AS cold and flu season continues to creep up on us, many are flocking to the local grocery stores and drug stores to start stocking up on over the counter remedies. Unfortunately, being prepared for winter’s illnesses can take a toll on the family budget as many of these medications are extremely expensive. Not only that, but studies have shown that not only do these medications cost you a fortune, but many of them don’t have any real benefits, either. So, how can you soothe your child’s stuffy nose, sore throat and cough and not break the bank? Check out these all natural cold and flu remedies that will have you back on your feet in no time.
- 1. Yarrow: Like aspirin, this herb contains salicylic acid, a compound used since ancient times to tamp down pain and inflammation. It also increases circulation, opening the pores and encouraging sweating, which helps bring toxins up out of the body. This sweating also brings down fever. Recent studies have also shown that yarrow has the ability to combat viruses, helping to shorten the length of your illness by several days! Drink yarrow tea daily while sick to open pores and reduce fever.
- 2. Marshmallow: Not the kind you find at the grocery store, but the flowering plant. The leaves and roots are rich in a compound known as mucilage, a slick and soothing coating that helps soothe sore, itchy throats and moistens nasal passages, relieving dry coughs. Marshmallow is also chock full of antimicrobial chemicals that fights germs in the intestine, which can help you recover from a stomach bug more quickly. Purchase marshmallow root tea in your local health food store and follow the directions. Sweeten to taste.
- 3. Peppermint: Are you sinuses stuffy? Do you have a headache? Try inhaling the scent of peppermint. This home remedy is as effective for soothing painful headaches and sinus cavities as 500mg of acetaminophen. Menthol, the active ingredient in peppermint, has long been used to open clogged sinuses and provide pain relief in muscle rubs. Place two peppermint leaf tea bags in a mug of boiling water and hold it under your nose, breathing in the steam.
- 4. Black Elderberry: These deep black berries contain flu-fighting chemicals that attach to the virus particles and cause them to self destruct. They have been proven scientifically to be effective against 10 different strains of flu so far. This compound has been shown to drastically reduce the severity of symptoms and help people recover up to four days faster. Take 2 tsp of Black Elderberry extract daily as a preventative against the flu this winter and increase the dosage up to four times daily at the first sign of an infection.
These tips are not designed to take the place of the advice you receive from your physician. Check with your doctor before starting any homeopathic remedy, especially if you are taking other medications as there may be unwanted side effects.