Winter is now in full swing, and with the change in weather comes cold and flu season. I’ve always been one who gets sick often and gets everything that goes around at work, so I get lots opportunities to try everything that’s out there and evaluate how it works for me. Here are two of my favorite and most comforting home treatments for reducing the congestion and pressure that comes with having a cold.
Decongesting nasal spray
You will need:
- a squeeze bottle of saline nasal spray
- a bottle of peppermint extract
Pop the top off your nasal spray container, and add 1-2 teaspoons of peppermint extract. Start with a small amount and add more gradually, after testing it out. You don’t want so much that it hurts, but enough that it will be effective in opening your nasal passages. I think I’ve got about just over 1 tsp in mine. Use as needed.
Cold remedy tea
You will need:
- Ginger root
- Fresh lemon
In a mug, add 1-2 Tablespoons chopped ginger root (I don’t even peel it when I make it) and the juice squeezed from half a lemon. Don’t worry about chopping the ginger into tiny little pieces, but do consider that the smaller the pieces, the less you will need (it’s more potent in small pieces). I tend to use about 2 Tbsp of larger slices because I get lazy and don’t want to take the time to cut it any smaller. Pour boiling water over your ginger and lemon mix and let it steep for 1-2 minutes. Strain the ginger and lemon seeds out, and add honey to taste.
This works really well as a decongestant and to just generally relieve discomfort and pressure from a cold. For some reason, it’s not effective if you use sugar or store-bought lemon juice. I have no idea why, but it must be something about the combination of these three things. At least I noticed a difference when I tried to substitute sugar or lemon juice when I didn’t have honey or a lemon or handy. I don’t know what it is about the combination of these three things, but you definitely need all three for this to work properly.
Here’s to a healthier winter this year!
Anyone else have favorite home cold remedies to share?