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Home Remedies for Colds

Updated on March 20, 2013

Natural Remedies for Colds

Using herbal medicine is becoming more mainstream as more and more scientific studies are released, and improvements are made in standardizing, quality control and labeling. We should remember that plants have been used for medicinal and healing purposes for thousands of years before chemical medications came along. It wasn't until the 19th century that scientists started synthesizing plant compounds in order to create pharmaceutical medications.

As people become more wary of chemical pharmaceuticals, more and more people are learning about herbal medicine. This knowledge combined with natural or herbal medicines makes healing accessible to all people, even the uninsured. We are a movement of people ready to take our health back into our own hands.

Origanum Vulgare, the source of oil of oregano
Origanum Vulgare, the source of oil of oregano

Oil of Oregano

The best natural remedy for colds that I know of is Oil of Oregano. It is known as "nature's antibiotic." Oil of oregano has been the subject of many scientific studies and has been proven to be an effective antiviral and antifungal as well as an antibiotic.

Oil of oregano is derived from wild oregano that grows in the Mediterranean, it is not the same oregano that is commonly sold in grocery stores as a seasoning. When buying oil of oregano you need to make sure that the product says "origanum vulgare" somewhere on the label.

Oil of oregano is also effective against fungus, parasites and viruses. Unlike traditional pharmaceutical antibiotics oregano oil will not create mutant strains of bacteria. It can be used internally and also applied externally on skin and even infected teeth and gums.

One important thing to take into consideration if you are going to take oil or oregano is that as it is antibacterial it will harm the beneficial bacteria that live in your digestive system, so I recommend plenty of probiotics. The best way to do this is to take the probiotics and the oil of oregano as far apart as possible, 12 hours apart if you can manage it . After finishing the course of oregano oil it is best to continue to take probiotics daily.

One of my favorite things about oil of oregano is that you do not need a prescription and the cost is low. Also there are none of the usual negative side effects of traditional antibiotics. In fact, the only known side effect is a "possible mild stomach upset."

Where to buy oil of oregano:

Where to buy Oil of Oregano

NOW Oregano Oil,90 Softgels
NOW Oregano Oil,90 Softgels

Oregano oil for internal use.



Elderberry has many benefits for a cold but my favorite is that it reduces the production of mucous, which reduces congestion and coughing. Elderberry has been shown to have antiviral and anti- inflammatory properties, and the ability to shrink mucus membranes. It can also be helpful for fevers, because it can increase sweating, which flushes toxins out of the body and helps to break a fever.

Like oil of oregano, it has also been the subject of multiple scientific studies. A University of Maryland study tested black elderberry against 10 strains of influenza virus. It was shown to have antiviral properties against the virus, and reduced the duration of existing flu symptoms by one to two days.

As a dark blue/black fruit elderberry is very high in antioxidants.

The syrup made from elderberries tastes good, which makes it easy to give to kids. There is a FDA-approved drug called Sinupret which is made from elderberry that has been extensively studied for effectiveness on bacterial sinusitis and upper respiratory and nasal issues, reducing mucus in the sinuses.

Where to buy Elderberry syrup and capsules:

Homemade Herbal Vapor Rub

Vicks vapor rub has its benefits but it contains ingredients such as petroleum and turpentine oil. You can easily make your own natural vapor rub using just coconut oil, eucalyptus oil and lavender oil. It is important that the label on the coconut oil says "Extra Virgin" and the labels on the eucalyptus and lavender oils say "Essential oil." If it doesn't say essential oil, it is just a scented oil and not an extract from the plant itself.

To make the vapor rub, take about 1/4 cup of coconut oil and mix in 5-7 drops of eucalyptus oil and 5-7 drops of lavender oil. Add more or less of the oils to fit your own preferences. The vapor rub mixture should stay solid in the winter, but I recommend it be kept in the refrigerator during summer months. It will melt to liquid on contact with skin.

Where to buy the ingredients for herbal vapor rub:

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    • chi kung profile image

      chi kung 4 years ago

      I always use natural remedies!

    • Magda2012 profile image

      Magda2012 4 years ago

      I like home remedies better than the artificial ones. good information.

    • profile image

      mlacombe 5 years ago

      Natural products are so much better than manufactured stuff. I hate putting chemicals and man-made stuff in my body.

    • profile image

      ChrystalM 5 years ago

      I use all of these. Good stuff.