Our top cold & flu symptom soothers this cold season

Whether you’re driving to work and you feel the itch in the back of your throat, or you commute on the train and everyone seems to be sniffing, coughing and sneezing way too far into your personal space, it’s clear that the temperature is dropping, and that means only one thing: cold & flu season is here.

Now, the girls at 1MW are not doctors (unless you count all the times I used my grandfather's stethoscope on his German shepherd when I was five), but like most of you, we've been through the ringer when it comes to colds, flu's, headaches, muscle aches, itchy eyes, asthma, the works! So if you're feeling the early itch in your throat, or you're in the throes of a full-blown sneeze-fest extravaganza of blocked-up despair, these symptom soothers are sure to relieve you while you get yourself on the mend.

Lemon, Ginger & Honey Tea

The staple beverage sure to soothe any sore throat or congested chest. Drink this all day, swim in it if you have to. This stuff is natural, good for your immune system, and doesn't contain caffeine, so there's really nothing in the cons column with this one.

1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger (no need to peel it)

1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 Tablespoon honey, plus more for extra taste

If the natural kick isn't enough, 1MW member Holly likes to add a dash of Whiskey ;)

Chicken Broth

You've heard this one a hundred times, but there's a reason for that. Chicken contains an amino acid called cysteine. It thins out the mucus in the lungs. Hot chicken vapors have been proven more effective than hot water vapors in cleaning mucous from your nose. Onion, garlic and ginger are powerful immune-supportive spices. Onions act as a natural anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory. The major active ingredients in ginger are terpenes and oleoresin, which have lymph-cleansing properties and also help improve circulation. Check out our 1MW approved Chicken Broth recipe.

Hot Shower

If your colds are anything like mine you'll find yourself living under the shower head blasting hot water in some feigned attempt to pressure hose the pain away. Steamy showers moisturize your nasal passages and relax your muscles. If you're dizzy from the flu, run the shower and sit on a chair nearby and take a sponge bath.

Sleep with an extra pillow under your head

Lying flat on your back tends to make you cough and might give you trouble breathing. Prop yourself up with 2-3 pillows, this will help the drainage of the nasal passages, and keep your airways a bit clearer when you sleep.

Stay in bed

Or in my case, glued to the couch with your entire collection of pillows and blankets, surrounded by a graveyard of tissues and every episode of Smash. Resting when you first come down with a cold helps your body redirect its energy toward the immune battle raging inside of you. Let your immune system do the hard stuff while you become one with the bed/couch.

Blow your nose the proper way

Blow your nose often, but do it properly. Getting rid of mucus is important when you have a cold, but if you blow too hard the pressure can carry germ-carrying phlegm back into your ear passages and potentially causing earache.

Thyme and Thyme Oil + Oregano

A tea (not very nice tasting) made from thyme is very effective against cold and flu. Thyme oil rubbed on the skin will help the body fight infection. Oregano and Oregano oil is a potent natural antibiotic and antiviral.

You may never get sick enough to need all of these remedies, and if that's the case I am jealous because I just about turn into a zombie when I get sick. If you work full time like me, make sure you make a little remedy kit and take it to work, and be sure to drink lots of water! It's easy to not notice how dehydrated you can get when you're busy coughing up your lungs. Hopefully your cold doesn't last too long, but if you need further treatment we suggest seeing your local GP for specific medicinal remedies.

Also, check out how to make your own DIY herb garden for all your winter comfort food recipes!

Get well soon!

Amy McClelland Website and Social Media coordinator Suggest an article Send us an email

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