Natural home remedies for colds aren’t just a cold season necessity – viruses can strike any time of year. If you find yourself under the weather, there are a number of natural home remedies you can draw upon to alleviate your symptoms and keep your suffering to a minimum.
“Achoo!!!” Oh no, have you caught something? Most people associate cold and flu season with winter, and rightly so. Yet, if you take public transportation every day, you’re likely to develop a runny nose and scratchy throat at some point – sometimes even in the summer. Before you turn to your medicine cabinet, why not give these natural home remedies for colds a chance to work their wonders first?
DIY Cough Syrup – with Onions and Honey
Onions not only make us tear up and give our dishes a unique flavor, they’re an important tool in any home pharmacy kit and a classic companion in cold season. Onions have antibacterial properties and can be combined with honey into an effective cough syrup.
You’ll find the recipe here: Homemade Cough Syrup: An Onion Juice and Honey Natural Cough Remedy
Potato and Onion Wraps as Cold Remedies: Straight out of Grandma’s Playbook
Hot wraps are one of the oldest home remedies against cold symptoms. Potato wraps, for example, are best for sore throats. Cook unpeeled potatoes using your preferred method; once they’re fully cooked, lay them inside a cotton towel and flatten them slightly, being careful not to burn yourself. Wrap the potato towel inside another hand towel, then place around your neck and throat for a good half an hour. Always test the wrap before placement to ensure you don’t accidentally burn sensitive skin.
Our old friend, the onion, isn’t only good for coughs, but also for earaches. Onion vapors improve circulation and reduce germs. For your wrap, finely chop one onion, then place it in a cotton towel or an old sock. Place your onion sack directly on your ear, holding it in place with your hand or a bandanna for at least 20 minutes.
Read more: Clogged Ears Remedy: 3 Household Hacks
The Garlic Cure: Smells Bad, Works Well against Colds
If you want to feel better, you may have to suffer a bit first – and in this case, that means eating garlic. It’s a natural cold remedy against bacteria and fungi. The anti-inflammatory properties of garlic are most powerful when garlic is consumed raw, perhaps in salad – or, if you’re brave, bitten directly off a freshly-peeled clove. Raw garlic will clear your sinuses more effectively than even wasabi, and the challenge will largely be forgotten because you’ll be breathing more easily in minutes.
Garlic soup, bruschetta with garlic, or garlic sliced in a salad – regularly eating fresh garlic as part of your diet in fall and winter months may keep you from getting sick in the first place. One tip: Avoid contact with any other human beings for at least two days following your garlic cure. Easy, right, since you don’t want anyone else to get sick anyway?
Eucalyptus Aromatherapy Baths: Quiet, Please!
Especially during the first days of a cold, you can minimize your symptoms by taking hot baths. The water’s warmth increases circulation in your mucus membranes, stopping viruses from multiplying.
Adding essential oils to your bath water can amplify the warm water’s effects to help you breathe better – add a few drops to eucalyptus oil to a spoonful of olive oil before introducing it into your bathwater. It’s important to relax in peace after a hot bath, making it an excellent bedtime ritual. Even if you’ve been sick for days, a hot, relaxing bath can still be an effective home cold remedy. Do not take hot baths, however, if you are feverish.
Herbal Infusions – Natural Cold Remedies
Hot tea – and a lot of it – is an essential partner in cold and flu season. Because there are so many herbal home cold remedies that can be infused into tea, it’s a beverage you can easily vary depending on the symptoms of the day.
Ginger is a classic for sore throats and upset stomachs – it’s a healing ingredient in the Indian Ayurveda tradition. Ginger is used as a home remedy to stimulate digestion and circulation, as well as reduce viral reproduction – the perfect cure for all stuffy noses. Anyone who’s had ginger tea before knows it’ll make you sweat – this tea really heats you up, from the inside out!
It’s super easy to make your own infusion – here’s how: The Benefits of Ginger Tea: How to Make a Healthy Infusion
Natural Home Cold Remedies: Sage and Thyme
Another helpful herb in cold and flu season is sage, which is a common herb in many home gardens. In the home pharmacy, sage is used to reduce sweating. It has antiseptic and anticonvulsant properties and is disliked by viruses and fungi alike. Pick leaves directly from your garden or buy some fresh at the market to drink as an infusion, or use the water for gargling.
You only know thyme as an herb for mediterranean cooking recipes? Thyme is a fantastic home remedy against cough – it expands and disinfects the lungs, breaking up congestion. Thyme oil can also be used as a mouthwash against sore throats.
You can add honey to any of these infusions. Only add it once the liquid has cooled a bit. Honey loses its healing properties if exposed to high temperatures. To access its soothing relief for scratchy throats, you can also eat honey directly from the spoon, allowing it to melt slowly on your tongue.
The Natural Cold Remedy for Everybody: Salt Water
Table salt is a small miracle worker when it comes to colds – that’s why you’ll find saline nasal sprays next to the cough syrup at your local store. Nasal sprays and washes, however, are easy and cheap to make yourself. Dissolve 1/2 teaspoon salt in a glass of lukewarm water. Ensure you have 10-12 oz of liquid in your glass to create the right concentration. Then pour your liquid into a clean spray bottle.
Salt water is also perfect for home inhalations. Dissolve 2 tablespoons of salt in 4.5 cups of hot water in a pot. Place a towel over your head, ensuring you cover the pot completely and inhale carefully over the steaming pot. This ensures that the healing vapors best reach your mucus membranes. Exercise caution, because the steam at the beginning is very hot – ensure that you leave enough space between your face and the pot so as not to burn yourself. Don’t forget to have tissues nearby – inhalation will cause your nose to run fiercely!
- The Benefits of Ginger Tea: How to Make a Healthy Infusion
- Clogged Ears Remedy: 3 Household Hacks
- Natural Home Remedies for Headaches that Really Work
This article was translated from German into English. You can view the original here: 6 pflanzliche Hausmittel gegen Erkältungaffiliate links: If you buy here, you actively support Utopia.org because we get a small portion of the proceeds.
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