How to Treat Cold effectively Using Natural Remedies

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In order to know how to treat a cold, it's good to first get an understanding on what causes the symptoms of a common cold. The common cold is an infection of the upper respiratory tract. The common cold is caused by viruses, of which there are over 200. Colds are transmitted by inhaling the infected droplets in the air when an infected person sneezes or coughs or by touching a surface that has been contaminated with the virus and the touching your face (nose, mouth and eyes). 
Colds are most contagious during the first few days and generally lasts anywhere between 5 to 10 days. When you get infected with a cold virus, the virus attaches itself to the lining of your nose or throat and starts reproducing. This causes our immune system to react by sending in white blood cells to the area infected to get rid of the viruses. The white blood cells cause the inflammation and increased production of mucus. This is what causes the runny nose and congestion. The irritation caused by the increase fluid causes the sneezing. The inflammation in the back of the throat results in the sore throat. We feel tired and sluggish because our body is using all its energy to fight of the infection. When the virus makes its way to the lungs and infects the cells lining the lungs, these cells also start producing mucus resulting in a cough. Therefore in order to treat a cold effectively we need to help boost our immune system, reduce inflammation and expel the mucus. There are many natural remedies you can use to reduce the systems of a cold.

Best cold medicine to boost immune system:

• Garlic has both antibacterial and antiviral properties as well as being an immune system enhancer. Consume 2-3 cloves of garlic a day at the onset of a cold or flu. Eating raw garlic can be difficult so it can either be sauted in a pan for a few minutes or made into a tea. For the tea, crush 2-3 cloves of fresh garlic and add to 2 cups of water and bring to boil. Then lower the heat and simmer for a further 15 minutes. Add some honey and a pinch of cayenne pepper and drink through the day.

• Honey and cinnamon work hand in hand to help boost the immune system. Taken regularly honey's antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal and antioxidant power combined with cinnamon's antibacterial and antioxidant properties can help fend off a cold or flu sooner. Mix 1 teaspoon of honey with ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon and take twice a day at the onset of a cold or once a day as a preventer.

• Rest is essential to recover from a cold or flu sooner. The body requires all the energy it can get to fight off the infection. Therefore it's best to not expend that energy elsewhere.

Best cold medicine to treat the inflammation:

• Salt water gargle helps with a sore throat because salt helps to reduce the inflammation of the cells in the throat by drawing out the water from the swollen cells thereby shrinking the cells and reducing the pain.

• Ginger is great for sore throats as it is an anti-inflammatory as well as helping to loosen and expel the mucus in your throat and respiratory system.

Best cold medicine to expel mucus:

• Drink plenty of fluids. Keeping up your fluid intake helps thin the mucus allowing it to be expelled easier.

• Steam helps to loosen the phlegm and prevent it from getting too thick making it easier to expel. Steam inhalation with added salt accelerates mucus clearance as well as reducing bronchial inflammation.

• Onions' anti-inflammatory and expectorant properties also helps to thin the mucus making it easier to get rid of. Cut an onion into slices and layer with honey. Leave covered for a few hours (overnight is best) and take a spoonful of the liquid that has formed as needed. This also helps to soothe a cough.

I hope this information has better equipped you with how to treat a cold more effectively so you can get back to doing the things you love sooner.Katherine Mckenzie 

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