Some home remedies for colds that may be effective for you

  • As the fall season begins, so is the start of the cold season.
  • Adults are expected to contract 2 to 3 colds a year between September and April.
  • Because there are no quick cures for a cold, home remedies are easier to adapt.

Fall marks the start of the cold season. Most adults are expected to get two to three colds a year between September and April, according to the CDC.

Since there’s no quick fix for a cold, many use home remedies for quick cold relief.

Below are some common home remedies for colds that you can either try out or skip the next time you get sick:

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that boosts your immune system and helps the body fight stress. Though vitamin C had been found to have little to no impacts on lowering cold frequency, previous studies suggest it may shorten its duration by 1.5 to 2 days.

For immune support, get enough Vitamin C especially during the cold season. Take two to three servings of vitamin C daily from citrus fruits, strawberries, green vegetables, and tomatoes. The RDA for vitamin C is 90mg for men per day and 75mg for women per day. A daily dosage of more than 1000mg daily may result to GI side effects.


Allicin compounds in garlic may protect the body from rhinovirus, the primary virus that causes colds.

In a 2014 study, people had 64% fewer number of colds and 70% shortened cold duration when taking garlic supplements. While the results are promising, it’s unclear if adding garlic in your diet would give the same benefits, since garlic supplements contain more allicin than a garlic clove.

Chicken Soup

Research suggests that chicken soup has mild anti-inflammatory properties that quickly relieves congestion and prevent symptoms from progressing into an upper respiratory infection. Another study also reported that a compound found in chicken can suppress infections.

While all hot soups and liquids may help ease congestion by thinning mucus, some think that chicken soup ingredients like chicken, onion, garlic, parsley and pepper, may provide more benefits in reducing symptoms and downtime.


Salt has been scientifically proven to draw water out of oral tissues while blocking viruses and bacteria, and lowers mouth and throat infection risks. A 2010 study suggests that gargling with an iodine solution also cuts down the occurrence of tonsillitis. To prepare-just mix ½ to 1 teaspoon of salt with warm water.

Hot Toddy

A hot toddy is a mixed drink made of alcohol with honey, lemon and warm water or tea, and served hot. 

While it is not proven that this beverage directly impacts a cold’s duration, its ingredients offer benefits. Drinking the warm liquid along with the alcohol or whiskey can soothe congestion while the lemon adds a dose of vitamin C, and the honey is touted to be an effective cough suppressant at night.

When using this remedy, keep the dosage small and get sufficiently hydrated to avoid dehydration from alcohol consumption.

Source: Eating Well

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