Home remedies

Home remedies for colds - that can work

Home remedies for colds - that can work

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These home remedies relieve a cold
If you have a cold, you don't have to take medication straight away. In this case, nature has many herbs and small plants ready, which promise relief as a home remedy for colds. The following article provides you with an overview of the available home remedies and explanations for their successful use.

Difference cold - flu

Flu is often spoken when it actually means a cold. However, a real flu is very different. This is triggered by a certain type of virus, the so-called influenza virus. A variety of viruses can be found behind a cold, such as adenoviruses, coxsackieviruses, enteroviruses and many more. Around 100 different pathogens can be the cause.

A real flu usually starts suddenly, within hours and very violently. Massive headache and body aches, dry cough, fever and massive sickness torment sufferers and they usually go to the couch or bed as soon as possible. In contrast, a flu-like infection usually begins slowly, with a little discomfort, fatigue, scratchy throat, difficulty swallowing and runny nose. With such a clinical picture, home remedies are the right thing. These can alleviate the symptoms and accelerate healing.

If the home remedies described below show no effect and / or the symptoms worsen, a doctor should be consulted. However, the remedies can accompany conventional medical therapy at any time.


Inhale is a good home remedy. If your nose is stuffy and / or you experience a painful cough, inhaling regularly can help. Stuck mucus loosens from the nose and the bronchial system.
A bowl is filled with boiling water twice a day. In there comes a little Himalayan - or rock salt, namely nine grams per liter of water. Inhale with a towel over the bowl and head when the water has reached a comfortable temperature. Essential oils are not recommended as they cause allergic reactions and may irritate the sensitive mucous membranes even more.

Tea blends

A tea mixed with the right ingredients is an excellent natural remedy. Suitable plants for this are eucalyptus, rose hip, elderberry, meadowsweet, black currant, coneflower and many more.

Here are some recipes that can help with a respiratory infection:

Recipe # 1
Elder flowers and linden flowers are mixed in equal parts and a teaspoon is poured with about 250 milliliters of boiling water. The tea should brew for about seven to eight minutes and then be drunk in small sips, preferably sweetened with a little honey. Elderberry stimulates the immune system and loosens stuck mucus. Linden flowers also have a defense-enhancing effect and are also fever-lowering and somewhat antispasmodic and cough suppressant.

Recipe # 2
This recipe also includes linden and elder flowers, each weighing 30 grams. In addition, there are 20 grams of meadowsweet flowers and 20 grams of rose hip fruits. The preparation is the same as for recipe 1.
Meadowsweet is a rose family and got its name from its lovely appearance. The plant has anti-inflammatory and antipyretic effects. Rosehip fruits contain a lot of vitamin C and thus strengthen the immune system.

Recipe No. 3
If the upper airways in particular are irritated, the following tea mixture alleviates the discomfort: 40 grams of linden flowers, 10 grams of elderflower and 40 grams of mullein flowers are mixed. The contained mullein flowers, also known as woolen flowers, are mainly used for catarrhs ​​of the upper airways. A teaspoon of the mixture is brewed with a quarter liter of boiling water and should then steep for about ten minutes. This tea is also drunk several times a day if necessary.
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Cough tea

This cough tea mixture has a soothing effect: 20 grams of fennel fruit, 20 grams of lungwort, 20 grams of ribwort plantain leaves and 40 grams of coltsfoot leaves. For a large cup of tea, a heaping teaspoon is poured over with 250 milliliters of boiling water and strained after about 10 minutes. Drinking three cups a day relieve the urge to cough.

Onion juice

Homemade onion juice is an old remedy that had a permanent place in the kitchen of our grandmothers. To do this, chop an onion, add a little honey and put the whole thing on the heater for a few hours. The liquid that settles out is a tasty, effective cough syrup that can be taken several times a day.

Cough syrup made from onions, sage and thyme

For this cough syrup, which can be easily prepared, an onion is chopped and boiled with 100 ml of water, a teaspoon of thyme, a teaspoon of sage and 100 grams of brown candy for about fifteen minutes and then strained. Three to three teaspoons three times a day relieve the symptoms and have a healing effect on the mucous membranes.

Healing wrap

Wraps are ancient home remedies for colds. These are easy to use and extremely effective.

