stores. Fill glass containers with a quantity of this solution. Only use enough so that when the container is placed on its side the liquid will not touch the plug.

Sterilize the containers and solution in a pressure cooker or stove just like you did before. When it cools, scrape up about a tablespoon of the fungus from the bread cubes and throw it into the solution.

Allow the containers to incubate on their sides at 70 degrees for seven days. It’s important that they are not moved around.  If you did it correctly, you’ll have Penicillin in the liquid portion of the media. Filter the mixture through a coffee filter or something similar, plug the bottles, and refrigerate immediately.


To extract the penicillin from the solution:

Adjust the cold solution to pH 2.2 using (.01 %) HCL. Mix it with cold ethyl acetate in a “separatory funnel” (that’s a funnel with a stopcock; you can find all these items at chemistry glass suppliers) and shake well for 30 seconds or so.

Drain the ethyl acetate (which should be on the bottom) into a beaker which has been placed in an ice bath and repeat the process. Add 1% potassium acetate and mix. You want the ethyl acetate to evaporate off. This can be induced by a constant flow of air over the top of the beaker, say from a fan.  When it dries, the remaining crystals are a mixture of potassium penicillin and potassium acetate.

There you have it, you have put together a laboratory and made Penicillin!  You are now officially a mad scientist.


It’s clear that making penicillin at home is beyond the ability of non-chemists.  However, it does make a point.   If there’s a major long-term disaster, there isn’t a way that anyone will be able to produce reliably safe and effective antibiotics at home. You might read about producing penicillin teas, but the issue is that you might have contamination by other molds that could be hazardous to your health.

If you are concerned about a collapse-level event, it may be wise to consider stockpiling some veterinary equivalents. At present, no prescription is necessary nor is there a limit to quantities purchased. This may eventually change as the CDC has declared that an increased “stewardship” of animal antibiotics will be necessary to combat the issue of antibiotic resistance. This is a reasonable concern, but restrictions will probably involve drugs for food animals first.

You can find lists of useful antibiotics, their veterinary equivalents, and much more in The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, now in its 700 page Third Edition. The book is available on Amazon or at

If you don’t want to buy fish medicine, at least grow plants that might have some antibacterial action. Garlic, for example, has scientifically proven antibacterial properties, as do some other herbs.  Honey, in its raw and unprocessed state, is also consider to be antibacterial. More on various herbal options in a future article.

Joe Alton, MD


Dr. Alton


Survival Medicine Hour: Snakebite, Bee Sting, Heat Waves, Zika in the US?

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bee stinger in a sting wound

In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Joe Alton, MD (Dr. Bones) and Amy Alton, ARNP (Nurse Amy) tackles a bunch of topics. First, new cases of Zika in Florida may not be related to travel outside the country. Until now, all cases were from people who returned from the epidemic zone in the Caribbean and Latin America. Puerto Rico now has 4000 cases, almost all locally transmitted, and the CDC thinks we’ll have some clusters of local cases in the continental U.S. as well.

snakebite ankle with bruising

snakebite wound

Also, summer is here and a murderous heat wave has gripped the Nation’s East, Midwest, and Southwest, causing at least 6 deaths and cause the heat index to feel like 100 degrees or more in locations that are used to much milder weather. Heat stroke is a major risk and you need to know how to identify and treat it.

heat dome reuse

the “heat dome”

Plus, out in the woods you’ll encounter a lot of critters. Last week, we talked about bites and attacks from warm furry ones, this weeks it’s snakes and bees/wasps. Learn all the latest about how to deal with a snakebite when modern medical help is not available, plus how to use an epi-pen to treat severe allergic reactions like anaphylactic shock.

All this and more on the latest Survival Medicine Hour with Joe and Amy Alton! To listen in, click below:

Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,

Joe and Amy Alton


The Altons


10 Essential Medical Resources You Can Get From Nature

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leechesJust because there is a currency collapse, martial law, or a natural disaster, that does not mean you can ignore medical needs. What will you do when there are no bandages, no medications, and no way to get help?

Even if there is only “weeds”, trees, and moss around, you may have a number of useful medicinal aids at your disposal.

Learning how to recognize natures medical resources is a very important part of preparing for a crisis. Aside from simply reading a few books and going on a few field trips, take the time now to make sure you know how to prepare specific treatments in a range of situations.

How to Use Nature’s Medicines

As someone with a keen interest in herbal remedies and natural medicines, I concluded long ago that it is truly difficult to remember all the incredible healing resources in nature. It is truly to your advantage to gain hands on experience and keep a well organized journal that contains detailed information on both the resources and how to use them. This journal should be treated with as much care as other sources of information such as maps and anything else that you consider indispensable to long term survival.

If you choose to keep a copy on your computer, do not forget that it may no longer be accessible if you do not have access to electricity.  A good medical journal may span several hundred pages and may also be quite thick from pressed specimens, however it is well worth its weight.

In time of need, you would truly be amazed at how confusing a sketch or even a photo may look when compared to a specimen that you can see and touch for a closer comparison.


Taking courses in how to use natural medicines is critical if you expect to know what you are doing in time of need and be successful. No matter whether you study online or actually attend wilderness medical excursions, do not simply put the materials aside once you are done with the courses. Always make the information part of your personal wilderness medicine journal and try to practice making medicines and equipment as much as possible.

Herbal Remedies for Chronic Illnesses

Most preppers already know that good quality medical care is essential for preserving health, managing injuries, and ensuring that the next generation of humans can be born and grow to maturity.

Many people also realize that in a major crisis or social collapse, medical care will be unavailable. Critical medications such as antibiotics and other drugs will be even more important in the post-collapse world. Even though you, and others may already know about herbal remedies and may also know how to grow and prepare them, that does not mean your work is done.

Consider a situation where you have been growing garlic, ginger, turmeric, and other herbs that can be used as herbal antibiotics. Perhaps you have even made oils from these herbs or dried them out for later use. Now let’s say  a major crisis occurs and you cannot get home for several days in order to retrieve your stash of herbs, or worse yet, your stash gets ruined while bugging out. In these situations, not knowing about the local wild plants in your area can spell disaster.

Here are some things you can do right now to ensure you will always be able to find and prepare the wild herbs in your local area for medicinal needs:

  • Get a field guide that features pictures and descriptions of medicinal herbs in your local area. The guide should give you full details about where they grow and also how to recognize them. The guide should also give you a listing of plants that are commonly mistaken for the plants you will need for medicinal purposes.
  • Make a list of all herbs that may be of interest to you. Do not list herbs that are from rare species or ones that are listed as endangered.
  • Go to sites where you can find the plants you identified as useful for your needs. Once you find a good sized patch of herbs to work with, take samples of leaves, stems, roots, flowers, and any fruit the plants may bear. These small samples should be done for all four seasons and folded into your journal.  You can also take pictures of the leaves and other parts of the plant, print them out, and keep them with the actual samples. In your journal, also make note of the spot where they are growing and the basic characteristics of the area.
  • Find a local herbal specialist or Cooperative extension and ask an expert to confirm that you have all the plants labeled correctly.
  • Once you have confirmed that your listings are all correct, you can begin looking for other places where these herbs grow well, and also start learning how to prepare them for medicinal needs. If at all possible, try to gather seeds from the wild plants. If you have to bug out or move to another area, you can try planting these seeds indoors and see if you can get them to grow.

In a major crisis, it is entirely possible that you will wind up traveling hundreds of miles as part of a massive evacuation form a dangerous area. Since there is no telling where you will wind up, you will need to use some additional methods for spotting medicinal herbs. You can try keeping field guides on hand.

One way to expedite the process of finding medicinal herbs in foreign locations is to see if you can find ones related to herbs that you already know about.  Herbs that grow in other regions may be more or less potent than the ones you are used to. Make sure that you know how to test herbal potencies for your own safety and well being.

Non-Herbal Remedies for Skin and Wound Management

No matter whether you are trying to find your way out of the city, navigate through a woods, or move objects from one place to another, injuries are bound to happen. During a major crisis, you can also expect infectious diseases to increase because of poor sanitation and increased risk of exposure to infected individuals.

In many cases, wounds that you would normally pay little attention to may become infected and require direct application of antibiotics.  If you are moving through unfamiliar areas, you can also expect increased problems with wounds because your immune system may not be as well adapted to the exact strains of pathogens in the area.

Here are some natural remedies that you can apply directly to skin and wounds:

1. Honey – even though honey has a sweet taste and seems very mild, it is one of the most powerful antibacterials you can find.  It has been used successfully on both oral and skin wounds for centuries without major side effects or other problems.  If you are able to find a beehive, be very careful when gathering the honey.  Since while honeybees are at very high risk for extinction, try to take only as much honey as you need, and try to avoid breaking apart the entire hive.  You should also do your best to subdue the bees with smoke instead of killing them.

2. Sphagnum Moss – Since sphagnum moss contains iodine, it will work well as an antibiotic. You can usually find this moss in bogs or other marshy areas.

3. Salt Water – If you are near an ocean coastline or other source of salt water, you can spray salt water onto wounds as a form of antibacterial. Do not rub the wounds with the salt water. Instead, try to run the salt water over the wounds similar to taking a shower.  Before using salt water, you should also filter it and boil it to make sure it is as clean as possible.

salt water

4. Tannic Acid – If you have rashes, blister, sores, boils, or other skin ailments, tannic acid may be of use.  You can obtain this acid from boiling acorns, and also from nutgalls that form on oak trees.

Splints and Bandages

To make bandages, non-poisonous leaves can be used to put pressure on the cut, and also to protect it from the elements. The best leaves to use are from the Plantain plant. If you chew on the leaves to release liquid from within the leaves, you will also have a natural antibiotic in the form of mashed leaves to put on the wound. From there, just use a second leaf to wrap around the crushed Plantain and the wound.bandage

Some fungus that grow on oak and silver birch trees may also be safe to use for bandaging.  Since it is notoriously difficult to tell safe fungus from poisonous ones, be sure to ask a local expert on mushrooms, molds, and mosses so that you know what to look for. As with locating and identifying useful herbal remedies in a woods or field, be sure to take samples and photos for your journal of useful organisms as well as ones that it may be confused with.

Splints for broken bones and injuries can be made from just about any tree branch.  To keep the splint in place, make rope from yucca leaves or any other leaf that has strong, straight fibers in the leaf.

If these plants are not available, tree bark from smooth bark trees can also be used. In order to avoid friction burns and abrasions, use mullein leaves (or any other non-toxic leaf) as a cushion between the splint and the the body part being immobilized.

In order to make a splint from a branch:

  • Choose a branch that is long enough and wide enough to support the area that needs to be immobilized.  The finished splint should also be long enough so that the joint above and below the injured area will also be immobilized.
  • The branch should be as straight as possible and of even thickness for the required length.  You can use a branch that is bent or curved, but try to use the straightest area parallel to the injured area.
  • Try to avoid branches that show signs of fungal growth, insect damage, or anything else that might increase the risk of developing an infection.
  • If you have sharp enough knife, try to smooth out the rough areas of the branch so that it is as smooth as possible.  You may also want to flatten out the splint so that there is a wider surface area.  Just make sure that all areas that you cut are covered so that your skin does not come in contact with the unseasoned wood.
  • When placing a splint, make sure that the rope or cord is not too tight or too loose.  A wrapping that is too tight can cut off blood circulation and lead to further problems.  If the wrapping is too loose, the splint will move around and cause more abrasions.  A loose splint will also fail to support the injured area and keep it properly immobilized.
  • Remember that if you have a broken bone or a dislocated joint, splinting the injured area is only a temporary fix.  You will still need to find a competent medical professional to move the bone or joints back into place.  Unless you have taken courses and practiced bone and joint setting, it is best to leave these matters to a doctor.  A broken bone or dislocated joint can still be near blood vessels or nerves that are still intact.  The last thing  you will want to do is try to manipulate the broken or dislocated areas and wind up causing damage to other tissue in the area.

Tourniquets and Wound Packing Materials

When you have a deep wound, or one that is bleeding heavily, you may need to use several different methods to stop the bleeding and then make sure the wound is protected.  Once you address the most immediate problem, you may still need other items from nature to ensure that the wound is managed as well as possible.

1. Tourniquets –  When blood is spurting or pouring form a wound limb, there is no time to prepare a bandage let alone a wound filler. Your first job may well be to cut off the blood flow as quickly as possible using a tourniquet.  Just about anything that can be wrapped tightly between the wound and the heart can be used.

For example, if you are in a meadow or field, tall grass or straw can be twisted together quickly and wrapped above the wound.  Anything that is pliable enough to wrap, and then twist will work to form a tourniquet.

Remember that you must be able to loosen and tighten the tourniquet every few minutes in order to avoid gangrene.  If you only have straw or other relatively weak stalks or even tree bark to work with, you may need  to make several tourniquets to manage the injury.

2. Pressure Bandages – If you have an abdominal wound, or some other wound that cannot be isolated using a tourniquet, you will need to make a pressure bandage. Once again, just about anything will do as long as you can apply pressure without completely stopping blood flow. You can try taking several leaves from safe plants and roll them up to form a pad large enough to cover the wound.

If soft, absorbent leaves such as mullein are available, use them close to the wound, and then stiffer ones on the outer layer. From there, use your hands, or even a flat rock to hold the leaves in place and apply additional pressure.  Remember that as with a tourniquet, it can take several minutes for pressure and blood clotting factors to finally stop the bleeding.  Try to make additional bandages from leaves so that you can apply new ones as needed.

3. Cauterizing Agents –  If you are bleeding from a major artery, then it is possible you will need to burn the wound so that it stops bleeding.  While cauterizing carries many risks, those problems can be dealt with later on. If you are bleeding heavily, stopping it needs to be your first priority. Even though you may not have access to metal in the woods, you can still build a fire and heat up rocks (after you remove soil and debris from them)  that can be applied to the wound. Be very careful about the rocks you choose, as they can explode when heated, or just as bad, have poisonous chemicals that will get into the wound.

In a sense, choosing rocks for cauterizing, and other medical needs is not so different from choosing herbs.  You will need to know a good bit about the geology of the area and the chemical makeup of rocks and their inclusions.  For example, if you found a nice, flat piece of gray shale, that does not mean the entire rock has the same chemical composition.  It may have some hidden parts that have toxic chemicals that will move out of porous areas of the rock when it is heated.

As with herbal remedies, try to obtain a comprehensive field guide that gives you detailed information about rocks in the local area and how they are most inclined to form and mix together.  Next, go out and collect as many samples as you can. Bring your samples to a local geologist and ask him/her about which rocks can be safely heated up and used for medicinal needs such as cauterizing.  If you can find a geologist or rock hound that has a special interest in hiking or natural medicine, then he/she may be a more viable source of information.

4. Wound Fillers – After you stop a wound from bleeding, there may still be large holes that need packing in order to prevent further damage.  Here are three substances that you can use. While some require more preparation than others, at least you will have some options to choose from based on the materials available.

  • Pine Sap – warm up the sap so that it is soft and sticky.  Aside from having antibacterial properties, pine sap will protect the wound and will also stop the bleeding.
  • Calcium Alginate – if you happen to be near a bed of kelp, or brown algae, you can extract calcium alginate from the leaves.  When applied to a large or open wound, the moisture from the wound will cause the calcium alginate to form a protective gel.  As with cauterizing, you still run the risk of developing a serious infection of the wound is not managed properly or if the  calcium alginate does not all form up into a gel.  That being said, this substance can also help stop blood flow, and may be of value if you have the time to prepare it.
  • Sphagnum Moss, Leaves, and Other Soft Materials – Non-toxic mosses, leaves, and even grass can be used to pack wounds and keep them from reopening.  If you must use leaves, try to find herbs to mix in that also have antibacterial properties.

Makeshift Syringes

Chances are, if you are working with herbs or other natural medicines, there may not be much need to inject substances into the bloodstream.  Nevertheless, it may still be necessary to isolate insulin from animal sources  to treat diabetes, or other injectables that require some kind of syringe or needle.  If you think about the basic parts of a syringe, you may be surprised to find that there are quite a few ways to make a makeshift version from natural materials.

  • The Needle – to work effectively as a makeshift syringe needle, the material used must be very thin, strong enough to resist breaking when puncturing the skin, and hollow.  Some possible sources of needles include wasp and hornet stingers (do not use bee stingers because they are barbed), fine porcupine quills, and very thin reeds.  If you are going to use insect stingers, make sure that the all of the venom is removed from the stinger.
  • The Barrel – this is where the medicine will be held until injected into the bloodstream.  Just about any rigid, hollow stem from a non-toxic plant will do.  Thicker reeds, bamboo stem, and other dried, durable stems can be used for this purpose.  To attach the needle to the barrel, you may need to set the needle at an angle so that there is less chance of breaking it.  Next, you can seal off the space between the needle and the barrel with pine pitch or some other natural glue like substance.
  • The Plunger – anything from a well trimmed tight fitting small branch to a solid, rigid plant stem can be used for the plunger.  Just bear in mind that the plunger must fit snugly inside the barrel so that the medicine is pushed through the needle instead of squirting out the back end.

Some problems that you may encounter when using a makeshift syringe:

1. It will be very hard to make exact dosage measurements.  If you have a way to determine how much material is ejected from the needle, then you can try making notches in the barrel and the plunger so that you can make  a reasonable estimate.  Before you go into a crisis situation and run out of syringes, make it a point to know exactly how much liquid should be discharged with each dose. You can do that with a measured syringe now, and then make a circle representing that amount in your journal.  If possible, try also allowing one single dose to stain the page so that you can observe the size of the liquid stain on a known paper source.  Make sure that you have an additional blank page so that you can make comparisons in the field.  Do not forget to make these comparisons for herbal or animal based injectables that you may need to prepare from scratch.

2. Even though you may be able to get medicine to move through the needle, you may not be able to create enough of a vacuum to pull medicine into it.  You will be best served by creating a simple leaf funnel or using some other means to pour the medication into the syringe.

Once you are able to make needles in a wilderness setting, do not overlook applications other than injecting medicines.

Solid needles can be used to stitch wounds (using animal sinew, fibers from plants) and also for acupuncture. Today, even conventional medicine includes acupuncture as  valid treatment for pain and other ailments.

As long as you know how to sterilize the makeshift needles and where to apply them, there are plenty of ways you can use this remedy as part of your wilderness survival kit.

Crutches and Carriers

When it comes to making improvised medical supplies, crutches are probably some of the easiest to make.  If you are in a wooded area, simply pick a branch or tree limb that has a fork at one end.  Try to pick one with the widest angle possible in the fork so that your armpit has a larger surface to rest on.

Next, use leave and vines/makeshift cordage to create a cushion that will fit under your arm.  If possible, add an absorbent top layer of leaves so that the padding does not all become soaked with sweat.  You may need to change the pad often for the sake of comfort and to avoid infections.   When cutting the wood for the crutch, make sure that it fits comfortably.

