It’s almost winter, and you know what that means! Well, besides snowmen and days off, winter unfortunately also means the height of the cold and flu season. Earlier this week, I shared with you natural ways to prevent and treat the common cold, and today I want to share a wonderful recipe I came across for a natural sore throat and cough remedy – probably my two least favorite cold symptoms.
Though, thankfully, we don’t get sick too often in our house, there’s always that one time that everyone is sick and it feels like the worst bug has gotten your entire family! But this bug was different. It wasn’t just the runny nose, the congestion, or the sinus pressure getting us down. It was the sore, scratchy throat, and the dry, hacking cough that came along with it! You know the one that makes it impossible to speak three words in a row without breaking out into a coughing frenzy?
Yeah, that one… Anyways, while my in-laws were sipping on the commercial cough syrups and meds, and hubby was just toughing it out on his own, I quickly went online to search for a homemade alternative to cough syrup.
I found this recipe from Good Food Matters – I loved that it was such an easy recipe and that I already had everything on hand to make it right away!
Natural Sore Throat and Cough Remedy
I used almost the exact same recipe, except that I also added some cinnamon and garlic to the mixture, used fresh ginger instead of ground, and cut down the water (or you could even cut out the water completely, if you want).
Natural Sore Throat & Cough Remedy
The healing powers of raw honey, cider vinegar, and traditional spices come together to make this super potent and powerful alternative to commercial cough syrups.
- 1 tablespoon <a href="_blank" rel="nofollow">raw apple cider vinegar</a>
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger (or 1/4 teaspoon ground)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 clove garlic (grated (or 1/4 teaspoon powder))
- 1 tablespoon <a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00014JNI0/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00014JNI0&linkCode=as2&tag=natusnurt-20">raw honey</a> (melted)
- small glass jar with lid
- If raw honey is hard, melt it using the double-boiler method, by putting it in a small glass bowl and placing it in a larger container filled with hot water. Do NOT melt it in microwave or on stovetop!
- In small glass jar, add apple cider vinegar and water.
- Add cayenne, ginger, cinnamon, and garlic. Cover jar and shake vigorously to combine.
- Add melted honey, and shake again to combine well.
- Shake well before use. Take 1-2 tablespoons as needed. No need to refrigerate unless making larger batches that will last longer than 2-3 days.
Adapted from Good Food Matters
More About The Ingredients
Each ingredient has its own wonderfully beneficial qualities:
- Cayenne – reduces the sensation of pain, thins mucus, increases blood flow, and clears congestion.
- Ginger – anti-inflammatory, relieves and suppresses coughing, and warms and energizes the body.
- Cinnamon – anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and warms the body.
- Garlic – antiviral, antibacterial, and helps support the immune system.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – antibacterial, antiviral, antiseptic, and promotes healing.
- Raw Honey – anti-viral, anti-bacterial, coats the throat, and contains beneficial enzymes to protect against infection.
I took two spoonfuls right after I made it, and within about 15-20 minutes, I was feeling a whole lot better! My throat still felt a bit scratchy, but it didn’t feel nearly as dry, and my cough had subsided quite a bit! I took another spoonful before going to bed, which helped pull me through the night.
And for the next few days, I took 1-2 spoonfuls 2-3 times a day, and was feeling much better by the end of the week. It’s definitely a bit spicy (although I like spicy), but the warming sensation on my irritated throat felt really soothing!
Some Helpful Tips
- The cayenne and ginger in this recipe make it a pretty spicy syrup, so it’s not for the faint of heart (or for young children). You can either reduce (or eliminate) these ingredients, or try diluting the syrup with a little more water.
- As with all products that contain honey, this should not be given to infants under 1 year because of the risk of botulism.
- Using fresh ginger and garlic are best since the juice and oils contain most of the health benefits, but ground or powdered would work as well.
- Make sure both your honey and cider vinegar are raw so that they have all the good, healing vitamins and enzymes.
- If you’re making a single batch, you can store it at room temperature and use it up in 2-3 days. If you’re going to double or triple the recipe, and won’t finish it within 2-3 days, then it should be stored in the fridge. Although, it’s best to make up a new batch every few days to keep the ingredients nice and potent.
Have you ever tried a homemade cough remedy before? What’s your go-to treatment when the cold/flu season hits?