A sore throat is often one of the first signs that you have picked up a viral or bacterial infection. Sucking on a throat lozenge or drinking a hot tea might help, but what else? Here are some natural medicines which will help you feel better this winter.

Gargles – here are some gargles that can help soothe a sore throat:-

  • Salt: 1 tablespoon of salt in 240ml of warm water
  • Apple cider vinegar: Place 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water. Apple cider vinegar is anti-bacterial. Apple cider vinegar is naturally brewed, unfiltered and unpasteurised and has beneficial properties unlike the distilled vinegars, which are highly demineralising.
  • Sage tea: 1 teaspoon of dried sage, with 1 cup of hot water. Allow to cool and gargle. The sage acts as an astringent on the mucus membranes of the throat and tonsils so reducing the mucus, redness and inflammation.
  • Liquid echinacea extract: have the recommended dose, gargle and spit a few times to get rid of the yucky stuff and then drink the rest down, this can be repeated 3-4 times in the day.

Coughs can vary a lot, for instance is it a wet or dry cough, are you bringing up mucus or not, as the cough varies so also does the remedy. There are certain herbal medicines that are excellent ‘lung tonics’ and often have an expectorant action too, which means they help to more productively bring the mucus up. For instance, the culinary herbs thyme and garlic are antibacterial and work on the lungs specifically. Liquorice root acts as a lung tonic and expectorant supportively bringing up mucus. You will find liquorice root to suck on in health food stores and you can buy liquorice root as a tea too. Also, there is Pelargonium, which has been shown to be helpful in bronchitis (and also in sinusitis). As a herbalist, i use liquid herbal extracts to make up an individual mix targeted at your specific symptoms.

Onion and honey cough syrup is a soothing cough remedy you can make at home:-

  • Slice up a whole onion (chopped well) place in a jar and cover the onion with honey and leave over-night. The honey will break down the onion and a clear liquid will appear along with the syrup. Take this clear liquid off with a spoon – and repeat as often as necessary to ease the cough.
  • A note on honey – research has confirmed honey as a broad-spectrum antibiotic, inhibiting the growth of numerous pathogenic bacteria. Raw honey is preferable because heating and sterilisation destroy valuable properties and therefore most commercial honeys have little antimicrobial activity. Raw honey also contains propolis and bee pollen. New Zealand’s Manuka honey is used medicinally because of the high antimicrobial action. Excellent for ulcers and throat infections.

See your healthcare professional if symptoms persist.

Did you know – I offer short consults specifically to address your symptoms and get a fast acting nutritional and herbal medicine to you ASAP.