04/10/2017 by Karolina Zaremba, CNP 0 Comments
Your All-Natural Cold and Flu Remedy Kit
You’ve got it all- scratchy throat, cough, feeling achy, sneezing, runny nose, fever. You’ve finally resigned to the fact that you’re sick. What medicine do you reach for?
Typical over-the-counter cold medication or cough syrup has a lot of nasty ingredients: sugar or corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, artificial colours, and preservatives. Here are just a few ways that these ingredients are harmful:
- Artificial colours have been linked to hyperactivity and attention problems in children (1).
- Artificial sweeteners such as sorbitol or aspartame can influence taste perception and cause addiction to sweetness.
- Consuming aspartame has been linked to neurological effects including headaches, seizures, and insomnia (2).
- On top of that, sugar can actually suppress immune system function.
1. Use oregano oil as a natural antimicrobial.
Oregano oil has been used for thousands of years to fight viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. It has medicinal properties that can help fight off colds, flus, or fungal infections like a yeast infection. It’s available in liquid drops, softgels, or as a throat spray. It has a strong taste that can be off-putting to some, in which case the softgels might be the best option. You should take it for up to five days at a time, and then take a break for three weeks.
2. Sip on bone broth.
The reason we associate chicken soup with colds is because a well-made chicken broth can help fight upper-respiratory tract infections. When the chicken bones are simmered in water for a long period of time (at least 24 hours), nutrients are drawn out of the bones into the liquid. Some of the amino acids released from the bones can reduce inflammation and lower mucus in the lungs (3). You should ditch the canned soup and opt for a
homemade bone broth, or pick one up from a health food store.
3. Vitamin C
The immune system relies on many nutrients to work well, including vitamin C, A, D, zinc, and selenium. Ensuring you have a good baseline of vitamins and minerals from a varied diet is important for cold and flu prevention.
But what if you’re already sick?
Research shows that vitamin C supplementation, when taken at the onset of symptoms, can reduce the duration of an upper respiratory tract infection (4). You can buy vitamin C in capsules, tablets, or powder, and take as directed for different ages.
Let us know if you have used other natural cold and flu remedies that you’ve found effective by leaving a comment below!