The onset of cooler, autumn temps may bring a sigh of relief after a long hot summer in Alabama, yet, this time of year also means it’s time to face the dreaded cold and flu season. As you prepare to fight back, you may be surprised to learn that a trip to the pharmacy isn’t really necessary. You may already have access to some of the most powerful remedies available — right in your very own kitchen. Use these tips to boost your immunity before and during this year’s cold and flu season.
Widely used in Asian cooking, ginger has a unique taste and smell. Interestingly, it is for this reason that ginger has historically been used to disguise the taste and smell of medicines. Ginger root can be used to remedy several different problems. For nausea or an upset stomach, try nibbling on a few pieces of candied ginger. To help reduce congestion, drink hot tea made by boiling a small piece of ginger root in two cups of water. A sore throat can be soothed by taking a teaspoon of honey mixed with several drops of a freshly squeezed ginger root.
Although most often used as a sweetener, honey can also work wonders for many health related issues. To help sooth the onset of a cough, take a teaspoon of honey with a few sprinkles of ground pepper. Honey is also well known for its ability to enhance metabolism.
Well known for it’s antibiotic properties, garlic is also a terrific antioxidant and immune stimulant. In terms of cooking, it is probably one of the most widely used ingredients throughout the world. In its raw form, the flavor and taste of garlic are very strong, yet when cooked, garlic becomes milder and almost sweet. Regular consumption of garlic has been linked to lowering cholesterol, as well as reducing high blood pressure. Garlic can also be used to reduce the irritation of a nagging cough. Cut one whole garlic bulb into quarters and place within two quarts of water. Simmer on a low heat for one hour, strain, and sip the broth slowly.
4. CAYANNE PEPPER
Adding spicy pepper, such as cayenne, to your food can help relieve many of the worst cold symptoms. Just a few sprinkles of ground cayenne can ward off congestion and help relax your lungs, therefore making it easier to breath. Consuming pepper while suffering from a cold can also help you regain your sense of smell and taste.
5. EPSOM SALTS
Doctors and other experts say soaking in Epsom salt can help ease aches, calming the body as it fights the symptoms of a cold or flu. Soaking in a tub of warm water and Epsom salts help initiate a process called vasodilation, which increases white blood cell production and helps the body fight illnesses quicker. You can buy Epsom salt at nearly any grocery or drug store for just a few dollars.