Cedar tea being distributed by elders at Whitefish Bay. (Submitted)Treaty 3 elders are using some traditional ways to help protect members from the coronavirus. Elder Isobel White says they've been circulating cedar tea, as a preventive measure.

The tea is rich in Vitamin C, and it's been used to help with colds and respiratory illnesses.

White says Teddy Copenace has been making traditional medicine for the whole community of Naotkamegwanning First Nation on Whitefish Bay on Lake of the Woods.

"During food hamper day for the community, they will include the traditional medicine for each household. This is something very new, and I believe it would catch the eye of other communities and leadership. Traditional medicine has helped my family numerous times throughout the years.

Some community members call it cedar tea. Copenace calls it cedar water, but White refers to it as cedar medicine.

White says she's been drinking it every day since March, and she feels very well protected.

For more information:

Canadian Medical Association Journal - How Indigenous people are coping with COVID-19How Indigenous people are coping with COVID-19