Cold and flu season is unavoidable and most people get infected at least once before spring comes around. In fact, colds are the #1 reason for missed work or school (1).
Colds are contagious during the first two to three days, so it’s best to rest and avoid contact with the public. Because it is a viral infection, antibiotics are not effective in treating a cold.(2)
As for the flu, it’s best to treat the illness with fluids and rest (3). Drinking hot teas and taking steam baths can help loosen up phlegm and relieve throat pain.
Here are just a few go-to teas that will quickly help you recover from the common cold:
1. Hot Pineapple Tea
- ½ – 1 cup pineapple juice
• ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
• 1 pinch cayenne pepper
• 1 tsp honey
- Combine all ingredients except honey in a saucer and heat to desired temperature (do not boil!).
- Pour in a glass and add honey.
• Pineapple juice helps loosen up phlegm and soothe inflammation in the throat and respiratory system (4).
• Viruses, bad bacteria and diseases are all said to thrive is an acidic environment.When it comes to your body, acidity is generally caused by stress, poor diet and lack of exercise. Apple cider vinegar is said to help alkalize the body and prevent infection.
• To fight inflammation and nausea, a bit of cayenne pepper does the trick!
• Honey is a well-known antiviral (5) sweetener which coats the throat to relieve pain caused by excessive coughing.
2. Wellness Elixir
- 1 lemon
• 1-inch piece of ginger
• 1-2 dashes of cayenne pepper
• 1 dash of turmeric powder
• 1 drop of organic mint extract
• 1-2 drops stevia (you can use honey here as well)
- Juice or blend the lemon and ginger, then add the cayenne pepper, turmeric and mint. Stir. Add equal amounts of hot water to the mix.
• Lemon helps to detoxify your liver and kidneys as well as boost your immune system by providing a rush of vitamin c (6).
• Inhaling ginger is said to help liquefy sticky mucus in the lungs clear our sinuses. In addition, drinking it can also help ease your throat, relieve headaches and prevent nausea (7).
• Curcumin, found in turmeric has potent anti-inflammatory properties that reduce swelling in the throat, sinuses and lungs (8).
• The menthol, a compound in mint, is a natural decongestant that relieves your lungs and sinuses.
3. The Ultimate Cold Buster
- 1 tsp lemon juice
• ½ tsp finely grated ginger
• ¼ tsp ground turmeric
• ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
• ½ tsp raw honey
• 1 pinch cinnamon
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add in all ingredients except honey and stir.
- Pour in a cup and let it cool down a bit and then add the honey.
• Like honey, cinnamon is antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial (9). This gives the immune system an extra boost to cure you quicker and more effectively.
A big part of recovering from the cold or flu is to take the time to rest, stay hydrated and eat nutrient-dense foods. You’ll feel like yourself in no time!