The common colds and flues area a result of an excess of kapha (cool, moist characteristics causing a stuff or runny nose and lots of sneezing) and excess vata energy which reduces the digestive fire resulting in feeling the chills. The common colds and flues are more concerning if they are chronic and occur frequently. The chronicity of colds and flues can compromise the respiratory system and can result in recurring sinus infections, allergies and asthma.
The root of the problem is weakened immunity, weak digestion, accumulation of toxins and addressing all the causative factors is what is addressed in the treatment plan. In the meantime, try the following:
What you can do?
Ginger can both reduce excess kapha and rekindle the digestive fire ( Agni) making it the best medicine for colds and flues. Take a handful of chopped up fresh ginger root, boil it in a pot of water with 8-10 cups for 15 minutes and pour into a thermos. Drink throughout the day as much as you like. Another suggestion is to rest. Your body is undergoing repair, allow it to do just that so your healthy functions can be restored. ( it is not recommended to drink ginger tea within 2 hrs. of taking aspirin)
Apart from ginger, many other common kitchen herbs can also be used such as cinnamon, cloves, licorice, basil. Adding the herb to a cup of boiled water to make tea or taking them in powder form in honey. ( If you have fever, do not use honey)
Lemon is excellent for cold. The saying goes, “A lemon a day keeps the cold away.” Mix the juice of two lemons in 2½ cups of boiling water sweetened with honey. Take this at bed time. It is a very effective remedy for bad cold.
For acute cold in the head, boil 1 tablespoon pepper powder in a cup of milk along with a pinch of turmeric. Drink this once daily for 3 days.
For non-productive hacking cough, stir a tsp of turmeric powder in a cup of hot milk, some honey and drink it 3-4 times a day. Milk is not recommended if the cough is productive
Daily use of honey and cinnamon powder strengthens the immune system and protects the body from bacteria and viral attacks.