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In Hunger Mountain Coop’s Wellness Department you'll find the finest selection of homeopathic remedies, herbal tinctures, dietary supplements and vitamins in Central Vermont. Our trained, knowledgeable staff carefully selects all of the items we carry and will personally assist you in finding natural alternatives to enhance your health and well-being.

Do you enjoy aromatherapy baths on a cold winter night, or lighting sweet incense on lazy summer evenings? Everyone needs to be pampered from time to time, and we have a variety of ways with which you can soothe yourself from the stresses of everyday life: soaps, oils, bath salts, body perfumes, shower gels and lotions. Also, we specialize in local Vermont products from herbal elixirs to felted soaps. Take a look around, and please let us know if we can assist you in any way.

Join us on Vitamin Wednesdays! All vitamins, supplements, homeopathics and herbs are 20% off – all day, every Wednesday!

Wellness News


Raw honey has so many wonderful attributes which can contribute to health and well-being. Raw honey is pure honey that has not been heated, pasteurized and/or processed in any way. All of the natural vitamins, enzymes, and other natural nutrients remain in the honey. Its natural goodness is preserved.


Here are some ways in which raw honey can support health:

Honey is a great energy booster – it is an excellent source of carbohydrates that in turn provide energy and strength.


Raw honey helps to support a healthy immune system – it helps inhibit the growth of viruses, infections, and bacteria. It also fosters a healthy digestive system. By strengthening the immune system, it is often effective during occasional respiratory discomfort.


Honey provides support for occasional sore throats – a spoonful of honey can be used to coat the throat in a protective layer that soothes irritated tissue.


Supports healthy skin – simply dab on blemishes nightly for occasional breakouts or luxuriate with a honey facial. A honey poultice can promote healing of a rash or abrasion.


One of my favorite sources for honey at Hunger Mountain Co-op is Mcfarline’s Apiary Honey. It’s raw and from untreated bees in Benson, VT. Tim Mcfarline harvests honey only once a year, so the blend is from all of the seasons. We carry both the one-pound and three-pound sizes in the Wellness Department.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that raw honey not be given to infants under one year of age.

This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. Please consult your doctor or health care provider with any questions. 







by Eleanor Baron, a third-year clinical intern at the VCIH

Spring weather has us heading outside to enjoy walks in the woods, garden chores, and maybe even an early season swim or paddle. Safe spring and summer fun starts with good planning and a few basic tools and strategies to protect against sunburn and insect bites. When those unexpected troubles do occur, having some simple things on hand and knowing how to find a backyard herbal ally or two can save the day.


Many of us need sun protection, especially at the beginning of the season, when we are at our most vulnerable. Awareness (and with it, controversy) has grown in the last few years about the risks associated with chemical sunscreens. We know now that some of the commonly used ingredients actually mimic our hormones and disrupt vital hormonal functions in our bodies. Some cause skin allergies, with even a so-called inert substance like methylisothiazolinone being called out by the American Contact Dermatitis Society as “allergen of the year.” And yet, the question of whether sunscreens actually prevent skin cancer remains unanswered. Before you choose a sunscreen, check it out on the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) “Skin Deep” website at — there’s even a phone app you can use while you’re shopping. You’ll find a good assortment of safer options to choose from at The Coop.


Don’t forget the simple things that can help, like covering up with long-sleeves in the hot sun, even if it’s not with today’s high-SPF fabrics. Eating more lycopene, especially in the form of cooked tomatoes, boosts your skin’s natural protection, as does eating a diet rich in healthy saturated fats, which are so important for healthy, resilient skin. If you’re not very, very fair, you might want to experiment with using some natural oils like coconut, carrot seed or raspberry seed oil, which range in SPF from 6 to 40. Use caution, and experiment with a small patch of skin to be sure it’s enough protection.


If you do get a burn, you have a few options for soothing remedies. Aloe juice, whether from a bottle or from your houseplant, will be immediately soothing and just may stop a burn in its tracks. Burned skin loses moisture easily, so stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. A soothing home remedy can be made by mixing equal parts of apple cider vinegar with a strong tea made from mint, plantain, calendula flowers and lavender flowers. When cooled, spritz on sunburned skin and enjoy a little herbal relief. Moistened green tea bags on burned skin can also feel soothing, as can soaking in a cool oatmeal bath.


With the ever-growing threat of serious tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease and various mosquitoborne illnesses that come and go with the seasons — not to mention the pleasure-sapping swarms of black flies that can make early season outdoor adventures frustrating finding a good insect repellent may also be on your to-do list. Again, the EWG website can be of help in sorting through the options. You may want to make a simple repellent using essential oils like citronella, lemongrass, cajeput, clove, cedar, rosemary, eucalyptus, catnip, lavender or mint (you choose), using just a few drops mixed with distilled witch hazel and water in a small spritzer bottle. Or you can look for an all-natural alternative made with similar ingredients; there are plenty of good ones. You’ll find some excellent options at The Coop.


