From the pantry to the bedside, home remedies you can make in a snap help prevent seasonal colds or cure a stubborn case of the flu.
Garlic tea immune enhancer
A well-known immune system strengthener, garlic shines as an antibacterial and antiviral herb for fighting colds, coughs and the flu. One of the best ways to take advantage of garlic's healing properties is by drinking fresh garlic tea. Sweetened with a little raw honey, it's delicious and helps to heal what ails you. Peel 2 to 3 cloves of fresh garlic and lightly crush them with the side of a wide knife blade. Add them to 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for another 15 minutes. Strain the garlic and allow the tea to cool to mouth temperature. Add raw honey, a tiny pinch of cayenne pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Drink as much as desired.
Red onion and raw honey cough syrup
A wonderful home remedy for adults or kids suffering from a cough uses brown cane sugar, raw honey or stevia and red onions to make a soothing and tasty cough syrup. Wash, peel and slice the entire onion horizontally. Starting with the base of the onion, layer the slices in a bowl alternating with layers of raw honey or brown sugar. Stevia powder works well for this home remedy too; however, it is extremely sweet. Continue adding layers of onion and sweetener until the entire onion is reconstructed in the bowl. Cover and allow the sweetened onion to remain in the bowl on your counter for about 12-15 hours or overnight. The next day, there will be about a cup or more of sweet syrup in the bowl. The cough syrup contains a range of nutrients, vitamins and minerals from the onion and the honey to help fight infection and soothe sore throats and quiet a cough. Take a spoonful as needed. Has no onion-y taste.
Raw honey and lemon for sore throats
A mixture of fresh lemon juice and raw honey provides soothing relief for sore throats and helps stop the tickle that stimulates coughing. Raw honey -- with all its components including royal jelly, propolis and bee pollen -- is high in nutrients and enzymes which kill bacteria and viruses. The vitamin C and antioxidants found in fresh lemons boost the immune system, speeding healing. Together these two home remedies are a powerhouse for getting over a cold and sore throat. Mix the juice of 1/2 the lemon with 2 to 3 tablespoons of honey and sip throughout the day as needed.
Chicken soup antiviral
Chicken soup really does act to knock out a cold or the flu and hasten healing. As long ago as the 12th century, the Jewish physician Maimonides recommended consuming chicken soup to fight colds and flu. Take advantage of the high antioxidant properties and nutrients found in organic vegetables and chicken. Although non-organic chicken soup may relieve some cold symptoms, it also supplies the body with pesticides, growth hormones, herbicides and antibiotics that are not recommended for well being. Go organic all the way and get well quickly.
Mullein tea for coughs and congestion
Mullein tea is well-known for relieving chest congestion from coughs, colds and the flu. It acts as an expectorant, loosening trapped mucous and soothing sore throats. Make mullein tea by filling a tea ball or strainer with dried mullein herb and steeping in a cup of boiling water for 10 minutes. Sweeten with raw honey and drink as needed to relieve symptoms.
Sources for this article include:
University of Maryland Medical Center: Cough
Linus Pauling Institute: Garlic and Organosulfur Compounds
Office of Health Promotion University of Utah: Cold, Flu and Sore Throat
HolisticOnline.com: Herbal Medicine for Flu