In the Bay Area, wildfire smoke in late summer and fall is, unfortunately, becoming a yearly occurrence. In California, we have already had many fires this year. Twenty of these fires were the worst on record. The smoke has been challenging to say the least. And, although it is clearing experts say that we haven’t seen the end of it yet.

Therefore, here are some of the best herbs and supplements that will help your body cope with the smoke. If you haven’t taken any herbs or supplements and are living in the fire zone I highly recommend you do so to keep your body healthy. Here is a list of my favorites…

Herbs and Supplements for Wildfire Smoke

For the Lungs

The lungs need to be nurtured through this time, especially if you have asthma or other lung conditions. Here are my top picks for herbs that soothe and tonify the lungs.

Mullein: This herb is a supreme lung tonic. It relaxes the lungs, eases spasms and coughs, as well as soothes dryness and irritation.

Marshmallow Root: Very soothing herb that is incredibly moisturizing to the lungs and mucus membranes, especially when they feel dry and irritated by smoke.

Horehound: This is a great expectorant, to help release any phlegm that has built up due to smoke.

Wild cherry bark: This herb is one of the best for dry, unproductive, and persistent coughing.

For Detoxification

A lot of toxicity resides in smoke from fires. Therefore, we need to help our body release these toxins through supplementation.

Detoxification Factors by Integrative Therapeutics: One of the best detoxification formulas I have found because it offers support to both Phase I and Phase II detoxification in the liver. This helps the toxins neutralize and clear out of your body.

N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC): This supplement helps with detoxification through increasing glutathione, an important detoxifier that is also a powerful anti-oxidant. It also helps decrease any excessive mucous you may be having.

For Stress

Let’s admit it if you’ve been living in the Bay Area over the last few years chances are you have some level of fire trauma or even PTSD. We need to nurture our emotions, our adrenals, and help decrease stress in our bodies. Here are some herbs that help with this process.

Tulsi (also known as Holy Basil): This herb helps soothe emotions during times of major upheaval. It also decreases cortisol (the chronic stress hormone) in the body.

Ashwaganda: This is a great herb in general with amazing adaptogenic abilities. You can use it for issues with sleep caused by stress. It also decreases excess cortisol. And, it is one of the primary herbs I think of for times of stress because it brings balance during challenging times.

Reishi: This herb has a multitude of uses. It is an adaptogen that helps you deal with stress. It keeps your immune system healthy and balanced. It also is helpful in lung conditions such as bronchitis and asthma.

*Note: For those who are feeling distressed in general, and especially if you are having PTSD symptoms (anxiety, depression, hyper-reactive to things or people, etc.), I highly recommend that you tend your emotions. The best way to this is to work with a professional, whether that be seeing me in my practice or another therapist or counselor, it doesn’t matter. But, please make sure that you are being supported). I also recommend that you dive into your spiritual practice, such as meditation. Quieting your mind can do wonders for any voices of stress or worry that may be running loose.

For Children (or adults)

Tea of Chamomile, Peppermint, and Lavender: You can use these herbs individually or together. All three of these herbs help with lung irritation. They also are very soothing to frazzled nerves.

For Eye Irritation

Compress of Chamomile: make a strong cup of chamomile tea. Soak a washcloth with the decoction then use it as a compress on the eyes.

Where to purchase

You can utilize the above herbs in a tincture or in tea.

For tinctures, you can buy them individually or can get them custom-formulated at Farmacopia in Santa Rosa and mailed to you if desired.

You can buy the NAC and Detoxification Factors online or at Farmacopia.

For teas, you can buy them individually at herb stores such as Rosemary’s Garden in Sebastopol, your local herb store, or online.

Discount for Support

If you need extra support to get clear on your body needs or would like to receive support on an emotional, energetic, or spiritual level; I am offering a time-limited discount to help us all through this challenging time. I am offering a discount on one-hour follow-up visits. These visits are normally $175, but from now until the end of October, with the discount, they are $150. To take advantage of this special you can make a follow-up appointment here.

If you are a new patient I am offering new patient session discounts. These sessions last an hour and a half and normally costs $325, at the discounted rate it is $275. From now until the end of October. To take advantage of this special please let us know that you would like to schedule a new patient session here and we will get back to you to get you scheduled.

To find out more about my practice you can go here.

Sending love your way. May we all find our way into balance and a new normal with ease and grace.

Much Love and Many Blessings,

Dr. Melissa

*These recommendations are for educational purposes only. I do not recommend these supplements and herbs for everyone, especially if you have an auto-immune condition, thyroid issues, or are on medications that might be contraindicated! Therefore, please use caution in deciding which supplements and herbs are best for you. To determine what you need specifically please see your healthcare provider.


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