What Home Remedy Kills a Cold?

A woman with a cold holds a cup and blows her nose into a tissue

While there is no magic solution to curing a cold, home remedies for a cold and sneezing are aplenty. You just have to pick the method that works best for you. 

Natural Treatment Tips for Colds and Flu

Use Essential Oils

Peppermint is a versatile plant. On one hand, its leaves are a great cocktail garnish. On the other hand, the oil extracted from peppermint leaves can help clear a stuffy nose. It’s the menthol in the oil that does the job. Alternatively, eucalyptus oil is just as effective as peppermint oil in helping to banish a clogged nose. 

Try steam inhalation the next time you feel a cold starting up:

  1. Put a few drops of peppermint or eucalyptus oil in a bowl of hot water. 
  2. Lean in so that your face is directly over the bowl. Put your face close to the bowl, but not too close that your face touches the water. 
  3. Put a towel over your head, forming a kind of tent for your head and the bowl. 
  4. Inhale deeply through your nose. Repeat for no longer than two minutes at a time. 

Read: How to Get Started Using Alternative Medicine

Drink Tea with Honey, Ginger, and Lemon

Separately, honey, ginger, and lemon are already three of your most flexible ingredients in your kitchen. They are excellent sources of antioxidants, which your body needs to strengthen your immune system. Ginger, particularly, has been used as a herbal remedy for over 5,000 years. 

Honey, lemon, and ginger are powerful individually. Together, though, their antimicrobial effects are even more enhanced. Take them in teas:

Honey and Lemon Tea

  1. While waiting for the kettle to boil, mix 1 tablespoon of lemon juice with 2 tablespoons of honey in a cup. 
  2. Add boiling water to the cup and stir. Drink while it’s hot.

Honey and Ginger Tea

  1. While waiting for the kettle to boil, peel a 1-inch piece of ginger. Then either grate it or pound it with a mortar and pestle. 
  2. Place the ginger in a tea diffuser and place it in a cup.
  3. Pour boiling water into the cup with the ginger and stir in 2 tablespoons of honey.
  4. Let the tea steep for 2 minutes.
  5. Remove the tea diffuser, stir and enjoy while hot. 

Read: Why are Bees Important?

Take Health Supplements

Not everyone follows a balanced diet every day. Sometimes, you need some help in the form of dietary supplements to make sure your body gets the nutrients it needs. 

While there are a lot of health supplements on the market to pick from, only three are essential if you’re looking for natural remedies for a cold:

Vitamin C. While vitamin C can’t prevent a cold virus from affecting you, researchers from the Cochrane Collaboration have found that regularly taking vitamin C can shorten the cold’s duration and intensity, especially in children. The supplement, though,  has to be taken regularly as a preventive measure, and not only when one already has a cold. 

Echinacea. For more than 400 years, Native Americans have used this antioxidant-rich herb to treat wounds, infections, and practically every other thing that ailed them. Today, at least 14 clinical trials have found that echinacea can reduce the risk of developing a cold by 58 percent. It’s also been found to cut the duration of a cold by one to four days. 

Zinc. Taken as tablets, lozenges, or syrup. Zinc has been found to reduce the duration of a cold if the supplement is taken within 24 hours of the onset of cold symptoms. This mineral is necessary for the growth of cells, boosting your immune system. 

Take zinc with caution, though, since long-term use comes with side effects, which include nausea and gastrointestinal symptoms. 

Read: Fact vs Fiction: Are Natural Healing Options Better for You?

Sleep Enough

Think of sleep as a charger for your body. When you sleep, your body produces growth hormones that repair tissues and cells. In sleep, the body also produces cytokines, which help the immune system to fight infections from viruses, such as the common cold. 

To get its full health benefits, you need to sleep between seven and nine hours every night. Not enough sleep may mean a weaker immune system and a body susceptible to infections, such as colds. 

Finally, How Can You Prevent a Cold? Hydrate

Cold symptoms are actually signs that your immune system is fighting off the virus. For instance, your nose runs when you have a cold because your body is flushing off germs from your nose and sinuses. To generate these warrior-like defenses, your immune system uses your body’s fluid reserves. This is why you need to amp up hydration especially when you have a cold. 

Read: 7 Herbal Teas You Can Easily Grow Yourself 

The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommends that generally, men should take 15.5 cups of fluids daily; women, 11.5 cups. These numbers consider the fact that drinking water isn’t the only way you can get your liquid quota. You can also fulfil your daily liquid requirement from other beverages, and even fruits and vegetables. 

There is no actual cure for the cold virus, which can last for about seven to 10 days. Choosing natural remedies, though, has been found to shorten the duration of the virus, and ease its intensity without all the pharmaceuticals. 

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