In December, we answered the question, “What is the Common Cold?” In that post, we covered ways for prevention and some natural remedies to try at the first sign of a cold. What we missed was some natural remedies for when the virus has sunk it’s claws into you. Here are some cold remedies suggested by Dr. Elson Haas from Staying Healthy with the Seasons:
- Fasting. Dr. Haas observes that animals fast and suggests it’s actually “an instinctive response…to many illnesses, especially colds, flus, and intestinal problems.” He finds fasting a useful tool himself, which ultimately helps speed up the body’s natural cleansing response to the virus. Read this post for a safe, enlightening 3 day fast.
- Cayenne Pepper. High in vitamin C, this ground fruit or pod of the plant has “stimulating and heating effects” which “makes it a good herb for colds, flus, and sore throats, plus weak circulation and cold and damp feet.” Try the Master Cleanse recipe: 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, 8 oz natural spring water, 1-2 tbsp organic maple syrup, 1/10 tsp cayenne pepper.
- Ginger Root. Just a few of the natural healing abilities of ginger, it’s been used to suppress, “menstruation, colds, sore throats, diarrhea, indigestion, and nausea… Add 6-8 thin slices of ginger root to two cups of boiling water and simmer 15-20 minutes.” You can also put a warm cloth or towel soaked in ginger root tea to help with circulation.
- Eat more Alkaline Foods. Based on the acid-alkaline method to balanced nutrition, mucus is the body’s response to becoming too acidic by eating too many acid-forming foods. Click here for a list of alkaline foods to choose from (but just remember that you need some acidic foods in your diet!).
- Licorice Root. The Chinese call it “great peacemaker” and besides being commonly used to treat sore throats, coughs and colds, it also works as a mild laxative, calms the mind and aids digestion.
- Chamomile. Among it’s very useful and varied health applications, it is considered effective for colds, kidneys, bladder problems, nervous disorders, and to help expel worms. Yuck.
- Liquids. Lots of them. You can stimulate your body’s cleansing process by drinking tons of water, juices, teas and soups. Along with this nutritional and aged advice: get plenty of rest and stay warm.
- Garlic. Apparently, the medicinal properties (and odour) of garlic is in it’s essential oil. Try rubbing garlic oil on congested chests, or, get this, on the soles of your feet to prevent or remedy early colds! To extract the essential oil from garlic, just “peel and chop enough cloves to fill half of a quart jar. Cover with cold-pressed olive oil to about one or two inches above the garlic and place in a sunlit window for five to seven days, shaking once daily. Then strain it well through a cheese cloth, and you have a strong smelling garlic oil. The garlic that was soaking can be refrigerated and used in cooking, and the garlic oil will last months and can be used both internally and externally.
So that was Doc Haas’ natural cold remedies. My favourite is lots of TLC from a loved one (including making any of the above) and at least one full day of sleeping and movies. 🙂