When you get the flu it just plain hurts. There are no medical cures for the flu, only palliative treatments for pain and other symptoms. But your kitchen is a haven for healthy foods that can provide relief of symptoms making your down time a little easier. Medicinal foods have been used for centuries by almost all cultures and herbal practitioners for soothing away the aches and pains, coughs and nausea accompanying the flu. Next time you have that all-over-body pain with aching, coughing, sneezing, sniffling and chills, head right to your kitchen for relief.
Ginger is a blood purifier and an excellent herb to use for soothing away several flu and cold symptoms. Used for hundreds of years by the Chinese, ginger root helps reduce fevers, breaks up coughs and soothes the nausea and stomach upsets of the flu, according to the Ivillage website. Someone with the flu can grate fresh ginger, about 2 tbsp. full and steep in 2 cups of hot water for 15 minutes to make an infusion that can be taken as tea. Raw honey can be added to sweeten the mixture. Another alternative is to drink ginger ale as long as it has real ginger in it. It is recommended to allow it to go flat and bring to room temperature for use with an upset stomach.
If suffering from the flu, one remedy is to make a mix of garlic, horseradish and cayenne pepper by crushing a clove of garlic and making a paste by adding the other ingredients. Next, 1 tsp. of the mix should be steeped in a cup or two of hot water. After straining the mixture and adding some raw honey, it is ready to be consumed. If the mixture is too spicy, more water can be added. This is an excellent ready remedy to use to break a fever or break up chest and sinus congestion according to Jethro Kloss in his herbal book, "Back to Eden."
Garlic is one of the two best flu remedies reports the How to Cheat Colds and Flu website. Used for centuries by herbal practitioners, garlic has both antibiotic and anti-viral properties. Allicin, the active ingredient in garlic, breaks up mucous and acts much like a decongestant providing anti-oxidants to fight free radicals according to the iVillage website. Garlic can be eaten cooked, raw, or in odorless capsule form.
It's not called "Jewish Penicillin for no reason, explains the Dave's Garden website. Home made chicken soup is made with lots of healthy herbs and spices and healthful vegetables. Chicken soup has been prescribed for helping to heal colds and flu for hundreds of years and the Jewish doctor Maimonides recommended it back in the twelfth century.
Dietician Lynn Grieger of the Ivillage website, recommends increasing Vitamin C intake during a bout with the flu. One way to do this is by making lemonade. All it entails is squeezing half a lemon and mixing the juice with a spoonful or two of raw honey to sweeten and a glass of warm water. Vitamin C is loaded with anti-oxidants and helps to purify the system and boost immunity.
- Dave's Garden: Herbal remedies for cold and flu symptoms
- How to Cheat Colds and Flu: Best two foods to beat swine flu
- "Back to Eden;" Jethro Kloss; 2006