If you are in a group, those who are injured may slow down the entire group.  Rather than leave people behind or take a risk on not getting where you need to go, try making a litter or other form of carrier.  Adults and children can be dragged along far easier than they can be carried.  You can make a simple carrier using the following basic instructions:

  • Take 2 saplings or branches that are about 1/3 longer than the height of the person who needs help being transported.   Next, take 2 more saplings that are a little longer than the shoulder length of the individual.   If the person is very heavy, or you do not have durable materials to make a mat with, then collect 2 or 3 more of the shorter branches.
  • Use vines, bark rope, or other cordage to tie together the saplings.  The longest saplings should be parallel to each other.  Set one of the shorter branches at one end of the longer branches, but leave a few inches so that the bottom of the longer branches is the only thing that will be touching the ground.
  • Set the second shorter branch at the opposite end.  There should be just enough room between the top and bottom for the person to lay down without his/her feet or head flopping over the frame.  You should also have enough room at the top of the litter to pick up the longer branches and drag them along.
  • Add the remaining branches between the top and bottom ones. Try to make them  equal distances apart.  When you are done, the frame of the litter should look something like a ladder with the longer sides extending  out further than the “steps”.  Alternatively, you can also have the longer branches aligned so that they cross in front of the area where you will be standing.  You may need longer branches for this method.
  • Next you will need to add padding to the litter.  Moss, leaves, and anything soft can be used for this purpose.  You can also use vines to tie the materials down and make a more compact bedding. You can also used animal hides as long as they are well scraped and have been drying for at least a few days.  Choose leaves and other materials that are as dry and clean as possible.
  • If you have enough materials to make additional cordage, create a belly band or harness that attaches to the handles of the litter.  You can use the harness to drag the litter and keep your hands free or pull along with your hands if you so choose.
  • Unfortunately, in nature, there are not many ways to reduce friction on the bottom of the litter where it can catch on rocks, stumps, and many other things that will make it harder to drag along. You can try attaching very smooth, flat rocks to the impact areas.

Animal Based Remedies

Many people do not study animal based medicines because they think that plants are more diverse, easier to find, and easier to harvest.  On the other hand, some of the most powerful and useful medicines are harbored within “dangerous” animals that you may already be hunting for food.

Study  Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine to learn how to prepare medicines from these animals. It should be noted that there are a number of newer drugs based on compounds found within these animals, however it may be difficult to find out how the important molecules are isolated. Given that the Chinese traditional healers, Indian practitioners of Ayurvedic medicine, and Native American medicine people may have been using these animals to reliably treat illness, they are your best source of information on this matter.

Here are a few animals you can ask about as long as they are relevant to the local area for you and the practitioner has direct knowledge of the species of animals in the area:

  • Frogs – produce natural antibiotics on their skin.  Some frogs also produce neurotoxins and other poisons that may work in lower doses as painkillers and muscle relaxants.
  • Pit Vipers – aside from carrying compounds in their venom that work as ACE Inhibitors (used to treat high blood pressure), snake venom may also be used as an anti-coagulant,  to treat heart failure and preserve kidney function in diabetics.  While venoms vary from one species of viper to another, local and indigenous medicine people may still know which animals can best suit your needs as well as how to safely milk the vipers of venom without killing them.
  • Gila Monster – if you happen to be in the desert and need a stimulant to produce insulin, venom from these lizards may be of some use.
  • Spider Venom – some species of spiders and tarantulas produce venom that can treat cancer, reduce pain,and relax muscles.
  • Spider webs – as fragile as spider webs look, they can act as a strong, gentle network that allows flesh to grow back into place.
  • Cone snail – if you are near a body of saltwater or near the ocean, cone snail venom may be an option for treating pain, managing heart disease and preventing epileptic seizures.
  • Horseshoe Crab – if you aren’t sure if a bacterial infection is present, expose water, food, or other materials to the blood from a horseshoe crab. If the blood becomes thick and coagulates, then you know a dangerous infection is present.
  • Centipedes – centipede venom can be used as a painkiller.
  • Scorpion Venom – this venom can be used to treat cancer and also as a painkiller.

Poison Antidotes

Chances are, you already know that activated charcoal is one of the best antidotes for swallowed poisons. As long as you have trees and a fire, you can make charcoal as a form of poison antidote.  To get the most out of the charcoal, crush it up and mix with water.

While some people recommend mixing tannic acid with charcoal, researchers have found that the tannic acid is actually absorbed by the charcoal, thus making less room available to remove the poison.  If you need to draw poison from a wound, you can try using a charcoal poultice.  Mud poultices and some herbal poultices may also draw poisons out of a wound.

Some modern research suggests that honey badgers, squirrels, and opossums have molecules in their blood that can neutralize venom from snakes, spiders, and other venomous animals that you might encounter. As with other animal remedies, try asking indigenous people in the area about how they treat venomous bites, and if they use preparations from these animals.

If you already know how to hunt these animals and use them for food, then you may already be on your way to an important natural  remedy for venomous bites.

Worldwide, thousands of people die each year from consuming poisonous plants or mushrooms, getting bitten by venomous animals, or ingesting poison from some other source.   While activated charcoal can help in some cases, there is very little else in nature that can act as an antidote.

You can still try to mitigate the effects of some poisons if you know what you came in contact with and how it affects your body. Once again, you should never experiment  with these ideas.  Take them to a certified herbalist or other practitioner of Chinese or Ayurvedic medicine to see if they already have experience with these methods.

For example, if you know that you have been bitten by a snake whose venom acts as an anti-coagulant, it may be possible to wash the site with some herb that has the opposite effect, but will not interact in ways that multiply the effects of other parts of the venom.

If you need to induce vomiting, warm salt water can be used for that purpose. Try to avoid herbs (unless you know they are safe to take with the poison in question)  that induce vomiting because they can also interact with the poison and make it more dangerous. As a means of last resort, you can still try and focus on herbal or animal based remedies that counter the effects of the poison.

Fire Cupping

In ancient Chinese medicine, Fire Cupping was often use for pain relief.  This particular treatment basically relied on creating suction by heating a round, hollow object, and placing it on the skin.

fire cupIf you can generate heat and suction as in fire cupping, then you may be able to create a makeshift venom removal kit. Some things you might try using for the “cup” include hollowed bones, or mud that has been shaped into a bowl with a narrow opening and fired. Needless to say, if you have, or find  a small glass bottle or a cup, then you can use that to for suction purposes.

When choosing natural materials to make a fire cup, choose items that:

  • Can easily be fashioned into a small, round cup with a narrow neck.  If you cannot create a rounded cup, a longer, narrower form will do as long as the neck is still narrower than the body.
  • The cup should be able to retain heat well.  If the material loses heat easily, it will not generate sufficient suction.  The material should be able to retain the heat for at least 3 – 5 minutes.
  • If you are going to keep an open flame on the cup while in use, it should be non-flammable.
  • You can try boiling a wooden cup, however it may not work as well as other materials.

Rocks for Generating Steam

From winter colds to spring allergies, and other respiratory ailments, inhaling steam or herbs mixed with steam is often the best remedy.   While this may seem like a novel idea,  generating steam for these purposes is possible using natural resources. As with heating rocks to cauterize wounds, you need to be very careful about which rocks you use and how you use them.

Here are some important things to keep in mind:

  • When rocks are heated, they can crack or break apart causing sharp projectiles to fly all over the place.  Porous rocks are usually the most problematic because water from rain, dew, and other sources seeps into the rock.  Once the rock is heated by a fire, the water turning into steam will create pressure that causes the rock to break apart.
  • Heated rocks can also emit gasses that are poisonous.  It does not matter if the rock is porous or not, since even surface contaminants can emit poisons when heated.
  • When you pour water onto hot rocks, the sudden changes in temperature can also cause the rock to fracture or explode.
  • As hot water seeps into the rock, it can mix with other chemicals hidden deep in the pores. These chemicals will escape with the steam and can be poisonous if you inhale them.
  • Because rocks very so much in composition and formation, you need to work with a reputable geologist in your local area in order to help reduce the risk of choosing rocks that can cause more harm than good.
  • When creating a steam bath, many people try to keep the steam in an enclosed area.  Never put yourself in a position where the materials used does not allow adequate ventilation.  For example, never use plastics or any kind of tarp that does not allow air to flow through it.  It is better and safer to take the time to create a leaf or bark mat then wind up suffocating in a steam bath.  When choosing plants to make the covering, make sure that you wash and dry them thoroughly so that you do not pick up stray chemicals that can be harmful if inhaled with the steam. Only work with plants that you know to be safe and non-toxic for this purpose.
  • Never use steam sweats unless someone else remains outside the steam area and can monitor you for signs of trouble.  This includes making sure that you exit the steam area every few minutes so that you do not dehydrate or suffer from heat stroke/exhaustion.

Leeches and Maggots

When science was in the process of overtaking religion for control of the masses, the use of leeches and maggots was dismissed as quackery.  Today, modern doctors have had to substantially revise their opinion on the use of these animals as part of sound medical treatment.

Here is how you can use leeches and maggots in time of need:

  • Leeches can be used to suck blood from serious injuries. Basically, if you had to sew up a limb that was amputated or almost amputated, or some other injury that caused damage to the blood vessels, the blood will pool and slow down healing.  If you apply leaches for a few hours each day, they will absorb the blood pool and allow the veins to heal.
  • Historically speaking, leeches were often used in “bloodletting” for colds, and many other diseases.  At this time, it is believed these therapies do more harm than good.  That being said, if you need to stimulate blood production, sucking out small amounts may actually do more harm than good.
  • Maggots are used to manage deep infections where the flesh is rotting or is very close to that stage.  To use maggots for this purpose, simply let flies rest on the wound.  Once the eggs from the flies hatch, they will become maggots that eat up the rotted flesh. Once you see blood an feel pain from the wound, then you know it is clean. Wash out the maggots and let the wound continue to heal.

In these times, we are often led to believe that there are very few, if any alternatives to modern medicine.  Throughout the world, indigenous people have been using medicines for thousands of years from items found in nature.  While herbal remedies are the most commonly discussed treatments, there are truly many other medicinal wonders that nature has to offer.

As a prepper, you should learn all you can about wilderness medicine and how to use it in a time of need. Aside from courses aimed at basic treatments, also consider studying indigenous methods so that you can expand your skill sets even further and utilize more materials in different geographic settings.

NewSMDCover3This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

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Survival Medicine Hour: Tom Martin of APN, Shooter Issues, Summer Germs, Natural Remedies

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Summer Germs

In this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Joe and Amy Alton, aka Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, Tom Martin of American Preppers Network joins us to talk about his new show, plus a serious look at the recent shooter events and when violence is the answer to stop the fatalities. Also, places you’ll be this summer that could make you seriously sick if you’re not careful. Nurse Amy continues her discussion of natural remedies that will help for orthopedic injuries. Dr. Bones also talks about what the medic’s priorities should be when under fire in hostile survival scenarios. All this and more on the latest Survival Medicine Hour.



To listen in, click below:


Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,


Joe and Amy Alton

joe and amy radio

Don’t forget to check out our brand new Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook, as well as our Zika Virus Handbook, both available on Amazon. And fill those holes in your medical supplies at Nurse Amy’s store!

How To Use Natural Sunscreens To Survive Summer

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Survivopedia natural sunscreens

Sunburns are no fun and are really bad for your skin. Not only are sunburns bad, too much sun can damage your skin and cause sun spots and wrinkles.

While it’s true that you may look great with a tan, you’ll pay for it with elephant skin later. The problem is that commercial sunscreens are packed with chemicals and have a limited shelf-life, which makes them poor stockpile items.

You know there are cancer-causing chemicals in your food, and sunscreen is the same. You may slather on the sunscreen to prevent skin cancer, some of the chemicals in it have actually been linked to cancer. Oh, the irony.

Some ingredients can also disrupt your endocrine system and many people have skin allergies to sunscreens/blocks. Three great reasons to make your own sunscreen.

The first thing you need to understand before venturing into the land of homemade sunscreen is the difference between sunscreen and sunblock. Though the two terms are used interchangeably, they function differently.

Also, it’s important that you know the difference between UV rays before setting out to make your own sunscreens. UVB rays are main cause of sunburns and UVA rays, which penetrate more deeply, are more closely associated with skin damage such as wrinkling and leathering, and play a larger role in causing skin cancer.

In other words, you want something that’s going to protect you from both!

What is Sunscreen?

Sunscreen is a chemical protectant. It’s absorbed by your skin and chemically filters out and absorbs the sun’s UV rays before they can penetrate and damage your skin. They use benzophenones that screen UVA rays and salicylates that screen UVB rays. Oxybenzone, octyl methoxycinnamate, and octyl salicylate are common ingredients.

If you’re buying commercial sunscreen, make sure that they contain both classes because older formulas don’t have the UVA protection.

What is Sunblock?

Sunblock, as the name implies, actually blocks the rays from penetrating your skin. It’s a physical protectant that provides broad protection from both UVA and UVB rays. The two most common ingredients are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. This is the white stuff stereotypically seen on lifeguards’ noses. It’s available in clear, too.

Let’s Go Natural!

OK, now that we have that straight, let’s talk about natural alternatives.

Unless you’re going to be out long enough to be worried about burning, it’s a good thing to get a bit of sun because that’s how our bodies get vitamin D. With so many of us working inside, vitamin D deficiency, which is linked to cancer and mood disorders such as depression is becoming more prevalent. Moral of the story – get a little sun each day.

To determine how much protection you need, use the SPF. You probably know how long you can be in the sun without burning. All an SPF number indicates is how many times longer you can be out in the sun with the product on without burning. In other words, if you can be outside for 20 minutes without getting pink and you get an SPF 10, you can be outside for 200 minutes (3 hrs. 20 min). Easy.

I personally prefer to use zinc oxide as block in addition to my oils, which are typically low SPFs, plus most oils only protect against UVB rays. Also remember that if your mixing oils, don’t ADD the SPFs together.

For example, hemp seed oil has an SPF of 6, and almond oil has a SPF of 5. The total SPF of this combination would be SPF 6. They don’t pile on top of one another but they do have different benefits for your skin and may break down at different rates.

Here’s a guide to help you determine how much zinc oxide or titanium dioxide to add into your oil or cream:

sunscreen spf

You may be thinking right now that neither zinc oxide nor titanium dioxide sound very “natural”, but you’d be wrong. They also aren’t systemic like the parabens and other nasties in commercial sunscreens.

The difference between regular zinc oxide and micronized or nano is that the latter two will make a clear sunscreen, but regular zinc looks white on your skin. You can always add fun colors for the kids – you’ll never wonder if you need to reapply!

Note that you have to use a high percentage of either product to get a high SPF, but it’s not that horrible; when compared to the price of commercial sunscreens, the cost of using either of these ingredients is actually less, especially if you use it in coconut oil or another relatively inexpensive oil.

Warning: If you choose to use micronized or nanoparticles of zinc, use a mask. It’s not toxic on your skin and doesn’t absorb into your system via your skin, but breathing it is a different story.

SPFs of Essential Oils

Now, let’s discuss the SPFs of a few oils. Remember that it’s important to use high-quality, pure oils anytime you’re going to use them on your body or consume them. Also, don’t use citrus oils as they can increase your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight.

Carrier oils such as coconut oil, help stabilize the essential oil and dilute it so that it’s usable. Often, pure oils have an extremely strong smell and can be irritating to the skin if pure. They may also evaporate quickly. Carrier oils help all of these issues. There are plenty of uses for animal fats such as lard, but stick with plant oils.

  • Red Raspberry Oil – SPF 30-50, and protects against both UVA and UVB. Also great for eczema and psoriasis.
  • Carrot Seed Oil – SPF 40 (Definitely needs a carrier oil)
  • Wheat Germ Oil – SPF 20 (Packed with vitamins)
  • Macadamia Oil – SPF 6
  • Avocado Oil – SPF 4-10
  • Olive Oil – SPF 2-8
  • Shea Butter – SPF 3-6
  • Almond Oil – SPF 5
  • Sesame Seed Oil – SPF 4
  • Hemp Seed Oil – SPF 6
  • Jojoba Oil – SPF 4
  • Coconut Oil – SPF 2-8

You may notice that some of the oils with lesser SPFs will make a great carrier oil! Coconut Oil is my personal favorite because it’s inexpensive (relatively) and it actually smells like sunscreen!

sun oils

Textures for Homemade Sunblock

Now that you have your oils and some ideas for carrier oils and know how to use zinc oxide, it’s time to talk about texture.

  • If you want it oily, use an oil carrier such as coconut oil and then leave it as-is after you mix it.
  • If you want it like lotion, use shea butter along with a carrier oil. If you want it just a bit thicker, add more shea butter or a small amount of beeswax.
  • If you want it in a block, or want to make sunscreen lip balm, use beeswax along with shea butter and a carrier oil.
  • If you want it waterproof, use beeswax along with the shea butter and carrier oil.
  • If you want to increase the SPF, add more zinc oxide.
  • Remember that ALL sunscreens need to be frequently reapplied, especially if you’re in the water or sweating.
  • Use 1/2 teaspoon vitamin E or tea tree oil per 8 oz. as a preservative.

How to Prepare Sunblock

Now, let’s pull it altogether! These SPFs have not been evaluated by any authority and are estimates only. You can do the math for yourself when cooking.

Sunblock 1 – about SPF 20, no zinc oxide

  • 3/4 cup coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. beeswax
  • 2 tbsp. shea butter
  • 15 drops red raspberry seed oil

Melt the coconut oil, beeswax, and she butter together. Allow to cool a bit and add the raspberry seed oil. If you want to boost it to a 30-40 SPF, add 2 tbsp. zinc oxide.

Sunscreen 2 SPF About SPF 20

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup shea butter
  • 1/4 cup beeswax pellets
  • 1 tsp. carrot seed oil
  • 1 tsp. raspberry seed oil
  • 1 tsp. vitamin E oil
  • 1/4 cup shea butter
  • 2 tbsp. zinc oxide

Melt shea butter, coconut oil and beeswax until it’s liquefied. Combine the zinc with a small amount of oil, or with your essential oils, then add everything to the liquefied carrier oils.

I’ve included these recipes because they’re good base recipes to get you started. Add your own touches and do the math to figure the SPFs. Now that you know what the SPFs of some of the best oils for sunscreen are and have a decent knowledge base about the entire subject, play around with some recipes of your own.

Try some lip balm, too – remember, all you need to do is add more shea butter or beeswax to thicken it up a bit!


If you have anything to share about making natural sunscreen or other natural remedies, please share it with us in the comments section below!

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Healthy Low Carb Foods To Stockpile For Survival

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Survivopedia low carbsThere are 3 types of nutrients that your body can convert to energy: carbs, fats, and protein.

Carbs are the primary source for most of us but the problem is that they burn up quickly, leaving us hungry and run-down an hour or so after we eat them. Good fats and proteins, on the other hand, burn slowly so they provide level, sustained energy.

Obviously, there are situations that call for each type, but the big thing with carbs is that you need to choose the RIGHT ones, which is a topic for another day. Today, we’re going to talk about good sources of low-carb foods (aka, high protein/fat foods).

Just as with carbs, there are good and not-so-good sources of proteins and fats. The debate about this is hot, especially when it comes to saturated fats such animal fats.

Your body is hardwired to use carbs as the first source of energy because they’re quick and easy to break down. When it doesn’t have carbs (or during prolonged exercise), it turns to fat, and then protein. You don’t want to push yourself to the point that your body is using protein as a fuel source exclusively, because it’s literally eating your muscle away.

Instead, use protein to build and repair muscles, and use fat as your energy source. Your body needs glucose (sugar) for proper brain function, but it doesn’t need it in large quantities or from junk sources. Fruits and veggies provide the carbs your body needs.

We’ve  all heard how eating too much red meat or eggs raises cholesterol and increases your risk of heart disease, but now there are studies that suggest that meat wasn’t necessarily the culprit – it was other foods that were eaten in conjunction with the meat.

