As the sniffles start moving across the country – helpfully tracked this year by Google, you can start loading up on some natural remedies for those annoying symptoms. Since flus are viral in nature, no amount of antibiotics is going to help and why ply you or your child with over-the-counter medicines which sometimes haven’t really been quite tested enough?
Instead, take some preventative steps and try some of these herbal remedies, often available at your local health food store.Before the flu comes your way, try some of these anti-viral and immune system building herbs.
1. Zinc – Zinc is an essential trace mineral that stimulates the immune system – great for those days when the flu is coming your way.
2. Echinacea – Echinacea a popular herb since the 70s is one of the two natural remedies that we start taking daily (with Vitamin C) around this time of year to boost our immune systems
3. Elderberry Extract -Elderberry extract is another popular anti-viral agent, for fighting the fluTake this before, as well as, during a flu attack.
4. Licorice -Look for licorice in herb based teas designed to fight the flu. This anti-viral herb is excellent and tastes good too.5. Ginger -For upset stomachs and nausea, try ginger. This herb can be taken in capsules or added to a variety of different types of food or look for ginger based teas.
6. White Willow – Rather than gulp down a few aspirin for headaches, why not consider an herbal pain killer. White willow blocks pain and reduces fever just like its synthetic form, aspirin.
7. Cayenne Pepper -A favorite of Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail, Cayenne pepper has a number of health inducing properties and is an excellent pain killer and fever reducer.
8. Horehound -For those times when it seems like coughing will never stop and lungs are full of, well, gunk, Horehound drops act as a natural expectorant. This is an old, tried and true herb that your great- grandmother used.
9. Wild Cherry Root -Also good for controlling coughs – more of a soother than an expectorant, wild cherry root works well and tastes good too.
10.Garlic – Those old wives were true! Garlic is great for fighting the flu. Since sometimes a severe flu can be accompanied by a bacterial infection, it’s good to stock up on this anti-bacterial and anti-viral herb.
Photo Credit: Wordridden at Flickr Under Creative Commons License