Girl anoints her face protective cream on the beach

Natural Approaches to Summer Ailments


Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it.  ~Russel Baker. How we all love summer days. As a boy I would run bare foot all day, swim in the ocean, hike in the mountains or just lay around watching the clouds. Summer camp also holds fond memories with all its adventures, not to mention the 5 pound mosquitos eager to drain every ounce of blood you have. Summer reminds us of sunburns, cold sores, allergies and August colds that should only do business in winter.

We all love summer and summer, like a woman scorned all year, makes most of us suffer for it. Therefore, as we are again about to launch into the heat of summer let us explore some natural remedies for common summer ailments. One of the most severe and dangerous of all summer ravages is sunburn. We frolic at the lake and bathe in its coolness all day only to find that we are scorched and in excruciating pain due to sunburn. As a boy my mother would always ice us down after the slightest evidence of overexposure to the sun. She rightly knew that the sun’s heat was still creating deeper and more severe damage in the skin’s tissue. Though we were no longer exposed to the sun’s harmful rays, the damage was increasing. Ice drew out the heat reducing the damage and lessening the intensity of the coming burn.

However, this simple remedy does not address the true underlying cause of sunburn which is the depletion of vitamin F. Vitamin F is linoleic acid which exists in poly-unsaturated fats such as Safflower Oil, Olive Oil, Castor Bean Oil, Sunflower Oil, and Peanut Oil. The sun tends to burn up vitamin F as it increases vitamin D which is vitamin F’s antagonist. Both vitamins are required in balance for optimal health. When we are overexposed, the body sends its entire vitamin F reserve to the sunburned area to correct tissue damage. Vitamin F is a skin regenerator. Also as a result of this depletion wheat and corn allergies often develop. These allergies are common in summertime because of the lack of vitamin F.  This is why people put oils on their bodies when in the sun.

When you get sunburned, you should avoid wheat and corn products. Salads, vegetable rich Chinese food and rice are much better then buns, rolls and pasta. It is wheat allergy that so drains your energy after sun exposure. Unsaturated fatty acids are important for tissue respiration in vital organs, making it easier for oxygen to be transported by the bloodstream to all cells, tissues, and organs.

Vitamin F is able to restore resilience and lubrication of all cells and combines with protein and cholesterol to form living membranes that hold the body’s cells together. It regenerates the skin.  Thus, vitamin F is the antidote to sunburn as well as wheat and corn allergies.

When you get sunburned, cool the area with ice or cool water (some recommend cold whole milk for a soothing cool down) then apply safflower oil to  the skin and let it absorb into the pores. This not only will address the damaged skin with a wonderful regenerating factor, but it will stop the development of wheat allergy instantaneously. Safflower oil has the highest polyunsaturated fat content.

Another summer ailment associated with the depletion of vitamin F and the development of wheat allergy is swimmers ear. It is not an infection from the water, but a wheat allergy caused by the sun. When you think you have an infection in your right ear, it is probably an inflamed ear from a wheat allergy. The left ear is governed by rice allergy. By using vitamin F as an antidote to the allergy, often the inflammation of the ear will subside relatively quickly.

Although cold sores and fever blisters are caused by herpes simplex viruses, they usually only develop in the summer. This also is due to the depletion of vitamin F from over exposure to the sun. By consuming quality polyunsaturated oils to maintain ample vitamin F in our system, summer cold sores and fever blisters will remain dormant.

Supplementation of vitamin F is available. My office recommends Cataplex F from Standard Process. I also suggest the use of Extra Virgin Coconut Oil which may be used both externally and internally.

Insect bites and stings are also more common in summer. It takes the venom of 100 bees to create a fatal dose for most adults, yet one sting may cause a fatal allergic reaction in a hypersensitive individual. What is amazing is that there are three to four times more deaths from bee stings than from snake bites. As far as remedies, there are numerous natural approaches to insect bites and stings.

Drinking cilantro juice and applying sandalwood paste to the sting for instance comes to us from Ayurveda medicine. The use of flower essence rescue remedy or applying fresh bruised plantain leaf or juice to the sting along with Aloe gel is also common. An aromatherapy approach would be to use basil, cinnamon, garlic, lavender, lemon, onion, sage, savory, and thyme oils. Lavender may be effective in treating itching from stings. Nutritionally, vitamin C should be taken as soon as possible with vitamin B5. One gram of vitamin C and 500 mg of B5 every hour until pain and swelling subside. Vitamin E could also be applied to the sting.

As you enjoy this wonderful time of year, remember that there is a natural remedy to the havoc that summer may throw your way.


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