Article From The Deep South – Hi Justine!!
Natural remedies solve son’s eczema
WHEN Justine Reihana’s youngest son, Renata, was a baby, he suffered so badly from eczema, hayfever and lactose intolerance, it forced his mother to search for alternative foods and cleaning products.
Although Renata is now 19, Ms Reihana has stuck to the recipes and cures, some of which were Maori remedies passed down through the generations.
‘‘I had to find some way of washing his clothes and his nappies and some way of cleaning him,’’ Ms Reihana said.
Renata’s bedding and towels could not be washed in conventional washing powder. Everything that touched him had to be specially treated.
He was allergic to household chemical cleaners and even air fresheners, she said.
Ms Reihana began a long research journey. She sourced a mail order company which sold plant-based products. However, they were ‘‘horrendously expensive’’ and she had to buy in bulk.
‘‘So that set me on a journey of trying to find out what else there was,’’ she said.
‘‘I talked to the old people on the marae’’ and visited health food shops, she said. Slowly Ms Reihana built up list of washing products, remedies and foods that were acceptable to Renata.
Over the years, more information had surfaced about childhood allergies and it had become easier to source information, she said.
Recently, Ms Reihana found a North Island sharemilker, Lyn Webster, who had embarked on a similar path — although Ms Webster’s initial motivation was to save money by making her own products.
Ms Webster restricted her family grocery budget to just $100 a week and managed to save $12,000 over the last year to invest in a rental property. She created a home budget advice business called Pig Tits & Parsley Sauce, which Ms Reihana plans to promote in Gore.
Ms Reihana said classes, which would include recipes and remedies from Ms Webster and her own knowledge, would start this week.
Not only did the recipes and remedies help relieve the symptoms of allergies, they kept alive traditional methods, were environmentally friendly and saved money, she said.
The home-made products used little or no chemicals and used recycled containers.
Baking soda and vinegar were two key ingredients, she said.
Participants in the classes would be issued with a fact sheet that included recipes and some samples to take home. Ms Reihana would hold classes in Gore on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and Thursday mornings, she said. If there is the demand, a Thursday afternoon session will be added.
People can buy the recipe sheets without attending the demonstrations.
Ms Reihana has created a range of baby knitwear called The Paa Hobo, which used New Zealand merino and possum blend wools. She had been selling the range of knitwear at the Mataura Community Market.
– Phone Justine Reihana on 208-7552 or 027 634-9353.
Back to nature: Coping with her son’s allergies led Justine Reihana to learn about natural remedies and foods. After teaming up with a North Island budget specialist, Ms Reihana is ready to share her knowledge.