No matter what you think about meat, you probably agree that there are far worse foods in the junk-carb category than steak and eggs. Anyway, now studies are showing that many of these proteins are good for you.

Since it takes your body longer to break down protein and fat, you won’t get that pop of energy that you get from carbs, but your energy levels will remain steady for much longer and you won’t suffer from the crash that you get from carbs. There are many great sources of low-carb foods to stockpile for survival.

low carb

(Fairly) Lean Meat and Poultry

Meats such as lean beef, venison, lamb, bison, rabbit, goat, and lean pork cuts provide are amazing sources of protein and vitamin B12, and generally have zero carbs. Sufficient amounts of this vitamin are found almost exclusively in fish and animal-sourced foods.

Vitamin B12 is critical to human health. It plays a role in the health of every single cell, including brain cells, in your body. Deficiencies are linked to Alzheimer’s disease, anemia, impaired brain function, mental disorders an even a decreased brain size.

Vitamin D3 is another vitamin that’s exclusive to animals. D2 is found in plants but isn’t as bioavailable as D3 is. Your brain needs this for proper function and it also plays a role in nutrient absorption. Typically you get all the D you need from the sun, but if you’re forced to hunker down, it may become an issue.

Add that to the energy that you get from the meat and it’s a no-brainer that these are necessary for your food stockpile. You can pressure can your meat, dehydrate it, or buy it in bulk freeze-dried containers. You can also farm your own or hunt for it so that you have fresh meat.


Fish is great for you. Even when red meat was the scourge of society, fish was still on the happy face list. It’s also basically carb-free and easy to source as long as you live near a water source and the water isn’t tainted.

All fish are good sources of protein but fatty fish such as tuna, salmon, mackerel, and sardines provide Omega 3 fatty acids that are essential for numerous bodily functions, including brain function.

Be careful eating fish that are higher on the food chain, though, because they also likely have high amounts of mercury, which can poison you in high amounts. Shoot for wild-caught fish instead of farmed fish to help with this. Wild-caught fish also have a better Omega 3/Omega 6 ratio, which is also another article altogether.

You can pressure can fish (or buy it canned for fairly cheap), smoke it, catch it fresh, or buy it freeze-dried. It doesn’t last well when dehydrated because of the fat content. It’s probably easier to just buy the cans of tuna and salmon.

Eggs and Milk

Eggs are another excellent, low-carb (zero) source of protein, Vitamins D and B12, phosphorus and riboflavin. and they’re extremely versatile. Eggs are also a source of Omega 3s and the amino acid lutein, which your body needs to build muscle.

The best thing about them when it comes to prepping is that it’s available in three extremely user-friendly forms. You can either reach under your own hen and get a fresh one, or you can buy it powdered or freeze-dried.

Dairy Products

Yeah, I know the counter-argument to this already – humans are the only mammals that drink milk post-weaning. Blah. I’m a farm girl – give me fresh cream in my coffee and a huge scoop of cottage cheese on my tomatoes any day, and for heaven’s sake don’t mention this argument to my dad unless you want to set him off on a 3-hour tangent.

High-fat dairy, just like anything else, is only bad for you if it’s ALL you eat. It’s low-carb and has some excellent nutritional benefits, including being a great source calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.

It also has amino acids in it that your body needs to synthesize muscle, and cultured dairy such as yogurt (unsweetened!) has probiotics that help keep your gut healthy. Omega 3s are also in there, though not in nearly the quantity that you’ll find in fish or nuts.

You can actually make and can your own butter as well as milk. You can make yogurt at home.

If you’ve looked into making cheese, you’ve probably noticed that many of them require rennet, which isn’t exactly something that most people keep on hand. There are, however, several cheeses that don’t require it, including mozzarella, cottage cheese, cheddar, and cream cheese. In fact, you can make these cheeses right at home in very little time.

The best part is that if you keep cows or goats, you can have a steady supply of milk. If not, you can buy it powdered or freeze-dried, or use the other methods in the article that I linked you to.


I’m not even going to touch on the health benefits of vegetables; otherwise we’d be here all night. Instead, I’m going to tell you which ones are the lowest in carbs and highest in nutrients.

Before I do that, though, I need to explain how the carbs in veggies and fruits affect your body differently than those from wheat or sugar. Vegetables and fruits are typically extremely high in fiber, which means that your body has to work hard to digest it. Because of this, the sugar is released slowly instead of all once.

A good rule of thumb is that if a veggie is green, it’s low-carb. Other veggies, such as yellow peppers, cabbage, and cauliflower are also good. Even if a veggie is higher in carbs, such as carrots and tomatoes, see above.

Root veggies and tubers such as potatoes and rutabaga are high in carbs, so if you’re shooting specifically for a low-carb diet, skip them.

I’ve written an article about the best way to stockpile veggies here.


Fruits are iffy when it comes to inclusion on a low-carb list. The general rule here is that the higher in fiber and the less sweet a fruit is, the lower it is in carbohydrates. Fruits are like veggies, though. The more fiber they have, the slower the body extract the sugar, so you don’t get the carb pop and crash.

Good fruits include apples, pears, berries, and citrus fruits.

Again, preserving fruits is fairly simple. You can water-bath can them, pressure can them, freeze dry them, or dehydrate them, but if you’re shooting for low-carb, don’t add sugar to them. They are another healthy foods to stockpile for winter.

Preparing fruits and vegetables, and even meat for that matter, all involve a similar process that just about anybody can learn to do.

Nuts and Seeds

These are great because they’re easy to pack and take with you if you need to bug out or even if you’re just going on a short hunting or camping trip. Many nuts, including walnuts, almonds, and sunflower seeds are rich in omega 3s too, so win-win!

Fats and Oils

Having a good supply of fairly healthy fats is necessary for a variety of reasons. They’re rich in omega 3s and they’re a necessary ingredients (well OK, you CAN substitute apple sauce in some baking recipes, but not for the good stuff like biscuits.

You can also can fats and seeds are simple to store. These definitely need to go on your list.

1_620x110_1Now that you have a general idea of some low-carb foods for survival, please feel free to mention any that I may have forgotten in the comments section below!

This article has ben written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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13 Ways To Fight Aging Naturally

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Survivopedia 13 agains aging

We all hate the bodily changes that come with age. How is it that we all feel 20 in our minds, yet are betrayed by those wrinkles on the face in the mirror? You can’t stop the clock, but there are plenty of steps that you can take to look and feel great as the hands keep moving!

You may think that this is going to be a fluff piece about getting rid of wrinkles, but you’re wrong.

Aging is more than just getting a few lines around your eyes; it affects the way you move and the way you think. Being able to move well and think quickly may be two of your greatest tools in a survival situation. Looking young while you’re using those tools is just a bonus!


It’s true that if you don’t move it, you lose it. You need to be doing at least 30 minutes of cardio and 30 minutes of strength training at least 3 days per week in order to maintain endurance and muscle mass.

The immediate benefits of being physically fit in a survival situation are obvious, but exercising also helps keep your bones healthy. Oh, and you know those saggy areas? It gets rid of those, too.

Exercise doesn’t necessarily have to take place at a gym; you can walk or jog around the neighborhood, do lawn work or housework, or play a sport. Hiking is a great way to get your exercise and to teach your kids survival skills at the same time.

Stop Smoking

Smoking cigarettes ages your body at an astounding rate. It creates wrinkles around your mouth and creates oxidation in your body that leads to other forms of aging such as wrinkles and mental decline. Obviously, it inhibits your ability to breathe, too.

Smoking is the antithesis to physical fitness and youth and will make you look and feel old way before your time. Quit.

Eat Well

Yes, eating well is the solution to everything, it seems, but it’s true. The antioxidants in fruits and vegetables fight aging at the cellular level by attaching to free radicals that contribute to disease and the signs of aging. Proper nutrition is your first step in looking and feeling younger naturally.

We’ll talk a bit more about good anti-aging foods in the coming paragraphs.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil was a fad five years ago. Now it’s a staple in many pantries and medicine cabinets because it works. Coconut oil has been used for centuries by Mediterranean and Caribbean women as moisturizers, and the results are amazing. Those women look young forever.

It’s a natural sunscreen and moisturizer, both of which contribute to young, healthy skin. Coconut oil is great as a moisturizer, but its anti-aging properties extend well beyond that.

Coconut oil is a medium-chain triglyceride, which means that it’s processed by your body more as a sugar than as a fat so it’s a good source of quick energy. It also doesn’t raise your bad cholesterol, so it helps keep your cardiovascular system healthy. Oh, and it’s obviously vegetarian, of that’s a concern for you.

Make your own soaps, deodorants, toothpaste, and skin care items using coconut oil as a base to save money, avoid chemicals, and look great!


Yogurt helps you stay young in a couple of ways. It provides good bacteria, known as probiotics, that keep your gut healthy and your digestive tract functioning smoothly. It’s also a good source of protein, which helps keep your skin and hair looking great.

Yogurt can be used on your skin, too. The lactic acid in it acts as a mild acid peel that sloughs off old, gray skin and lets new skin shine through. You can even make yogurt at home, so it will be available as long as you have access to cow or goat milk in a survival situation.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C, especially in the form of citrus fruits, is a great tool to have in your anti-aging arsenal.

First, vitamin C helps your body produce collagen, one of the two proteins that are most associated with aging. Collagen helps to hold your skin in place, for lack of a better explanation, so that it doesn’t begin to sag.

Next, vitamin C helps in the production of elastin, the other anti-aging protein. Elastin is what keeps your skin stretchy and pliable so that it bounces back instead of just hanging there loosely.

Vitamin C is also a powerful antioxidant that helps fight those free radicals that we talked about earlier.

Foods rich in vitamin c include berries, sweet potatoes, leafy greens, red, yellow and orange peppers, tomatoes and citrus fruits. Include plenty of these in your survival garden to help you stay young and healthy.

Vitamins B and E promote collagen production, too. Shoot for plenty of green leafy veggies, cauliflower, broccoli, beans, nuts, and seeds.

Citrus Fruits

Yes, I realize that I already discussed citrus fruits in terms of vitamin C. What I didn’t mention is that citrus juice is acidic and makes a great facial peel. Mix it with honey and milk or yogurt and it makes one heck of a wrinkle-fighting mask.

Lemon juice also helps fade age spots. Since lemon juice is also great for canning, healing, and even making invisible ink, it’s earned a spot on your uncommon survival items list.

Bone Broth

Gelatin is a protein that is formed when collagen breaks down, and it can also help rebuild it. Commercially, you can find it in gelatin desserts. It’s sourced from animals, including cows, pigs, fish, and poultry and is that clear layer that congeals on top of the broth when you cook it.

All of this time, you scraped that off when it could have been making you look younger!

You can also extract  gelatin from cooking meat and bones until the marrow, connective tissue (aka gristle) breaks down. There are a ton of other health benefits to bone broth or beef broth besides anti-aging.
antiagingAloe Vera

This stuff is practically magical. In addition to being a soothing agent for burns, it has many health benefits. It’s a common ingredient in many alternative remedies because it’s so versatile but when it comes to aging, it’s a must-have.

Aloe promotes collagen production and the malic acid in it improves skin elasticity and reduces wrinkles and fine lines. The zinc present in aloe shrinks pores so that your skin looks younger and there are long-chain sugar molecules called mucopolysaccharides that promote collagen production and keep your skin moist.

If you think about it, these traits are probably what make aloe so great for burns and healing, too.


Seriously, when it comes to skin aging, the monkeys have it right. Bananas are rich in potassium and vitamins B, C, and E, which all contribute to great skin. Since they’re packed with antioxidants that stop aging from the inside, feel free to eat even more bananas than you smear on your face.


Drinking a glass of red wine daily can help you stay young. The antioxidants, particularly resveratrol, have been shown to reduce the signs of aging such as wrinkles, and it also promotes heart health and fights wrinkles from the inside.

Personally, I agree with the research that says the relaxing effect of a glass of red wine helps fight aging and disease. Cheers. Relax, have a glass of wine, and feel yourself getting younger. Want to have some real fun? Make your own wine.


This little green gem isn’t called a superfood for nothin’. It’s packed with healthy fats that promote brain health and antioxidants that fight wrinkle-causing free radicals.

Avocados are also rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamins B, C, E, K, selenium, zinc, folate, and beta-carotene that nourish and repair damaged cells while promoting the growth of new cells.

They’re great for you internally and externally. Incorporate them into your diet and use them in your facial masks.

Omega 3s

Brain health is a huge part of remaining young and sharp. It’s also what may keep you alive in a survival situation. Your brain quite literally functions on Omega 3 fatty acids, and it’s estimated that at least 70 percent of Americans are deficient.

Omega 3s build brain cell membranes, promote new brain cell production, reduce brain inflammation, and actively work to prevent dementia and the chemical disruptions that cause depression and other mood disorders.

Physically, omega 3s help prevent such diseases as arthritis and also help keep your skin looking great. I could go on and on about how necessary omega 3s are to your health and longevity but that’s a completely different article. Some good sources of omega 3s include fatty fish such as salmon and tuna, flax seeds, eggs, and even some legumes.


We all want to look marvelously youthful but more importantly, we want to remain healthy, mobile, and alert. There are many great foods that contribute to overall health, but remember that there are things to avoid, too.

Fast food, processed foods, fried foods and fatty foods (unless it’s good fat) cause free radicals that contribute to disease and wrinkles. These garbage foods work as hard to make you look and feel old as the good foods do to make you young and healthy.

Skip the drive-thru and grab a bag of black cherries (which should also definitely be on your list!) on your way home or to play some baseball. Move it, don’t lose it!

If you have any other great ideas for staying young naturally, tell us about it in the comments section below!


This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Survival Medicine Hour: Expert Charley Hogwood, Cinnamon, Antibiotics, Alligators

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Charley Hogwood, Survival Group expert

In this topic-packed episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Joe Alton, MD and Amy Alton, ARNP, survival group expert and author Charley Hogwood joins us to talk about survival group dynamics as well a number of other issues that may affect your chances for survival in the uncertain future. Also, Nurse Amy talks about one of her favorite herbs, Cinnamon, and its medical uses and Dr. Alton discusses an unusual subject, driven by recent news: Alligator attacks, what to do and some common-sense prevention strategies. He also brings you up to date with the Zika epidemic ramping up in Puerto Rico, and the 3 infants born with Zika-related deformities in the United States. Finally, Dr. Alton discusses antibiotics while answering a question from a listener of the popular Survival Podcast with Jack Spirko. Dr. Alton serves as the medical expert on Jack’s Expert Council.

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Plus, doctors say 1 in 5 trauma victims’ death are preventable. Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy discuss why and what could be done to increase your chances of surviving a mass casualty incident.

To listen in, click below:


Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,

Joe and Amy Alton

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Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy

Paleo Diet: 5 Basic Recipes You Need To Know

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Survivopedia 5 paleo diet recipes

Our ancestors were hunters and gatherers long before they began farming.  They also rarely made use of cooked or processed foods. Many people today feel it is best to go back to the kind of diet our ancestors consumed, and choose to follow the Paleo diet.

The Paleo diet is meant to mimic the kinds of foods that our ancestors were able to find and eat with relative ease. This means consuming foods that are readily available in nature, and ones that require a minimal amount of preparation.

Just about any type of wild game or fish might be found in a Paleo diet, but you would eat very little milk or cheese. Berries, roots, and fruits tend to be favored over beans and grains that require special preparation.

Here are some common foods you might find in a Paleo diet.  This includes foods that may not be readily available on supermarket shelves, but can be found easily enough in nature, or raised in aquaponic systems.

Recommended Meats

Meat is an essential part of the Paleo diet. Keeping a good supply of meat may be very difficult to some people, because you need to know key breeding seasons and the food requirements of targeted animals.

As you consider this list of healthy paleo meat sources, select a few of interest and see if you can raise them. Finding the best way to prepare alternative meats will also help you and your family in the quest of living a healthy life.

The conventional animal meats are chicken, pork, fish, beef, turkey, lamb, lobster, shrimp, goat, goose, quail, oysters, clams, scallops, crab, and bison. Other healthy Paleo meat sources  are rabbits, rodents, young hedgehogs, termites, earthworms, grasshoppers, grubs, beetles, ants, snails,  caterpillars (non-butterfly), deer, bear, buffalo, freshwater fish, clams, oysters, kangaroo, turtle, snake, and birds.

Recommended Dairy

Since dairy products require a good bit of preparation, they should be avoided as much as possible. Raw goat or cow milk may be permitted, but nut and vegetable blends are preferred. For example, you can use almond or rice milk, but should not use soy milk because it is made from legumes.

Eggs are allowed in the Paleo diet even though they are listed in the dairy food group. If chicken or goose eggs are not available, you can eat eggs from other bird species. Make sure you know when the breeding season starts for different bird species so that you do not destroy eggs with developing embryos.

Recommended Fruits, Herbs, and Vegetables

In the modern world, it becomes all too easy to believe that the vast majority of plants will flourish regardless of climate and seasonal constraints.

When it comes to adapting the Paleo diet to your needs, find out which plants are available in your area. At the very least, even if it takes time to raise crops, you can still make use of local plants to meet your nutritional needs.

  • Conventional (Non-GMO) Fruits, Herbs, and Vegetables – Berries, apples, parsley, basil, thyme, rosemary, spearmint, echinachea, turmeric, sage, paprika, citrus, brussel sprouts, avocados, mango, plum, peaches, pumpkin, sunflower, melons, bananas, papaya, lettuce, figs, carrot, celery, spinach, broccoli, squash, cabbage, pepper, tomato, onion, eggplant, cauliflower, and artichoke.
  • Healthy Paleo Fruits, Herbs, and Vegetables – Wild berries, dandelion, cat tail tubers, apples, lettuce, pumpkin, carrot, onion, broccoli, squash, pepper, tomato, onion, cauliflower, artichoke, seaweed, mushrooms, moss, basil, parsley, thyme, sage, spearmint, Echinacea, rosemary, paprika, and lichen.

paleo food

Plant Based Foods to Avoid

As you look at the list of plants most suitable for a Paleo diet, you may be wondering why rice, wheat, beans, peas, potatoes, and peanuts do not appear on the list. While these foods were all derived from wild sources, it is believed that our ancient ancestors did not make use of them until they began growing things in domestic settings. They are considered less healthy than other foods that were easily obtained in nature.

The Recipes

Rather than follow precise recipes, you are best served by memorizing proportions of some basic staples, and then work with them based on the foods available at hand.

1. Baked Meat with Stuffed Peppers or Tomatoes

  • 3 – 6 bell peppers or tomatoes
  • 1 pound of beef, pork, or lamb
  • 1/2 cups of broccoli or cauliflower (flower portion only)
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 pound of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes
  • basil and parsley for seasoning.

Remove tops and seeds from peppers or tomatoes so that only outer shell of flesh remains. Cut into bottom until shell sits straight in baking pan. Partially brown beef, pork, or lamb in animal lard or vegetable oil. Chop broccoli or cauliflower until it is grain sized. Stir in with meat and finish to brown.

Combine meat, vegetables, and tomato sauce in mixing bowl. Keep some tomato sauce aside for basting. Fill peppers or tomatoes with mix. Top off with basil, parsley, or other seasoning as desired. Bake at 350 for approximately 1 hour, or until pepper or tomato shells are soft. They will need to be basted 2 -3 times to prevent burning.

