All Natural Remedies To Prevent And Treat The Cold And Flu

It’s that time of year again. Runny noses, sore throats and yes, back to school germs. According to the Center for Disease Control, there are more than 52 million cases of the common cold each year among Americans under the age of 17. Since the FDA warned parents to not give their children under the age of two cough or cold medicines, many parents are not sure how to make their little one feel better. Read on to find out some all-natural alternatives to relieve and prevent cold symptoms.
By Vicki Salemi

Got vitamins?
What’s a parent to do? According to Jared Schulman, MD, MPH and medical expert for, it starts with preventing the onset of a cold in the first place. “Prevention is the first line of defense and is done by both boosting your child’s immune system as well as by taking precautions such as hand washing.”

He notes Vitamin C has been shown to help boost immunity (here’s a hint: be sure your kids eat oranges and grapefruits). Newer research looks towards preventative effects of beta glucans to help alleviate many of the symptoms of the common cold. “Beta glucans are found in barley, white bottom mushrooms, and oats (which are also high in vitamins E and B).”

Home remedy power
So what happens when you’ve done all the preventative measures and your little one still comes down with the common cold? Three little words: natural treatments. Dr. Schulman explains, “Some naturally occurring plant and vegetable extracts do play a role in preventing and fighting infection. Phytochemicals are a group of naturally occurring extracts that are proving to be extremely beneficial in helping patients suffering from the common cold.  Certain phytochemicals (i.e. allicin) are found in garlic as well as warm broth with leaked vegetables.”

In another example, experts recommend eucalyptus and chamomile for coughs. After washing seven eucalyptus leaves and three chamomile plants and putting them in a clean container, add half a liter of boiling water and let it set. After straining the mixture, children should take three teaspoons and repeat every day until there’s improvement.

For nagging colds which your kid simply can’t shake, one natural remedy is thyme. After boiling twenty thyme buds in one liter of water, kids should drink as many times as they want during the day. Infections should be healed and the cold should disappear after five days.

Read for another treatment? Guava leave extracts are recommended for sore throats. After boiling two to five guava leaves in a cup of water, strain and gargle with filtrate. This is supposed to eliminate the bacterial and viral infection in the respiratory tract to relieve sore throat symptoms within three days.

Mama nurse
All in all, keep in mind your child is exposed to a plethora of infectious agents on a daily basis.  Dr. Schulman adds, “Staying healthy starts with preventive measures and may progress to actively treating infections.  A physician should always be consulted if infection is suspected.  Sometimes prescription medications are relevant, but there are natural remedies available for certain presentations.  All of these foods and extracts can be looked up on, which provides a wealth of information as well as ways to incorporate them into your diet.”

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