SG594: Staying Healthy During Cold & Flu Season with Plants From Your Garden with Herbalist Katja Swift

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Herbalist Katja Swift joins me on the show today and we’re discussing "Staying Healthy During Cold & Flu Season with Plants From Your Garden"
Here in Minnesota, temps have fallen into the teens over the past few days. Already my hands are dry and cracking, my mom has come down with a virus, and it seems I’m constantly reminding the kids to wash their hands and drink plenty of water.

Everyone is impacted by cold and flu season in one way or another. Have you thought about what you can do to make sure you stay healthy during cold and flu season? Will you get a flu shot? Are you open to incorporating even more plants, fruits, and herbs into your daily health regimen?

Katja is a Boston-based herbalist. In fact, she cofounded the CommonWealth Center for Herbal Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts - it’s right by Fenway Park. Katja is the Center’s Director of Education.

Today Katja will review the effective use of plant remedies for preventing colds and flu; since avoiding getting sick is something on everyone’s mind as we head into winter.

Some of the plants we will be discussing include: 
Thyme, Sage, Rosemary, Oregano, Bee Balm (Monarda), Lavender, Peppermint, Spearmint, Hyssop, Catmint/Catnip, Basil, Ground Ivy (Creeping Charlie), Chamomile, Yarrow, Garlic, Onion, and Hot Peppers.
Katja will introduce us to the medicinal properties of these common plants and she'll help us remember how to use them by grouping them into categories like "the pizza herbs" or "the cool mints".

The beauty of plant-based remedies is that they don’t just simply mask symptoms - they work with the whole body to boost the immune system.  As extremely effective antibacterials and antivirals, plant-based remedies naturally shine at helping to build and restore the health of the system.

This episode focuses both on providing relief to others who need it, as well as maintaining good self-care as always with plants direct from the garden.

Katja will cover how to :

  • Decrease the chances of getting a cold or flu
  • Decrease length and severity of illness if you get sick
  • Make powerful and delicious immune-boosting recipes
  • Make home remedies specifically for sore throat, cough, congestion, fever and ear infections
  • Be prepared for the cold and flu season ahead.

In this episode, Katja will cover the foods and teas to get you through the cold and flu season. She will share simple recipes to make before the season begins and really simple recipes once you or someone you care for becomes sick. Katja will also go through what you can buy at the store to have on hand. Finally and most importantly, Katja will go through the best ways to avoid becoming sick in the first place.

I’m so thrilled you are here to join me for this highly informative chat with Katja Swift. When cold and flu season hits this year, you’ll be glad you listened!

Thanks for Listening!

Still Growing,

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Still Growing is one of the reliably informative gardening podcasts from North America. The format consists of an intro (personal gardening status chat, seasonal remarks), an extended interview with a guest, and an outro with funny outtakes, side remarks, and some chatter (poems, readings) from the host's children. The podcast is focused on reliable knowledge - the guests are typically experts like academics, master gardeners, gardening entrepreneurs or public garden leaders. The intro and especially the outro give it a homey feel. Given I live in the high northern region, just a little below the Polar Circle, I'm always looking for more cold-weather oriented gardening information. Jennifer Ebeling is in Minnesota, so that's helpful to me! Vegetable gardening (my main interest) gets a good share, but is not predominant. Most topics transcend your specific gardening interest and are applicable to many styles: landscaping principles, vermicomposting, greenhouses. The episodes are typically an hour long, which is just fine for me.

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Jennifer Ebeling
Jennifer Ebeling is a proud Minnesotan and U of MN alumni. Gooooooo Gophers! Each week, Jennifer produces and hosts Still Growing - a gardening podcast dedicated to helping you and your garden grow. The show is an in-depth interview format. Guests featured on the show share a passion for gardening and include authors, bloggers, professional gardeners, etc. Listeners and guests of the show can join the Still Growing community on Facebook. It's a place to ask questions, share garden stories, interact with great guests featured on the show, and continue to grow and learn. Jennifer and her husband Philip have four children, a big golden lab named Sonny, and live in lovely Maple Grove, Minnesota. P.S. When she's not teaching her four kids a new card game - or teaching them how to drive a car - Jennifer loves inspiring individuals and groups to maximize and personalize their home & garden.
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  1. Trisha on June 6, 2021 at 11:55 am

    You have such a soothing and easy to listen to voice. But great episode-very informative!

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