Natural Remedy for Croup {Plus an Easy Chest Rub Recipe}

I have been blessed with four, very healthy sons. Aside from the occasional, short-lived low-grade temp or common headache, my boys are rarely sick. Seriously... (knock-on-wood) we don't get the flu, strep or even the common cold. But there is one thing that all four of my children have gotten a time or two, usually at the change of seasons... CROUP.

For my kids, they can be completely fine and out of nowhere, the horrid barking sound comes in the wee hours of the night. It truly is a terrible thing to experience to see your child straining for a breath. Being a nurse still never prepares me for dealing with a croupy child.

In years past I did the "mainstream" treatments recommended by many. Take the child into a bathroom with hot shower running to breath in the moist air. If that doesn't work, take the child outside. If those don't work, a trip to the emergency room is usually needed. We've done that a time or two!

But thankfully as I've grown in my knowledge of all-natural health and wellness, I now have discovered "the best" remedy for croup... finish reading here.


Butternut Squash and Carrot Soup

Squash has never appealed to me. Summer, acorn, butternut. It just doesn't do it for me. Maybe it's from the mission's trip I took to Africa the summer of '95 where we at a huge squash casserole for dinner one night. I'm sure the goat's milk mixed in didn't help things, but still. Not a fan.


A friend of mine from college posted a picture on Instagram of a butternut squash soup... and it looked pretty good. She sent me the recipe and on to the weekly meal plan it went. In the produce section I tried to figure out which of the squashes looked best... well, actually all of the large, gangly nude-colored fruit didn't look the least bit attractive to me. But as I placed it in my cart, a feeling of pride rushed over me. Like, "Hey, look at me and my squash!"... "I'm making something really healthy this week." No one seemed to care.

The crazy fruit sat on my counter for a little while. I kept looking at it... sometimes touching it, but my excitement for the soup waned. I was intimidated by it. I had cooked with one before, but if I remember, it didn't turn out well. So I didn't have high hopes for this one either.

So the squash soup day came. I still wasn't excited. Even in fancy restaurants when the soup du jour is some kind of squash soup, I immediately dismiss trying it. But I was already committed so onward  I went.

Needless to say, I loved it! This soup is very earthy, sweet, yet salty... just nice. Hope you take a risk and try it too!

Butternut Squash & Carrot Soup
adapted from About.com's Savory Butternut Squash & Carrot Soup

2 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cup carrots, diced
1 large butternut squash, peeled and diced
5 cups vegetable broth
3/4 cup almond milk, original (not sweetened)

1. Saute onions in olive oil for 5 minutes over medium-low heat. Add carrots and cook another 5 minutes. 

2. Add squash and broth and stir. Cover and let simmer for 25 minutes until squash is soft. 

3. With a large slotted spoon, gather the solid parts of the soup and add to food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. (You may add some of the broth if the mixture is too thick).

4. Pour pureed contents back into pot and add almond milk. Stir and heat through. Season with salt and pepper. 

Optional: add plain greek yogurt for extra flavor.