2. Basic Omelettes

  • 2 eggs or egg substitute
  • 1/4 cup onion
  • 1/4 cup pepper
  • 6 ounces of pork or chicken
  • 1/4 cup tomato
  • season with parsley, rosemary, thyme or basil

Sear chicken or pork in hot oil until surface is light brown. This seals in juices and also gives a better flavor to the omelette. Dice onions and peppers. Fry lightly in hot oil and set aside. Scramble eggs or prepare egg substitute and pour into hot frying pan. Fold meat, onions, peppers, and seasoning into the omelette. Add tomatoes last to keep them as crispy and fresh as possible.

There is also a baked version for this recipe: after frying meat, mix all ingredients together and pour into an 8 ounce baking dish.  Cook at 350 degrees until center is cooked through, but before edges burn.

3. Vegetable Pancakes

  • 2 eggs or egg substitute
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup chunk tomato, pepper, or onion
  • 1 tbsp powdered onion, rosemary, or thyme
  • 1/2 cups ground roasted pumpkin or squash seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Prepare ground seeds as noted in flour substitute table above. Chunk tomato, pepper, or onion.  While you can also boil and mash vegetables for addition in pancakes, they taste better when left in chunks.

Prepare egg substitute or scramble eggs. Add ground seeds to water and stir until smooth. Fold in vegetables, salt, eggs and seasonings. Add a tablespoon of oil to griddle or pan and allow to heat up. Pour a few drops of batter onto hot griddle, and remove when drops are evenly browned.

Proceed to pour enough batter into pan to make individual 4 inch sized pancakes. Flip pancakes when bottom side is golden brown and remove from skillet when both sides are cooked and inside has sponge like consistency.

paleo meal plan

4. Protein Cookies

  • 1 cup of boiled, mashed pumpkin or squash
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup boiled, ground dandelion leaves (can be bitter; so add to suit)
  • 3 1/2 cups ground and roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup of shredded chicken

Combine mashed pumpkin, ground dandelion leaves, and ground seeds. Mix in salt and shredded chicken. If dough is too moist, add more ground pumpkin seeds. Flatten out dough on cutting board and cut into 1 x 2 inch squares. Place dough on non-stick cookie pan. Bake for 20 – 30 minutes at 350 degrees until golden brown. Remove cookies from sheet and place on cooling rack as soon as possible.

5. Conventional Vegetable Chips

  • 1 eggplant,
  • 2 tomatoes,
  • 2 peppers,
  • 3 onions, or separated cabbage leaves
  • 1/2 cup powdered dry basil, parsley and thyme

Slice eggplant, tomatoes, or peppers into 1/8 inch slices. For onions, slice into 1/8 thick slices and then separate rings. For cabbage leaves, remove from head one at a time, and try to keep them as whole as possible.

Arrange vegetable slices on a cookie sheet so that they do not overlap and brush with water. Sprinkle with powdered seasoning, but not more than will be absorbed by the water. Bake at 325 for 25 – 30 minutes. Remove from oven when chips are dry and start turning up at edges. Let cool and store in airtight container.

If done correctly, these vegetable chips will have a bit more texture from the cauliflower and broccoli bits.

The Paleo diet’s high energy foods and simplicity also make it ideal for living a healthy life.  No matter how difficult times are, the Paleo diet will help you remain strong and healthy.

Remember that you need to stay healthy to be among the fittest who survive, and click on the banner below to find out more about the way our ancestors lived!


This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

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5 Survival Remedies To Fight Hepatitis

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Survivopedia hepatitis

Hepatitis simply means “inflammation of the liver”. Though it sounds simple, it’s a condition that can be fatal, especially if you don’t have access to medications to treat it.

Fortunately, there are some natural treatments that can help treat hepatitis.

Your liver has several functions within your body and you can’t live without it. It filters out toxins, helps fight infections and digest food, and stores nutrients and energy. Unlike most of your other body parts, it has regenerative powers but it needs time to heal, and it has to be healthy to do that.

A Few Words About Hepatitis

There are five types of communicable hepatitis: A, B, C, D, and E. Each has different causes, but hepatitis C is considered to be incurable. Hepatitis A, B, and E are all curable and may even resolve on their own without treatment. Autoimmune hepatitis varies in severity so treatment may or may not be necessary. Hepatitis D is an oddity that we’ll discuss in a bit.

Before we begin discussing treatments, let’s talk about what each type of hepatitis is. It’s important that you know about each one because if SHTF, diseases are going to spread like wildfire and know WHAT causes something and whether or not it is contagious will be critical to survival.

Unfortunately, all forms of hepatitis share the same symptoms, so making a diagnosis without a blood test will be virtually impossible. However, there will be people who were diagnosed prior to a catastrophic event and will know what type they have, so in those cases, you have a head start, as long as they choose to share the fact that they have the condition.

Symptoms of any form of hepatitis include:

  • Fatigue
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal pain or discomfort, especially in the area of your liver on your right side beneath your lower ribs
  • Clay-colored bowel movements
  • Loss of appetite
  • Low-grade fever
  • Dark urine
  • Joint pain
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)


Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV) and is contagious. According  to the Mayo Clinic, hep A is typically transmitted via fecal matter, though it can also be spread through sex or simply by being in close proximity of somebody who has it, whether or not they’re showing symptoms. There is a vaccine for HAV.

Even ingesting the tiniest amount of contaminated fecal matter can cause infection. You probably automatically think of water contamination or transmission because somebody with the virus doesn’t wash their hands after going to the bathroom, and you’d be right. You can also catch it from raw shellfish that’s sourced from contaminated water.

Symptoms of hepatitis A can range from non-existent to severe and don’t occur until you’ve already had the virus for a few weeks. The good thing is that hepatitis A isn’t like other forms of hepatitis; it doesn’t cause long-term liver damage nor does it become chronic. Acute liver failure is a possibility though, but typically that’s only a concern for elderly people or people who already have a chronic liver disease.

There is no treatment for hepatitis A because the disease usually goes away on its own. The liver will heal within six months with no lasting damage. You may want to treat the symptoms though, especially the nausea. Ginger and peppermint are both great for that. You’ll probably feel tired and will want to rest, which is a good idea so that your body can heal.

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is caused by the HBV virus and is an infection of the liver. If not treated, it can become chronic and cause liver cancer, cirrhosis, or liver failure. There is a vaccination for it and people in most healthcare-related professions are required to get it.

If you have hepatitis B, you may not even need treatment but you’ll need to get plenty of rest and adequate fluids and nutrition to fight the infection. Beware, because the HBV can live outside the body for up to seven days.

Symptoms tend to develop gradually over three months or so. Hepatitis B is contagious and is passed via blood, semen and other bodily fluids. Typically it’s not passed via saliva though the virus may be present in it. It’s also not airborne, which is a good thing. Sex, sharing needles, and coming into contact with bodily fluids if you have an open wound are the likeliest ways of catching it.

Healthy adults who contract hepatitis B usually recover fully and are cured of the illness. Kids are more likely to develop chronic hep B.

Hepatitis C

This type of hepatitis is the worst that you can get. It has no cure and people who have it typically don’t have symptoms until liver damage appears decades later. It’s spread via blood-to-blood contact.

The worst thing about hepatitis C is that it lingers in your body just like the chicken pox virus does, making a liver transplant useless. It can also survive on surfaces at room temperature for up to six weeks!

Hepatitis D

Hepatitis D piggybacks on hepatitis B. It absolutely cannot be contracted or spread without the HBV already present, but it is spread when the HBV is spread. There are no antivirals to treat it like there are for other types of hepatitis. This type of hepatitis isn’t much to worry about unless you have hepatitis B.

Hepatitis E

This type of hepatitis is passed via the oral-fecal route just like hepatitis A is. It’s typically spread from person to person but can also be contracted by eating undercooked contaminated pork, boar, and deer meat as well as shellfish. Symptoms occur from 15-60 days after exposure.

There is no specific antiviral treatment for hepatitis E and it usually resolves on its own, though some rare cases do progress to chronic condition.

Prevention of Hepatitis

The best way to avoid any type of hepatitis is to practice good sanitation and hygiene. Wash your hands after you use the restroom and before you eat or touch your face. Wash your fruits and vegetables.

Use disinfectants such as bleach to clean surfaces. Boil water that could be contaminated for at least 3 minutes then allow it to cool naturally.

5 Natural Treatments for Hepatitis

Depending upon the type of hepatitis that you have, you may not even need treatment but eating lots of fruits and vegetables will help give your immune system a boost to help it out.

There are also a few natural treatments that have been used in holistic medicine for hundreds or even thousands of years.

1. Milk Thistle


There’s a compound in milk thistle called silymarin that is a common treatment for hepatitis in holistic medicine. The treatment is made by creating a tincture from the leaves of the Silybum marianum, or milk thistle, plant. It works in  4 ways:

  • Reduces liver inflammation
  • Stimulates the growth of new liver cells
  • Works as an antiviral
  • Protects liver cells from damage by blocking the infection of new cells

2. Turmeric


The curcumin in turmeric helps fight hepatitis in a few different ways and should be included in daily diets for people suffering from the disease. It works by:

  • Fighting inflammation
  • Working as an antiviral

Be careful using too much turmeric if you’re on anti-clotting medications because curcumin is a natural blood thinner.

3. Probiotics


Though probiotics don’t fight hepatitis directly, they do provide good bacteria that keeps your intestines healthy. This is a big deal for your liver because if your digestive tract is functioning well, it won’t have to work as hard.

Probiotics are found in dairy products such as yogurt, fermented foods, and sour pickles.

4. Artichokes


The compound called cynarin in artichoke leaves has several different qualities that make it a good natural treatment for hepatitis:

  • Protects liver cells from being infected by the viruses
  • Promotes growth of new liver cells so that it can regenerate
  • Promotes the outflow of bile from your liver

Having bile moving out of the liver is a good thing because if it’s not, it increases the danger of damage to the liver. Either eat the leaves or make a tincture.

5. Dandelion


Tea made from dandelion leaves, roots, and stems is said to promote healing in the liver as well as encourage the outflow of bile. Place about 1 ¼ cup of the roots, stems and leaves in a quart of water and boil til it reduces to a pint. Drink 3 tablespoons six times a day.

In addition to these direct remedies, you can also use natural treatments to address the symptoms of hepatitis. Check out my article on medicinal plants to find something to treat your particular condition.

This cluster of liver infections and diseases is something that you may need to address if SHTF hard enough to cause a breakdown in society as we know it because several strains of it spread so easily. Knowing how to treat it if you get it, and avoid it so you don’t have to worry about treatments is good info to have.

If you’d like to find out more about medical survival, click on the banner below!


This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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American Survival Radio, May 21st

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American Survival Radio is Joe and Amy Alton’s second and latest podcast, focused on current events, health, and politics. It is separate and distinct from The Survival Medicine Hour, which continues as before focused mostly on health issues as they pertain to preparedness and survival.  If you’re interested in Survival, your own and that of your country, we bet you’ll like both!

airplane liberia

On American Survival Radio’s latest podcast, an EgyptAir flight from Paris to Cairo is downed by terrorist actions and plane travel may now be as safe as sitting on a pincushion, which is how you might feel when you board your next flight. Joe and Amy Alton give you some travel tips that will keep you safer abroad. Also, Israeli prime minister Netanyahu goes hat in hand to Moscow to find out why Russian jets are intercepting his fighters. Russia is involved in a number of negotiations with countries that the U.S. used to have influence with, as it seeks to quietly supplant America as the dominant player in Southeast Asia.


Plus, a pharmaceutical company does an end run around the FDA to market its products as “nutraceuticals” to prevent aging. Dr. Alton examines the science behind the claims that 5 Nobel prize winners are backing, and whether you can extend your life with products that might be considered prescription drugs if the FDA didn’t take a decade to approve them.

All this and more on American Survival Radio.

To listen in, click below:


Check out previous shows by clicking the RSS feed on the right sidebar, where both our podcasts are identified by date aired.


Wishing you the best in good times or bad,


Joe and Amy Alton



Survival Secrets From Your Garden: How to Use Roses

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SVP roses for survivalThey’re beautiful, they smell great, and they’re the chosen gift for everything from saying, “I love you”, to “I’m  sorry”.

Roses are probably the best known of all flowers, but there is much more to them than just a pretty face. They’re a great plant to grow for survival. Read the article so see how many survival uses they have!

Plant Roses as a Defensive Measure

As you know, every rose has its thorns! In this case, that’s a great thing. If given a plain fence to jump over, or a hedge of thorny roses, raiders are going to choose the easy path.

Also, roses provide great cover. You can plant trellises of them around your garden and people will assume that you have a flower garden and be less likely to sneak in to take a peek around. You basically have an edible defense system!

Both rose petals and rose hips, the little berries that show up on the rose bush in the spring, are edible. It’s likely that you’ve heard of rose hip tea but you probably never thought of popping a petal into your mouth. Before we get into some of the great ways to use roses, let’s set some guidelines.

You’ll want to grow roses that are great for creating cover and for use in recipes, so choose carefully. Heirlooms are great, but base your decision on roses that suit your needs for flavor, scent, and defense.

Find Roses that Smell Good

Likely, if you like the way a rose smells, you’ll like the way it tastes. Some roses, such as red roses, tea roses, or endless blooming roses have very little flavor or smell but yellows, whites, and pinks usually have pleasing scents and tastes.

rosa damascenaAnd the most renowned for its scent is Rosa Damascena, which has been brought from Central Asia a thousand years ago.

These roses were traditionally used for making jelly, oil, and cosmetics.

The tip of the rose petal where it joins the base of the flower is often bitter, so you may want to avoid eating those.

Make sure that your roses aren’t coated in fertilizers or herbicides. That would obviously be bad.

The best time to pick your rose petals are in midmorning after the dew has dried up but before the heat of the day has settled in. You can store them in the fridge for up to a week.

Rose Petal Vinegar

This may not exactly be the first thing that you think of when you hear the word “roses”, but rose petal vinegar is relatively easy to make and has some pretty amazing health benefits.

To start, consider the benefits of the base. You can use any type of vinegar that you’d like but apple cider vinegar has a ton of health benefits too, so you’ll get more bang for your buck using it.

Internally, rose petal vinegar is purported to be good for stopping bleeding, discharging phlegm, and relieving PMS, hot flashes and inflammation. It’s also calming and good for relieving depression and mental and physical fatigue.

Externally, it’s good for toning and refreshing your skin, evening skin tone, relieving skin conditions and blemishes, and preventing or reducing wrinkles. Gargle it for relief of a sore throat. Rose vinegar is good for soothing sunburn and relieving the itch of bug bites.

Oh, and it makes a delicious salad dressing! Depending on your preferences, there are many ways to work this into recipes. To make rose vinegar, simply follow these steps:

  • place 3 ounces of rose petals in a jar,
  • cover with 16 ounces of organic ACV (or whichever vinegar you prefer),
  • cover, then let it sit for at least 5 days.

The longer you let it sit, the better. Store in a cool, dark place and it will last 6 months or more.

Rose Petal Oil

Many of the benefits of rose vinegar are found in rose petal oil, but without the smell of vinegar. The thing about making essential oils is that it typically requires a distillation process which is a bit complicated for a beginner. Instead, you can make an infusion by using an oil base.

Good oils to start with include olive, coconut, jojoba, and almond so just go with what you prefer. Use roses that have just begun to open and pick the petals midmorning.

To make the oil:

  • Pick 1/4 cup rose petals and place them in a plastic storage bag. Use a small mallet or can to gently bruise them to release the oil.
  • Place the bruised petals in a small jar and add 1/2 cup oil to them. Seal the jar up and let it set overnight. Strain the petals from the oil and add another 1/4 cup crushed petals and repeat the process until the oil is scented strongly enough to suit you.

Health benefits include nervous system rejuvenation, relief of depression or anxiety, inflammation relief, fever reduction, and antiseptic qualities.

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Rose petals and rose petal oil are great ingredients to include in your soap.

It’s wonderfully relaxing when used in a relaxing bath and it makes you smell great, too.

You can either place the petals directly into the soap, which also makes it pretty, or you can use the oil that you made before.

Rose Petal Syrup

This syrup is delicious to use with everything from pancakes to tea, and it’s easy to make, too. The color and flavor of the rose will determine the flavor and color of the syrup so choose a rose petal that you love. Here’s the recipe:


  • 1 cup rose petals, tightly packed
  • 3 cups water
  • 4 cups sugar


Put the rose petals and water in a wide, deep pan and let it sit overnight. In the morning, add the sugar to the water and cook the mixture at a simmer until it thickens to syrup consistency. Allow to cool. Strain the rose petals out and pour the syrup into a bottle with a snug lid.

Rose Jelly

Ahh…one of the most delicate signs that spring has arrived is the blooming roses in the yard. That brings to mind my grandma’s rose jelly. She always left a few of the petals in the jelly to make it pretty.

In other words, canning is very effective as a means of storage and, when canned properly, fruits and even flowers will last for a decade or longer.

You want to use really fragrant roses for this, and the color will, of course, determine the color of the jelly. Choose roses that are almost fully open but not fading.


  • 2 pints tightly packed, cleaned rose petals
  • 14 oz. granulated sugar
  • 3.5 oz. super fine sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 pint water
  • 2.5 fluid oz. liquid pectin


Combine both sugars and the water in a large pan. Heat it until the sugar is dissolved. Stir in the petals and allow to cool. Let the petals steep in the syrup for 3-4 hours. While you’re waiting, sterilize your jars and get your seals and rings ready.

Strain the petals from the liquid. Add the lemon juice (the color will sharpen), then return to heat. Bring to a slow boil and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add the pectin. If you’d like to add a few petals back in for aesthetic reasons, now would be the time. Return to a boil and boil slowly for another 10 minutes.

Remove from heat and allow to rest for a couple of minutes. Pour your brand new rose jelly into your jars and clean the rims. Add the seals and rings and allow to cool.

rose jellyRose jelly makes an absolutely beautiful gift as well as a delicious addition to breakfast!

Scenting Pillows

As we’ve already discussed, roses have a calming, mentally boosting effect that makes them great for scenting pillows. My grandmother used to store rose blossoms in her towel closets and may sometimes even throw a few into the dryer as she dried the pillowcases.

This is only the beginning of a very long list of great uses for rose petals. You can make rose tea, rose honey, and even rose shampoo or just hair rinse. Hopefully, I’ll be writing more on this soon!

If you have any good rose-related tips or recipes you’d like to share, please do so in the comments section below.

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Survival Herbal Recipes From Our Ancestors

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 Herbs Recipes

There are many ways to use herbs and they’re easy to grow even if you live in a small apartment because they’re small enough to pose as house plants. A bonus is that they’re fragrant, pretty, and easy to take care of. They’re great to use fresh to season food, but they’re medicinal too.

In a SHTF situation, having these ingredients will be good for bartering as well, because everyone will need them for medicinal purposes or just as a luxury.

Our ancestors used these plants well for medical purposes, and you need to know how to prepare them too. Some recipes will call for them to be used straight up or dried, but many call for teas, tinctures, poultices, infusions, decoctions, sprouting, or powders so you need to learn how to properly make those, too.

Read this great article about growing herbs indoors to see where to start from, then follow the steps below to see how to turn any of them them into natural remedies.

How To Dry Your Ingredients

drying herbs

First things first. In order to use your ingredients, you can dry them and there are a few different ways to do this. Drying is a great way to store them long-term, though most of them lose their efficacy and flavor slowly over time.

