In spite of what some might say, the cold virus can strike at any time. Winter, spring, summer, or fall. Completely uninvited, and without warning. Whether it happens during the dead of winter, or radiant summer days, colds are most definitely not fun. Dealing with them is inevitable, but there are ways to shorten the duration of colds and lessen the brunt of their symptoms naturally and effectively.
Right off the bat, garlic is a definite must for fighting colds and improving overall health. It helps lessen the severity of a cold and contains important nutrients like vitamin C, which boosts the immune system and strengthens the body to protect and fight against viruses and infections. Garlic also contains allicin, an antioxidant that’s anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal.
Chop up some garlic and try sprinkling it in soups. Or for a more potent effect, try finely mincing 1-2 cloves of garlic in a glass of water and drink quickly.
Eating onions supercharges the immune system. It also contains powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties (along with garlic) that help ease aches, pains, and congestion.
Try consuming an equal mixture of onion juice and raw honey to relieve sore throat and coughing.
Ginger contains anti-inflammatory qualties, such as gingerols, that soothe symptoms associated with flu and colds, including nausea, vomiting, headaces and fever. It’s a natural antiviral, and it also aids the body in eliminating toxins by sweating without the need of ibuprofen and it’s harsh side effects.
Add some fresh ginger to soups and other meals, or make a good cup of ginger tea with raw honey.
Loaded with antioxidants, and possessing both antibacterial and antifungal properties, honey is an awesome immunity booster that helps fight viruses. In 2008, researchers at Penn State University College of Medicine found honey to be an effective cough suppressant by reducing the frequency and severity of nighttime coughing.
It’s a good idea to avoid refined sugar while sick with a cold since it suppresses the immune system and feeds bacteria. Honey makes a far better substitute for sugar that’s healthier and contains needed vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, that promote a speedy recovery.
Load Up On Hot Teas
Whether you’re a big tea drinker or not, hot herbal teas are simply a must when feeling under the weather. The heat helps boost the immune system and the various herbs can help fight infection, while easing the severity of symptoms. Here are some herbal teas that’ll help:
- Ginger – In my household, ginger is the go-to tea for colds and coughs. It’s just that effective! As mentioned before, ginger contains a boatload of antiviral compounds, and helps ease pain, reduce fever, suppress coughing, and encourages rest. You can add raw honey or lemon (or both!) to your ginger tea for flavor and for that extra kick of vitamin C.
- Anise – Known to ease those suffering from stomach problems, aniseed is actually an expectorant that helps get rid of stubborn phlegm. Try drinking one cup in the morning and another in the evening to help loosen phlegm and fight your cold.
- Licorice – If you thought licorice was no more than mere candy, think again. Licorice root is not only a medicinal herb with anti-depressant qualities, but it’s also an antiviral that encourages the body to fight viruses.
- Elderberry – By far one of the most well known herbs to boost the immune system and fight colds, flu, bronchitis, viral infections, and promote a speedy recovery. It contains high amounts of vitamins A, B, C, all of which are powerful antioxidants and support immunity.
- Peppermint – If running a high fever, then peppermint is the ticket. Peppermint reduces fever by allowing the body to sweat. Its anti-inflammatory property helps ease nausea and vomiting, while its antibacterial qualities boosts the immune system.
- Chamomile – Not only does chamomile help calm nerves and promote a needed good night’s sleep, but it also reduces inflammation and fever.
- Cinnamon – Antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and containing antioxidant effects, cinnamon can help break fevers and aid digestion. Mix a spoonful of raw honey into a cup of cinnamon tea to help relieve cough and congestion.
An excellent source of vitamin C, kiwi fruit improves digestion, boosts immunity, and reduces the severity of upper respiratory infections. It’s also worth mentioning that kiwi contains stronger antioxidant properties than oranges, and grapefruit.
If you don’t know about colloidal silver by now then you have no idea what you’re missing. At the first sign of allergies, a cold, or infection, silver is the way to go. Colloidal silver is a construction of silver particles in a pure solution. These microscopic particles, when produced properly, are effective against harmful organisms. It is safe, easy to take, has zero side effects, is tasteless, and most of all, works! High quality silver is important when shopping around as anything less will not be as effective.
Here a few great quality silver products to consider:
Drink Plenty of Water
In addition to taking herbal teas, if you’re running a fever it’s important to keep the body hydrated and rested while it’s fighting illness. Avoid dairy products, as they can actually create more phlegm, and also sugary soft drinks.
Zinc decreases the severity and duration of colds, and can also relieve respiratory symptoms. It stimulates white blood cell functioning, fights infections, and contains antioxidants. When sick, adults should consume 50-75 mg a day in capsule form, or lozenge. Some other good sources of zinc can be found in almonds, ginger root, pecans, and peas.
Cod Liver Oil
This is a great source of vitamin D, which helps prevent illness and promote faster recoveries from them by both boosting and maintaining a healthy immune system. Cod liver oil is also an anti-depressant, and contains beneficial anti-inflammatory properties that can relieve aches and pains.
Eucalyptus Essential Oil
If you’ve ever used vapor rubs such as Vicks in the past then you’ll most definitely recognize eucalyptus’ distinct woody, medicinal aroma. For congestion, allergies, fever, aches and pains, sore throat, runny nose, and asthma, eucalyptus is an effective cure-all. This oil has been known for it’s wide-range of beneficial properties which include anti-inflammatory, decongestant, antibacterial, stimulant, and antiseptic.
Don’t Forget the Chicken Soup
Soups for colds are not only instinctive, but the two are simply a match made in heaven. Now, a soothing warm bowl of soup should not be underestimated or underappreciated. Its got a lot more healing qualities than most would assume. Sipping hot soup and breathing in the steam clears up congestion, while amino acid that’s released from chicken during cooking can ease bronchitis and other respiratory problems. Spices such as garlic and peppers that are added to chicken soup thin mucus and helps make breathing easier. Plus, a lot of those ingredients contain anti-inflammatory properties that can help ease cold symptoms. So, it’s safe to say that a good cup of homemade chicken soup isn’t only easy to stomach and soothing when stuck with a cold, but it significantly assists in the healing process, too.