Do you take meds like NyQuil to make you feel better? As a result, you end up getting the same sickness short after? Don’t worry, I have a natural alternative to NyQuil that isn’t toxic! Whether you decide to make your own or go with one that’s already made for you (and my favorite!), you’ll be set.
Today we will be talking about all things NyQuil and why you should leave it on the grocery shelf and toss out what’s already at home. Your liver, kidneys, brain and future health will thank you mucho. Plus, you can check out my kitchen detox guide where I teach you to ditch items that may be sabotaging your health.
First of all, NyQuil is a sedative drug that is used to lessen your desire to cough. Plus, it knocks you the heck out when you could be using FREE medicine. Procter and Gamble own this drug along with other products like Swiffer, Dawn, Febreeze, Gain, Tampax and Olay. It’s (super) weird to me that the makers of cleaning products would also own an oral drug to “help” when you’re sick.
Any product that contains NyQuil or is NyQuil contains: alcohol, sedative antihistamines and hypnotics. Killer combo (literally). Then, there’s Dextromethorphan…
Or DXM, is a drug that went up in abuse by 15% from 1999 to 2004. It was put on the market in the 50s and later removed. Rather then keeping it in the grave, they brought it back under a new name. Dextromethorphan takes away your desire to cough. As a result, it masks the congestion that is underlying and avoids the problem. 10% alcohol can cause a high which explains lots of my weird childhood NyQuil nights.
When abused or taken in excess, DXM can cause brain damage, seizures and even death. Symptoms of acute use/toxicity are nausea, vomiting, dizziness, insomnia, ataxia, slurred speech, mood swings, perceptual changes and aggression. Additionally, it can trigger limbic seizures, depression and psychosis. Houston, we have a problem.
DXM is metabolized by the liver. Specifically, a P450 enzyme called CYP2D6 (incase you wanted to know). Sadly, a huge amount of the population happens to have a dysfunctional CYP2D6 enzyme. This means you may not even metabolize this junk. Other common drugs like SSRIs and antidepressants also use this enzymatic pathway. In turn, increasing the chance of negative drug interaction. Therefore, I’ll pass.
Additionally, long-term use of DXM can cause liver and brain damage. Overuse causes an irreversible shrinkage of the Cerebellum. This is the part of our brain that controls sensory, motor and integration: balance, touch, feeling, etc. Overuse of DXM can also cause rhabdomyolysis. That’s high serum protein due to muscular cell death and breakdown (too much protein floating around in our bodies) = kidney failure. Did I mention…. DXM is highly addictive.
Have I convinced you to choose a natural alternative to NyQuil yet??
Taking a look at the active ingredients, you see several different long names which leaves you with many questions. The rule of thumb is that if you can’t pronounce it, don’t but it. Of course this rule has a few exceptions like quinoa, ashwagandha, turmeric and other fun spices. One of the active ingredients is acetaminophen which is an antipyretic (prevent/reduce fever) and analgesic (pain reliever). Your body uses three liver pathways to break down acetaminophen. The first two are “safe” but when they become overwhelmed, the third pathway starts to convert acetaminophen into a liver toxin. Subsequently, you get a little ruh-roh raggy situation.
The inactive ingredients make me cringe. I advise you keep it out of your cabinets. This toxic combination of artificial dyes, high fructose corn syrup, windshield wiper fluid and alcohol has me asking how this is on the shelf. At least they use purified water though, right?
HFCS is a no-go. It suppresses the immune system which, ironically, is already suppressed. Artificial dyes have proven in study after study to cause hyperactivity in children (ADD, ADHD, Autism). If nothing else, they negatively stimulate your brain and send false signals of satisfaction.
When I mentioned windshield wiper fluid, I am talking about propylene glycol. This is in antifreeze and also our food system. Here is an article from Dr. Axe. He sheds light on the importance of finding a natural alternative to NyQuil.
I was with my family last Thanksgiving and one of my (5) brothers got a little cold and asked my mom to get him something for it. My mom came home with NyQuil and I was like “wait, what?!”. Respectfully, I ask if he minded my input and read the ingredient label to him. Needless to say, after the windshield wiper fluid portion, he threw it on the counter. He said, “Heck no, I’m not taking that”. Certainly a cause for “what the freak?” for everyone that heard me read the label! There’s story after story of my NyQuil nights as a child. NyQuil made me high/drunk, not sure which one and knocked me out. If I fought the tiredness it made for even more of a psychedelic night (awesome or nah?).
You’re probably thinking, “is she going to say anything positive?”. Don’t worry, I have included natural options for the next time the cold hits.
Lavender oil: perfect for headaches, anti-inflammatory and sinus issues. Another oil I love is lemon oil for detoxification and congestion. Then, who doesn’t love peppermint oil? It’s wonderful in ridding congestion and headaches (don’t use if your breastfeeding!)
Additionally, you can create a blend of these oils for the next cold season.
Sandalwood, Frankincense, Bergamot and Vetiver are great for sleepless nights. You can apply this topically or aromatically. If you choose to use it aromatically you can put 4-5 drops in a diffuser and get the good vibes flowing.
Also, probiotics, coconut oil and slippery elm are great things to have on hand. Probiotics help to repopulate good gut bacteria. Coconut oil is antibacterial and antimicrobial. Additionally, slippery elm feels amazeballs on the throat when it has a tickle.
Lastly, elderberry syrup is what I use throughout the winter to keep the nasties away. This is the natural alternative to NyQuil I have been getting at. We take a tablespoon a day if it seems like we are getting a little cold and BAM it knocks it right out. You need organic vodka, elderberries and a mason jar to make it. Now for the fun part, foraging for the elderberries and making it from our own bounty. Want to make it yourself? Here is the recipe.
Now, I feel ya. Not feeling it? Here is one you can buy in liquid form from one of my favorite ladies online!
Finally, download your free Meal Guide! You will get the guide (I sell for $200) with everything from a menu of my EXACT meals for the day to a broken down grocery list!