Fighting off the Common Cold and Flu

Getting ready for cold and flu season

Winter will soon be here. You can feel the chill in the air and the cold wind. This is also the time for cold and flu. Your nose gets stuffed, throat hurts and you cannot taste your favorite food. Common cold is definitely one of the most irritating conditions. Cold is an upper respiratory tract infection caused virus that affects the throat, sinus and nose. The symptoms include runny nose, fever, sore throat, headache and coughing. The symptoms start two days after the infection and the normal recovery time is around seven to ten days. As the common cold is a viral infection, it is not curable. However, there are several home remedies that will help ease the signs and symptoms of the common cold. Here is a list of some of the best home remedies to fight off the nasty cold.

1. Steam it out

One of the best remedies to open up that stuffy nose is steam. You can use a facial steamer or simply breathing in the steam from a pot of hot water.

Direction: Fill a bowl with boiling water, hold your head above it and breathe through your nose slowly. You can also drape a towel of cloth over your head to keep the steam trapped in. Be careful while doing this. You can also add few drops of essential oil like eucalyptus oil or tea tree oil in the hot water to make it more effective. The essential oil, which is carried via the steam, will help ease the stuffy nose and dislodge congestion.

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2. Drink ginger tea

You will find ginger in many home remedy lists. Ginger is a miracle food and cures many ailments from upset stomach to a sore throat to headache. For a sore throat, boil a cup of water and add in a few slices of ginger in it. Drink up this decoction.

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Directions: You will need a cup of water and few slices of ginger. Boil the water and add in the ginger slices. Let it steep. Drink this piping hot liquid. You can also add some cinnamon and honey to make it delicious. This will help soothe a sore throat and ward off the nausea sensation. Drink the liquid two to three times a day.

3. Onion and honey

Yes, onion is a great remedy for a sore throat and cough. It has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and helps dislodge phlegm in the chest. Honey is also good for soothing irritated throat.

Directions: You will need 1 red onion or a few shallots, 1 cup of honey or 1/2 cup of white or brown sugar. You will also need a jar. Chop up the onion/shallots and place it in a jar. Add a layer of honey over it or cover it with a layer of sugar. Repeat this to get alternate layers of onion and honey. Close the jar tightly when you reach the top. Now let this jar sit for around 12 hours or overnight, after which you will find liquid in the jar. This liquid is arguably the best home remedy for a cough. Drink one teaspoon of the liquid to stop your cough.

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4. Garlic

Another great remedy for a scratchy throat. It will calm your sore throat and give you temporary relief from it.

Directions:You will require 1 medium sized garlic clove, 1 teaspoon of honey, 1 lemon and warm water. Crush the garlic and put it in a glass. Now add lemon juice and honey in it. Then fill the glass with warm water. Drink this solution.

5. Vitamin C

Eat fruits and vegetable rich in vitamin C to fight off the symptoms and signs of cold. According to a research, consuming sufficient amount of vitamin C can help heal the infection of upper respiratory tract.

Direction: You can eat grapefruit, oranges, lime. Or drink lemon tea with honey or hot lemonade. Vitamin C will help your immune system to fight the infection.

6. Eat radish

Radish is an excellent home remedy for cold. Rich in vitamins and minerals, the crisp vegetable has anti-septic properties. The vegetable is a good decongestant and will loosen up the phlegm. Eat up two to three radish for a quick recovery from a cold.

Direction: You will need just 2-3 radishes. Eat the vegetable and say goodbye to your cold.

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