by Terry Lemerond
Every year when the official “cold and flu” season rolls around, you may think you’re ready. You may have antibacterial wipes for every surface, keep a plentiful supply of tissues at work and home, and even have the latest flu vaccine on board. But the truth is you may not be ready at all. Antibacterial wipes ultimately just make bacteria stronger, and in my opinion, flu shots don’t work.
Fortunately, there are some simple, even more effective things you can do to stop a cold or flu in its tracks. They are excellent natural alternatives that are safe and effective with no side effects.
Stop a cold in its tracks
The common cold is very common – some estimates put the number at about 1 billion people who suffer from colds each year. And every year, up to 1 in 5 people get the seasonal flu.
The botanicals Pelargonium sidoides and Andrographis paniculata are extremely effective against colds, upper respiratory infections, coughs, and even gastrointestinal complaints. Pelargonium, also known as Umckaloabo, was used by the Zulu in South Africa for hundreds of years to treat coughs, colds, upper respiratory tract irritations, tuberculosis and gastrointestinal complaints. It has been clinically tested and works great for children as young as six years old. It’s perfect for those who have a tough time dealing with antibiotics. Andrographis is an excellent partner herb, because it stimulates immune system activity and works as an anti-inflammatory, too.
The causes of sinusitis vary. It can be an overgrowth of normal bacteria, viral infection in the upper respiratory tract, or seasonal allergies. Whatever the cause, 37 million Americans are affected by sinusitis each year. For many people, the choices for conventional sinus relief are not attractive. Not only are the typical over-the-counter medicines non-natural, many of them leave people feeling jittery or fatigued. There are better solutions – encapsulated bio-typed oils. Two encapsulated essential oils I’d recommend to anyone dealing with congestion and sinusitis are eucalyptus oil and myrtle essential oil.
Eucalyptus oil helps decongest the sinuses, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and has been traditionally used to treat the other hallmarks of the cold and flu season, including runny nose, cough, and sore throat.
Myrtle essential oil has been well-studied and sold in Europe for more than 75 years. In fact, patients treated on the average of six days did significantly better during placebo-controlled trials.
These are two oils that I strongly value for natural treatment of sinusitis and sinus infection. Consider it a first choice as soon as you experience symptoms.
Kick viruses to the curb
The harsh cough and sore throat of respiratory infections, the body aches and runny noses of seasonal viruses, and the pain of shingles all have one thing in common: a compromised immune system. A combination of botanical, vitamin, and mineral ingredients can help. They include elderberry extract, vitamins A, C, and D, plus the added benefits of zinc, magnesium, and calcium lactate.
Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) is one of the most clinically studied and reliable botanicals for treating respiratory viruses, flus, and overall immune system defense.
Anthocyanins from elderberry are powerful antioxidants with anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties, and prevent viruses from entering cell walls and replicating. Elderberry is especially effective when combined with vitamin C and zinc, both strong immune supporters in their own right. For the vitamin A in this ideal formula, I’d recommend the retinyl acetate form, the only one that can fight viruses.
Deficiencies of vitamin D are common in northern climates (and usually mean a susceptibility to allergies, flus, and respiratory ailments), so supplemental vitamin D is especially important going into this season. Magnesium helps keep the bronchial system running smoothly as well – important for anyone suffering from acute respiratory viruses. Along with magnesium, calcium lactate supports healthy cell structure and suppresses viral growth. It also fights other virus-caused irritations, including fever blisters.
Stay well this season naturally by considering these recommendations. Selecting your treatment now can make your life this fall and winter much easier.
Terry Lemerond has over 40 years of experience in the health food industry. He is the founder and president of EuroPharma USA which markets supplements under the Terry Naturally brand name. Terry has created more than 400 formulations, hosts a local talk radio show, and writes a weekly educational column covering a variety of health topics. His mission is to introduce revolutionary natural products that will improve the health of America.