Getting Over an Illness {The Natural Way!}

by Katelyn Block on November 2, 2012 · 11 comments

Hi everyone! It’s Friday night and I’m a college student. Put two and two together and you’d probably think I should be out being… social or something.

Instead, I’m on my couch drinking tea because, surprise! I’m under the weather. I’ve been dreading this day, and knew it would come eventually.

I’ve been training hard, and eating well… but sleep is the one part of the equation that’s been slightly lacking. I can usually get a solid night of sleep 2-4 times a week, but the other three nights I’m either out late or working late. Most of the time, my brain just doesn’t shut off.

Wednesday night, I was up late working on a paper for my Human Sexuality class (I wrote it about athletes and sex. If you think that sounds interesting, it was. Probably one of the most entertaining papers I’ve ever had to do research for!). As I was writing my paper at the super-late hour of 10pm (college students that pull all-nighters… I have no idea how you do it), I noticed my nose getting stuffy and a tickle in my throat.

Usually when this happens, I have a mug of echinacea tea and go to bed. After a good night of sleep, all cold symptoms tend to go away and I wake up fine. This time, I woke up on four hours of sleep and had to go through a full day of classes, exams, and presentations.

The only way I got through the day was with this drink.

Forreal. Thank you to Twitter follower @genom813 for sending me this video! Literally have had this elixir twice a day. But, I had to do some shopping first.

I had apple cider vinegar on hand (made a note to buy it at Wegman’s this week — glad I did!), and had to pick up more tea anyway. Successful trip! I was tempted to buy so many other goodies — Sunbutter, maple syrup, herbs and supplements that I probably don’t need but would love to have…. but was able to restrain myself.


Here’s the quick-and-dirty recipe:


Magic Sickness Elixir


  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 heaping tbsp. raw honey
  • 3/4 cup water, boiled


  1. Add your ACV to a small mixing bowl or Pyrex measuring cup.
  2. Scoop your honey and add to the ACV. Mix as much as you can by hand.
  3. Boil your water (or microwave for 1 minute) and add to measuring cup.
  4. Continue to mix until honey is completely dissolved in ACV.
  5. Drink up!

The first time I made the drink I was shocked by how bubbly and acidic it was. At first I had to drink it slowly (small sips, friends — think of it like a strong drink), and noticed my nasal passages clearing. I felt significantly better within ten minutes, and then my body started to feel like it had pins and needles all over.

It was incredibly cleansing and helped me to feel a bit better (less feverish, especially) for a few hours, and then I had it again at night. Because of my full day of classes (this was incredibly taxing on my immune system, I’m sure), I didn’t have time to go home for dinner. This is what I found on campus:

Chef’s salad with romaine, carrots, baby tomatoes, turkey, ham, hard boiled egg, and (cheddar?) cheese.

It was satisfying, but I definitely didn’t feel great after all of the sodium in the meat. On the side, I had an unsweetened iced tea (as opposed to coffee) and bought two hard-boiled eggs. My appetite wasn’t as big as I thought it would be, so the eggs were saved for a snack.

Speaking of snacks….

Recent favorite. So dang good. Like candy.

Half of a sweet potato with a teaspoon (ish) of coconut oil, sprinkled with cinnamon, sea salt, and stevia.

I could eat this every day. Scratch that, I do. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my almond butter + chocolate sweet potatoes… but I’m trying to cut down on my sugar and this is another great option for getting in my healthy carbs. Plus, the coconut oil makes the sweet potato sooo moist!

Another reason I’m eating sweet potato? The beta-carotene and complex carbohydrates are great nutrients to combat a virus.


My favorite place. Nerd alert. Fine with it.

I stopped by Barnes & Noble to check out Practical Paleo, which I’ve gotten thousands of recommendations for, but kept forgetting to buy. I read it in the store, and on first glance, it’s amazing. Packed with tons of resources for living well, and completely customized to your dietary and lifestyle needs.

How am I spending my night? Watching the Knicks play and hoping that this virus goes away before tomorrow morning. I’m feeling a lot better (knock on wood), eating lots of nutrient-dense foods, and hydrating well. I got over 14 hours of sleep last night (true fact), so I’m hoping for a good 8-9 hours tonight. Tomorrow, I’ll be training again. I’ve missed the last two days because of this silly virus and it’s driving me crazy banana sandwich.

To be honest, being out of the gym makes me antsy, but I’m thankful for the time that I’ve had on bedrest to reconnect with my nutritional and athletic goals. Sticking to whole, primal foods, with as little sugar as possible. The lack of sugar, especially, has helped me to cut down on my coffee intake — finally!

Have a good, safe night everyone!


How are you spending your Friday night?
What are your favorite ways to combat an illness?
What do you do when you’re stuck on bedrest? 

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Katie @ Talk Less, Say More November 2, 2012 at 9:56 PM

Chocolate sweet potatoes?! WHAT?! I love sweet potatoes, especially when topped with cinnamon and almond butter, but chocolate would be an AMAZING addition! ;)


Miranda @ Biting Life November 2, 2012 at 10:16 PM

Feel better! Also, be careful with the apple cider vinegar stuff. I’ve heard that it can be bad for your tooth enamel because it’s so acidic. Just make sure to use mouthwash or something after!


Katie @wishandwhimsy November 3, 2012 at 7:58 AM

Glad you’re getting better. I’m going to give that mix a try….I’ve been going going going and my immune system is low. I feel a cold or something coming on. Anyway, rest up still on this Saturday!


Erica @ For the Sake of Cake November 3, 2012 at 9:46 AM

Hope you’re feeling 100% soon! I love Traditiona Medicinals brand tea!


Lea @ Greens and Coffee Beans November 3, 2012 at 12:13 PM

Feel better! I love natural remedies, I pretty much refuse to take conventional medicine unless I’m feeling pretty miserable. The side effects and funky chemicals usually aren’t worth it.


Kat November 3, 2012 at 12:40 PM

Great remedy idea! Feel better soon and hope my email worked this time ;) xo


Kate November 3, 2012 at 2:09 PM

I’m dealing with the cold/cough thing right now and my lung is inflammed, so I can’t do intense exercise until that’s better. Lots of yoga and walking for me. Trying to rest up and eat well. Don’t push yourself too hard with crossfit. Give your body ample time to heal. I’ve been resting for a week and still not better, so I am just trucking along. It sucks, I know, but it will be better in the long run. :)

Raw honey looks so tasty, but I can’t put the money down for it. :(

Oh, and I am JUST like you. Last night (Friday night) I stayed home and read in bed and watched some Parks and Rec on Netflix. I’m not very into going out late, drinking, and staying up forever. Health comes first!


Lauren November 3, 2012 at 7:05 PM

The Netti Pot is my savor during sickness. :) Feel better love.


kim@hungryhealthygirl November 3, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Glad you’re feeling better! That sweet potato looks so yummy. I totally understand your love for Barnes & Nobles….I could stay in there for hours.


Irina @ Chocolatea Time November 4, 2012 at 11:10 PM

I hope you’re feeling 100% better! ACV is definitely one of those mysteriously potent natural medicines with so many uses! I occasionally use it on my skin for detoxifying purposes. I also adore that honey – it’s my go-to honey of choice! Pricey but the taste is unbeatable.


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