Simply harvest your ingredients and let them dry in a warm, dry spot out of the sun, or in the dehydrator or oven. Regardless of which method you choose, make sure that they’re in a single layer so that they dry evenly. If layered, they may mold before they dry, especially if you’re drying them naturally.

Wash them off to remove any dust or bugs. If you’re drying them naturally cover them with a paper towel to keep them clean while they’re drying. Let them dry completely until they crumble because moisture will cause them to mold. If you’re using the oven, do so at about 200 degrees or so.

You want them to dry but not burn, and you don’t want to cook them because you want to preserve the natural goodness in them, not bake them all out.

Once you’ve dried them, you need to store them in an air-tight container. If you won’t be using them within a few months, you can always vacuum seal them to extend storage time.

If you choose to dry the entire plant, you can dry it using the same methods as above or you can hang them upside down in a warm, dry spot out of the sun. You can also dry citrus rinds. They’re rich in vitamin C and add a nice flavor. Just grate the zest off and dry as stated above.

In addition to leaves, you can use the berries, roots, bark, seeds, stems and flowers of many plants too, using the same methods. It just depends on what the recipe, or your personal preference, calls for.

To take drying a step further, you may want to powder it. Simply grind the herb into a fine powder either by hand or using a coffee grinder.

How To Make Tea From Herbs

herb tea herb

Unless you’ve lived in a cave with no human interaction whatsoever, you’ve heard of tea. Teas, also called infusions, are made from the softer parts of plants such as leaves, flowers, or rinds. Sometimes seed and roots will be used in teas instead of decoctions because boiling will damage the essential oils in some plants. If you’re using seeds or roots, it’s best to crush them a bit in order to release the beneficial oils inside.

You can make tea from either fresh or dried ingredients and many of them are delicious as well as good for you. Teas are great for everything from personal pleasure to curing ailments and they’re quick and simple to make.

You can combine different ingredients for different flavor profiles or purposes, too. Play with them, and figure out which flavors you like best. If using them medicinally, do some research. I’ve written articles about that here and here.

You can put your ingredients in a tea ball or cheesecloth or you can place them directly in the water, then strain it. You can also drink them hot or cold. If the tea is medicinal and not particularly delicious, you can add a bit of honey or citrus rind as long as the recipe doesn’t specifically tell you not to.

A good rule of thumb is to use about 1 tsp. of powdered ingredients or 2 tsp. per cup of tea if you’re using dried. Double that if you’re using fresh ingredients. If you’re using them just for pleasure, you can adjust the amount to suit your taste. If you’re making a medicinal tea, you may use up to 1/2 cup of ingredients per cup, depending upon the recipe.

Start with boiling water, then put your ingredients in to steep, or put them in the cup and pour the hot water over them. Cover and let them steep for 10-20 minutes, then strain if necessary. Many medicinal tea or infusion recipes will call for longer steeping in order to infuse more of the plant benefits into the water. Enjoy!


How To Make A Decoction

Decoctions are similar to teas except they’re made with harder parts of plants, such as roots, seeds, barks, and stems. The primary difference in preparation is that you boil the ingredients in the water in order to release the medicinal aspects.


Bring your water to a boil and add the ingredients. It’s best to crush the ingredients a bit to release the oils and other benefits. Cover and reduce heat to a slow simmer. If you’re using smaller pieces, simmer for about 20 minutes. If using larger chunks, simmer for up to an hour, depending on what the recipe calls for. When it’s finished steeping, strain the herbs out and it’s finished.

The reason that you want to cover the decoction while it’s simmering is that you want to essential oils to drip back down into the decoction. A rule of thumb for amounts is a little over 1 tablespoon of dried ingredients per cup of decoction. If you’d like a stronger decoction, use more herbs, boil it longer, or let in steep overnight depending upon what the recipe calls for.

How To Make A Tincture

Tinctures are made when an ingredient isn’t particularly soluble in water or when you want to store it longer. The process uses alcohol in the form of vodka or rum (which needs to be at least 80 proof, or 40 percent alcohol), or 90-180 proof grain alcohol.


You’ll need dark colored bottles with tight-fitting corks or lids because sunlight damages the medicinal value of the tincture. If you don’t have dark bottles, your tincture needs to be stored in a dark place.

Making a tincture is a simple process but it’s important that you use the proper amounts of alcohol and dried plants. The ratio should be 1 part plant material to 4 parts liquid. To make it easier, use 2 ounces of plant material for every 8 ounces (1 cup) liquid. It’s important that you measure the plants by weight, not volume because 1 tablespoon of dried basil will obviously be much larger in volume that 1 tablespoon of bark.

The percentage of alcohol is important as well, to ensure that you get a tincture with at least a 1-year shelf life. The liquid needs to be around 40 percent alcohol, which means that if you use 80 or 90 proof rum or vodka, you can use it as-is, but if you use grain alcohol (180 proof), use 1/2 cup alcohol and 1/2 cup distilled water.

Add the ingredients to your bottles and make sure that the cork or lid is tight. Store in a dark area. Shake once daily until the tincture is ready. If you’re using soft material such as leaves or powder, the process takes about 2 weeks. Harder matter such as bark or woody stalks will take a bit longer: about a month.

At the end of the processing time, strain the mixture through a strainer or cheese cloth to remove the solid matter, pressing on the plant matter (wringing if you’re using a cheese cloth)  to get all the liquid out. If you used powder, stop shaking the tincture 3 days before it’s done. The powder will settle to the bottom and you can just pour the liquid off the top through a cheese cloth.

Pour the liquid into a clean glass (again, preferably dark) container and seal well. Store in a dark place at room temp. Since you’re using a large percentage of plant matter to liquid, and the alcohol better releases the properties of the plant, dosages of tincture tend to be much less than that of teas or decoctions.

Dosage does, of course, depend upon the recipe but the average dose of tincture is usually 1-2ml (30-60 drops) two or three times per day. You can take it directly in your mouth to absorb it faster or you can mix it in a few ounces of juice or water. If, for various reasons, you don’t want the alcohol, add the tincture to a couple ounces of very hot and the alcohol will evaporate in a couple of minutes.



These are by far the easiest to prepare and are used for tender or fresh plants, or for material whose beneficial properties would be damaged using heat or alcohol. You simply soak the matter in water overnight and drink the water according to the directions in the recipe.



These are super simple because the crushed herbs are either placed directly on the wound, or between two pieces of cheese cloth or bandage, then placed on the wound. You may need to add just enough water to dampen the herbs.

Then wrap the treated wound with a light cotton bandage to keep the poultice on the wound. You can even use a large leaf to hold the poultice if necessary.


Compresses are just clothes that have been soaked in infusions, decoctions or tinctures. They’re placed on the wound and are often used in place of a poultice.

Now that you know a bit more about the different methods to prepare herbal recipes for survival, practice a bit. You wouldn’t want to use it for the first time ever in a life or death situation!

If you have any experience with using these herbal concoctions, or would like to share some great recipes, please do so in the comments section below.

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Survival Medicine Hour: Allergies, Anaphylaxis, Antioxidants

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Joe Alton, MD and Amy Alton, ARNP are the medical experts for Jack Spirko’s popular Survival Podcast, and today take a question from Josh, who has four children that have issues with allergies although it’s never been an issue in his family. Dr. Alton discusses the Hygiene Hypothesis of why we’re experiencing an epidemic of allergies these, days, and how to recognize and deal with severe reactions. Also, Nurse Amy and Dr. Bones talk about antioxidants, a controversial topic to some in Western Medicine. What are they, what do they do, and a lot about how diet and lifestyle that could help your family stay healthy in good times or bad. All this and more in the latest episode of the Survival Medicine Hour!


To listen in, click below:



Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,



Joe and Amy Alton


Prep Blog Review: The Good Ol’ Medicine

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prep blog reviewWhat’s good about the old, tried and tested remedies is not only that they work, it’s that they work in times of struggle, when other options are not available. Makes sense, right? After all, if they managed to keep our ancestors healthy, they will surely be useful once SHTF (but before that, too).

So let’s take a look at four articles we found this week (plus, we published our own take on the subject last Sunday) that will help us stay on top of our health the good old fashioned way.

1. 16 Tips to Help You Deal with Seasonal Allergies After TEOTWAWKI

allergies“Spring is upon us and so are seasonal allergies.  Now I have bad allergies and over the years have spent some miserable springs and falls.

Now much of what I do to mitigate them goes out the window when the system fails.  I can no longer hide in an air-conditioned house and most medications will be in short supply.  So what is the solution?”

Read more on Preparedness Advice.

2. Homegrown Pain Relief/Leaf

garden“I just visited my first pot shop and all I can say is, wow, man. Cannabis use is legal in Washington State, so we can buy and use various forms of cannabis treats as well as trips. There are bonbon bombs and brownies, bongs and assorted pedigreed splif-stuffings as well as more mundane ointments and salves.

I was in search of a cannabis cream that has helped a surprising number of my friends find relief from arthritis pains as well as sore muscles and aching joints. My amazing massage therapist had used some on my hands and back and the result sent me straight off to the local den of iniquity with very rewarding results.”

Read more on Log House Plants.

3. 7 Old-Fashioned, Grandma-Approved Health Remedies That Actually Do Work

grandma remedies“Many old health remedies are defined by folklore, myth and the varying claims of natural healers across the centuries. Beyond the claims, however, studies have shown that certain natural remedies actually can provide effective relief for illness and disease.

Here are seven of the best natural remedies that have stood the test of time.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

4. How To Make A First Aid Kit For Survival

First aid kit isolated on white“How to make a first aid kit for survival has been on my mind a lot lately. I’m grateful I have neighbors who will call me when they have giant hives and ask if I have some Benadryl. Of course, I do.

His wife called me and the first thing I asked his wife was, “is he having trouble breathing, because if he is call 911”. This is the third time I have been over to help this wonderful neighbor of mine. He was not having trouble breathing, thank goodness! I asked, “does it feel like your airway is closing?” He said no to his wife who relayed that message to me as I’m talking on my cell phone running over to their house with my bottle of Benadryl.”

Read more on Food Storage Moms.


This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia.

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10 Must Have Natural Remedies For Preppers

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For thousands of years people have relied on nature for remedies against all sorts of ailments.

So why should we put our money into Big Pharma’s pockets and probably feel worse than we felt in the first plane, when we can rely on natural remedies that, if used correctly, have no side effects at all?

We’ve put together this infographic that gathers 10 of the most used and most efficient alternative cures for common problems that will make it so much easier for you to focus on what shouldn’t be missing from your natural medical kit. 


Make sure to use the comments section below to let us know what other remedies you would add to the list!

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia.


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Antioxidants and Survival, Part 2

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Last time, we talked about what antioxidants are and how they work to eliminate free radicals and strengthen your resistance to disease. We made clear the importance of having a variety of  antioxidant sources in your diet. It turns out that eating a healthy diet (and providing good nutrition for family and group members) is the best way to keep it together, even when everything else is falling apart.



Antioxidant Food Sources

You can buy antioxidants by the bottle at the store but, to tell the truth, you should get most of your antioxidants not from supplements, but from your diet. A diet of fresh, raw, unprocessed foods (especially fruits and vegetables) is loaded with them. You should eat fresh, organically-produced food whenever possible, which underscores the importance of learning how to produce food on your own property or by “guerrilla gardening“. Check out  resources through your state’s agricultural extension office, such as The Master Gardener Program. Even in survival scenarios, the ability to access fresh food will supplement stored non-perishables and, certainly, provide more antioxidant support.



Foods that are high in antioxidants include:

• Vegetables. Most of the vegetables you eat, especially green leafy ones, are loaded with plant compounds that act as antioxidants. Kale, mustard greens, and spinach, for example, are good sources of vitamin E and other antioxidants. Remember that to maximize the antioxidants in vegetables, you have to eat them in a raw, unprocessed, and fresh state.

Fruit. Fresh berries like raspberries, blueberries, and cranberries are good antioxidant sources. They contain lots of vitamin C and carotenoids, as well as  iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

Nuts. Raw Pecans, walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts have antioxidants that can boost your heart and overall health. It should be noted that some grocery store nuts are  irradiated to prevent germination and should be avoided. Also, you should know that peanuts aren’t on this list. They aren’t even really a nut! They’re legumes, and related more to beans and peas.



Green tea. Green tea has compounds that lower your risk for heart attack and stroke, plus much more.


Herbs and spices. Consider putting together a herb garden to go along with those veggies. Herbs and spices are an abundant source of antioxidants. Some options are ginger, garlic, cloves, cinnamon, and turmeric,. Look for fresh products, as they are have higher antioxidant levels than processed and powdered versions. The antioxidant activity of fresh garlic is stronger than dry garlic powder, for example.



Sprouts are great sources of antioxidants.  Live in a high-rise and can’t grow a garden? Well, if you have about a little spare counter space in your kitchen, you can be a successful sprout farmer. You can even grow them in jars.

What about all those supplements you’ll find online and at the store? The name (“supplement”) is the key, they’re there only to add to a diet and shouldn’t be a sole source.  Certainly, it isn’t easy  to eat healthily due to today’s hustle and bustle lifestyle. If you choose to take supplements, consider CoQ10, moderate, not high, levels of Vitamin C and E, and acai berry as some options.


Antioxidant-Friendly Lifestyle Changes


                                Get some sleep!


And, speaking of lifestyle, change yours to decrease the number of free radicals that your body has to deal with.

Decrease the amount of sugar  in your diet. Less sugar in your diet can help the antioxidants you have to work better and last longer. Food items with high-fructose corn syrup like many sodas are especially bad.

Exercise. Exercise in moderation can boost your body’s antioxidant production.

Manage your stress. Stress can worsen  inflammation  caused by free radicals. Studies have found links between psychological stress and numerous health issues. Even the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that most diseases have a psychological component.

Avoid smoking.  Smoking forms free radicals in your body, which accelerates the aging process, especially in your skin. Oh, by the way, it also has more carcinogens than you can shake a stick at.

Get some sleep! Sleep deficits can cause severe health problems. Seven to eight hours of sleep per night is the recommended amount for most adults, maybe a little less for oldsters.


Although antioxidants are considered to be part of the alternative philosophy of healthcare, many Western practitioners believe they have an important role (especially via diet) in keeping your body functioning at 100% efficiency. In a survival setting, that’s where you’ll have to be to stay healthy.



Joe Alton, MD

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To learn some strategies for handling medical issues in survival settings, look up our 3 category Amazon bestseller “The Survival Medicine Handbook“, with over 275 5-star reviews!  Also, fill those holes in your medical supplies by checking out our entire line of kits and supplies at

Antioxidants and Survival, Part 1

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Keeping healthy and fighting disease is what your body’s immune system is all about. What does your body use as weapons in the arsenal to stave off the toxins you’re exposed to every day? Antioxidants.  This may sound too New Age-y for you, but many in  conventional Western medicine acknowledge the importance of getting sufficient antioxidants from your diet or by other means. Human beings have one of the longest lifespans in the animal kingdom due to a lot of antioxidants in our diet. After a major disaster, that lifespan is in jeopardy, and your food storage should contain a lot of different sources of antioxidants.



This topic is something I’ve haven’t discussed before, and not all the science supports the health benefits of antioxidants (especially supplements), but the medically self-reliant should know about nutrition and what foods are most likely to keep their people healthy in good times or bad. So  what the heck are antioxidants, what do they do, and how do you get them?

Antioxidants are a class of compounds that are capable of preventing the damage caused by oxidation of other molecules in your body by… Oxygen! Yes, the oxygen in the air you need to breathe causes damage. Oxidation, when it affect your car’s chassis, leads to rust, and in your body, oxidation is essentially biological rusting. Antioxidants, some produced in your body naturally and some ingested, inhibit oxidation by fighting free radicals. Free what?

Free radicals. Free radicals are a waste product you naturally produce as a result of normal living and aging. They’re your biological response to environmental toxins like cigarette smoke, UV rays from the sun, chemicals, radiation, and more. Free radicals also form anytime you have inflammation in your body and with physical exertion.

Free radical molecules aren’t complete; they’re missing one or more electrons. The incomplete molecules go after other molecules and proteins to steal their electrons. When they do this, they damage cell structures and even your DNA, and form even more free radicals. Cell walls “rust”, so to speak, and become leaky, causing cell death. Without antioxidants, free radicals run rampant, leading to tissue damage, signs of aging, and the inability of your immune system to nip diseases in the bud. Free radicals are linked to many different diseases, including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, coronary artery disease, Parkinson’s, and many more.

How do antioxidants work? Antioxidants donate electrons to these free radicals, rendering them harmless, without becoming free radicals themselves. They serve to defend your cells from damage and resist the effects of exposure to pollutants and other toxins.

Other important possible benefits of antioxidants include:

• Assisting in cell repair
• Processing toxic elements like mercury and arsenic out of your body
• Increasing your body’s natural defense capabilities by shielding your DNA from free radical attacks
• Promoting the self-destruction of early cancer cells

Different Types of Antioxidants

Antioxidants are classified in different ways, and each protects different parts of your cells. Some, like Vitamins A, E, and alpha-lipoic acid, protect the cell walls, mostly made of fatty lipids, and others like Vitamin C and glutathione, protect the inside of cells, mostly made of water. You’ll need both types to prevent oxidative effects that might lead to biological rust.

As I said earlier, you make some of these in your body, but you make less and less as you get older. Some of your natural antioxidants are found in just about every cell, with names like catalase, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione.

You need a wide array of antioxidants to provide you with optimal benefits. Let’s talk about glutathione. This is considered the “master” antioxidant because it maximizes the effect of all the others, including coQ10, Vitamin C, alpha-lipoic acid, plus the antioxidants you ingest in your diet.

Glutathione helps process toxins from your cells and protects you from the damaging effects of radiation, chemicals, and environmental pollutants. Your body’s ability to produce glutathione decreases with aging. However, there are nutrients that can promote glutathione production, such as high-quality whey protein, curcumin, raw dairy, eggs, and grass-fed meat.

Another strong antioxidant is Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA). It helps reduce inflammation, gets toxic metals out of your system, and even enhances the body’s sensitivity to insulin, something especially important in Type 2 diabetics. It’s also the antioxidant that protects you from developing Alzheimer’s disease. Alpha-lipoic acid might even help regenerate other antioxidants.

Then there’s CoQ10 (Ubiquinone), an antioxidant converted to ubiquinol and produced in quantity in young people but less so in older folks. It’s used by all the cells in your body, and helps produce energy, as well as maintaining heart health and boosting the immune system. It has other effects as well, like keeping blood pressure in line and slowing the natural aging process. If you’re older, you might consider taking this in supplements.

Some antioxidants aren’t made naturally and have to be taken in your diet. One is resveratrol, also called a flavonoid. This is found in grapeseed, some vegetables, and red wine. It’s thought to help with blood pressure, heart health, and helps your ability to fight inflammation. It might even help prevent Alzheimer’s.

Another dietary antioxidant is the family of Carotenoids. These are the substances that give vegetables their colors, like carrots, peppers, and tomatoes. Your body converts them into Vitamin A.

One antioxidant you all know about is Vitamin C. Not only is it thought to be helpful to decrease the duration of some respiratory infections, it’s a major factor in battling oxidation from free radicals, and helps you maintain normal production of collagen, vital to skin, bones, tendons, and ligaments. You can get vitamin C from raw, organic vegetables and fruits, especially citrus. When taking a vitamin C supplement, many recommend one made with “liposomal technology”, which is thought to make the nutrient more accessible to your cells.

