- Alternative & Natural Medicine
10 Effective Home Remedies for Colds & Flu
Having a cold can be really irritating. Because the common cold is caused by virus, there are no medicinal cures for it. Antibiotics may cure you hacking cough but they cannot cure a cold because coughs are caused by bacteria while colds by viruses. However, not all hope is lost - there are actually several home remedies that you can try out to soothe and clear your cold as follows
1. Chicken soup. Ah, the thought of chicken soup is something you'd greatly look forward to when down with a cold and tucked in bed. Chicken soup is highly effective because it has anti-inflammatory properties that relieve the pain and inflammation associated with colds.
2. Hot water. Taking hot water throughout the day not only helps to prevent a dry and sore throat during your cold but also discourages the multiplication of viruses that might aggravate your cold.
3. Do not swallow your mucus. As disgusting as it sounds, I feel this is important advice. There are so many people out there who keep swallowing all the excess mucus produced when the have a cold. Mucus is a way of the body ejecting toxins out and swallowing it only means you are adding back the toxins. Blow out your nose gently or spit out the mucus.
4. Garlic. It has immune-strengthening power and anti-oxidants that help fight the flu. Also it is very effective in controlling cholesterol and lowering blood pressure. The smell of garlic won't be an issue if garlic is cooked with food, soups or used in salad dressings.
5. Honey. Processed foods and sugar should be avoided because they stimulate mucus production. Honey is a great substitute for sugar and contains numerous vitamins and minerals. A teaspoon of dark colored honey in hot water will relieve your sore throat.
6. Ginger. Eating ginger raw or drinking ginger tea relieves pain, is anti-inflammatory and an anti-oxidant too. It can also help you get rid of a headache you might have developed as a result of the cold.
7. Gargling. Salt water gargling helps remove any bacteria causing a sore throat. Mix a half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of Luke-warm water and stir until the salt crystals are dissolved completely before gargling.
8. Cinnamon. This spice is anti-viral and anti-bacterial. Cinnamon and honey is a magic mixture for colds and will relieve you in no time. Cinnamon can also be combined with ginger and honey for a wonderful healing tea.
9. Citrus fruits. Vitamin C helps boost the production of white blood cells that guard the body against bacteria and multiplication of viruses. Also, Vitamin C reduces mucus production. So start munching those apples!
10. A steamy shower. The steam helps to relax you and also moisturize and open your nasal passages. This helps to relieve breathing and allows the excess mucus to flow out. Of course, do not swallow back the mucus (gross), just spit it out in a bathroom sink.
A common cold can take anywhere from 3 to 7 days to go completely. It won't stay forever so that's a relief in itself! The above home remedies should help make you feel much better.