Once a cold or flu hits your home, it’s a bugger of a thing to fight and get on top off. Of course, are numerous remedies and medications available at the local pharmacy. However, you can also find natural relief by making herb garden remedies right from the abundance in your backyard or on the windowsill.
While a cold and the flu are caused by different viruses, they are both viral infections and many herbs have anti-viral properties. They also have similar symptoms – stuffiness, congestion, and coughing to name a few. All these remedies below are time-honored and effective ways to use herbs to help relieve the symptoms of the common cold.
Culinary Herbs to Use for Cold Remedies
- Basil is antibacterial and antiviral, making it a great choice for fighting the common cold. Use it as an excuse to eat more pesto. It’s not the tastiest tea but it can be sweetened with honey.
- Chives are in the same plant family as garlic making them antibacterial. They’re also high in Vitamin C for an extra immune boosting burst.
- Oregano contains antioxidants that when tossed into hot water for a foot bath can help sweat out a cold. Oregano is also the most traditional herb used in an oxymel.
- Sage is a great choice for sore throats.
- Tarragon can be used to stimulate a weak appetite due to illness.
- Thyme for wet coughs and sinus problems as it likes to clear mucous membranes.
How to Make Garden Cold Remedies
There are numerous ways to use these culinary herbs for natural remedies and this can be one of the most satisfying ways to practice home herbalism. Here are some of the simplest:
- Tea: Simply brew a cup of herbal tea. This is probably the easiest and quickest method of making a home remedy. Use 1 Tablespoon of fresh herb or 1 teaspoon of dried herb for every 8 ounces of boiling water. Sweeten if desired. Drink slowly.
- Oxymel: An oxymel is a fancy word for a mixture of herbs, vinegar, and honey. Consider making an oxymel from sage or oregano to help fight colds and sore throats with this tasty concoction.
- Tincture: A tincture is simply herbs infused in either alcohol or glycerine. These are deeply concentrated and can provide powerful relief.
- Eat: Use these herbs and their natural tendencies to fight illness as an excuse to toss even more of them into meals and make loads of pesto.
- Steam: Add some herbs such as bay leaf, lavender, chamomile, lemon, and couple of drops of eucalyptus oil to a large bowl and pour just boiled water over the herbs. Put a towel over your head and put your head above the bowel. This will trap the steam. Breathe deeply for 10 minutes.
As the spring and summer herb gardens produce be sure to dehydrate and make pesto for freezing now. This way when cold & flu season hits later the spice cabinet and home apothecary will be fully stocked with some kitchen herb garden cold remedies. You can even use herbs for your chickens and for preparedness.