Written by: Claudia Haller NBC-HWC
When the cold weather sets in, or when there's a seasonal change, many of us find ourselves battling the pesky symptoms of colds and flu. While it's crucial to consult with a healthcare professional when experiencing persistent symptoms, several time-tested natural remedies can offer relief.
Sometimes, you don’t need to reach for over-the-counter medications to feel better. Nature provides us with a treasure trove of ingredients that can boost our immunity and help alleviate symptoms of these common illnesses. Let’s dive into some of the natural remedies that can pick you up when you’re under the weather.
Water: Water is a crucial aspect of our immunity that we often overlook. One of the most important steps in managing cold and flu symptoms is staying hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids can soothe a sore throat, relieve congestion, and prevent dehydration. However, be conscious of your fluids; warm fluids, in particular, can provide comfort and ease symptoms while sugary drinks often worsen your symptoms. Many people underestimate the way that hydration habits impact immunity, energy levels, and overall health. Don’t forget to drink your water!!
Honey and Lemon: This classic duo is a soothing balm for sore throats. Honey is a natural antibacterial and can help in reducing throat inflammation. Lemon, rich in vitamin C, is a great way to boost the immune system. Mix a tablespoon of honey with the juice of half a lemon in warm water and sip it slowly to experience the benefits of both.
Garlic: Garlic contains allicin, a compound known for its antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. Alicin has also proven beneficial for the immune system. Incorporate garlic into your meals by adding it to soups, stir-fries, or veggies. There are also plenty of garlic supplements on the market as well. If you're really brave, you can even chew a clove or two daily.
Ginger: This root has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce sore throat, nausea, and congestion while its immune-boosting properties can prevent you from getting sick in the first place. You can either chew on raw ginger or make ginger tea by simmering slices in hot water.
Turmeric: Curcumin, the active component in turmeric, has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. You can add turmeric to your meals to alleviate existing symptoms or reduce inflammation. A warm glass of almond milk with a pinch of turmeric, often called 'golden milk,' can also be a comforting and cozy fall drink for before bed.
Eucalyptus Oil: A few drops of this essential oil in a bowl of steaming water can be a game-changer for you and your family this fall. Inhaling the steam helps to clear nasal congestion and is extremely effective. I have plenty of funny photos in my camera roll of my kids inhaling eucalyptus steam at the kitchen counter throughout the years of picking up illnesses at school. It is important that you close your eyes when you do this; the eucalyptus oil is not supposed to get into your eyes!! If this method doesn’t sound appealing to you, you can also find eucalyptus-based chest rubs or ointments for topical use.
Saltwater: Similar to eucalyptus steam, a saltwater gargle is another at-home remedy that is super easy yet extremely effective. A quick gargle can help soothe a sore throat and reduce inflammation. Simply mix half a teaspoon of salt in warm water, gargle, and then spit it out. Repeat this process several times a day as needed!
Bone Broth: Packed with amino acids and minerals, bone broth can be a nourishing drink when you feel under the weather. It can help hydrate the body which is crucial to ensure that your body has the resources it needs to fight off sickness. Bone broth in particular also boosts gut health, which is intricately linked to overall immunity.
Chamomile Tea: Among the many herbal teas that can provide comfort and relief from cold and flu symptoms, this gentle tea is especially known for its calming properties. Chamomile can also help to reduce inflammation and lower a fever. Additionally, drinking a cup before bed can promote restful sleep, which is crucial for recovery.
While natural remedies can be effective, it is essential to listen to your body and seek medical attention if symptoms persist or are severe. It's always a good idea to consult a healthcare professional before starting any new remedy. The key idea is that when you’re faced with regular cold and flu symptoms, you don’t always need to rely on pharmaceuticals. Natural remedies are a great way to support your body’s healing process.
In the end, prevention is the best cure. A balanced diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep, and managing stress can all bolster our immunity, making us less susceptible to colds and flu in the first place. Practicing good hygiene habits is also always a great idea. Washing your hands frequently with soap and water, covering your cough, avoiding contact with your face, and disinfecting surfaces regularly all go a long way. Fortunately, nature has endowed us with numerous tools to heal and rejuvenate when we do get pulled under the weather. By tapping into these resources and maintaining a holistic approach to health, we can all navigate the cold and flu season with resilience and vitality this year together.
For five easy ways to strengthen your immune system, check out our past blog here:
As mentioned before, the best way to prevent getting sick is by regularly practicing holistic and healthy habits. Here are a few of my suggestions to guide you in refreshing your health routine this autumn:
Claudia is an NBC-HWC Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, the owner of Vibrant Health by Claudia LLC and Virtual Health Coaches LLC. She studied health and wellness coaching at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where she also completed courses in Gut Health, Hormone Health, and Advanced Coaching. She is a certified 21-Day Sugar Detox Coach as well as a co-author of two Amazon Bestsellers “The Ultimate Guide to creating your soul aligned Business” and “The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a successful soul professional”.
To schedule a time for a free information call click here or join her Vibrant Health Power Community - a free Facebook Group - here.
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