Finally, there’s Vitamin E. Natural vitamin E is a family of several different compounds. You can get all these vitamin E compounds from a balanced diet composed of wholesome foods, but only one or two from supplements. If you take supplements, make sure you let your doctor know. Taking too much may lead to health issues.



In Part 2, we’ll discuss what antioxidant-rich foods should be in your storage and supplies, some supplements that might have benefit, and lifestyle changes that help antioxidants in their battle to keep you healthy.

Joe Alton, MD

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6 Potent Natural Pain Relievers For Preppers

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Pain reliefPreppers understand better than most that in a really bad total SHTF situation certain things everybody always takes for granted just won’t be ‘granted’ anymore in the foreseeable future.

Medications, especially prescription pain killers, will be more valuable than gold, that is if you ever even see them again. And then they’ll likely be from an untrustworthy, unsafe, black market venue. They might not even be genuine drugs, but something else some desperate survivor is trying scam out for trade.

Prudent preppers make a serious effort to stockpile their necessary personal medications in advance but doctors and pharmacies don’t like to allow that with pain drugs for obvious reasons. There are some over the counter medications that one would be advised to have an additional supply stock of in any event like Aspirin, Aleve, Ibuprofen,  and etc., that might help but these will also be scarce as time passes.

These also would not be nearly as effective for reducing pain as prescription drugs. It’s bad enough that the whole world around you becomes a pain in and of itself, but to make it worse by having no relief from your personal illness pain if you have a severe condition, is like throwing gasoline on the fire. Many would also die without their meds, or be in so much pain as to be dysfunctional.

A Good Solution

Fortunately there is an esoteric form of herbal and plant science dealing specifically with pain that will solve the problem. After the avariciously corrupted Big Corporatist Pharma shackled and enslaved humans with proprietary government sanctioned pharmaceuticals, this ancient herbal art was all but lost in modern times and secretly kept alive only by dedicated below radar practitioners.

There are numerous varieties of herbs and plants and concoctions that work as good and sometimes even better than standard prescription drugs if you know what to use and what you are doing. These natural remedies, and even cures, are often better in other ways because they don’t have the harmful side effects that most prescription drugs have.

It is a well known fact in the esoteric enclaves that big pharma’s M.O. is to alter the molecular properties of original organic compounds from which they make their drugs so they could patent them for mega profits. They also throw in one more evil element of population control to please their strange bedfellow, the totalitarian regime.

They intentionally make the drugs, especially the opiate derivatives, in a way that creates a systemic resistance in your body over time requiring more dosages to sustain the pain relief. Essentially this is what creates an ‘addict’, which finally brings the masses under the control of the government because you can’t legally get strong pain relief anywhere else! (This, by the way, is another one of the ways they’ll prohibit you from owning a gun. There’s a data base on prescription drug usage already. You will be deemed “not in complete cognitive presence of mind” if you are on pain meds, ie. having mental issues, and therefore you are too dangerous to have a gun).

So here are a few good alternative ingested herbal pain killers used for centuries–still NOT government regulated, at least at this writing–that will work for you in an emergency, or which also might work for you instead of expensive GMO prescription drugs you might now be using, and without the addictive or withdrawal characteristics of refined opiates.

 1. Wild Opium Lettuce (Lactuca Serriola)

WOL is found almost anywhere and in many parts of the U.S. and it is, ironically, considered to be an invasive weed. The milky latex sap in the leaves contains the pain killer and looks similar to the sap of the opium poppy, hence the name.

Usually the O-lettuce sap is scored/scraped/squeezed from the leaves and stalks and ingested orally or mixed with juice, or made into a tea. Or even smoked for maximum fast effectiveness. The effect is a whole body numbing that relieves muscle and joint and inflammation aches and pains. O-Lettuce also works for bad coughing and helps to induce sleep. It is known as a safe, effective pain reliever without side effects or addictive properties.

2.Kava Kava (Piper Methysticum)

A healthful tonic/drink made from kava briefly made it into commercial popularity a few years ago and then quickly faded away. This was because it was so good that Big Bad Pharma couldn’t stand the competition and launched a back door bad mouth study campaign falsely claiming that it was a dangerous substance and caused all the bad side effects that only their FDA sanctioned pharmaceuticals are ‘allowed’ to cause.

In fact, Kava Kava is a popular medicinal plant indigenous to locations like Hawaii and Fiji with a well documented track record for relieving stress and particularly soothing for headaches and tension related body and muscle anxiety such as Fibromyalgia with overall systemic pain reduction.

The University of Minnesota found that Kava contains special ingredients like Nuciferine which is an anti-spasmotic helpful for preventing epileptic episodes and other brain disorders. Additionally this plant is being studied for its potential to reduce the formation and spread of nascent cancer cells.

3. Blue Lotus (Nymphaea Caerucea)

This plant provides a bounty of beneficial pain mitigating attributes besides its overwhelming natural beauty. Its main pain reduction properties are used for migraines, severe muscle spasms, Tinnitus, and also works well for systemic pains like menstrual cramps and various moderate body aches and tension.

It is not a true Lotus because there are no ‘blue’ members of the lotus family. It is actually a water lily found mostly in ponds. It’s potency is increased when combined with an alcoholic beverage and its muscle relaxation and feeling of well being and euphoric properties are enhanced to a point where some cultures have used this combination as an aphrodisiac.

4. Kratum (Mitragyna Specios)

A native tree of Thailand, but can be grown in warmer climates like California or indoors. Kratum, particularly the Red Vein Kratum variety is often used for severe pain from traumatic injuries like broken bones or torn muscles. It is compared to Oxycodone in its potency but without the addiction problems and side effects.

Red vein kratum is so ‘threatening’ to Big Pharma that they felt the tyrannical need to do something about it–even though it is not a narcotic or controlled substance–so they had their vitamin Police, the FDA, launch a raid on a Kratum importer in California to seize many thousands of pounds from their warehouse in 2014. The authorities got them on violating a ‘regulated prohibition’ on selling any substance as a medical treatment without a proper license or other special approval by the FDA. Similar to what they did with unlicensed Naturopathic practitioners, or herbologists who prescribe certain vitamins or natural compounds for their customers.

You cannot directly prescribe anything to anyone, and then sell them the actual product,  if you are not licensed as a doctor or other specifically licensed or certified professional. If you are a vitamin/health store you can only inform people –as we are doing here–as to what you sell is used for, but you can’t specifically and intentionally prescribe it. This heinous crime is called ‘practicing medicine without a license’. It’s a grey area and usually only enforced if somebody complains formally. You are only allowed to ‘practice medicine’ on yourself if the substance is not illegal.

Kratum is not (yet) illegal and you can still find it at certain health food stores specializing in organic herbs or online but it might be selling under a different name so you have to research it. Some so called head shops also sell it as a form of incense or aeromatic therapy to avoid unwanted scrutiny.

5. Boswellia and Rhus Toxicodendron

Boswellia is an herb widely used in Ayurvedic medicine in India to treat both forms of serious Arthritis and Rhus Toxicodendron is a homeopathic remedy derived from poison oak specifically used for Arthritis conditions that include early morning flare ups but improves with motion. Taken in complimentary dosage their synergistic effects are claimed to be highly effective.

6. White Willow Bark (Salix Alba, S.Fragilis, or S.Purpurea)

The bark from these willow trees contains the compound Salicin and is a well known general anti-inflamatory remedy much like common Aspirin. Maybe because it is where commercial Aspirin comes from, of course not without typical Big Pharma modifications.

People have been chewing on or making tea concoctions from willow bark for centuries. It does have blood thinning properties like over the counter Aspirin so one must know that if they are on prescription blood thinning medications.


As with any substance taken internally, there is always a potential for serious abuse. And if you are on other medications for your pain problems, of course you must always check with your doctor before taking any other medications. You know, like if you have high blood pressure or a heart condition and want to take vitamins like lecithin, potent omega 3s and other such alternatives to the Warfarin rat poisons they are currently killing you with because then your blood might thin out too much? Well, really?

Makes one kind of compelled to ask the insolent question as to why, then, don’t they just use the natural remedies in the first place? One doctor told somebody I know that it’s because…’these natural substances are not yet vetted and approved by the FDA/AMA for their safety and effectiveness.’ And, of course, they never will be approved. Especially if they are too common and widespread for Big Pharma and the government to sequester so they can’t be profitable just by changing a molecule and getting a patent on it.

So as with anything else you consume, do your own diligence and research before using any alternative substances. Specifically concerning proper dosages and contraindications. There’s plenty of info on the above out there for you to arrive to your own conclusions by being well informed on the details you need to know beforehand.

Pain killers

The Nitty Gritty

In their greedy mentality what the AMA and FDA have willfully lost sight of is that keeping the masses addicted to narcotic pain killers is simply not healthy or ethical and has recently become a major criminal conspiracy because of the massive over prescription epidemic by doctors to their patients just for the asking. (More people have died from this AMA sanctioned aberration than any deaths or injuries by any so called assault weapons!)

However the truth is that the perverse psychology in the corrupt venue of medical corporatism is that it is more profitable to simply keep ‘treating’ people with drugs and other useless therapies until they die. As opposed to simply curing them quickly and preventing future illness and promoting healthy longevity by creating an environment absent of unhealthy foods and poisons so addictive drugs are not so necessary.

Alternative/complimentary medicine and advanced health and nutrition supplementation are anathema to Big Pharma corporatism. Never mind that for thousands of years beforehand between Chinese and Ayurvedic and Native Indian medicines and natural healing science, there is actually a ‘cure’ in these ancient archives for virtually all ailments and sickness known to man! And far more tonics and treatments along the way to gaining back optimal health!

For self reliant oriented preppers, it is a good skill to know at least a rudimentary production and application of herbal medicines you intend to use, and maintain an ongoing study of this vast and amazing science as time and resources permit.

At least stockpile the seeds or plants for some of these herb and plant remedies so that you can self sustain yourself when there is no other way to obtain them. There are many good beginner books on this subject, and if you search you’ll find outlets that sell the plants or seeds that you need.

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This article has been written by Mahatma Muhjesbude for Survivopedia.

DISCLAIMER: The data contained in this article are for informational purposes only, and do not replace by any means professional advice.

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Survival Medicine Hour: Bleeding Control Kit, Herbal Teas, Zika update, more

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Direct Pressure on Bleeding Wound

Bleeding wound

Would you have the materials and knowledge to stop heavy bleeding if you were confronted with it? In these violent times, you should be prepared to deal with injuries that could be life threatening and have the equipment that might save a life. Hear Amy Alton, ARNP, explain her thinking in designing a compact med kit that deal with hemorrhage that she believes should be in every workplace, classroom, and homestead. Also, Joe Alton, MD, talks about natural remedies when he goes over some herbal teas. Plus: Why does Zika Virus in Brazil cause birth defects, while no major history of the problem seems to occur with Zika virus in its original territory (Africa and Asia)? Is a mutation the cause? All this and more on the latest Survival Medicine Hour with Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy.


To listen in, click below:



Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,



Joe and Amy Alton


Check out Nurse Amy’s latest kit “The First Aid Bleeding Control Kit” at her store at




Stay Away From These Supplements That Harm You!

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big herbal supplements

As you delve deeper into the arena of survival medicine, you will learn more about using herbal remedies in place of conventional medicines. While this advice has a lot of advantages, it won’t be of much good if you simply try to stockpile pre-manufactured herbal supplements.

Aside from problems with shelf life, there are no regulatory guidelines to ensure that you are actually getting the proper amount of each herb listed on the bottle.

In fact, there are hundreds of herbal remedy brands on the market that prove to have fake ingredients and even dangerous fillers when tested by an independent lab. This will generate a huge negative impact on your ability to survive crisis.

What’s the Problem with Using Fake Herbs for Treatment

Historically speaking, if a human suffers from a physical or mental ailment, there is an herbal remedy to cure it. The problem comes in when large scale manufacturers claim to be making extracts from certain plants, even though the pills, potions, or powders are nothing more than placebos, or have so little extract in them there is no way they can be of therapeutic value.

Not only do consumers wind up spending millions of dollars on these fake herbs, they mistakenly believe the herbs are useless, or that there is no way to make good use of them. In some cases, these placebos even lead to death if the person does not get some form of proper medication in time.

Aside from being misleading, fake herbs are just about as unhealthy as illegal drugs. When companies want to cut corners, they easily use toxic fillers or ones that increase your risk of developing cancer or other diseases. If some of these fillers are supposed to extend the shelf life of the herbal formula, it may simply not hold up for years as expected in your stockpile.

Simply trying to add more government regulation isn’t about to solve the problem. If businesses are going to make fake products to begin with, they will find some way to phony test results that are meant to catch them.

How Is This Going to Hamper My Survival?

Consider a situation where you are on medication to treat a chronic medical condition. Let’s say that you are aware of the fake herb problem, and have actually done some research on brands in order to find a creditable one. Here are just a few problems that the fake herb crisis can cause at the worst possible moment:

  • In some cases, the herb may lose its potency much faster than expected. If you put these bottles of herbal remedies in your stockpile, they may be useless by the time you actually need to use them. If you plan to use herbs for heart disease, diabetes, or some other serious health problem, these impotent herbs from a “reliable” source could still lead to your death.
  • Consider a situation where you have been stockpiling herbs that you purchased online because you have read about other brands that aren’t as reliable. Perhaps you have even gone so far as to stop taking regular medications for a few days, and felt well enough to feel confident in using these herbs in a crisis situation. Even if you felt better, it does not mean that the herbs were actually working. In many cases, medications can still have an effect on your body weeks and months after you stop taking them. Once you are in a crisis situation, the placebo effect from fake herbs will wear off, and then you will be stuck with a useless stockpile and no way to get the care you need.
  • In some situations, you may decide that you would prefer to buy dried herbs so that you can create your own oils or other concoctions. As with regular pills, there is still an enormous chance that any dried herbs you buy will also be packed with fillers, and trying to make oils and teas from these drugs may be more dangerous than expected. Aside from non-existent therapeutic value, some of these fillers may even include pesticides and other toxic plant residues that will reactivate once you heat up the materials or try make a tea from them.
  • When it comes to stockpiling drugs and herbs, it is all too easy to simply buy a few bottles and store them away compared to growing herbs and processing them yourself, rest assured that the former method is much easier. As a crisis scenario goes onward, herbal suppliers are not going to be in a position to make new supplements. The greatest danger associated with stockpiling pre-manufactured supplements is that you will never be encouraged to learn how to do it for yourself from planting the seeds to harvesting, processing, storage, and dosing.

How Safe Are the Foreign Herbal Supplements?

When it comes to the arena of herbal supplements, you will find that as soon as one brand is taken off the shelves, people will take to the internet to see if they can get the herb they want from overseas.

Today, there are foreign herbal “pharmacies” that are making millions of dollars off fake herbal supplements that are no better than what was just removed from the shelves of your local store. In some cases, as border patrol catches up with these pharmacies, they can, and do prevent shipments from coming into the country.

If you are purchasing herbs from overseas, think very carefully about what you are doing, because these scammers will take your money, and then the herbs you bought will never arrive because they are unable to get through customs.

How to Stay Informed

Herbs that have been used for centuries in alternative medicine systems are not the same ones that you are able to buy on the market today. In fact, you may be getting fake herbs that are every bit as dangerous as the conventional drugs that your doctor prescribes or that you buy over the counter.



If you are determined to buy herbal supplements, keep up with current news on which companies are selling fake or adulterated goods.

Here are two sites that will help you get started, as well as provide you with a good basis for studying further:

  • – this group conducts independent tests of all kinds of drugs and supplements. Once they complete their studies, they release the information to consumers and other watch groups. also releases a number of nutritional surveys and conducts numerous studies on the safety and usefulness of a range of herbal supplements. Since the group conducts independent tests, their results may vary from those conducted by the FDA, pharmaceutical labs, and others that may be interested in testing various products. At the very least, this a third opinion that you can look to when controversial results or unusual side effects arise.
  • – no matter whether you are interested in finding out more about dangerous foods, drugs, or herbal manufacturers, this site will give you plenty of information. You can keep up with current enforcement actions and also look at the historical records of companies that are under investigation via the warning letters. As you study information on this site, you will also gain a better sense of what the FDA lists as deceptive advertising, as well as some indicators of how much harder it will be to buy herbal supplements in the future.

Ask a licensed herbologist or a licensed alternative medicine practitioner about these herbs. Many people today are surprised to find out that most states have a licensing board for medical practitioners other than conventional nurses and doctors. You don’t need to simply hope that your doctor actually knows about herbal supplements and alternative treatments when fully qualified people are on hand to answer your questions.

Always ask your doctor what courses they have completed in herbology and what, if any continuing medical education credits (CME) they have in this area. If you find that they have not officially studied in this area, then find someone that holds a proper license. If you would not take your car to get an oil change to a beauty parlor, it won’t be the best option to assume that every doctor knows as much about herbal remedies as they do about conventional drugs. At least, a licensed herbologist receives newsletters or other industrial insider information that helps them avoid buying fake herbs for resale.

Some herbologists will grow their own herbs. If you visit their shop or practice, you may be able to see the plants growing, or even watch as your supplements are prepared. If you cannot grow your own herbs, this means of acquiring them may be a bit safer.

Just be sure to consult with the BBB for the state where the business is located and other consumer protection agencies to see if anyone has filed problematic reports against the business. Also check the state licensing board to see if there are any disciplinary actions listed against the provider. (Actually, you should do this for conventional providers as well).

If you “google” different herbs, make sure you find all kinds of information about what works and what doesn’t. Rather than just rely on basic search engine results, visit Google Scholar, which is a special part of the Google search engine that only returns information from scientific, peer reviewed studies that are often considered legitimate enough for a number of industries.

In some cases, you may uncover genetic testing studies on specific brands of herbal supplements even if they have not been listed on mainstream media, or the FDA.

Be aware that there is a difference between the two search engines, never take what you read for granted, and verify the source of the information and the information itself. This includes investigating the financial sponsors of the studies and any investments they may have in competing businesses.

What You Need to Ask the Doctor

When it comes to fake herbs, let your doctor know what herbs you are using as well as the manufacturer. In many cases, your doctor won’t do more than ask and keep this information on file, but a discussion about fake herbal supplements is still very important.

If you are having strange side effects, or something does not feel right, ask your doctor to run some tests, and as with any other drug, demand copies of your blood work and any other diagnostic studies, then go ahead and research on numbers that are outside of the normal reference ranges.

Pursue second opinions and other specialist advice if you see something amiss. Never forget that when a crisis happens, doctors and competent medical providers won’t be there to to help you, let alone take care of relatively routine matters. Make use of what advice you can get now so that you have a better chance of having the best information in a time of need.

When it comes to going back to the old ways as a means of surviving a major crisis, using herbal remedies is bound to hold a good bit of appeal. But simply trying to buy herbs from a local store or even online can be a very hazardous undertaking. You should know how to spot fake herbs and understand how they can affect your health now and in a crisis situation.

As with any other prepping scenario, check what kind of herbs are in your stockpile, and do your best to avoid fakes and placebos. There are plenty of resources available to help you get the best information. Take advantage of these resources so that you do not wind up with even more problems once a major crisis occurs.


This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

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5 Ancient European Recipes For Your Survival Kitchen

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PalinkaFood and survival are symbiotic things, I mean, you can’t think about surviving without food, water and shelter, right? And, when confronted with a survival situation when SHTF, what’s the best thing you can do?

