How to Prevent the Flu Naturally

Lemon Tea, hydrate, postpartum, anxiety

Lemon Tea

It’s that time of year again: the dreaded flu season. Every time it comes around, you worry you might be the next victim.

While you might feel like you want to stay home and hide for the duration of flu season, that is most likely not a valid option. With work, activities, family members to care for, and life to enjoy, there is no time to get sick.

Staying healthy and avoiding sickness is important to you, but what are the best ways to do that? You also might be wondering if it is possible to prevent the flu naturally. The good news is, there are lots of ways to naturally prepare your body to fight off the flu.

Get Enough Sleep


First and foremost, an essential way to stay healthy during flu season is to ensure you are getting enough sleep. The body requires 7-9 hours of sleep. Lack of sleep can weaken your body’s defenses.

Ways to Get More Sleep

Sometimes sleep can feel elusive. In the busy rush of life, it’s all you can do to get to bed at a decent hour. Winding down can be difficult and then sleep can sometimes feel disrupted.

Here are some tips to help you get more sleep so you can keep your immune system strong and help keep the flu away:

  • Drink caffeine-free tea before bed
  • Put down devices before you get in bed
  • Consider meditation
  • Establish a routine time for bed and waking up that’s the same every day

With these simple steps, you can improve and increase your sleep, which will, in turn, keep you healthier.

Make Sure to Exercise


Routine exercise can help make your immune system strong, and boost your energy. Staying in good physical shape keeps your body healthy and prepared to fight sickness.

Whether adding in an extra walk every day, joining a gym, or participating in a simple work out routine in your home, you can easily incorporate exercise into your daily life. There are so many other benefits of exercising, like reducing stress, losing weight, and increasing energy, you will feel better on many levels, aside from just preventing the flu.

Another great benefit of regular exercise is that it can also help you sleep better, which as we mentioned earlier, is also a great way to prevent the flu.

Take Your Vitamins


Several vitamins and minerals can assist in strengthening your immune system. Taking these can not only help prevent the onset of the flu, but it can also potentially shorten the duration of the flu if you do still manage to get it.

Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and Zinc

These three are a popular combination when it comes to preventing the flu. Many people look for these to boost their immune system during cold and flu season. They are found in pill form, or other over the counter remedies, such as included in soluble powders that you can add to water.

Herbal Supplements

Echinacea and elderberry are two very popular botanical medicines that also assist in bolstering the immune system, and alleviating symptoms when the flu attacks you.

Echinacea is an immune system stimulator which stimulates cells that are responsible for fighting germs and foreign organisms. It also helps prevent bacterial and viral infections.

Elderberries are rich in flavonoids and antioxidants. They aid in strengthening the immune system, and are also said to have antiviral properties. Through a drying process, elderberries can be used in a tea or syrup.

These powerful botanical supplements have amazing benefits and are a great way to build up your immune system and ward off sickness.

Don’t Forget to Wash Your Hands


One of the simplest ways you can prevent the flu is to remember to be vigilant when it comes to washing your hands. Remember when you were a child and you were instructed to sing the ABC song in your head while washing to ensure you washed for long enough? Well, it won’t hurt to bring that method back!

Washing your hands may seem insignificant, but it is truly an easy way to help prevent the flu and other illnesses.

It is also crucial to keep your hands away from your nose, mouth, and eyes if they are not washed. By keeping your hands clean, you are less likely to spread germs to your mucous membranes.

Leave the Stress Behind


We all would like to live stress-free lives. Stress can wear you down, contribute to lack of sleep, and also deplete your immune system.

It is essential to use relaxation techniques to help reduce stress. Here are some great ways to help you de-stress:

  • Try meditation, yoga, or even acupuncture
  • Use essential oils in a diffuser to set a relaxing atmosphere
  • Take a warm bath
  • Engage in activities you enjoy, like hiking, reading, or any of your hobbies
  • Exercise

If you can manage your stress and find ways to relax, you will be able to keep your immune system strong.

Take Care of Yourself

Overall, it is vital to take care of yourself during flu season. By getting enough sleep, exercising, and reducing stress, you will ensure your immune system is healthy.

Taking vitamins and herbal supplements can also help strengthen your immune system and keep you healthy.

By following these simple steps, you can avoid the dreaded flu and remain healthy through this difficult season.

