Natural Herbs and Substances to Fight Flu

Natural Herbs and Substances to Fight Flu

The flu comes around every year and, even if you are immunized, you can still get a strain of flu that was not covered under the flu vaccination. If you do get the flu, you can distinguish it from a cold because it often brings on high fever, body aches, malaise, and headache, along with the typical respiratory symptoms that can mean either flu or cold.

There are flu remedies you can purchase over the counter and prescription medications you can take. Over the counter flu remedies are usually concoctions of medications for fever, body aches, and respiratory symptoms and prescription medication usually involves getting antivirals that must be given as soon as you develop the symptoms in order to work.

Herbs And Natural Substances That Help Fight Flu

Fortunately, centuries of trial and error have come to the identification of herbal remedies known to fight flu symptoms and to make you feel better.

Nothing takes the place of rest, hydration, and bowls of hot soup when it comes to fighting flu but these remedies have known activity against flu symptoms that will make it easier to tolerate having this condition.

Here are some good choices to try when you develop the flu:

Thyme oil or dried thyme

Thyme is a great expectorant for chest congestion. Try steeping two tsp of fresh or dried thyme in a cup of hot water for ten minutes and drink to loosen congestion. Thyme can be used as a bath with essential oil or fresh thyme added to bath water. Some people put thyme in hot water and breathe over a bowl of steeping thyme. By breathing in the thyme essence, the herb can loosen secretions at the source.

Licorice root

This contains active ingredients that fight viruses of all types. It has been found to help you recover from all sorts of flu viruses and acts as an expectorant, loosening phlegm in your lungs and upper respiratory system. You need to get licorice root rather than eating licorice candy. Steep it in a tea and drink for its many anti-flu properties. Because it can interfere with certain prescription medications, you should talk to your doctor to see if it can interact with the drugs you are currently taking.


Garlic is a great immune booster herb that can prevent respiratory infections such as the common cold and flu. It is better for prevention than it is for curing the flu but if you get sick and take garlic, you tend to recover faster from the viral illness. Garlic supplements are easier on your breath than regular garlic although the fresh garlic clove can be chewed daily for prevention or treatment of cold and flu symptoms. If you don’t like the flavor of plain garlic, mix it with a little bit of honey to counteract the flavor. It can be added to regular recipes as well.


This is a good remedy for the prevention of colds and flu, especially when taken along with garlic. It looks great in the garden, too, as the purple coneflower. Because it is hard to know how much to take, try purchasing the supplement at a health food store. Take 1000 mg three times a day. Beware that you may be allergic to it if you also have a ragweed allergy.

Elderberry Extract

The extract of elderberry is said to shorten the duration of the cold and flu symptoms by as many as four days. It fights many strains of flu viruses and is available at your local drugstore under the brand name of Sambucol. This is a liquid supplement you can mix with warm water or make into a tea.

Homemade Bone Broth

Actually, any kind of hot liquid broth will stimulate your immune system. Try sipping various hot herbal teas or even chicken soup to keep your immune system sharp and ready to fight off the flu symptoms.

Vitamin C

Take high dose vitamin C to fight flu and other types of viruses. Take about 3000 mg per day in divided doses until you have recovered. Then drop down to about 500 mg per day for immune system health.

Oil of Oregano

Use one dropper full of oil of oregano in water every few hours to fight off viruses and bacteria.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Take a tablespoonful of this vinegar in a glass of water every three hours to kill off yeast that might take hold if you are immunosuppressed.

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