If you ask me, the answer is pretty straight forward: you don’t have to re-invent the wheel, just look back into our history. How did people used to make ends meet, thousands of years before internet, electricity and internal combustion engines? It seems pretty improbable nowadays, right, even amazing?

Well, that’s just because we got used to our modern, care-free, high-tech life, when everything is just a click or a phone call away.

But keep in mind one thing folks: back in the day, survival was not a punch-line, it was a way of life. So, just by studying how our ancestors used to live (and eat, but back to that in a moment) would be awesome, prepping-wise.

In today’s article, I will try to increase your knowledge base with a few ancient European food recipes for your survival kitchen.

Remember what that ancient guy used to say? You don’t live to eat, but you eat to live? I don’t fully agree with Hippocrates on that issue, because I love to eat, and also I allow my food to be my medicine and my medicine be my food (that’s another paraphrase of Hippocrates).

The best thing about old-school food recipes is that they’re fairly easy to DIY, they require a minimum amount of skills and raw materials, they’re as healthy as they come (everything’s natural and raw, without chemicals, additives and stuff like that) and they’re dirt cheap to manufacture. Oh, and I almost forgot: they’re very tasty!

Also, being capable of cooking nutritious foods from scratch would come pretty handy in a survival situation, and more! I mean, these things are awesome, I eat (some of) them on a daily basis, so stick with me folks, because something good’s coming’ on right after the break!

Braga – the Beverage of Sultans

Let me begin with a tasteful and healthy homemade beverage, called bragă. I can bet you’ve never heard of that stuff before, and I’d be like 99% right. However, braga used to be very popular back in the day, especially in Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Macedonia, Herzegovina and Bosnia, not to mention Turkey and Albania, where it’s still very trendy and it is known az boza or bosa.

Braga is produced by the fermentation of cereal flour, being a malt-based refreshing drink and it can be manufactured from fermented maize, wheat or millet. Being a product of fermentation, it also contains something like 1% alcohol, which is negligible, unless you drink tons of it.

There are mentions of braga and its manufacturing process dating way back to the 8th millennia before Christ, in the ancient Mesopotamian and Anatolian kingdoms. Since then, it became hugely popular in the Ottoman empire, where it was served with cinnamon and roasted chickpeas, and even laced with opium and what not.

The general idea is that braga is a very tasty and healthy beverage, which can be easily made at home using basic ingredients. This beverage has a thick consistency, a sweet flavor and it’s slightly acidic.

Speaking about health issues, according to research performed by a Turkish Science and Technology institute, a liter of braga will provide you with one thousand calories (that means energy, which comes handy in survival situations), vitamins A, B and E, along with lactic acid (this helps with digestion).

Basically, you should drink braga every day, for your health’s sake; it’s all natural and very tasty, and it’s also a pro-biotic drink.

Turkish braga

So, how is it made? Braga, the beverage of Sultans, requires the following ingredients (this is the easiest way and the cheapest, nota bene):

For the yeast:

  • 1-2 tablespoons slightly roasted flour
  • 1 cup tepid water
  • 1 spoonful sugar
  • For the braga:
  • 5 l water
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup home-made ferment (yeast)

The yeast must be prepared one or two days in advance. The process is very simple, all you have to do is to mix the ingredients and leave them to ferment in a bowl  for a couple of days at room temperature.

For the braga itself, you’ll have to bake the flour in a dry pan until it changes its color to rosy, then you’ll have to let it cool in a big pot. Then, poor the 5 liters of water over the brown stuff and mix it really well, without making lumps. Then you must add the sugar and boil the mix for 8 minutes, mixing it properly all the time. Let it cool, then add the pre-made yeast, and let the stuff ferment for 2-3 days, then store it in the fridge.

Voila, you’ve made  yourself 5 liters of braga! You can flavor it with anything you like (cinnamon for example), and you may add sugar or whatever to suit your taste.

Borş – the Unknown Hang-Over Remedy

borsThe next ancient European recipe for your survival kitchen is called borş and it’s very similar to braga in terms of preparation and benefits. Borş can be described as a sour-fermented juice traditionally used in Romania in soups, and it’s made by fermenting wheat bran.

Also, hard-core Romanians sometimes drink it raw, as a hang-over remedy. Borş is full of probiotics, just like braga, and also contains the B vitamin complex, which makes it very healthy.

The main ingredient in borş is wheat bran or corn meal. To make borş, you’ll first need to make the starter, for which you’ll require a sterilized jar, water at room temperature and organic wheat bran, so it doesn’t contain preservatives.

Place the wheat bran in the jar, about 1/20 of the jar’s volume, and then fill the jar with water (pure, sterilized, de-chlorinated), at a temperature between 106 and 118 F, and let it ferment for a couple of days in a cool room, at approximately 60 F.

After 2-3 days, you should check the magic juice, and if it doesn’t smell at all, then all the bacteria is dead and you have to make another batch. If it stinks too much, it means it’s contaminated with bad/wild bacteria, and again, you must prepare another batch.

What you’re looking for is a faint, somewhat unpleasant scent, similar to how lacto-fermented pickles smell like, or B vitamins. The liquid itself is sour and if you leave it there for a couple more days, it will become even sourer (that’s actually the borş).

What’s now at the bottom of the jar is your starter. To preserve the stuff, you can mix it with wheat flour and corn meal, in equal quantities and make patties, then let them dry in a cool room (for later use). The patties are best stored in the fridge or in the freezer for long-term.

Now, with the starter taken care of, borş can be made as it follows: you’ll need 1 lb. of wheat bran, 1/2 lb of corn meal and a cup of the aforementioned starter. The ingredients will be mixed with pure/de-chlorinated water in a 1.5 gallon mason jar and the jar must be kept in a dry, cool room at 60 degrees F. The stuff will ferment in a couple of days and if you allow it an extra day, it will become even sourer. Don’t let it to ferment for more than three days, or it will spoil.

Once you’ve acquired the desired taste for your borş, strain it and pour it in bottles in the fridge for later use. You may add lovage in your borş for health reasons, making it even more beneficial.


Next on the list is pastrami, yet another ancient European recipe for your survival kitchen, delicious and nutritious, yet fairly easy to DIY. Just like corned beef, pastrami was invented as a survival food, for long-term storage in the absence of modern-day refrigeration methods.

What is pastrami? Well, a good old meat product, made from beef, mutton, pork or even turkey. The raw meat is the main ingredient, partially dried and seasoned with spices and herbs, marinated, and afterwards smoked and steamed.pastrami

How to make pastrami: brine is made by boiling one gallon of water into a big pot, then adding juniper berries (5), garlic (6 cloves, smashed/peeled) , salt (3/4 cup), bay leaves (3 broken into pieces), brown sugar (1/2 cup), curing salt (3/4 cup),  mustard seeds (1 tbsp.), and peppercorns (1 tbsp) if you like it spicy. Let it cool down and then put the meat inside (beef brisket for example, flat, trimmed to 1/4 inch), and refrigerate it for three days.

For the rub, combine coriander seeds (3 tbsp.), cinnamon (1 tsp), bay leaves (2) and black pepper (3 tbsp) in a spice grinder, then pulse until coarsely ground. After that add some sweet paprika (2 tbsp.), ground clove (1/2 tbsp.), and brown sugar.

The meat must be removed from the brine and rinsed in cold running water, then you must pat it dry using paper towels; now it’s time to put the aforementioned rub on the brisket, cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit into the refrigerator for one day.

The next step is to smoke the beef brisket for 3 to 4 hours on a charcoal/gas grill over low heat (200 F to 275 F) or use a dedicated smoker. The pastrami should be smoked/cooked until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 175 degrees F, then allow it to cool off at room temperature.


Pastrami is excellent when served with mujdei, the next European recipe for your survival kitchen. Mujdei is basically a garlic sauce and it’s used to flavor meat and fish dishes. Garlic is an excellent health-booster, a natural antibiotic, and is filled with vitamins and minerals.

How to make mujdei? Well, it’s fairly easy: you’ll need 3.5 ounces of garlic, salt and 5 ounces of sparkling water. You must grind the garlic and mix it with a punch of salt, add the water and stir it until it becomes a fine sauce.

You can add a little bit of pepper into the mix or use olive oil instead of sparkling water. Another recipe uses garlic, punch of salt, pepper and 150 ml of tomato juice instead of water/olive oil. Also, you may use cream or yogurt instead of tomato juice. It all depends on what you like more; go experiment a little bit.



Let’s End the Meal with a Shot

After a tasty meal, nothing is better than a shot of palinka (also known as palinca). Palinca is a traditional Eastern European alcoholic beverage: it’s a fruit brandy invented way back in the Middle Ages, and is usually made from plums, apples, cherries, pears or apricots.

For making palinka, you must double-distillate the fermented plum/apple/whatever juice, which results in a vigorous alcohol content of 40 to 70 percent ABV. Keep in mind that in certain US states, moon-shine (which this qualifies as) is strictly prohibited.

However, the basics for DIY-ing palinka are as it follows: first, you must prepare the fruit mash by removing the stony seed (if any) and sometimes you’ll need to grind the fruits to make the mash softer. The next step is fermentation of the mash, in an anaerobic environment using stainless steel or wooden containers. With the ideal temperature being 57-61 F, the fermentation process takes anywhere between ten days and two weeks.

The 3rd step is the distillation process, using a pot still or a column still.

Traditionally, Palinka is made using a pot still no bigger than 1,000 liters. Also, Palinka is always double distilled.

The last step is aging the Palinka in wooden barrels or stainless steel tanks, depending on the type of Palinka (some varieties can’t be aged in wooden barrels, as the wood cancels the fruity taste of the beverage). Here’s a DIY guide for a home-made distillation gizmo.

Video first seen on Fenyutas

Also, you can always buy palinka, if moonshine is not your cup of tea, but you’ll require strong connections in Hungary or Romania, the places which produce the best palinka in the world!

I hope the article helped. If you have other ideas or if you tried any of these recipes and want to share your experience, feel free to express yourself using the dedicated section! Or click on the banner below to get more about the ancient ways of survival that we should learn and start using!


This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia.

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Did You Know These Siberian Survival Secrets?

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    big siberia

In today’s world, Vladimir Putin is one of the most controversial leaders and Russia is starting to flex its geo-political muscles, 25 years after the collapse of the USSR. But regardless of what you think about Putin and the geo-political landscape, Russia is a very old civilization, with a rich culture and a long history of trials and tribulations.

We can learn a lot from the Russian people in terms of survival. Hence, today’s article is focused on survival recipes Made in the USSR, more precisely, ones originating from Siberia.

You know, if you think about vast, uninhabited lands, scarcely populated, extremely cold and filled with wild beauty and natural resources, Siberia is the first thing that comes to one’s mind. Siberia is the substantial equivalent of Alaska and Siberians are hard-working, tough people, who manage to survive in a very hostile environment. Therefore, if you want to learn about survival, you can look to Siberians and see how they’ve done it for centuries.

Holistic medicine is still practiced on a large scale in Russia and there are dozens of medical-scientific expeditions sent annually to Siberia to research old-school healing methods practiced by the ancient Siberian civilization.

siberian gingseng

The very harsh Siberian climate requires extraordinary efforts from its inhabitants to stay in shape, and today’s article will present you with some of the best holistic survival recipes and remedies.

These have been proven to boost health and energy time and time again, so pay attention and keep reading folks!

Relying on Nature for Medical Survival

Let’s begin with a well-known plant – almost a cure-all herb (or panacea).

They say it purportedly increases longevity, boosts your energy level and sex drive, promotes vascular health, improves memory, and prevents dementia in older people.

It also reduces the risks of getting cancer, reduces stress, increases insulin production and reduces blood sugar levels (excellent news for diabetics).

Ladies and gents, say hello to the Siberian Ginseng.

The Siberian variety is somewhat different from the regular Panax Gineseng (the Asian species) but it works just the same.

Siberians use it mainly for preventing colds and flu and for increasing their energy levels during the extremely cold winter months.

Rhodiola rosea, also known as Arctic Root, King’s Crown or Golden Root is another magic herb used extensively in Siberian holistic medicine for its extraordinary properties which are very similar to the ginseng’s, minus the hyper-activity ginseng may induce to certain persons.

Basically, in the holistic world of healing, Rhodiola is considered excellent for treating depression and chronic fatigue, also works miracles with stress-reduction.

Russian athletes and military personnel frequently use Rhodiola and ginseng supplements for staying in shape and improving their physical and psychological fitness.

Old people also appear to benefit from Rhodiola’s anti-aging properties, and the plant is also used as a great treatment for neurasthenia, depression and hypo-tension. Small doses of Rhodiola are great as stimulants (200 to 600 milligrams/day) while bigger doses have the opposite effect, being almost sedatives.

Saltbush, orache, or mountain spinach, aka Atriplex Hortensis is a plant species which originates from Central Asia and Siberia and it’s very similar to regular spinach. Saltbush is widely used in traditional Siberian medicine for treating liver, kidney and gynecological disease. The seeds are natural emetics and purgatives while the plant itself is used as a diuretic. It’s filled with minerals and vitamins, and works wonders for pancreatic dysfunctions. It’s also believed to be a cardio-tonic. Overall, saltbush is said to be excellent for digestion and circulation, and it should be on your menu regularly (remember Popeye the Sailor Man, right?).

The Healing Power of Ash

The ash resulting from burning wood in the oven is a basic ingredient for a lot of traditional Siberian survival recipe. It’s been used for hundreds of years to treat digestive problems, wounds and for stopping hemorrhages. It’s also used as a remedy for headaches and toothaches. Actually, Siberians consider wood-ash as a real panacea, especially the ash resulting from burning specific mixed wood essences.

According to Siberian holistic medicine, combining the ashes of different types of wood essences dramatically increases the power of the “medicine”, with the best wood combinations being linden, oak, birch and poplar. The ash resulting from the burnt wood must be sifted before being used in recipes or stored (in glass jars) for best results.

Let me enumerate 12 ancient Siberian recipes based on wood-ash for treating various diseases/conditions:

  • Skin ulcer: For treating skin ulcers you’ll need about 17 ounces of birch and/or linden ash (a mix or whatever) mixed with 5 quarts of boiling water. The infusion must be allowed to cool off until it reaches about 90 degrees F then it must be sifted. The affected limb (the hand or the leg) must be immersed in the infusion for half an hour, and then left to air-dry naturally. If the skin ulcer affects other areas of the body, you may use a gauze imbibed in the infusion, applied twice a day for two hours at a time.
  • Hives or urticaria: For treating hives, you’ll need half a glass of birch ash and 2 liters (half a gallon) of water, mixed thoroughly, then boiled and left to decant for 24 hours. After that you have to sift the solution using a gauze or something similar, then put it in a covered receptacle and store it in a cool, dry place, out of sunlight, for 2 days. Use the infusion mixed with water in a 1:1 ratio for washing your body 2-3 times a week, regularly, and let it dry naturally without rinsing.
  • Arthritis, muscular pain: Mix one tablespoon of cedar ash with one cup of boiling water in a covered receptacle; let it infuse for 12 hours and then sift it. Drink two tablespoons of the infusion three times a day for ten days, with a seven day pause and you can repeat the treatment if necessary for another 10 days.
  • Rheumatism: You’ll need 17 ounces of birch ash mixed with about a pint of water, boiled slowly for 10-15 minutes, then covered and left to cool off/infuse until the next day. Pour the infusion (take care not to agitate the container) into your bath tub (the water in the tub should be at least body-temperature). Soak in it for 15 minutes and repeat the procedure for 10 days in a row.
  • Lumbago: You’ll need three tablespoons of vineyard-stumps ash mixed with 4 cloves of garlic (smashed) and four tablespoons of lard. Mix the ingredients thoroughly and then spread onto a piece of cotton cloth. Apply the cloth  over the affected area and leave it to work its magic for 2 hours, for three days in a row. After a 20 days pause, you can repeat the procedure.
  • Menopause hot flashes: You’ll need 1/3 cup of salt, 2/3 cup of birch ash and about 2 gallons of warm water mixed thoroughly and then poured into a basin. Soak your feet for 15-20 minutes, 3-4 times a week for ten days.
  • Oral hygiene/health: Rinse your mouth with a mixture of wood ash and water 1:1 before and after every meal for 7 days.
  • Depression: Mix two tablespoons of aronia ash in a glass of water. Drink it in the morning on an empty stomach for 16 days in a row.
  • Pulmonary disease (bronchitis, pneumonia, respiratory viruses, etc): Pour one quart of boiling water over four tablespoons of poplar ash, cover the container and let it infuse for ten days in a dark, cool place. Drink 8 spoons (4 for kids) of the infusion three times a day (after meals) for 11 days in a row.
  • Regulating intra-ocular/intra-cranial blood pressure: Mix four tablespoons of oak ash and one liter of boiling water in a container, cover it and let it cool off until morning. Drink three teaspoons of the infusion (half a dose for children) three times per day, half an hour before a meal, for 2 weeks straight. You may take a 5 day pause then repeat the procedure.
  • Intestinal parasites: One teaspoon of linden ash mixed with half a glass of warm milk , administered two times a day (in the morning and in the night) for the first three days, one hour before meals is used to treat intestinal parasites. On the fourth day, drink the stuff first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach. During the treatment, you should avoid sugars and sugary fruits. After the four-day linden-ash treatment, you should drink an infusion of cranberry leaves, 2-3 times a day, thirty minutes before meals for two weeks, then repeat the ash treatment for 4 days, then the cranberry leaves procedure for 2 weeks, twice a year, at a 6 months-interval.
  • Dandruff: To get rid of dandruff, mix six tbsp of ash with three and a half ounces of alcohol and apply the mixture on your head, rubbing it gently on your scalp. Let it work for 10 minutes. After that, you can follow your shampoo routine. The treatment must be done twice a week for one month.

Coal, aka the black medicine, is widely used in modern medicine against various diseases, like flatulence, stomach ache and indigestion, and the same story goes for ash. It’s perfectly safe to consume it as long as the wood wasn’t contaminated with chemicals or radioactive stuff.

There Is a Natural Cure for Every Condition

Now, let’s talk about some Siberian methods to fight anemia and chronic fatigue naturally. These remedies are widely used currently all over Russia, the Ukraine and other places. Siberian popular medicine recommends a diet rich in liver, meat, eggs, veal brain, milk, butter, caviar, garlic and onions. And every patient must drink 2 liters (half a gallon) of fresh/unprocessed milk every day!

