First Aid Safety The Natural Way (cont.)

reallyrosie_webmd: I just had what I think was a bout of food poisoning. What suggestions do you have for treating this and what should I be eating now that I am starting to feel better? I am still pretty weak.

Mars: Food poisoning remedies include a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a tablespoon of honey in warm water taken every couple of hours. Two charcoal capsules taken every two hours, and they are available at health food stores. And Umeboshi plum paste, one teaspoon in a cup of water every couple of hours. All of these remedies will help combat infection, calm nausea, and help curb the diarrhea, although vomiting and diarrhea may be your body's way of cleaning the offending substance out of your system. You want to let it happen initially, but enough is enough. Good foods to eat include good yogurt, miso soup, apple sauce, baked winter squash. It's also a good idea to take garlic capsules, or echinacea tincture for a few days afterwards to prevent the replication of any harmful pathogens,

Moderator: Brigitte, in your book you have a great section on Surviving Nature?s Challenges. Could we talk about this?

Mars: About a year and a half ago, I had a fire in my home. The information in my natural first aid book kind of rushed before me as I said, "I am not going to lose my home." And I remembered some basic things. It seems like a natural reaction would be to open a window if it's really smoky, but that can fan the flames. I still am really cautious about candles and incense, leaving lights plugged in. In my case, it was a halogen lamp that was left on for about four hours. My phone went dead. You may have to go to a neighbor's house to use the phone to call 911. Keep low in a burning building, don't use the elevators because the electrical system could fail. Put a wet cloth over your face, nose and mouth, to prevent smoke inhalation. And if you have to, if you are trapped, stick something out of the building, or signal that someone can tell someone is trapped on that floor. People have died from jumping out of a burning building, or have been totally impaired. If your clothing is on fire,  do not run! Stop, drop and roll is the thing to remember. If you can be covered, by blanket or carpet, roll in that. But don't run. It makes flames bigger. Beat flames downward away from the head. You can use liquids to douse a fire, including water, but also milk or soda, but never alcohol, because that will make flames bigger.

Moderator: Let's talk about lightening.

Mars: Never stand under an oak tree. They are the most likely to get hit. Avoid tall trees, or lone boulders, or being right outside something tall, because lightening will often hit the highest area. Don't linger in the mouth of a cave, but get deep inside. If you do have to seek shelter among trees, get into a large stand and crouch as low as possible. Stay away from metal objects such as fences and bridges. People describe feeling electricity in the air, such as the feeling of your hair standing on end. Take off any metal jewelry or belts that you are wearing. Get out of the water, if you are swimming or boating. Be careful about using electrical appliances. Lightening has entered telephone wires.

A couple of things on earthquakes. If you are indoors, get shelter under something, heavy furniture, tables, standing under a door frame is usually the strongest part of the building,. It seems to be a natural tendency to go outside, but you need to realize that street wires or buildings can fall, or get hit by falling debris. I can understand why people do go outside, our greatest fear is being trapped in a building. The official information is to not run outdoors, but you need to weigh all of that out. If you feel that you could run outdoors and get away quickly, I'm not going to tell you not to do that. If you are outside, stay there, but get away from anything that might collapse. If you were in a basement or tunnel or subway, then it seems to be worth trying to get outdoors After the earthquake, be aware that opening cupboards, things can fall on you. Don't smoke or light a match, it may be wise to turn off gas, water and electricity, especially if it's been a hard earthquake, or you are told by the authorities My daughter lives in LA, and I've told her to have a bag packed under her bed that has dried food, whistle, water. You can whistle for help a lot longer than to call for help. If you do have to run outside, or go outside after an earthquake, good shoes are very important. If there is debris and broken glass, if your feet are cut up, you are not going far. Think about having an extra pair of shoes by the door, in your car, in your survival bag, because if your feet get cut up, it will limit your chances for survival. Be prepared. The time to think about first aid is before you are in a crisis.

Moderator: Brigitte, thank you for joining us, it has really been a pleasure having you on WebMD Live. Members, thank you for your questions. Brigitte Mars' book, Natural First Aid is available now at your local or online bookstore. Please check out her web site at 

The opinions expressed herein are those of the guest's alone. If you have questions about your health, you should consult your personal physician. This event is meant for informational purposes only.

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