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Top 10 Natural and Herbal Remedies to Prevent Flu Outbreak
- Natural and herbal remedies such as American ginseng and ginseng root have moved to the forefront of our American culture.
- The most popular can work to help ward off the flu or assist in a fast recovery.
- Natural herbs like elderberry concentrate must also be carefully watched to make sure they are safe for individual use.
Homeopathic remedies have maintained popularity in Europe and Canada with an increase in interest in the U.S. over the last 15 years. Some of the attention has been based on various side affects and problems with standard pharmaceuticals while others simply want to return to the more natural modality.
With flu outbreak in full force, it’s always good to know what the most useful natural herbs are to help keep you healthy. There are many places to buy herbal products. Not all products on the shelves contain the highest quantity or quality! The best location is at your local natural health food store or an independent pharmacy that includes integrative medicine.
When researching natural products for flu outbreak, it’s important to know some of the differences in product. Raw product, concentrate or tincture and supplement. Only concentrate or tincture will require a visit to your practitioner or integrative pharmacist. These are categorized in the professional products group and are highly potent. They require a consultation and, if you order on-line, they may be password protected.
A good resource is the website of Alternative Medicine; they specialize in the CAM approach (Complementary and Alternative Medicine).
Top 10 List of Natural Remedies:
An essential mineral required by more than 300 enzymes in the body. Found in foods such as meat, liver, seafood and eggs. Available in pill and lozenge forms.
2. Astragalus root
Used in traditional Chinese Medicine to help strengthen immunity and prevent colds and flu. Also an antioxidant, studies show antiviral properties. Available as a capsule, tea, extract or dried root at many health food stores.
Used by many cultures whether in chicken soup or a crushed garlic drink. The cold fighting compound is “allicin”. Studies have shown to reduce the risk of catching a cold and cut the recovery time of those that do have a cold. There can be side affects for people with blood sugar problems and pregnant women.
4. Vitamin C
Although a new review by the “Cochran Collaboration” resulted in the fact that Vitamin C did not appear to prevent the common cold, there was a slight reduction in the severity and symptoms. Vitamin C continues to be a firm staple in combating cold and flu. There are problems associated with doses larger than 2,000 mg per day.
Popular in many cultures, studies have shown honey to assist by coating an irritated throat and are believed to have antioxidant and antibacterial affects. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine also attribute honey to assist in calming children’s coughs and helping them sleep better. Not to be given to children under one year of age.
Studies haven’t proven that Echinacea prevents or shortens symptoms, but it remains one of the most popular to date. Herbalists often recommend taking Echinacea two to three times per day, with a total daily dose of three or more grams per day at the first symptom.
7. Ginseng Root
Of the many types, the North American Ginseng is the most popular in the U.S. The compounds of: polysaccharides and ginsenosides are thought to be the active constituents in ginseng. There are concerns relating to drug interactions and for those with blood thinning problems. Ginseng root has been used throughout the centuries. Unless your practitioner advises you otherwise, American ginseng is more cost effective and easier to get.
Ginger root is not only a folk remedy but has been used in traditional Chinese Medicine for cold and flu symptoms as well as ayurvedic, the traditional medicine of India. Hot ginger tea with lemon and honey is a common cold beverage. Those on blood thinners should be cautioned to confer with their physician and ginger should be avoided 2 weeks before and after surgery.
An herb with a history of use for colds, sinus infections and flu. There has been research to show that the anthocyanins compounds found naturally in elderberries may be the active component that strengthens the immune system and blocks the flu virus from sticking to our cells. Elderberry concentrate or tincture is a very popular method to battle the flu outbreak.
10. Eucalyptus Steam Inhalation
Helps to relieve sinus and nasal congestion. It can be done two to four times per day, best to use the essential eucalyptus oil found in most natural health stores. (Not to be confused with camphor oil.) To find out how to use eucalyptus steam inhalation you can go to the website of alternative medicine)
The average individual is usually not aware of the fact that the DSHEA Act of 1994 was passed to assist in the guidelines of herbal supplements and products. This law protects consumers by not allowing any herbal manufacturer or supplier to make inaccurate claims about the products.
Always keep in mind that natural herbs may have interactions with other drugs and supplements that you may be taking – as well as medical conditions that you may have. Consult with your physician or an integrative independent pharmacist before adding even natural products to your daily regiment.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
|Flu14 Oct 2009|