Quark wrap

The well-known curd wrap helps with stuck cough or constant cough. The middle of a tea towel (use a smaller one for children) is coated with simple low-fat curd cheese and the two free ends are folded over it. The wrap then stays on the heater for a few minutes so it is not so cold. Then it is placed on the chest. On top of that comes a dry cotton cloth and finally a woolen cloth. The wrap can be worn as long as it is tolerated. The curd has an anti-inflammatory effect, which is particularly positive when coughing. But the wrap is also recommended for sore throats. Here it is placed around the neck, but in such a way that the cervical spine remains free. A cotton cloth and then a wool scarf also come over it.

Lemon wrap

For sore throats, lemon wrap is a good alternative to curd wrap. Either lemon slices or lemon juice are used for the wrap. A bio-lemon is cut into thin slices and placed lengthways in the middle of a tea towel. A little space is left left and right at the end so that the cervical spine can remain free when changing. Fold the free ends over and the wrap is done. It is also fixed with another cotton cloth and a wool scarf. The wrap stays on the skin for up to an hour. In the event of itching or burning sensation, it is removed immediately and the neck treated with a care cream.

If you prefer to use lemon juice for the wrap, squeeze a bio lemon and soak a cotton cloth with the juice. As described above, this is then placed around the neck and removed immediately if symptoms of irritation develop.

Potato wrap

The potato wrap relieves the urge to cough and loosens the mucus. Boiled potatoes are wrapped in a cloth, crushed and, if the temperature is suitable, this is placed on the skin. Beware of burns - potatoes store the heat for a very long time! There is a cotton and a woolen cloth over the wrap. As long as the envelope is perceived as pleasant, it can remain on the skin.

Oil wrap

Oil wraps relieve the symptoms of a cold. Lavender and / or thyme oil (please pay attention to quality), a maximum of ten drops in total, are mixed together with some olive or almond oil. The oil mixture is warmed up slightly and soaked with a smaller cotton cloth and placed on the affected skin. The wrap is fixed with another cloth and a wool scarf. The effect is enhanced with a heat source such as a spelled bag or a hot water bottle. The oil wrap can remain on the skin for one to two hours if there is no skin irritation.


Ginger is a very versatile home remedy for colds. This sharp root helps the stomach, relieves nausea, strengthens the immune system. At the first signs, like scratching the throat or runny nose, ginger helps - best in the form of tea. For this, a small piece (organic quality) is washed thoroughly and cut into slices. Then pour the pieces with a quarter liter of boiling water and let the tea steep for ten minutes. If you like the spiciness, you don't have to remove the ginger after cooking. But be careful: the tea gets sharper from cup to cup.

Manuka honey

This is a very special honey with a special effect. Depending on requirements, it can be used both externally and internally. If you have a cold, pour a teaspoonful of it into a cup of sage tea and drink it in small sips. This helps especially with difficulty swallowing.

Manuka honey is often also enjoyed pure. A teaspoon of honey should then slowly slide down the throat so that the mucous membranes can come into contact with the sweet remedy.

Cold bath

Another home remedy is the cold bath. However, only if those affected do not have a fever. This should definitely be observed. A hot bath puts stress on the circulation and the entire organism, which in connection with fever could be dangerous. But even with a simple cold, a relative should always be nearby when bathing, so that they can have a helping hand immediately if they feel unwell.

A cold bath usually lasts twenty minutes and the temperature is 37 ° Celsius. The body has to rest afterwards. A cold bath works best if this is done right before going to bed. For the bath, meadowsweet, chamomile and sage each boil two teaspoons together with one liter of water. This mixture should take another ten minutes, is strained and then added to the bath water. In the case of sensitive skin, the brew is enriched with a cup of milk.

If you prefer to use essential oils, you can make a mixture yourself: sage, eucalyptus, thyme, tea tree, chamomile, lavender, lemon balm - all these are oils that can have a soothing effect on the cold symptoms. For the mixture, a maximum of three oils and a total of no more than six drops are mixed with a little cream and, when the tub is already filled, “stirred” into the water with your hands.

Drink enough

Sufficient drinking is urgently needed for a cold. Non-carbonated water or tea remove the toxins from the body and help to liquefy the mucus. Sufficient still water and "normal" teas, such as green tea or red bush tea, should be drunk with the above-mentioned cold teas.

Nasal irrigation

The nasal irrigation is carried out with salt - simply from the palm of your hand or with a nasal douche, which is available in any pharmacy. Nine grams of Himalayan or sea salt are dissolved in one liter of lukewarm water to make a 0.9 percent saline solution. The salt water is sucked into a nostril from the hand above the wash basin and then sniffed out or rinsed through the nose with the nasal douche according to the enclosed instructions. The saline solution moisturizes the attacked nasal mucosa and prevents more germs from settling. The liquid should not be too salty, but remember the taste of the tear fluid. Performed preventively, nasal irrigation can protect against an infection.