Help From the Experts

If you are still wondering what else you can do to maintain your health during flu season, you can always contact Balanced Care and work with our naturopathic doctors to find a plan that will work for you.

At Balanced Care, we work to find natural and holistic solutions to the health-related problems in your life. Individualized plans and education are our priorities.

We are here to help keep you healthy and happy year-round, especially during flu season. Call today to set up an appointment with us. We are excited to work with you to develop a plan to evaluate your overall health and wellness.

Join us at our open house on Thursday, November 29th in Edina to meet our providers and grab discounts on products and services. 20% off immune packs and lots of giveaways. For more information and to RSVP visit:

Huge Announcements!!

Julia Liebich, naturopathic doctor, natural treatment, digestion, anxiety, depression

Changes in Edina and Woodbury are coming up!

Julia!!Introducing Dr. Julia!! Dr. Julia will be taking over for Dr. Rachel beginning in January and we are thrilled to have her. She recently moved back to Minnesota with her husband and two young children and is excited to empower you to live your best life.

Dr. Julia attended National University of Health Sciences to complete both of her Naturopathic and Chiropractic doctorates, as well as her certification in acupuncture. She also continued on to complete a three-year residency in Family Practice and a Master of Science in Advanced Clinical Practice. During her residency, she worked under medical doctors, naturopaths and chiropractors while completing her clinical rotations at Northwestern University Center for Integrative Medicine and private practice. Prior to starting her current practice, she spent several years working at National University of Health Sciences as Chief Clinician, Attending Clinician, and Instructor.

“Teaching and working with interns and patients at NUHS Whole Health Center brought me much joy! I am passionate about empowering patients to live their best life and am excited to share simple solutions that can help improve your health forever! ” ~Dr. Julia

You can begin scheduling appointments with Dr. Julia in Edina and Woodbury in January. Dr. Julia will be available for current and new patients. You can schedule online here.


Dr. Rachel has been seeing patients at Balanced Care for the past year, but she has made the difficult decision to move back to California to be closer to her family. Her mom has been ill so this will allow Dr. Rachel to be closer to her mom while pursuing greater clinical experience in oncology and pediatrics. Dr. Rachel has been such an integral part of Balanced Care and will be greatly missed not only by myself, but her patients as well.

Appointments with Dr. Rachel will be available through December 14th for current patients. Follow ups after the 14th can be made with Dr. Katie or Dr. Julia. Please contact us with any questions or concerns about this transition.


As many of you know, my husband Brian and I (Dr. Katie here!) are expecting our first baby at the end of January. We are thrilled! I hope you know how much each and every one of you mean to me and I want to make sure you are taken care of leading up to my leave and while I am away. I know Dr. Julia will do an outstanding job, but if you have questions or concerns before then, please let me know.

EDINA: I will be seeing patients in Edina through January and then Dr. Julia will be covering for me while I am on my maternity leave. Please schedule any follows ups in December and January. I will be in the office Monday – Wednesday in January and Dr. Julia will be there Thursday and Friday.

WOODBURY: I will be seeing patients on Wednesdays in Woodbury throughout December and Dr. Julia will take over beginning in January. Please schedule any follow ups in December or phone visits in January.

Thank you for your understanding during all of these changes and we wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving!

Natural Menopause Relief at Home

natural menopause relief

Old Women

The word “Menopause” brings up different feelings in different people and cultures, but what is menopause? Menopause is something that all women go through. It is the time in life when a monthly cycle comes to an end.

On average menopause happens naturally after a woman reaches her mid 40s to early 50s. A woman stops having periods at this time because her ovaries stop producing the hormones needed for menopause and pregnancy to occur, primarily progesterone and estrogen.

When a woman’s body is starting to change from a childbearing body to a menopausal body, the transitional phase is termed perimenopause, which translates out to be “around menopause.” Once a woman has gone a full year without having a period, menopause has completed.

The transition, mentally, seems to be less of an issue in the Western world than the discomforts that women suffer while the change is occurring. Menopause treatment has become a big business, and there are many therapies on the market to help with the symptoms some women suffer from. But there are also many ways to provide natural menopause relief.

Do All Women Suffer?

Old Women

Though all women go through menopause, research has shown that not all women suffer the discomforts of menopause that seem to be prevalent in the western world. Not only that, but in other areas of the world, menopause is looked forward to rather than seen  as a negative change.

