Mullein Tea and Healthy Winter Kids

I discovered Mullein the year that both my girls caught whooping cough and I stopped eating all grains. We had just moved into a rental after selling our first home and were struggling with livestock at a neighbor's while looking for a new house that wasn't outside of our budget. Mostly we were looking at foreclosure because we needed to have land and the only thing we found were abused homes on abused land. So I think part of our depressed health was our depressed spirits. I was eating a lot of grains (just not wheat, already knew  was celiac) and spending almost no time out of doors because of sick kids, winter, and the fact that we were not in our own home so there wasn't a project for me outside besides animals chores down the road twice a day.

Photo: searchhomeremedy.com
At this time I was fighting killer headaches and weight-gain. Naps didn't help, hydration didn't help, nothing helped. I went to a couple of doctors thinking that I had a brain tumor or something else really serious because my sinuses were always congested and the headache progressively got worse. My naturepath suggested going paleo and started me on HEAVY doses of mullein, from Nature's Sunshine, in pill form. Now that just seems silly to take it in a pill but at the time I didn't know what mullein was. Well, my headaches went away and so did the congestion, but I was taking 2 pills every four hours and it was getting expensive. I also gave them to the girls but I broke them open and added the powder to their lemon-tea since they were so little it would be hard to get a pill down them. Their whooping cough came down a notch. To help them clear phlegm I made them a tea of herbal tea, lemon juice, honey, and a tiny pinch of cayenne pepper. The BEST help was a little sinus irrigator that helped when I spritzed saltwater up their noses.

Once I started opening capsules up in their tea I wondered how much cheaper it would be just to purchase the whole herb. That failed, the whole herb I could get at the health food store didn't work as well as the capsule, I think it was younger and tested at Nature's Sunshine because it did work in the capsules. HOWEVER, when we moved to our new house I had mullein EVERYWHERE, because mullein does really well in depleted, dry soils. You harvest the leaves in the rosette stage, or when it looks a little bit like a furry lettuce at the base. The leaves are nice and soft and quite small. If you harvest too much then the plant will never flower and there will be no more mullein on your property. Because of this I plant some mullein every year to put in my garden. If you decide to wildcraft on someone else's land or in the 'wild' be aware that it may have been sprayed with pesticide or had sick animals around it that could make you sick. Also, the leaves have little hairs on them and it is best to strain your mullein tea through a coffee filter before drinking. Always ask a doctor before using any herbal remedy. I use mullein tea whenever my lymph is sluggish or I am congested. To make mullein tea take your favorite tea, a pinch of stevia (I buy the whole herb in bulk), and a small piece of mullein leaf and pour boiling water over it all. Mullein tastes like dirt so I highly recommend the other tea just for flavor.

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