There are quite a few very effective herbal flu remedies available now, and many people are finding that they prefer them to over-the-counter medicines. One reason is because herbs typically have few or no side effects. Natural remedies are also available in many pleasant forms, such as teas or infusions, which makes them more enjoyable to take.
When considering an herbal flu remedy, as with any herbal remedy, realize that each herb has different healing properties. Some may offer relief and some may be best for prevention, while others may shorten the effects of the ailment and still others may actually strike out the illness quickly.
Natural flu remedies include:
• Elderberry – The bluish purple berries of this healing plant offer a powerful defense against flus and colds. It is the most effective if taken at the first signs of illness. This herbal flu remedy can be consumed as a tea, extract, tincture, or capsule.
Since I have the elderberries growing wild where I live, I harvest them in late summer for making my own extract for the winter months. We add the liquid to hot tea to enhance the flavor and ward off any potential germs that may be lurking.
• Echinacea – This is a popular herbal flu remedy which can reduce the symptoms of a cold and works best when taken at the first sign of a cold or flu appearing. It can often prevent it from turning into a bad cold. This herb is considered to be very effective at stimulating the immune system and helping the system to fight off infection.
• Goldenseal – This herb can work well on easing the congestion of mucus in the respiratory passages. It contains a substance called berberine, which is considered to be a natural antibiotic. This is one of a number of herbal flu remedies that can stimulate the immune system to fight off infection.
• Ginger tea – This tasty herbal flu remedy is popular because of the delicious flavor as well as its warming properties. Those who are suffering the symptoms of colds and flu can have at least 3 cups of the tea each day. Ginger contains a number of compounds that can help to reduce pain and inflammation and which can be useful at easing the uncomfortable symptoms of flu.
• Inhaling the aromas of herbs such as eucalyptus, chamomile and thyme can help to ease the respiratory passages by loosening mucus, making it easier to breathe and helping the sufferer to feel as though their head is a little clearer.
Inhaling the aroma of the ginkgo biloba leaf can help to kill off bacteria in the respiratory system and can begin to heal the system.
This can be done as a steam inhalation, by adding the dried herbs or a few drops of the essential oils to a bowl of hot water and lean over with a towel over the head to trap the steam in. This can be done for 15 minutes at a time up to 3 times a day when symptoms are at their worst.
• Hyssop tea is one of the oldest herbal flu remedies, as it is widely considered that this herb has the ability to prevent a cold from occurring.
• Chamomile tea is ideal for helping the sufferer to rest and relax, which is essential when feeling under the weather.
• Mullein tea is made from the flowers of the plant and is one of the natural flu remedies that can help to soothe the throat and help to deal with coughing. This tea can be sweetened with honey, which can also help with colds and flu by coating the throat and offering anti-bacterial and anti-viral benefits.
• Basil tea can be consumed to bring on sweating, which can reduce the feverishness associated with flu and colds.
• Ginseng is an herb used to help strengthen the immune system. There have been studies carried out that indicate those who use the herb regularly are less prone to colds and flu.
Whichever remedies you choose, it is important to see a doctor if your symptoms persist for any length of time or become concerning at any time.