When women in the United States think and talk about menopause, two of the biggest things that pervade their minds are hot flashes and night sweats. It would be a surprise to them if they were to find out that these symptoms are not shared around the world, different cultures speak of varying degrees of discomfort.

During studies on menopause, that started in the 1970’s, it was noted that hundreds of women studied in India had no complaints of perimenopause discomfort. In Japan, shoulder stiffness was the main complaint. When it came to degrees of complaints, most complaints were said to be mild.

So why do the western countries seem to suffer so much more during the time when their bodies are changing? Could our lifestyle choices be the reason for our varying degrees of menopausal symptom complaints? Is menopause treatment vital?

Before we talk more about the lifestyle, let’s look at some of the common complaints of menopausal symptoms in the United States.

Symptoms of Menopause

Old Women

Though hot flashes and night sweats are the most talked about menopause symptoms, below are a few more that are quite common in the United States:

  • Mood swings
  • Increased facial hair
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Thinning hair on the head

These symptoms, though quite bothersome, are not life-threatening, which is good to know, right?

If your doctor is recommending conventional, medical treatment, it is essential to know if you are at risk for breast cancer, cardiac disease or osteoporosis. Why? Let’s look at some of the risks of medical treatment of menopause symptoms.


As with most medical treatments for other diseases, conventional menopause treatment is geared at relieving the symptoms the woman is having. These treatments can include:

  • Antidepressants for mood swings
  • Vaginal lubricants or estrogen therapy for vaginal dryness
  • Estrogen Replacement to decrease hot flashes and improve sleep, as well as reducing the risk of osteoporosis, a controversial topic at best due to the possibility of increasing the risk of cardiac disease

It is a good thing that women at least have some choices to help them get through menopause if their suffering is decreasing their quality of life. But what if lifestyle changes were taught and implemented ahead of time or even during menopause? What if lifestyle choices negated the need for menopause treatment for some?

Natural Menopause Relief

Lifestyle Choices Can Help Decrease Menopausal Discomfort


Changing your lifestyle is all about protecting yourself from the things that “can” happen. It is documented that menopause can cause weakened bones due to the decreased amount of estrogen in the body. But there are changes that can be made to lessen the risk of osteoporosis:

  • Increasing your exercise to at least three days per week
  • Changing your diet to one with increased calcium, vitamin D and Fiber
  • Working to get to and maintain a healthy weight
  • Stop smoking, which is a documented risk factor for osteoporosis.
  • Include weight bearing activities into your exercise routine
  • Flamingo stand – stand on one leg for 2 minutes and switch to the other leg. Repeat 2x per day. Use a counter-top for balance. This can help improve or maintain bone density in the hips.

Holistic and Integrative Menopause Treatments

When treating menopause holistically, it is crucial to purvey the idea that menopause is not an illness. Taking the mind to a place of acceptance of this reality can, in itself, help decrease the discomforts of menopause by looking at them for what they are.

The aim of integrative therapies, for menopausal discomforts, is similar to conventional therapies: to ease the discomfort of the symptoms. Surveys have shown that women are already using these treatments to provide natural menopause relief, and are finding them useful.

The integrative approach, however, is not about masking the symptoms, but about looking at the woman as a whole and seeing what lifestyle changes can be made so that her body will balance out which will cause the discomforts to disappear.

Integrative changes aren’t just about the body, but work on the mind, the emotions and the spiritual balances as well. Integrative therapy looks at the whole woman and helps her balance out all aspects of her life. This is not just good for providing natural menopause relief, but also for increasing optimal wellness in all areas of health.

Using the Mind and Body vs. Hormones and Medications


There are two significant perks when considering lifestyle changes vs. conventional treatments. Money and the Risk factor for further diseases.

Multiple studies have shown the positive results of diet, exercise, relaxation and stress management to increasing one’s overall health. This is no less true than with the discomforts of menopause and probably much more welcome.

The above-mentioned changes may not be the magic pill for your menopause symptoms; however they will improve the overall quality of your life.

When the menopausal transformation is complete, you will have new lifestyle that could give you a new perspective on freedom. And a better appreciation for health than you ever have.

Whether you are looking for information for yourself or someone you love, this may be the time to try something new. Balanced Care is about helping you be balanced on all levels. Call us and find out what Balanced Care can help you do for you.

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