10 Essential Natural Cold and Flu Remedies

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Stay healthy this cold and flu season with these Essential Home Remedies.

Can you believe the average person is sick for an entire month out of the year?  That’s more time than most people getcold and flu remedies for vacation!  No bueno.  Thankfully, there are so many ways you can take care of yourself and prevent the common cold or flu from taking you down. 

Nourishing your immune system with proper rest and hydration is crucial for prevention.  The dietary choices we make on a daily basis impact our overall health and immunity.  But what if you’re feeling that cold start to take hold?  Below you will find my favorite ninja tools for kicking colds and flus in the behind, before they have a chance to take you down. 

  1. GARLIC  Cheap, plentiful, and used since the dawn of history, raw garlic packs a healing punch.  It’s numerous healing properties include:  antibiotic, antiviral, and antifungal.  Garlic boosts the immune system, and fights off evil doers. 

Everyone has their own method of ingesting raw garlic.  Here’s mine:  mince up a clove and let it stay out on the counter for 10-15 minutes.  This quick “aging” process activates the medicinal properties.  Put the minced garlic on a spoon, and down the hatch, followed quickly by a glass of water to get it all down.  As long as it’s well minced, there is no need to chew it, but it must be minced.  Just swallowing a whole clove will not do it.  Some people add it to honey and take it that way.    

If you really can’t handle eating the raw garlic, you can try the Kyolic brand aged garlic capsules. 

2.  VITAMIN C  Prepare yourself for some unnerving news.  Were you aware that the vast majority of vitamin C on the market today is produced from GMO corn?  So lame!  Yet true.  Taking high amounts of vitamin C has been shown to reduce the duration of a cold, so we do want to add it to our arsenal of immune boosters. Consider taking vitamin C in it’s non GMO powder form, ascorbic acid.  It is more bioavailable so your body can utilize it right away.  No fillers means you’re not putting anything in your body it doesn’t need.  If you can’t be bothered to mix powder into a drink (that’s me sometimes), just be sure to get non GMO Vitamin C capsules.

3.  YIN CHAO is the balm.  It is a Chinese Medicine formula of 9 different herbs blended to fight colds.  This is my secret weapon.  It only works, however, if you take it early.  At the first inkling you may be getting sick, hit the Yin Chao every few hours.  Unfortunately, if you’re already full-blown sick, yin chao doesn’t work as well.    

4.  PROBIOTICS  A recent study performed at the University of Florida found that taking the probiotic strain bifidobacterium bifidum R0071 reduced occurrence of colds and flus in the clinical trials.  It has long been stated by natural health professionals that health begins in the gut, and this is proof!

5.  ZINC  This is also very effective if taken at the onset of cold or flu symptoms.  Significant effects were seen at doses of at least 75 mg (the equivalent of three or four lozenges) per day, taken as long as your cold lasts. 

soup6.  BROTH  Good, old-fashioned remedy that will never go out of style.  Sipping on broth, whether it’s veggie or meat stock, is soothing and nourishing.  Add some powerful infection fighters like garlic, turmeric, and ginger to your broths to up the healing effect.

7.  LEMON-GINGER TEA  Soothing to a sore throat, and also ginger powerfully clears sinuses.  It also helps the body to absorb and assimilate essential nutrients.

8.  GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT  Warning:  this stuff is horrible tasting!  But sometimes you gotta swallow that bitter pill to get the healing benefits.  If you wake up with a sore throat, put 20 drops in a cup of water, and gargle for 30 seconds, spit out, and repeat until you’ve gone through the whole cup.  Did I mention this stuff tastes nasty?  It really does.  However, I do it because it has proven itself to work multiple times.  GSE is powerful stuff.  It has been shown to kill over 800 different bacteria, viruses, and fungi.  If you are taking other medications, check with your doctor before taking it. 

medicinal mushrooms10.  MEDICINAL MUSHROOMS  Immune boosters extraordinaire, mushrooms are one of the most fascinating life forms on the planet.  Each mushroom has unique healing properties, and they work better together in blends of multiple mushrooms.  Reishi supports the respiratory system.  Cordyceps fight infection and modulate the immune system.  One blend I absolutely love is Host Defense MyCommunity. 

If you would like to know more about medicinal mushrooms check out these websites: 

-Paul Stamets’ YouTube video channel  https://www.youtube.com/c/paulstametsofficial

-Database with information about many of the medicinal mushrooms  http://www.medicalmushrooms.net/ 

On a final note, stress is actually the #1 cause of lowered immunity and vulnerability to falling ill.  Having some kind of stress relieving practice, whether it’s exercise, yoga, or meditation, is the key to staying healthy.  A wise person once said, “Meditate 20 minutes daily.  Unless you don’t have time.  In that case meditate one hour.”  Funny, but so true.  A little self care goes a long ways towards your quality of life, health, and vitality.

Namaste.  Be well.  Give thanks!

By Brenna Moore

Licensed Massage Therapist, Kona, Hawaii

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