Natural remedies to fight off the common cold
While winter ‘tis the season to be jolly‘, sadly, tis also the season to be ill, and with the first day of winter set to officially arrive in just a few weeks, we are already starting to hear a chorus of sniffling. A few weeks ago we covered some handy tips on how to avoid colds and flu, but if you didn’t manage to dodge the bullet, take a look at the following all-natural remedies, which could help you to fight them off.
Commonplace in both mainstream pharmacies and in herbal medicine, this purple flower has been used for years as a multifunctional healing agent.
It’s recommended that you begin to take an echinacea supplement as soon as you start to feel unwell, though it is still better to take it when your cold is in full swing than not at all. As with all supplements, quantities do vary so do read up to ensure you’re taking the right amount.
- Vitamin C
While studies into whether vitamin C helps to abate a cold once it has already set in have proven inconclusive, much research has found that higher levels of vitamin C in the blood may be an indication of good overall health. Vitamin C has also long since been renowned for immune system boosting properties, which during times of sickness and lethargy may well come in handy.
Although you can find vitamin C in supplement form, an alternative and more natural option is to prepare a nutrient dense shot made from freshly squeezed lemon (juice ½ – 1 whole lemon), ginger (juice 1-inch piece of ginger) and honey. If you are also suffering from a sore throat then do add a dash of ground cayenne pepper and gargle. Ginger will provide relief for an upset stomach and lessen aches and pains, lemon will boost immunity and provide a dose of vitamin C, and cayenne pepper will treat fever.
Because our bodies detoxify through urine, try to up your water intake, and when you think you’ve had enough, drink some more! Keep a full glass on your desk or by your bed to remind you to keep drinking. If you get fed up of water you can change it up and go for herbal tea, squash or lemon water.
Try to section off some time for you to properly rest. Wrap up warm, snuggle into bed or curl up on the sofa and light a fire to really relax. If you can nap a few times during the day to recharge your batteries then great. If you can sleep for eight to ten hours at night then even better!
- Take a hot bath
Make a bath as hot as you can stand, add in oils and salts (eucalyptus is great for decongesting) and bring a nice cup of herbal tea or some lemon water to keep you hydrated while you are bathing. The steam will help to clear your sinuses, the water will ease those achy muscles and the heat will help you to sweat it out.