Natural Remedies To Relieve Sore throats, Colds And Flu
Looking for a natural or alternative treatment for your cold or flu symptoms? Here are 8 herbs that may help relieve your symptoms.
1 Sage ( Salvia officinails) – Sore throat soother
Sage is one of the oldest remedies for sore throats and coughs. With its astringent, antiseptic, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, sage can soothe an inflamed throat and reduce infection.
The next time you have a sore throat, here’s a simple home remedy. Add two teaspoons of dried sage leaves in a cup of boiled water. Let it steep for 20 minutes. Then strain and add a pinch of sea salt and gargle with the tincture. You can dry the leaves by letting them sit overnight or you can buy dried sage leaves at the supermarket.
Caution: pregnant or breastfeeding women should not use sage or drink sage tea. Sage contains the active ingredient thujone which can stimulate the uterus in pregnant women as well as dry up breast milk.
2 Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) – Fever remedy
Yarrow tea should be given at the first sign of a cold or flu, especially if there is a fever present. It is also good for measles and similar diseases. (Anything involving fevers & spots) One ounce dried leaves to one pint boiling water. Externally, an ointment made with yarrow can be applied or (better) use it in a steam bath for both headaches and fever.
Cautions: Allergies to yarrow are possible. It should not be taken in large doses during pregnancy, but it is sometimes appropriate in small doses at that time.
3 Elder (Sambucus nigra) – Fever And Flu Relief
Infuse 1 to 2 teaspoons (2 to 5g) dried elder flowers in boiling water; drink 3 cups per day. Alternatively, look for a commercial preparation made from elderberries and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Cautions: Uncooked fresh elderberries may cause diarrhea and vomiting. Use only the dried or cooked berries.
4 Andrographis (Andrographis paniculata) – Clinically proven to reduce symptoms of respiratory infection
For the best results, take andrographis as soon as possible after the onset of cold or flu symptoms. look for a commercial preparations standardized for their content of andrographolides, which are considered responsible for much of the herb’s activity, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Does of up to 6g dried herb per day are nomally used to treat infection, while lower does are taken for prevention.
Cautions: Andrographis may exacerbate pre-existing cases of heartburn and gastric ulcer.
5 Garlic (Allium sativum) – Broad-spectrum infection fighter
To treat infection, take up to 2 cloves fresh garlic per day. Chop them and leave them to sit for 5 to 10 minutes before cooking with them. This will allow the medicinally active component allicin to form. For prevention, aim for a dose of up to 3 cloves per week, or buy a commercial preparations standardized quantity of either alliin or allicin, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Cautions: If you are taking blood-thinning or blood pressure medications, don’t take garlic.
6. Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) – Antimicrobial and Antispasmodic
Infuse up to 1 teaspoon (4g) dried thyme leaves or 2 teaspoons fresh leaves in boling water; drink 3 cups per day.
Cautions: Do not consume the isolated essential oil of thyme. Use only the fresh or dried herb.
7. White Horehound (Marrubium vulgare) – Loosens the mucus in unproductive coughs
Infuse up to 1 teaspoon (2g) dried flowering tops of horehound in boiling water; drink 3 cups per day.
Caution: Black horehound (Ballota nigra) should not be used as a substitute for white horehound (Marrubium vulgare).
8. Mash mallow (Althaea Officinalis) – Soothing expectorent for irritated airways
Infuse 2 to 5g dried marsh mallow root in cold (not hot) water, and steep for 8 hours to release mucilage; drink up to 3 cups per day.
Cautions: Marsh mallow may interfere with the absorption of other mediciens, so seperate doses by 2 hours. It also may affect blood sugar levels, so should not be taken by people with diabetes, except under professional supervision.
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