Home Remedies for Cold and Flu
It’s winter which means cold and flu season, stock up on the best ingredients to make home remedies to help you recover.
It is the time of year when the common cold is doing it’s rounds. Although a cold is usually not serious, it can make you feel lousy. Common symptoms of a cold include, a blocked or runny nose, sore throat, muscle aches, coughs, sneezing, a raised temperature, pressure in your ears and face, and a loss of taste and smell.
Colds are different from flu, and rarely need intervention from the doctors. There are a number of ways that you can treat a cold yourself from the comfort of your own home, which will leave you feeling better in no time. That said, make an appointment to see your doctor if; your symptoms do not improve after three weeks, your symptoms get suddenly worse, your temperature is very high or you feel hot and shivery, you are concerned about you or your child’s symptoms, you’re finding it hard to breathe, or you develop chest pain, you have a long term medical condition, such as diabetes, or a heart, lung, kidney or neurological disease, or if you have a weakened immune system.
Try some home remedies for your cold
There is a reason that people bring chicken soup to those who are unwell, and this is because it really is great at helping the symptoms of a cold.
Research has shown that consuming chicken soup, which is packed full of vegetables will slow the moment of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, in your body, which will in turn help to protect you from infection.
On top of this, soup that has a low salt value, is also great at helping to keep you hydrated.
Ginger has so many health benefits and has long been used in natural remedies. Studies have suggested that placing a few slices of raw ginger root in boiling water and leaving it to steep can help soothe a cough or sore throat when sipped throughout the day.
On top of this, research has suggested that it can help prevent nausea, which is often a symptom of a common cold.
Honey is brilliant and has so many health benefits. This is because it is packed full of antibacterial and antimicrobial properties and is fantastic at helping to ease the pain of a sore throat. Research has also suggested that it is a great natural cough suppressant as well.
It should be noted though that you should never give honey to children under the age of one. This is because honey quite often contain botulinum spores, which can be harmful to younger children and babies, as their immune system is not developed enough to fight them off.
Garlic is a smelly remedy, but an effective one. It contains the compound allicin, which has great antimicrobial properties, and it is suggested that adding a garlic supplement to your diet could actually help to suppress the symptoms of a cold.
It should be noted though that more research does need to be carried out surrounding this area. That said, adding more garlic to your diet has not shown to have any negative effects, and might have some positive ones, so it is definitely worth doing regardless.
This one really will come as no surprise, but vitamin C has so many health benefits, and you can easily up your intake of this vital vitamin by eating the right things. Limes, oranges, grapefruits, leafy greens and fresh fruit and vegetables are all great sources of vitamin C and have been suggested that they help to relieve symptoms.
Vitamin C is absolutely essential for keeping a healthy immune system, and can help to relieve upper respiratory tract infections, along with other illnesses.
Salt water can not only help to prevent upper respiratory infections, it can also decrease the severity of cold symptoms, including sore throat and nasal congestion.
If you are bunged up, gargling with salt water will help to reduce and loosen any mucus that you have, which contains both bacteria and allergens which will make you feel unwell. Simply dissolve 1 teaspoon of salt into a glass of water, before swishing it around your mouth and throat. Do not swallow this, gargle and spit it out.
Colds thrive in a dry environment, and is much more likely to spread, so by creating more humidity in your home, it can reduce your exposure to this virus.
Increased humidity can help to reduce nasal inflammation, which can make it easier to breathe when you are feeling unwell. invest in a cool mist humidifier to your bedroom to help you sleep and make you feel more comfortable. You can also add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to act as a natural decongestant.
Alternatively, take a warm shower with the doors and window shut to create steam, and stay there for a few minutes inhaling the steam.
Take a warm bath:
Do not underestimate the power of a warm bath. These are really effective at helping to reduce cold and flu symptoms in adults.
Try adding Epsom salts and baking soda to the water, which will help to reduce the body aches which are associated with a common cold. Again, adding a few drops of essential oils to the water can also help to create a very soothing environment, which will help you to relax and recover.