Herbal Remedies for the Cold & Flu Season

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herbal remedies for the cold and flu season

Symptoms are signals that our body is out of balance is some way, in a state of dis-ease. Symptoms themselves should not necessarily be suppressed, as what modern medicine and pharmaceuticals strive for, but to be treated by healing the whole system on a deeper level. Herbal and natural remedies, taken properly and without the mindset of just getting rid of a symptom, can be very effective in treating colds and the flu. Herbal remedies work by helping to bring the body back into balance.

For example, it is assumed that a fever is bad and must be suppressed. However, a fever is the body’s natural defense for fighting an infection. Because of this, it is important not to bring down a fever too much or too quickly. A temperature of 100-101 degrees is necessary for the body to fight the infection. However, if a fever rises too high, measures must be taken to bring it back down within a normal range.

One nice way to use herbs during the cold and flu season is to create a soothing bath tea to help relieve symptoms, promote relaxation so healing can take place and induce sleep. A bath tea (also known as tub tea, herbal soak or herbal bath sachet) works the same way as brewing a cup of tea. Herbs can be brewed on the stove as making a large batch of tea or put desired herbs into a muslin bag and place the bag into the tub as it is filling. Bath teas combine the benefits of herbal aromatherapy with the direct application of herbal nutrients to the skin.

Therapeutic Bath Tea – Combine equal parts of sage, rosemary, eucalyptus and sea salt.

Stimulating Bath Tea – Combine equal parts of peppermint, spearmint, rosemary, cloves and anise

The following herbs are specific for the treatment of colds and flu. A suggestion is to make teas or tinctures from a combination of herbs depending upon which symptoms you might be experiencing. Always make sure to drink sufficient water to help the body flush toxins out. Some of the herbs listed below stimulate perspiration, opening pores, as a way for the body to release toxins and heat. Make sure to use high quality herbs for any herbal preparations. The best supplier of bulk herbs is Mountain Rose Herbs.

Anise Seed

  • Sore Throats & Coughs

Catnip

  • Stimulates perspiration without raising temperature
  • Reduces fevers
  • Sleep promoting

Cinnamon

  • Increases perspiration
  • Diarrhea & Nausea

Elder Flowers

  • Promotes perspiration
  • Reduces fever
  • Good for colds & flu, upper respiratory inflammations & diarrhea

Eucalyptus (do not use internally)

  • Antiseptic, antibacterial
  • Kills flu virus
  • Good for bronchitis

Fennel

  • Expectorant
  • Sore Throats & Coughs

Ginger

  • Specific for rhinoviruses (colds)
  • Increases perspiration
  • Reduces pain & fever, nausea, diarrhea
  • Suppresses cough
  • Mild sedative

Green Tea

  • Helps prevent infection of the flu & colds

Horehound

  • Bronchitis & non-productive cough

Lavender

  • Expectorant

Licorice

  • Expectorant
  • Antibacterial, antiviral
  • Soothing to the throat
  • Good for bronchitis

Maitake

  • Kills viruses
  • Good for persistent colds

Marshmallow

  • Soothes mucus membranes, lungs & bronchial
  • Irritable coughs

Mullein

  • Reduces inflammation
  • Expectorant
  • Good for bronchitis

Peppermint

  • Promotes perspiration
  • Reduces fever

Raspberry Leaf

  • Diarrhea

Rose Hips

  • Very high in vitamin C

Sage

  • Sore throats – gargle with 2 tbsp per pint of water (tea)

Skullcap

  • Stops flu virus from reproducing
  • Induces sleep & relaxation

Thyme

  • Relaxes respiratory tract – antispasmodic
  • Coughs & bronchitis
  • Antibacterial, anti-fungal

Wild Cherry Bark

  • Relaxes bronchial muscles
  • Good for coughs & colds
  • Very common in cough syrups
  • Use in small doses

Yarrow

  • Induces sweating, reduces fever
  • Diarrhea

 

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Order my eBook, A Journey into Herbal & Natural Healing, to keep your body in balance and healthy throughout all the seasons.

 

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