We’re two days away from the official start of autumn, which signals the changing of foliage colors, the start of hoodie season, another Chicago Bears disappointing start, and the cold and flu season.
We’re not doctors over here, but we are parents, and we have years of experience tending to our household when they are under the weather. Before you resign yourself to a season full of sniffles and coughs, arm yourself with these five natural remedies to fend off those pesky viruses.
1. Echinacea: Nature’s Immune Booster
Originating from Native American traditional medicine, Echinacea has been used for centuries as a remedy for various ailments.
When it comes to colds and flu, this plant may be your immune system’s best friend. Research suggests that Echinacea can boost immune function, helping to ward off those nasty viruses.
While it’s available in various forms like teas and supplements, always consult with a healthcare provider before adding any new herbal remedy to your routine.
2. Honey and Lemon: The Dynamic Duo
Sonny and Cher. Abbot and Costello. Thelma and Louise. They got nothin’ on honey and lemon.
Your grandmother might have sworn by this, and guess what? She was on to something. Honey is not only sweet, but it also contains natural antibacterial properties, which can soothe a sore throat and suppress coughs. Lemon, packed with vitamin C, aids the immune system and balances the body’s pH levels. It’s also an antibacterial.
Warm up some water, squeeze in fresh lemon juice, add a dollop of honey, and voila, your throat may start to feel better, and better is always good.
3. Ginger: The Root of Relief
There’s a reason why ginger has been used in traditional medicine across various cultures for eons.
This fiery root is an anti-inflammatory powerhouse. A steaming cup of ginger tea can not only alleviate symptoms like sore throat and congestion but also combat nausea, which sometimes accompanies the flu.
Grate fresh ginger into boiling water, let it steep for a few minutes, strain, and enjoy. For an extra kick, add a pinch of cayenne pepper.
4. Feel the Steam
We’ve all been there—a head so congested it could pass for Thanksgiving stuffing.
Breathing in some steam is a time-tested method to relieve this. Fill a bowl with hot water, drape a towel over your head, and inhale deeply. The steam helps moisten the nasal passages, allowing mucus to flow more freely. Add a few drops of eucalyptus or peppermint essential oil for added benefits and to feel like you’ve brought the spa into your living room.
5. Stay Hydrated: Water to the Rescue
Water does more than just sit in a glass, creating condensation.
Staying hydrated is crucial when battling the cold or flu. Fluids help flush out toxins from your system, keep mucus (eww) thin, and soothe a scratchy throat. Water is excellent, but herbal teas and broths are also beneficial. Just remember to avoid caffeine and alcohol, as they can be dehydrating.
🚨SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🚨
Speaking of remedies, a little care package goes a long way.
We present our Get Well Wishes Gift Basket, a recuperating-themed gift box filled with cozy socks, playing cards, a crossword puzzle book, snack mix, Claey’s hard candy, and tea.
It’s just what the BasketWorks “doctors” ordered.
BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today! Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn.