My goodness, to have a cough these days is a little more than worrying, but the fact remains that ‘tis the season. Coughs and colds are a chilly weather phenomenon from way back, and so, no surprise, there is an abundance of homespun natural remedies and garden remedies to help us feel better.
In other words, we can likely help ourselves and our families feel better when sore throats, sniffles, and coughs arrive. The trick is to find some things that give immediate relief and add in a pinch of this and that to provide immune system boosters to glide us into full-fledged recovery.
Some foods, particularly spices, are just aces for thwarting bronchial problems. More or less, these are ingredients that can be ingested in bulk when a cold has already shown up, or they can be used as preventative measures for avoiding coughs and colds altogether. Put them in syrup, and they can be easy to take and even potentially enjoy.
A homemade cough syrup starts with a good set of ingredients, and there are some marquee items to include in this endeavor. Using these regularly will help to avert issues in the first place, and they can help ease suffering when it is too late.
- Ginger: It has compounds that open up the lungs and relax muscles that are stressed from coughing.
- Garlic: A good component of a healthy daily diet, raw garlic can up the ante of medicinal qualities when necessary.
- Turmeric: Packed with curcumin, turmeric is known as a bit of a cure-all with anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties out of the wazoo.
- Lemon: Full of vitamin C and antioxidants, lemon plays a vital role in repairing damaging systems and soothing them as well.
- Tea: In particular, hot tea can be instrumental in soothing coughs, as it has anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties.
- Black pepper: A natural decongestant and expectorant, black pepper is a great addition to mixtures when combating coughs and colds.
- Plant-based liquid sweeteners can act as substitutes for honey.
The consensus is that hot stuff helps more when it comes to sore throats and coughs, so it’s best to get into the mindset of teas and sipping soups as natural cough syrups. Though we can make sticky sweet syrups, thinking outside the pharmacy might provide better results.
- Hot Vegetable Broth: Pack this savory broth with lots of the helpful spices above—garlic, ginger, turmeric, and black pepper—as well as lots of onions and peppers. Strain out the solid stuff, or better yet, blend it. Sip this several times a day as a hot drink if you are already ill, or have it regularly throughout the week as a preventative.
- Sunshine Turmeric Latte: Showcasing turmeric, ginger, and black pepper, as well as other helpful ingredients like cinnamon and cardamom, Sunshine Turmeric Latte is a great tasting and soothing beverage to help with coughs.
- Ginger, Lemon & Black Pepper Tea: Start with either black tea or green tea as a base and add thin slices of ginger, a squeeze of lemon, and a couple of shakes of black pepper to the mix while it’s steeping. Add some vegan honey for a bit of sweetness.
- Fire Cider: While not a hot drink in terms of temperature, the name—Fire Cider—says it all. Imbued with ginger, garlic, lemon, cayenne, and other medicinal items, including apple cider vinegar, fire cider is a great cure-all and immune booster.
An Actual Cough Syrup
However nice hot drinks and soups are, sometimes we just want that run-of-the-mill spoonful of medicine to go down and make us feel better. For those times, we can make up a sugary sweet and thick syrup to take.
- The Base: Onion (another fantastic cold medicine) and honey/liquid sweetener is the basic mixture we start with. Dice up an onion and pour a couple of tablespoons of natural sweetener over it. Let this sit overnight.
- Natural Additives: Now that we know all the other ingredients that can help, we can infuse this mixture with them. Helpful herbs could be thyme and sage.
While most of us turn to medicine, be it herbal or pharmaceutical, when we are already sick, the best remedy for a cough or cold is to stay prepared. Eating and drinking a healthy mix of these ingredients daily will provide some protection as the cold and flu season makes its return.
- DIY Fire Cider: From Apples to Medicine
- 5 Healthy Homemade Tonics For Flu Season
- 15 Ginger-Based Vegan Recipes That Are Great for Cold and Flu Season
- 12 Foods to Help You Survive Winter Allergies, Colds, and The Flu
- 15 Soothing Plant-Based Recipes to Prevent the Winter Flu
Easy Ways to Help the Planet:
- Eat Less Meat: Download Food Monster, the largest plant-based Recipe app on the App Store, to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy. You can also buy a hard or soft copy of our favorite vegan cookbooks.
- Reduce Your Fast Fashion Footprint: Take initiative by standing up against fast fashion Pollution and supporting sustainable and circular brands like Tiny Rescue that raise awareness around important issues through recycled zero-waste clothing designed to be returned and remade over and over again.
- Support Independent Media: Being publicly funded gives us a greater chance to continue providing you with high-quality content. Please consider supporting us by donating!
- Sign a Petition: Your voice matters! Help turn petitions into victories by signing the latest list of must-sign petitions to help people, animals, and the planet.
- Stay Informed: Keep up with the latest news and important stories involving animals, the environment, sustainable living, food, health, and human interest topics by subscribing to our newsletter!
- Do What You Can: Reduce waste, plant trees, eat local, travel responsibly, reuse stuff, say no to single-use plastics, recycle, vote smart, switch to cold water laundry, divest from fossil fuels, save water, shop wisely, Donate if you can, grow your food, volunteer, conserve energy, compost, and don’t forget about the microplastics and microbeads lurking in common household and personal care products!
Help keep One Green Planet free and independent! Together we can ensure our platform remains a hub for empowering ideas committed to fighting for a sustainable, healthy, and compassionate world. Please support us in keeping our mission strong.