If you do get bitten, head into the backyard to find a plantain leaf; you won’t have to look far! Look for a low plant with a cluster of rounded, long, and pointed leaves joined together in a rosette. (Plantago major is a common and easy-to-identify local variety.) Chew a leaf without swallowing and press the green wad of chewed herb directly on your bite (it’s called a spit poultice). You won’t be disappointed! This is such a safe and easy way to sooth a bug bite, you’ll want to teach your kids to do the same. For information on the specific issues related to tick bites, check the International Lyme and Associated Diseases website at And since ticks often hop on bare ankles and head up, tucking your pants into your socks really does help when you’re out for a hike. Remember to check for ticks when you come back inside, using a hand mirror and a sharp pair of tweezers or a tick-remover tool. Ticks love to hide in warm, moist places, so be thorough!


Most importantly, go outdoors! Spending time in nature is in itself a healthy choice, reducing your chance of depression, boosting your vitamin D levels, and strengthening your body and spirit.


Sliding-Scale Herbal Consultations ($5 to $10)

Available at the Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism in Montpelier with third-year clinical interns. Call 802.224.7100 to schedule an appointment, or read more at


Coop Sunscreens

As we enter the spring and summer, The Coop has a wide array of sunscreens. 


Badger‘s line of sunscreens are local, natural, and mineral based. They offer broad spectrum protection from UVA and UVB rays using the mineral zinc oxide.


· Badger Baby Broad Spectrum SPF 30 $13.39

· Badger Kids Broad Spectrum SPF 30 $13.39

· Badger Broad Spectrum Lavender SPF 30 $13.39

· Badger Anti-Bug Broad Spectrum SPF 34 $14.39

· Badger Damascus Rose Broad Spectrum Anti-Aging SPF 20 Face Sunscreen $21.99

Alba Botanica offers a number of mineralbased sunscreens. They are gluten free and biodegradable. The active ingredients are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.


· Alba Fragrance Free SPF 30 $9.99

· Alba Kids SPF 30 $9.99

· Alba Facial SPF 20 $9.99

All Good from Elemental Herbs has a broadspectrum unscented sunstick and lip balm. Both are mineral based.


· All Good Unscented SPF Sunstick $7.99

· All Good Unscented SPF Lip Balm $3.49




by Betzy Bancroft, Co-Director and Faculty of the VCIH


If we go deep into our past, we find that until we had refrigeration and widespread distribution of food, people ate more dried food and carbohydrates such as grains and legumes in the winter. In the modern world, we can — affordability permitting — eat fresh produce whenever we want to, but we tend to be more sedentary and consume more carbohydrates and heavier foods in the winter. Excess carbohydrates in the diet — when we consume more than we can burn for energy — convert to fat in the liver and are stored in our abdominal adipose tissues. Our triglyceride levels rise. In many temperate areas, people traditionally ate young green plants that grew throughout the springtime to restore balance and vigor. Nettles, dandelion greens, mustards, wild leeks, and poke shoots are some of the best-known spring tonics. They stimulate the kidneys and liver, as well as help the lymphatic system to cleanse the interstitial fluids. In the old herbals, plants that stimulated these organs of detoxification were called “blood purifiers.” Greens are also rich in vitamins A and C as well as minerals like calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc.


In the garden, some of the earliest spring greens include orach, sorrel, mustards, broccoli rabe, spinach, asparagus, bunching onions, and cilantro. These greens are often perennial, selfseeding, or can be sown in the fall for spring picking. Early wild greens include dandelion, violets, wild leeks, chickweed, nettles, and wild mustards like winter cress, watercress, and garlic mustard. Some other common vegetables that have rejuvenating properties include parsley, radish, carrots, beets, collards, kale, cabbage, radicchio, and celery.


One of the most traditional ways of preparing spring tonics has been as soup, or “potage.” A variety of chopped greens is added to vegetable or chicken stock and cooked just until tender. Aromatic allium-family veggies like garlic, shallot, leek, onion, and their wild cousins are often included, and some cooks like to poach an egg in the soup. These greens can also be simply steamed and served with lemon and olive oil, both of which also support liver function. Make pesto, juice them, and add them to salad — any way you like them!


Spring Tonics Available at The Coop 

Rejuvenation Tea from Zack Woods – Loose leaf tea that contains nourishing nettles, raspberry leaf, milky oats, and lemon balm. Local and organic. 4-oz bag $9.29


Flor-Essence from Flora – Purification tea that is a gentle detox for the whole body. Hunger Mountain Coop carries both the tea bag and liquid options. Non-GMO verified, and 90% organic ingredients. Dry tea blend 2.2 oz $39.39, 17 fluid oz $36.79


Wheatgrass from Navitas – Wheatgrass has been used to generate healthy energy as well as to cleanse the body of toxins. Freeze-dried powder. Organic, and Non-GMO verified. 1 oz $22.29


Digestive Bitters from Urban Moonshine – Handcrafted digestive tonic, including dandelion root and leaf, fennel seed, yellow dock root, and ginger root. Local, organic, and gluten-free. 8.4 fluid oz $41.99


Raw Reserve from Amazing Grass – A powdered blend of spirulina, chlorella, and sea vegetables from Maine. Great addition to smoothies. Organic, Non-GMO, gluten-free, and vegan. 8.5 oz $34.29