Fighting flu doesn’t have to be all about pills and tablets. Here’s how you deal with it naturally.
Andrographis has been the topic of numerous clinical studies, which show that it is a useful treatment for upper respiratory tract infections like colds. It may help to relieve symptoms such as sore throat, runny nose, sinus pain, cough, sneezing, headache and fatigue – especially when taken at the first sign of symptoms. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is considered to have cooling properties, and is used to deal with acute infections and hot, feverish conditions .
Calendula flowers have been prized for their antiseptic properties for centuries, and may help to relieve irritation and inflammation of the throat when applied topically (for example as a gargle or throat spray).
3. Cod liver oil
Cod liver oil is a natural source of vitamin A. Vitamin A helps maintain the mucous membranes in the respiratory tract, which are the body’s first line of defence against infection . It also contains vitamin D, which helps support the body’s immune defences .
Echinacea is well known for its skill to stimulate some activities of the immune system, including phagocytosis – the process in which white blood cells ‘gobble up’ invading infectious organisms, boosting the body’s ability to fight infections. As a result, it helps relieve the symptoms of colds, flu and mild upper respiratory tract infections. Echinacea may also reduce the severity and shorten the duration of colds, helping you get back on your feet faster.
Garlic has traditionally been used for infections such as colds, flu and bronchitis. The sulphur compounds in garlic help to kindle infection-fighting white blood cells, boost NK cell activity and increase the effectiveness of antibody production .
Horseradish is considered as having a mild decongestant action on the respiratory sinuses, which may help to lessen symptoms of nasal and sinus congestion .
In Western herbal medicine, marshmallow root has conventionally been used to alleviate respiratory symptoms such as hoarseness and excess mucus . It is regarded as having soothing effects on irritated mucous membranes, so is often included in mouthwashes and gargles for the aid of sore throats .
8. Olive leaf extract
Olive leaf extract helps support immune system function . It contains the compound oleuropein, which is supposed to be the component responsible for its effects on immune health.