Best Cold and Flu Home Remedies
It doesn’t feel like winter until you’ve had a run-in with the common cold. Unfortunately, modern medicine has nothing to treat the common cold. So your doctor will likely just tell you to let the cold run its course.
However, a cold can wreak havoc on your immune system, leaving you open to a bacterial infection. These home remedies for a cold can help you get over your cold faster.
The flu is one of the most dreaded illnesses of the winter season. It sweeps through schools and workplaces, leaving many schools looking bare and empty.
While resting and letting the flu run its course, there are natural home remedies for the flu and cold. You can use to ease symptoms and hasten the end of the flu. Combine these treatments with plenty of rest for maximum efficiency.
1. Chicken Noodle Soup
Lots of people believe that chicken noodle soup for a cold is just an old wives’ tale. However, science backs up this treatment. Full of tasty ingredients, chicken noodle soup is the yummiest home remedies for a cold.
- Make your chicken noodle soup, rather than one from a can or box.
- Include carrots, celery, and onions in the soup to get as many cold-fighting ingredients as possible.
- Eat the soup piping hot to help break up the mucus in your throat.
Honey not only coats and soothes an irritated throat, but it can also decrease the life of a common cold. This remedy creates the cough syrup that you can use every day.
- Mix 1/4 cup of honey with 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar.
- Stir together to blend the ingredients.
- Take 1 tablespoon of the mixture every 4 hours to decrease your cough and soothe your throat.
3. Saltwater Gargle
Salt can clear up the mucus and inflammation in your nose, helping you breathe a little easier. This remedy can be repeated 5 or 6 times per day, providing all-day relief from cold symptoms.
- Pour 8 ounces of cold or lukewarm water into a glass.
- Add 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the water.
- Stir to dissolve the salt.
- Gargle the saltwater mixture for as long as you can tolerate it.
- Spit the mixture out when you are done with it.
4. Mullein Tea
Congestion from a common cold is easily one of the most painful symptoms. This tea, which clears up congestion and helps you more effectively cough out mucus, is one of the most effective home remedies for a cold.
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add 2 teaspoons of mullein herb to the water.
- Steep for 10 minutes.
- Strain the herb from the water.
- Add honey as desired and drink the tea.
5. Vitamin C
Despite what most people believe, vitamin C doesn’t prevent you from getting colds. However, it can help clear up a cold that you already have.
Taking the amount of vitamin C described in this remedy is fine for a short-term solution, but taking that much when you do not have a cold can give you diarrhea.
- You need to aim to get between 1,000 and 3,000 milligrams of vitamin C per day when you have a cold.
- You can take supplements to get the majority of this, but try to get plenty of fresh vitamin C-containing fruit as well.
When a common cold takes over, it can quickly take over your immune system. Garlic’s antiseptic properties help the immune system defend itself against a cold and shorten its duration. This remedy combines two effective home remedies for a cold: hot liquids and garlic.
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add 3 to 6 cloves of garlic and bring the water back up to a boil.
- Steep for 5 minutes.
- Remove the garlic.
- Drink the liquid as a tea or eat it as a soup.
Anyone who has ever eaten an overly-spicy meal knows how pepper can clear out congestion.
- Add 1 teaspoon of ground black pepper to 1 cup of lukewarm water.
- Gargle the water as long as you can.
- Spit it out when you are done.
- Repeat 3 or 4 times per day.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is naturally healing, so it helps the body more effectively fight the flu and cold. It also kills yeast, which may feed on the infection and cause it to grow.
- Pour 1 cup of water. Stir 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar into the water.
- Drink once every 3 hours until symptoms subside.
A mustard rub can ease the chest pain and coughing caused by influenza. There are many different ways to make a mustard rub; this one makes our list of home remedies for the flu because it uses easy-to-find ingredients.
- Combine 1 tablespoon of dry mustard with 3 tablespoons of flour.
- Add 1 egg white to the mustard mixture. Stir to check the consistency.
- Add warm water to the mixture until it forms a smooth paste. Rub the mustard mixture all over a clean handkerchief. Rest another clean handkerchief over the mustard mixture, sealing the mixture between the handkerchiefs.
- Rub a small amount of olive oil onto your chest. Press the handkerchiefs onto the olive oil.
- Check for irritation every 2-3 minutes. After about 6 minutes, remove the handkerchiefs.
- Wash mustard off your skin.
10. Lemon Juice
Lemons have been used in all sorts of home remedies for the flu for hundreds of years. It assists in clearing out your mucus membranes of irritants.
- Boil 1 cup of water. Chop up 1 lemon and add to the water.
- Steep for 5 minutes. Inhale the steam while the lemon steeps.
- Strain the lemon pieces out of the water. Add 1 teaspoon of honey and stir.
- Drink 3 to 4 times per day for best results.