With the Christmas party season about to begin, the last thing you want is to catch a cold or a flu. And, of course, there are plenty of opportunities to do just that when everyone around you seems to be coughing and sneezing in your direction.
Luckily, there are many natural ways to strengthen your immune system and prepare it for the constant bug attacks during the winter season. So here are some of the top natural remedies, which can help to keep colds away or (if you have already caught a bug) can help to relieve the symptoms and reduce recovery time.
There’s a good reason why garlic is nicknamed as “Russian penicillin”. It contains a powerful antibacterial compound allicin, which is effective against common cold and flu. It’s a great source of vitamin B6, vitamin C, manganese and selenium. While adding garlic to your cooked meals is a great way to get all these nutrients, raw garlic is the most effective infection-fighter. Therefore, if you are unwell and not particularly concerned about “garlic breath”, crushing one clove of garlic, letting it sit for 10-15 minutes and then eating it with a teaspoon of honey can help speed up your recovery.
This zingy root possesses a great variety of therapeutic properties, such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and spasmolytic. To make use of these impressive properties, I suggest you brew your own fresh ginger tea. You can find my recipe below.
Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices, coming from Ancient Egypt. It has a rich history as a medicinal herb both in Eastern and Western cultures. Besides having a delicious chocolaty and nutty flavour, it possesses a wide range of therapeutic properties. Amongst these properties is an antibiotic and circulatory stimulant. A simple way to increase cinnamon consumption is by adding some ground cinnamon to your porridge, smoothies, yogurts or herbal tea. Or, just sprinkle it on top of your cappuccino instead of chocolate… delicious!
Fresh ginger tea with cinnamon
Finely chop 2-3cm of a ginger root (with or without the skin)
Squeeze half a lemon
Add 1tsp of ground cinnamon
Add 1tsp of honey or a handful of goji berries for sweetness
Pour over half a litre of boiling water and let it brew for 10 minutes
Enjoy it as a hot tea or a cold herbal drink. The bonus – you can count it towards your daily water intake!