Natural Remedies for Colds and Coughs

We have added more to our alternative medicine cabinet recently, mostly a lot of herbs, and I have been busy finding good recipes for natural remedies.  Since colds have made their appearance in our house this week, I was able to try several new things and am finding they are working!

Here are the recipes I used for each:
Elderberry Syrup
Thyme Cough Syrup
Garlic Syrup
Sage Gargle Rinse

The elderberry syrup recipe called for cloves but I didn't have any so I left that out.  All of us have been taking it a few times a day, even my toddler but I've had to give it to him in a syringe in order for him to swallow it.  It is very sweet!  My husband is taking it in hopes of not catching our sickness and so far, so good.  Elderberries have more vitamin c than oranges and are ant-inflammatory and contain an antioxidant and antiviral properties.

The thyme cough syrup was from Dr. Low Dog, who is an expert on herbal medicine.  It can be used for everyone of all ages.  My daughter used it for her dry cough tickle and it worked and stopped her cough!!  It only lasts a week in the fridge, so it is something I will only make when someone needs it.

I'm the only one brave enough to do the garlic syrup, it is 4 big garlic cloves blended with raw honey.  I normally just swallow crushed garlic cloves with water but this helps get it down easier.  Garlic has so many healing properties, it is the one thing you should always take when sick and even when well for prevention!  It is great when you have an infection and don't want to use antibiotics as it is antibacterial.  I use children's garlic oil in my son's ears now because he always get an ear infection with his colds but this time hopefully I caught it in time as I'm putting them in his ears every morning.  Before, I would always forget and then when he would get the ear infection it was hard to treat - so it is something I try and remember now whenever he gets a cold.

We also have found that sage gargle rinses also work wonders for sore throats!  It is another recipe from Dr. Low Dog.  My daughter's cold started with a very bad sore throat and she did the sage gargle rinse and found immediate relief.  I used it today for my sore throat and also got immediate relief!  Sage kills bacteria in the throat and can reduce inflammation, that along with the salt, soothes a sore throat.  It is pretty nasty though, so good thing we don't have to drink it!

We still use our old faithfuls for colds - echinacea, hot lemon/honey water, vitamin c and eucalyptus and steam.  I'm the only one the family that will use the Neti-pot when I get nasal congestion but my daughter is almost willing to try it next time she gets nasal congestion and my husband does only if I make him LOL!

Related: Cold/Sinus Infection Remedies and Bronchitis Remedies