A healthy, vitamin-rich diet is one of the home remedies for flu infections. Fresh fruit and seasonal vegetables daily are important. Heavy meals must be avoided. Fruits rich in enzyme such as pineapple, papaya and mango are helpful. The enzymes it contains activate the metabolism and strengthen the immune system.

Horseradish has an antiviral and antibacterial effect. Every day between ten and twenty grams of freshly grated horseradish root, mixed with apple or quark, have a very positive effect on the immune system. If you don't like fresh horseradish root or can't get it right now, you can also consume horseradish from a glass or as juice (health food store). But please only buy products that do not contain any preservatives. Garlic, wild garlic and / or onions also belong on the menu during a cold. In addition, sea buckthorn is rich in vitamin C. Refined with a little honey and stirred into the muesli or yoghurt, this is a healthy snack - not just for a cold.

A freshly cooked chicken soup has always been one of the most effective home remedies for colds. The preparation is not difficult, and the soup can also be made very well in stock.

Recipe for chicken soup


  • A soup chicken (about two and a half kilograms, if possible organic quality)
  • A bunch of birch trees
  • An onion
  • Three-four carnations
  • A bouquet of herbs (for example with thyme, parsley and bay leaf)
  • salt
  • A tablespoon of fresh peppercorns
  • Five juniper berries

Preparation step 1:
Wash the soup chicken thoroughly inside and out and cut off the fat gland on the tail. Wash the onion and cut it in half. Roast the two halves with the cut surfaces facing down in a (coated) pan without fat. Place the herbs, peppercorns, juniper berries, salt and the soup chicken in a large saucepan and pour in cold water until the ingredients are well covered. Bring everything to the boil slowly, skimming off the foam that is now rising with a foam trowel. Repeat this process several times so that the soup does not become cloudy. Now reduce the temperature and let the soup simmer for three to four hours on a low heat with the lid half on.

Step 2:
When the soup is boiling, the soup greens are cleaned and cut into large pieces. Add this one hour before the end of the cooking time and cook with it. Then remove the onions, vegetables and spices with a foam trowel. Take the chicken out and let it cool. Pour the broth through a sieve into another pot and season with salt and pepper. Skin the cooled chicken, then loosen the meat from the bones, cut it into small pieces and put it back into the broth.

Step 3:
Depending on your taste, other ingredients such as soup noodles or rice and various vegetables can now be added to the soup. For example, add peeled and sliced ​​carrots, cauliflower or frozen peas and let them cook in the broth for a few minutes.

Tip: Freeze a portion of the freshly cooked chicken broth so that you always have something ready when you need it. However, do this before adding deposits such as pasta or rice, because these become mushy after thawing and heating. It is better to cook the insert fresh.

Cold tips

In times of illness, the body needs rest. Sport is absolutely contraindicated. The organism has enough to do with the pathogens and should not have to make additional efforts. If you feel fit enough, a good walk - in the fresh air - is good for you. But be careful - no violent marches. If you do not feel sick and do not have a fever, a passage in the steam sauna may be good for you. If you feel uncomfortable, a sauna session should definitely be stopped.

Sucking lozenges containing cystus (cistus) or drinking cystus sud or cystus tea is recommended during a cold, but also for prevention. Anyone who travels by public transport every day protects themselves from infection by sucking on a suitable cystus preparation. This is available in every pharmacy. If you caught a cold anyway, you can and may not shake hands because the cold germs do not necessarily have to be passed on. (sw)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.

Susanne Waschke, Barbara Schindewolf-Lensch


  • Ursula Uhlemayr, Dietmar Wolz: "Wraps and pads: advice, selection and application", Deutscher Apotheker Verlag, 2015
  • Mannfried Pahlow: The great book of medicinal plants: Healthy through the healing powers of nature, publisher Nikol (August 1, 2013)
  • Wonder bulb ginger naturopathy, Freiburg University Clinic (accessed: 18.08.2019), Freiburg University Clinic
  • Paula Grainger, Karen Sullivan: Herbal tea: 70 special teas to mix yourself (Hallwag general introductions), Hallwag, an imprint from GRÄFE UND UNZER Verlag GmbH; Edition: 1 (September 13, 2017)

Video: Treating a Cold (June 2022).


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