Natural Cold Remedies

Natural Cold Remedies

The cold season is upon us and you might soon find yourself in need of remedies to make yourself feel better. For mild symptoms, natural solutions often work just as well as over the counter treatments. If you feel terribly bad, you needn’t suffer through it; use whatever medicine you need to fight off anything more serious than a common cold. From cough medicine to hot tea, this is my collection of cold remedies that are both natural and zero waste.

Loose Leaf Tea. There’s a guide to drinking zero waste tea here. Peppermint tea can help with stomach ache and nausea, basil leaf can help relieve headaches and migraines, and ginger will help with nausea. Simply steep plenty of leaves or sliced ginger in hot water for 5-10 minutes and sip on it. You can add maple or agave syrup to sweeten the tea if you like.

Lemon, Syrup, and Ginger. If you’re keen on sipping “honey, lemon, and ginger” to help with illness, switch out the honey for maple or agave. The idea that honey is a miracle cure-all is a myth; it's mostly just a natural substitute for processed sugar. Maple and agave work just as effectively in this drink, which will soothe sore throats and fight off colds.

Garlic or Salt Water. Gargling with garlic salt water might help fight the onset of a sore throat. Crush 5-6 cloves into hot water with salt, and gargle with it a couple of times a day for two or three days.

Essential Oils. Essential oils can help relieve cold symptoms and make you feel a lot better. Place a few drops of eucalyptus oil on a handkerchief or your pillow and keep sniffing it to relieve congestion, ease breathing, and help with chesty coughs; lavender oil sprinkled on you mattress will aid sleep; tea tree oil can be infused into hot water and breathed in under a towel. This will help with coughs, congestion, and sore throats.

Fermented Foods. Fermented foods are said to help with digestion and gut health. Kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, sourdough bread, pickles, bean curd, and kombucha are some favourites. Miso soup is super easy to make and great to drink when you’re sick.

Hot Showers or a Bath. Hang eucalyptus in your bathroom, ideally around the shower head, and you’ll create a steam that will make breathing easier. Add epsom salts to your bath to soothe aches and pains and essential oils to relieve sinuses.

Cough Syrup. Make your own from 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 1 tbsp maple syrup or agave, 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 2 tbsp water. Mix it altogether, keep at room temperature but out of direct sunlight, and take a tablespoon at a time whenever needed.

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