The common cold is caused by a viral infection and lasts for anywhere between 7 to 10 days in typical cases. Some of the common symptoms of this infection are sore throat, sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion or congestion of the lungs, and fever.
Flu or influenza, on the other hand, is an infection of the respiratory system and is caused by a virus. While both cold and flu have similar symptoms, flu can be severe, and some variants of the flu can also be fatal.
Common cold and the flu are familiar and recurrent health issues for many, but that does not mean they do not require treatment. Although cold and flu can be treated effectively at home, consulting a doctor is necessary if the fever increases. This article discusses some of the most effective natural remedies for cold and flu.
Natural remedies for cold and flu
Apart from medication, several natural remedies for treating cold and flu are equally effective. Additionally, they prove beneficial in the long run as they are free of side effects. Some of the popular ways of treating cold and flu naturally are mentioned here:
- Drink warm fluids like ginger and herbal tea. They help loosen mucus and provide relief from sore throat and inflammation, which often accompany cold and flu. Warm beverages are also good for alleviating cough. Add honey to your warm tea or have a spoonful by itself. This natural remedy for cold and flu helps suppress cough and also soothes a sore throat.
- Ginger is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, so add it to your food or have it as is to fight the cold or nausea. You can also add it to your tea for both flavor and health.
- Taking a hot bath can provide relief from the symptoms as it loosens the muscles and alleviates pain due to the condition. It is also important to wear warm clothes or take precautions against cold weather. You can also add Epsom salts to hot water for a detoxifying and refreshing bath.
- Another effective way to treat cold and flu naturally is to take adequate rest for a couple of days and avoid straining the body till you recover.
- Gargling with warm salt water helps get rid of the virus from the throat and also provides relief from a sore and scratchy throat.
- Essential oils have strong fragrances that can treat cold. Eucalyptus oil is known for treating cold and blocked nose, and peppermint oil is also a natural decongestant. However, ensure that you mix any essential oil with carrier oil before applying it.