5 Frugal Ways to Ease Cold Flu This Season
In the early days of the pandemic, I spent a great deal of time mixing up Elderberry syrup to give to family and friends....until I could no longer buy dried elderberries because everyone else had the same idea, I think. It boosts the immune system and contains high amounts of vitamin C. By being high in antioxidants, it gives the body a stronger immune system and can shorten the duration of colds and flu. My thinking was that its' healing qualities might be an added protection from the dreaded Covid virus. Once I could no longer find the dried berries, I felt a little panicked. Nowadays, I no longer have that fear. But I do want to stay protected during the winter months and I prepare ahead of time by having these five different remedies on hand. Let's face it, when sickness hits the household, nobody wants to spend their time searching for ingredients and mixing them up in the kitchen. It's best to be prepared ahead of time when you feel good enough to take care of things. And these homemade remedies cost a whole lot less than anything you can buy at the drugstore. With that said, here is my list of must-haves to have on hand. But remember if your fever goes above 101.3 or lasts more than five days or symptoms are severe, contact your doctor.
1. Chicken Soup: There are many who tout the benefits of chicken soup and I'm one of them. There's nothing better when you are feeling bad than having a steaming bowl of chicken noodle soup. Some studies report it has mild anti-inflammatory properties. But the best thing is it has a great deal of nutrients to nourish the body, and the warmth and steam help to decongest and get lots of liquids in you, which you need. What I do is cook up a big batch of soup as the air gets a little cooler, and I freeze three or four quarts to pull out when the coughing and sneezing begins.
2. While there is no cure for colds or flu, you can certainly make yourself feel better and shorten its' duration and a good way to do that is to boost your vitamin C intake. Rosehip tea can do that for you. Remember, we've said this before---rosehips have the high levels of vitamin C. Make sure you have dried rosehips on hand. It is a very easy tea to brew up. Find the recipe here: https://www.giverecipe.com/rosehip-tea/
3. Another good hot tea is Ginger sweetened with honey. The ginger eases tummy troubles, nausea, and headaches, as well as helps with muscle aches and is anti-inflammatory. The honey soothes raw throats. Keep some ginger roots in the freezer. Frozen is actually easier to peel and grate. And use the edge of a spoon to peel as it is so much easier. You will need a tablespoon of grated ginger root per cup. Add it to 1 cup boiling water with 1 teaspoon (or to taste) of honey. Let steep 5-10 minutes, strain. Add a slice of lemon if you have it and enjoy!
4. Epsom Salt and Essential Oil Soak. This bath can pull toxins out of you and help muscle aches and pains. Plus, after a warm soak, and donning some fresh pj's, you will drift off to a welcome sleep! Have Epsom salts on hand as well as your favorite soothing essential oil; lavender (relaxing), rosemary (helps ease muscle pain), chamomile (gentle and soothing) are just a few. Run a warm bath and add 2 cups Epsom salt and 10 drops of essential oil or essential oil mix. You can soak from 15 minutes up to 1 hour. Be sure to keep drinking fluids during the bath; cool water is good.
5. If you don't have anything else on hand, make sure you have some elderberry syrup. It is so easy to make and lasts for quite some time. As stated above, it is a natural anti-viral remedy and can boost your immune system when that system gets weakened from stress or loss of sleep. Here's an easy recipe from the Old Farmer's Almanac website: How to Make Elderberry Syrup | Recipe | The Old Farmer's Almanac
These are a few of my favorite ways to stay prepared for the coming season. You may have a few you like. Just make sure you aren't caught off guard and forget to prepare ahead of time. It will make it so much easier and cheaper on you. If you need dried elderberries, here is a source: