• Chiron Healing Arts

5 Natural Cold, Cough, and Flu Remedies

Winter is making itself known and it's time to gear up for increased exposure to various illnesses over the next handful of months. Naturopathic Medicine is very effective at treating acute illness and helping to shorten the duration of illnesses, as well as preventing these illnesses.  

The foundations of a vegetable-based, whole foods diet, stress management, and quality sleep are always essential. These are foundational.  

Beyond that, these are my top 5 recommended home remedies for colds, coughs and the flu for you and the little ones in your life this season. These will act as prevention and treatment

1. Start Eating Mushrooms!

The mushrooms that flush in Western Washington in the fall rivals anywhere in the world in terms of diversity and quantity. Fungi from right in our backyards, as well as the crimini and button mushrooms you can readily get at the store, are wonderful preventive and treatment food options that are often overlooked.

Photo by Nick Grappone on Unsplash

One thing fungi are really good at in nature for themselves and us is fighting off viruses and bacteria.  Many compounds in mushrooms help us to directly fight off microbes but also help our immune systems to be stimulated and more effective at fighting off foreign invaders.   

My advice is to eat as many mushrooms as you can get into your diet. Get a variety if possible.  Eating a serving at least 2-3 times a week will give you a healthy boost against infections this winter.  

Mushroom powders, such as reishi powder, are other easy forms to get the health benefits of our fungi friends. If you are using mushrooms to treat an acute illness, this might be an easier option. I recommend taking 4-5x the serving size for at least a few days to get over an illness quicker.

2. Alliums Alliums Alliums!

Alliaceae is the family that contains onions, garlic, chives, leeks, and shallots.  These are often just called the members of the Allium family. This family of common and easily accessible foods is a real treasure trove of potent antimicrobial compounds.