Tea Pot Glass

Natural Home Remedies for When You’re Sick

No one likes being sick. Sometimes we try so hard to avoid the common cold, and to our dismay we are phased with seasonal sickness. We constantly wash our hands, avoid people who appear ill and are very cautious with our placement of hands on public surfaces like doorknobs and bus seats. We may use a hand sanitizer every second, and change our sheets more often than the average person, but we still get sick. How could that be? Well, your immunity is working hard to protect you, but if it’s always protected by anti-bacterial hand soap, how hard does it have to work? Train your immune system to have a strong cytokine response by exposing yourself to some germs now and again, but not too many because, you know, yuck. So enough about that - how do I get better faster, right? I personally hate cold medicine and will take Advil only after all else fails, or when I am too impatient to attempt natural remedies first. Here are six tricks that do not include medicine that should speed up the common cold recovery process in a natural way.

  1. 1. Tea - Good for so many things!

    Try to stick with herbal since it’s decaffeinated. My personal favorite is the brand Traditional Medicines, specifically ThroatCoat. If you drink Throat Coat on a regular basis, there’s a good chance you will improve your day-to-day wellness. When I first discovered this tea, I thought it tasted horrible, but I literally felt amazing and could sing my best afterwords. I now drink it on a regular basis. I am in love with the taste and the way it makes me feel.

    My fave flavors:

    Chamomile - To help you sleep. It is also believed to have anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits.

    Peppermint - Supports digestive tract health; helps relieve indigestion, nausea, and stomach pain.

    Ginger - best remedy for nausea. I typically enjoy a ginger and turmeric probiotic blend, which is one of the best immune boosters I could think of. It can also relieve indigestion or constipation.

    Hibiscus - Has antiviral properties and is also pretty to drink!

    Echinacea - As a singer, this tea has saved my life on many occasions, simply when I had to get excess mucus out as soon as possible. It helps fight the common cold and mild infections, and boosts immunity.

    Rooibos and Rosehip - Both lower inflammation.

    Passionflower - Improves sleep quality.

    Dandelion Root - Supports healthy digestion.

    Moringa - Rich in antioxidants, lowers inflammation.

    Stinging Nettle - Reduces inflammation.

    Licorice Root - Soothes the GI tract and promotes respiratory health.

    Add fresh lemon, fresh ginger, and/or local honey to any flavor for added antibacterial benefits. To detox your body, start your day with hot fresh lemon water. 

    Quick recipe: “Magic Milk” - Your choice of non-dairy milk, cinnamon, honey, turmeric, black pepper. When served hot, can be anti-inflammatory, filling, and yummy.

    Breakfast tea with flowers and strawberries
  2. 2. A steam/nasal rinse

    Get some water boiling in a pot, and stick your head over it at the kitchen table with a towel to trap the steam. Throw in a drop of eucalyptus essential oil for added benefit, but don’t overdo it - it can burn the eyes. The steam will help break up the mucus in your sinuses and relieve inflammation. Listen to some relaxing nature sounds while you’re at it, and make an at-home spa for yourself when you simultaneously get back to good health. Follow your steam with a saline nasal rinse or a NettyPot. These work like a miracle when all else fails. Get that yucky mucus out of your nose in a safe way with purified or distilled water and a saline package. Be careful not to use tap water - some studies show negative consequences of that.

  3. 3. Sleep

    Sleepy girl in bed

    Getting 6-8 hours of sleep regularly as an adult will help prevent sickness and give your body a chance to fight off any illnesses and infections. When you’re sick, give in to your body and sleep it off. Your body knows what to do! Weighted blankets are scientifically proven to help insomniacs. They’re also incredible for treating people who suffer from anxiety, and will keep you cozy while you try to break a fever. Also, keep it dark and turn off the screens. Blue light reduces the amount of melatonin that is produced in our bodies, and this leads to a less restful sleep.

  4. 4. Home-made Chest Rub/Heating Pad

    Having a heavy feeling in your chest is always unpleasant, but some studies have shown some negative side effects of Vicks Vapor Rub. But not to worry because now you can make your own!

    Recipe:

    - 1/2 cup olive oil, coconut oil, or almond oil

    - 2 TBSP beeswax pastilles (level, not heaping)

    - 10 drops rosemary oil

    - 20 drops peppermint oil

    - 20 drops of eucalyptus oil

    Use a heating pad to mitigate some muscles aches and stay toasty under the covers.

    You don’t have to feel like this:

  5. 5. Meditation

    Take some time to breathe. Practice alternate nostril breathing if you don’t have a stuffy nose, and give your body a chance to heal itself - that’s what it does best. Find a guided meditation on Youtube if you prefer, or even selectively choose one that includes positive affirmations about good health.

    Meditation
  6. 6. Eat some soup

    We know how important good nutrition is, and it is a huge factor in how fast we will get better when we’re sick. Choose hearty soups with tons of veggies in them. If you’re not up to cooking, hopefully you have someone to whip you up some home-made cookin’. Nothing beats homemade soup. The Minimalist Baker offers incredible wholesome recipes that are super easy to make and make you feel like a million bucks.

Most importantly, don’t get too upset with yourself when you’re sick. It happens to all of us from time to time. Give your body what it needs, which is mostly rest and lots of fluids. Wash your hands often, and nourish your body with healthy food, clean water, exercise and fresh air. Getting sick isn’t the end of the world. After all, it gives you an excuse to binge watch that show on Netflix you’ve had on your mind for the past month. I hope this simple tips help you get well ASAP. They always work for me. Get well soon!

Xo, Susie