With the arrival of the cold and flu season, there has been a notable surge of interest among Brits in seeking natural remedies to alleviate the discomfort and symptoms associated with the common winter cold.
In the past month alone, search queries for “cough and cold natural remedies” have seen a significant increase of over 30%, reflecting a growing desire among the population to explore alternative and holistic approaches to combatting seasonal ailments. This trend is indicative of a broader movement towards holistic well-being that align with a more natural and sustainable lifestyle.
1. Vitamin C
Research has shown that vitamin C, when taken at doses of 1–2g per day, can reduce the duration of a cold by 8% in adults and 12% in children. While these improvements may seem modest, vitamin C’s strong antioxidant properties can reduce inflammation and boost the immune system, enhancing antiviral and natural killer cell function.
2. Vitamin D
Low levels of vitamin D have been linked to an increased susceptibility to colds. Research shows that vitamin D supplements can reduce the frequency and duration of colds in both adults and children. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in maintaining skin barrier function and supports the development and function of T cells, necessary for immune responses.
Some studies suggest that echinacea can reduce the severity and duration of colds, making it a potential option to boost immune function.
4. Chicken soup
The age-old remedy, chicken soup, contains ingredients known for their anti-inflammatory properties and potential to boost the immune response. The combination of chicken, vegetables, and spices in chicken soup offers a range of health benefits that may help during a cold.
5. Drink lots of water
Ensure that you are well-hydrated to help alleviate your symptoms so you feel better faster, as well as drinking lots of water also helps your immune system to work efficiently so you recover quickly.
6. Get plenty of sleep
Sleep is when your body’s immune system is most active. During the deep stages of sleep, the immune system releases proteins called cytokines, which help regulate immune responses and fight off infections. This repair process is essential for healing and reducing the duration of illness.
7. Drink hot drinks
Drinking hot drinks, such as herbal tea or hot water with honey and lemon can ease the discomfort of a sore throat by providing a soothing, warm sensation. The warmth can also help relax the throat muscles, reducing pain and irritation. The steam from hot drinks can also help open up the nasal passages and relieve congestion. This can help make it easier to breathe and reduce that stuffy feeling in your nose.
8. Wear a mask
Wearing a mask, though not guaranteed to prevent a cold but it can help reduce the risk of transmitting the virus to others if you have a cold.