Cold and Flu Remedies
If you have the hacking cough of a heavy smoker this remedy will disguise your weakness. Put two ounces of sunflower seeds into a saucepan with a quart of water, and an inch or so of whole ginger. Simmer until reduced to a pint and a half. Add sugar or honey to taste. When cold, strain. A tablespoon of whisky will help the drink to stay fresh; if it is not added, it should be made fresh every two or three days. This is an excellent decoction to relieve bronchitis or a hacking cough.
Put stalked elderberries into an earthenware jar, cover with a well-fitting lid and place in a slow oven. Leave till the juice flows, then pour it off into a pan and return the covered jar to the oven. Continue doing this until you have obtained all the juice from the fruit. Extract amount remaining by squeezing the fruit through muslin.
Measure the juice, and to every pint add half a pound of loaf sugar, about half a dozen cloves and a piece of bruised root ginger.
Place the pan over heat and bring to the boil. Simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, then strain into bottles or jars with a secure lid. Drink diluted with hot water to taste.
Take a tablespoon each of Elderflowers, Peppermint and Yarrow and infuse with a pint of boiling water. Strain off a large cupful and drink it hot in bed. Take this same medicine three times during the following day and again when you go to bed and you will find it quickly chases the sniffles away. And if the cold has turned to flu, Elderflowers again will relieve the symptoms.
An almost infallible cure for an attack of influenza in its first stage is a strong infusion of dried Elder Blossoms and Peppermint. Put a handful of each in a jug, pour over them a pint and a half of boiling water, allow to steep, on the stove, for half an hour then strain and sweeten and drink in bed as hot as possible. Heavy perspiration and refreshing sleep will follow, and the patient will wake up well on the way to recovery and the cold or influenza will probably be banished within thirty-six hours. Yarrow may also be added.
Here’s another variation of this same cure:
Mix 1 oz dried Elder Flowers and 1 oz dried Peppermint leaves. Boil 1 pint of distilled water in a saucepan large enough to hold a quart and while boiling, add the herbs. Cover them and let step (not boil) in a hot place for 10 or 15 minutes. Do not raise the lid or you will lose some of the strength.
When ready, strain through muslin or a thin cloth into a glass or enamel pitcher. Before taking, the patient should be in bed and well covered with blankets to retain the heat.
The dose for severe colds and fevers is drink one pint as hot as possible. Then, remain in bed well covered. It may be sweetened if desired. It will be found beneficial to have a hot water bottle, covered with a towel dipped in vinegar, applied to the feet and allowed to remain there.
The dose for children is from one half to one teacupful. In all cases, the patient should be kept in bed for at least 12 hours after taking, and kept well covered to promote free perspiration.
There will be free perspiration starting in from 20 to 40 minutes after taking and sometimes sooner. This will soothe the patient to sleep and the perspiration will continue for several hours.
The next morning if the fever or cold is completely normal, the patient should be sponged with warm water, put into a clean bed, and be given some light nourishment such as fruit juices (pineapple, orange), or prunes. Care must be taken to keep the body quite warm for a day or two.
If one does does not completely break up the fever, another should be given 24 hours latr. It will be found that, not only the 7,000,000 sweat glands discharge the poisons from the body, but the bowels and kidneys are also activated and will materially help in the recovery of the patient.
Sources: An Elementary Course in Herbology and A Modern Herbal
Europeans and early Americans gargled with sauerkraut juice – the fermented juice of the cabbage plant.
This refers to the traditional fermented homemade Sauerkraut which is an excellent source of probiotics and enzymes for gut health. Commercial sauerkraut is not the same.
To make homemade sauerkraut, layer scores of chopped cabbage leaves in a Crock-Pot, sprinkling salt over each layer. Alternatively, you can knead the salt into the chopped cabbage leaves instead of layering it. Cover it with a clean cloth and tightly weigh it down with a stone or heavy plates. Let it sit for six weeks or more. Draw off the juice and gargle as needed to alleviate a sore throat.
Naturopathic doctors today have improved on this remedy by alternating gargling with warm ginger juice and gargling with cold pineapple juice.
Here’s the recipe for the ginger juice:
Boil one-half cup of water and one teaspoon of powdered ginger, just until boiling. Once it has cooled, add one-quarter teaspoon of honey and the juice of half of a lemon. Alternate gargling with the ginger juice mixture and with cool pineapple juice. Repeat as needed.
Salt has been used from the earliest times as a means to soothe a sore throat. In India, however, many people today will gargle daily with a pinch of salt and a pinch of turmeric. They do this as a preventive measure and to clear their throats of mucus.
Another variation of gargling with warm salt water comes from an ancient yogic tradition. While gargling with warm salt water, practice the throat opening sounds “oh,” “ay,” “mi,” and “li.” If you persevere, you will find that your throat opens and relief is given.
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