  • Here’s a recipe with Caucasian Aloe (from Caucasus/Central Asia) for treating chronic fatigue/anemia: take 4 stems of aloe and let them macerate in a bottle of wine for at least four days. Unlike many “tonics”, this treatment is very enjoyable. Drink a cup of the concoction three times a day.
  • Iron deficiency is the reason for anemia and Siberians treat this condition with a green apple in which they sink 5 – 10 (washed) iron nails. The apple is eaten after 24 hours and the dose is three apples/day.
  • For calcium deficiency (common in anemia/tuberculosis), Siberians recommend this recipe: take 10 fresh eggs and put them inside a glass jar, then cover them with lemon juice. Wait until the lemon juice (that’s citric acid basically) dissolves the egg shells (it takes up to two weeks), then add 12 ounces of honey and a glass of brandy. Mix them thoroughly and drink a small cup 2-3 times a day before meals. Another ancient Siberian “magic” potion is made using equal quantities of carrots, horseradish and beet juice (you can add honey into the mix to suit your taste), mixed and put inside a bottle which is then buried into the ground for 13 days. You must drink a small cup of the respective potion three times a day, before meals. Shake the bottle before drinking.
  • Here comes an energy formula, Siberian recipe. You’ll need 4 cloves of garlic, smashed thoroughly, 4 fresh onions ground (remember to keep the juice), 6 ounces of oats, 1.5 ounces of finely grated Valerian root, all mixed with 25 ounces of honey and boiled slowly until the mixture has a fine-cream consistency. Afterwards, let the mixture cool on a plate until it hardens, then cut it in small pieces and store it in a cool, dry place. Eat 3-6 pieces a day (a 2 cm piece) before the meals.
  • Another energy-boosting remedy for senior citizens is a mixture of garlic, onions and honey; you’ll need 3.5 ounces of garlic, 5 ounces of onions, 25 ounces of honey and two tbsp. of apple cider vinegar. The garlic and the onions must be finely grated then mixed with the vinegar. Let them to macerate in a warm place (in the kitchen for example) for 24 hours. Then boil the honey slowly, stirring it all the time. After it reaches the boiling point, add the garlic/onion mixture and then let it macerate for 7 days in a warm place. Then you sift the mixture and you’re ready to go. The treatment consists of 4 spoons of the stuff, once a day.
  • Here comes the Ukrainian elixir, another energy booster for senior citizens: 12 ounces of garlic, well smashed, mixed with the juice obtained from 24 lemons (without the seeds). Let them macerate in a glass jar covered with a piece of gauze for 24 hours. Take a spoonful in the evening, with half a glass of warm water. Also, you can take a spoon of finely grated horseradish 5-10 times a day, between meals, for boosting your energy levels even more.
  • To prevent atherosclerosis, especially if you’re over 50 years old, you must eat a tonic made from raw potatoes: you take a medium sized-raw potato, washed and peeled, you grate it finely and you eat the stuff (and the juice) every morning, on an empty stomach.
  • Here comes another tonic, garlic based, which is also recommended to senior citizens to prevent atherosclerosis: fill a 1-cup container with smashed garlic and add alcohol. Let it macerate for two weeks in a warm place then you filter the concoction. The recommended dose is 2 blobs/day for starters, before meals, and each day you add a blob until you reach 25 blobs per serving. Then you start reducing the dose one blob/day until you reach 0. If you take this treatment twice a year, the results will be exceptional.

I hope the article helped. If you have other ideas or comments, feel free to express yourself using the dedicated section below!


This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia.

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Don’t get sick

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It’s that time of the year when people stop spending so much time outside, between the cold weather and the sun going down so much earlier, people spend more time indoors with each other, in closed up rooms and buildings. It’s no wonder people get sick so much easier, and they expose other people to these bacteria and viruses.

I like being more proactive with natural remedies. Things that build my immune system and help my body fight off what I am exposed to when I’m out in the world. Actions such as washing my hands more often, not touching my face (especially my eyes, nose and mouth), many bacteria and virus enter our bodies through our hands touching openings in the body, these are easy entry ways. I think about this when I’m in public, touching door knobs, opening doors, shopping cart handles, gas pumps, public ink pens and the such. Any place that someone else has touched is potentially infected with nasties I’d rather not pass to myself.

One more thing I actively consider is another persons’ airstream, the space where they were breathing, coughing, sneezing, if I hear someone cough of sneeze ahead of me, I will do my utmost best not to walk through the air where they just expelled millions of droplets of potential infection. Might sound silly, but I don’t get sick as a general rule, not saying I am 100% on this, but it’s a rare thing for me to get sick.

One of the proactive things I do when I know I’m going to be exposed to more people is to take elderberry, I prefer taking it in pill form, but you can also get it as a syrup. It’s said to work by keeping the virus from attaching itself in your body, if it can’t attach to one of your cells, then it can’t infect you.

I also take other supplements to boost my immune system, things like turmeric (curcumin), cayenne powder, ginkgo biloba, of course vitamin C, zinc, vitamin D, and a myriad of other supplements. I prefer to fill my own capsules when I can, using a capsule filling machine, buying many of my supplements in bulk powder form. It’s cheaper that way, and I know what is going in the capsules, no fillers, no binders, nothing that I didn’t put in it.

Right now I am able to buy these supplements, but that may not be true in the future, between the government trying to keep us from healing ourselves and big pharma worried about their bottom line, it’s always a good idea to have a general knowledge of your local plant life to know what you can use for medicine.

When I first moved to my west Texas off grid home, I looked around this high desert and couldn’t imagine what I could use for medicine, but after just a little time on the internet, I learned that I have a virtual pharmacy right outside my door. Pine needles (for vitamin C), juniper berries (diuretic, kidneys, improves digestion…), horehound (coughs, parasites…) just to name a few. Plus the herbs I cultivate myself, one important one is lemon balm, it’s in the mint family and grows like a week. Lemon balm is highly antiviral, not to mention it’s a tasty herb, having a strong lemon scent and flavor.

This is the time of year when I look over and take stock of what I have and what I need. I also work on what I need to adjust, some of these supplements are not meant to be taken all of the time, our bodies can “get used to” certain supplements and need a break from them in order for it to continue being effective.

I would recommend learning as much as you can about natural supplements, learn which companies are most reliable, learn which supplements you can harvest or grown yourself, learn how to store, how to take, how to extract what you grow or collect. Learn what grows naturally around your area, learn how & when to take them.

Don’t forget, if you are taking prescription or OTC medicine now, be sure you find out if it’s compatible with what you are wanting to add to your medicinal diet. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you aren’t sure, be safe.

Another thing to remember is your mental attitude can also affect your health. Stress can play a major role in how your body defends itself against these bacterial and viral intruders. Keep a healthy attitude, don’t allow the stresses of the season get to you. Take time to breath deep and let the tension roll off of you. Don’t allow another person’s bad attitude infect you either, remain calm and centered, their problems are not yours.

What supplements do you take and why?

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10 Must Have Alternative Remedies For Preppers

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Natural remediesBy now everybody knows that if a real whopper of a SHTF scenario hits and you rely on doctor’s medications it might get really bad for you. Hospitals and pharmacies and prescription drug stores will be the first things looted right after food stores because of the hoards of the ravaging ‘sub-human’ elements of our species.

So you should try to maintain a backup supply of your prescription drugs or any other medication or equipment necessary for your health survival. Often this is difficult because doctors or pharmacies don’t like to go out more than a month in advance on prescription writing.

Fortunately, people have been surviving their health problems for centuries without the benefits of modern pharmaceuticals or complex clinical treatments.

One reason, of course, is that they weren’t poisoning us so intensely with toxic chemicals, GMO Frankenfoods, deadly environmental pollutions, and generally lethal diets and prescription drugs with more side effects to kill you than your original ailment, that in bitter irony all conspire to come around full circle to perpetuate the vast corrupt-for-profit fraud of ‘modern’ health care in the first place!

The way they did it back in the days, and even to this day, was to rely on ‘Elixirs’ or ‘Magic Potions’ and other more natural cure-all remedies, that were more or less based on herbs and other organic compounds.

In the Old West there were traveling salesmen selling bottles of ‘Dr. Good’ which consisted of nothing more than water with shot of grain alcohol and a pinch of opium or cocaine–none of which were controlled substances back then. This gave a quick ‘buzz’ of temporary well-being which, of course, led to habit forming addictions, and repeat profits for the vendors.

That was also the beginning of ‘network marketing’ and mail order catalogues and advertising. It all started with trying to make people feel good. Later, with the Chinese coming in as railroad labor, useful oriental herbal remedies and compounds were introduced as more ‘serious’ treatments and cures.

Big Pharma versus Mother Nature’s Remedies

Today these natural plants and biological compounds are often the same substances from which modern pharmaceutical drugs are derived with only slight molecular ‘modifications’ to allow them to patent and profit from them.

Big Pharma can never really duplicate or improve that much upon nature without creating additional side effect risks because there are other factors and natural ingredients in the original substance which create a synergistic effect that is superior to the pharmacy knock offs.

Aspirin, for example, is derived from the bark of the willow tree and is hard to improve on. That’s why you see some animals, like goats, sometimes chewing on the inside of the bark when they get a headache.

Actually there are so many natural cure remedies that you would almost have to become an herbologist or botanist and maybe a few other ‘ists’ to know all the important knowledge on the subject. After all, Chinese, and Indian alternative medicine has been around for thousands of years. But a select few remedies seemed to dominate in many venues and purposes.

Big Pharma and their sycophant for-profit motivated medical doctors usually ‘dis’ alternative medicine and cures as old ‘wives tales’. And for their obviously greedy reasons, they’ll often vilify natural remedies and even vitamins and minerals.

The AMA and Big Pharma are such a regrettably powerful force of control over our lives that they can have practitioners and practitioners of alternative medicine sanctioned, sued, and sentenced if these people don’t exercise ’caution’ in their ’work’.

Big Pharma even managed to change the term from ’alternative’ to ’complimentary’ because in their avaricious totalitarian mentality there IS NO ‘alternative’ to conventional medicine. Research the controversy over Red Yeast Rice, for instance, to learn how nefarious Big Pharma, their hired gun lobbyists, and the FDA are when it comes to tried and true natural substance competition.

Since the practicing of medicine includes prescribing medications and is required licensing by law, complimentary medicine practitioners cannot legally treat patients by prescribing anything to heal or cure your ailment, especially if you are getting paid for it.

So anything herein, of course, is not intended to be any kind of directions for ‘treatment’ or prescription by definition of medical practice. It’s merely information about what other people are doing in and of their own personal right of free market consumption of legal substances.

10 Remedies Any Prepper Should Always Have

Again, there are many good substances to have in your medical cache when convenient commercial supplies don’t exist anymore.

But the following natural remedies/cures were chosen because of their overall popularity, benefits, and their multi-purpose applications, which cover a wide variety of problems. So we don’t want to call them ‘basic’ items. These are the minimum items you should stock up on because they are the best ones out there:

1. Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegarAlthough ACV has been around a long time, the popularity has really increased only in the last couple of years. Bragg organic raw unfiltered un-pasteurized is the one you usually see in big stores that carry multiple brands of vinegar.

Lately it has been ‘flying’ off the shelves and more places carry it. Of course then the price went up as would be expected, but you can make your own if you have an organic apple tree. ACV proponents claim it is one of the healthiest substances in the world to consume daily with many amazing ‘cure-all’ benefits.

Everything from digestive disorders, to energy enhancement, to cancer prevention. Taken before meals, it even helps with weight loss! Also, ACV is one of those ‘100 uses’ miracle products. It has topical applications from eye drops to anti-itch treatment and many other 1st aid uses.

One of the best daily tonics taken 1st thing in the morning is a glass of distilled water with a tablespoon of Bragg ACV, a tablespoon of raw organic honey, 1/2tsp. of baking soda, 1tsp of organic blackstrap molasses, and 1tsp of lemon juice.

This daily drink right before or with meals even helps weight loss! This elixir also encourages proper balance of your body’s PH. Studies have shown that cancer cannot maintain itself in a low acidic body chemistry. You can add a shot of concentrated organic cherry juice or other for ‘flavor’, but it doesn’t taste bad once you get used to the tartness.

2. Honey

Honey has been the ‘food of the Gods’ since the dawn of history. The ancient Egyptians revered it as such and there are many cures in their medicinal archives which include honey in the ingredients.

There is much interesting research out there on the benefits and various uses of honey and it easily replaces refined sugar if you have a ‘sweet tooth’ as a much healthier alternative. Honey also has 1st aid and topical skin care application benefits that are far superior to toxic cosmetic treatments.

But the caveat is that the honey you use must be natural raw organic un-pasteurized honey, otherwise there are no complete health benefits processed versions. Raw honey is thicker and even almost solid in cooler weather where commercialized honey is more liquid.

This is more expensive than regular honey but well worth it. If money is less important than your physical well-being, get yourself raw Manuka honey, which has been analyzed to have amazing all around health benefits including anti-bacterial properties rivaling prescription antibiotics for topical wound dressing but it also happens to be one of the best honeys for maintaining probiotic balance in your stomach/intestines.

3. Organic Garlic

garlic If you could only have one herb/spice, this would have to be it (although onions, imho, would be the default choice). Garlic also goes way back to antiquity and garlic wasn’t picked for the main remedy against vampires for nothing.

If there’s anything that enhances food flavor or improves health better, it’s yet to be discovered. There’s too many benefits to list here that range from exceptional anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties to maintaining healthy blood cholesterol levels to treating type 2 diabetes.

But it is considered almost a universal cure and prophylaxis treatment. Garlic is easy to grow and store and pickle. Eating it daily will also enhance your immune system.

4. Coconut Oil

Many of us didn’t get ‘turned on’ to coconut oil until recently as it started popping more up at the larger grocery stores. Now there are several brands. All many of us knew about coconuts was that monkeys flung them at tourists, they tasted good shredded on coconut cream pies, and that we shouldn’t stand under a coconut tree on a windy day.

Other cultures, however, have utilized coconuts as main staple for ages. Pure organic virgin coconut oil is said to have amazing ‘miracle cure’ properties for everything from weight loss to preventing and even curing heart disease.

It can be used in all kinds of foods and by itself as a cooking oil and is one of the best skin ‘creams’ you can put on your face and hands. And it even works as a gun lube oil in a pinch. It can be stored easily as it does not spoil at room temperature and solidifies below 76 degrees.

Other pure organic oils like olive oil, of course, should also be stocked for particular health reasons. There are other very beneficial oils such as macadamia oil, flaxseed oil, walnut, and even avocado oils, although pricier and harder to find in stores.

5. Aloe Vera

aloe This is considered a tried and proven must have healing plant that usually is associated with skin treatments, especially burns, but it is far more versatile than just that. Make salves and balms from a combination of coconut oil, aloe, and honey for amazing skin rejuvenation properties.

And health food stores have been selling organic cold pressed aloe juice as an all-around tonic/elixir for a long time. Aloe Vera is easy to grow, and even pass off as an ornamental house plant. Have as many plants growing or seeds for the future as you can.

6. Bergamot Juice

The best kept secret of the bergamot fruit tree from Calabra Italy is out! This juice and especially the extract sold in over the counter solutions is gaining in popularity to be currently the best remedy for controlling your cholesterol levels without prescription drugs that will eventually harm you.

It is also a good source of vitamins and is said to have super anti-oxidant and other unique properties that enhance well-being and promote anti-aging. Exemplified by all the dancing and bike riding you see 100 year old Italians doing in Calabra!

7. Organic Peppers

red peppersAll peppers, especially hot ones, are one of the most healthy prophylaxis foods for disease prevention. The more you can handle, the better. cayenne is a must have for a variety of reasons.

It’s also a great topical skin wound treatment as it eases the pain and immediately helps to stop bleeding and promote healing while providing anti-bacterial properties.

It is a nerve pain related treatment and can be used for arthritis pain (dilute a strong cayenne extract in DMSO for a great deep penetration topical rub muscle pain reliever) and could even forestall the heart attack event if you pop down a couple cayenne gel caps if you think you are about to have one. Cayenne is also a tasty spice that gives you a pop of energy after you eat it.


8. Steam Distilled Water

The dirty little secret nobody wants to mention is that virtually ALL water that most of us come in contact with or drink has something wrong with it. Even so called ‘purified’ bottled water is not necessarily that clean. A lot of the ’purity’ depends on the filtration system. All are not created equal or perfect. The absolute purest water is steam distilled water. There is nothing in it but the H2O.

But the benefit are superior to regular water. Distilled water is a better solvent than other waters, especially ‘hard’ water. It cleans all by itself, especially the skin, without cleaning additives. It has a different ion structure than non-distilled water that attracts heavy metals and other toxins in your system and takes them out of your body when it goes through your urinary process! Essentially an organic cleansing also known medically as Chelation treatment.

Rainwater used to be a ’naturally distilled water until the environment became so polluted. Now rain is ‘dirtied’ and poisoned before it hits the ground. A lot of people have gained significant health improvements by drinking only distilled water, including using it for tea and coffee. That’s why you see it carried in most grocery stores these days. It makes sense.

You know you are getting the purest poison free water, and it also is an ‘elixir’! It’s also pretty easy to make your own in a bad SHTF scenario. If you drink it every day make sure you take a good vitamin mineral supplement also because it also flushes some of those out of your system. Check out the information on steam distilled water for health benefits.

9. Flax, Chia and Other Super Seeds

chia, flaxWho ever thought that that cute little ‘fur’ sprouts -which are super edible also – growing on those chia pets we used to buy, was one of the great super foods of the world?

Chia seeds are considered the perfect organic food because they contain too many benefits to list here. And who would believe that what appears to be just another ‘weed’ with pretty blue flowers would be a natural health superstar?

Everybody knows about flax seeds and that they are a super source of dietary fiber but studies have also shown that organic raw flax seed husks which are wrapped around the seed pods are integral to considerably reducing the risk of some cancers, lung, and cardiovascular diseases.

New studies are showing that the flax husks can help prevent colon, breast, and prostate cancers. They contain Omega 3 AMA and lignans which are inhibitors of cancer cell incidence and growth. The entire plant seed pods also contain anti-oxidants and other compounds to help prevent heart disease and diabetes among others.

Then there’s hulled hemp seeds which are sold in stores and are loaded with vitamins and minerals and have a higher level of Omega 6 and protein. But it’s best to try to find organic seeds if possible. All these seeds blend in well with almost any meal. A tablespoon of each in your morning steel cut oatmeal along with a teaspoon each of honey, coconut oil, and organic butter, with a little goat milk, is a super healthy way to start the day. And it tastes great!

The seeds are relatively cheap because they grow quickly and easily anywhere regular grass or weeds thrives, requires little maintenance, and keeps coming back every year. These truly are ‘the food of the Gods’. If you plan to grow your own make sure you study more about this and harvest/prepare them correctly for maximum benefits.

10. Hydrogen Peroxide

H2O2 is just another oxygen molecule added to the water molecule. This means it falls into the ‘oxidizer’ category of substances. There’s tons of information out there on its health uses and used carefully it can be taken internally and is a good stable for topical disinfectant purposes. H2O2 is used, mostly in other countries, as a specific cure for many systemic illnesses including cancer.

Like the chemistry of ACV and PH in your body, it also changes the chemical nature of the body by providing an extra-oxygenated environment where cancer and other diseases cannot grow. Now we’re not talking about the 3% stuff at the stores in the dark plastic bottles you use for mouthwash and minor skin irritations. W

e’re talking about 35% FOOD grade, which is NOT the same. The 35% grade can actually burn your skin if you put too much in one spot. But you can dilute a drop or so depending upon the requirement in a glass of water and you have a prophylaxis or potential cure.

With the surge of organic, natural products natural ‘elixirs’ are coming back as people get more fed up (no pun intended) with the high prices of Big Pharma’s commercial remedies which are as bad or worse than the toxic food we eat that caused most of our sickness to begin with.

There are safe, natural, specific cures for almost every ailment known to man. The prudent self-reliant prepper should explore this wonderful world of healthier and self-sustaining living and expand upon this information at the earliest opportunity.

Alternative off grid medical and health supplies should be a priority prepper effort right after you secure your BOL retreat/shelter situation, ammo stock, and a year’s worth of stored food.

Interested in the best medical survival techniques? CLICK HERE to find out more!

This article has been written by Mahatma Muhjesbude for Survivopedia.

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