When it’s cold and flu season, no one is immune to sickness and the symptoms can be miserable. From coughing to headaches to congestion, cold and flu season is never fun.
Fortunately, if you want to relieve your symptoms, you have a lot of options available to you, including natural remedies such as homemade tea.
In fact, choosing homemade tea for cold and flu symptoms is becoming more popular all the time, and it won’t take you long to realize why.
Homemade Tea for Cold and Flu
Homemade tea is easy to make and in fact, you probably have most of the ingredients to make one of these teas already. Below are some easy recipes that you can follow for the cold and flu season.
1. Ginger Tea
If you want to reduce congestion and open up those sinus cavities, ginger tea is what you want, but for the very best results, use fresh ginger root and not the herb.
Simply take a 1”slice of ginger root and put it in the bottom of a cup. Add boiling water, cover, and steep for 5 to 10 minutes. If you like, you can add a little lemon and honey for better flavor and more immune support.
2. Peppermint Tea
Peppermint tea helps you feel better in lots of ways. It can shorten the length of your cold, help you breathe, open up your airway, reduce inflammation, and even ease your pain symptoms.
Peppermint is used in various cough medications, and it’s easy to understand why. You can buy any of the more popular peppermint teas on the market and you’ll be amazed at how well it works.
3. Hibiscus Tea
Caffeine-free and packed with lots of vitamin C, hibiscus tea can be purchased or made yourself. To make it, simply take 8 to 10 fresh hibiscus flowers and place them in a pot of boiling water.
Let the mixture steep for four to five minutes and drain it into your cup or mug. It has a pleasant flavor but you can still add a fresh lemon slice for added flavor and even more vitamin C.
4. Green Tea
Green tea is incredibly healthy for you, but you’ll need to use lower water temperatures than you do for other types of tea.
Boil your water at 175 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit, place green tea leaves in a tea strainer, and set it in the water. After it steeps for three to five minutes, remove the leaves and it’s ready to consume. It is especially good for inflammation and scratchy or sore throats.
5. Nettle Tea
The nettle plant is spiny and has hairs on it, but it is also chock full of vitamin C and carotene. To make the tea, simply use one cup of nettle leaves to two cups of boiling water.
When the water is boiling, remove it from the heat and add the leaves. Steep for five to seven minutes, then remove the leaves and place the tea in cups or mugs. Its bold taste can be tempered with some honey and lemon!
6. Lemon-Based Tea
Most lemon-based teas, including lemon verbena, lemongrass, and lemon balm tea, can help shorten a cold or flu. The vitamin C content alone helps cut your cold short, and make sure that you steep it for 8 to 10 minutes to get the best effect. For the best results, brew an entire batch of lemon tea and sip on it throughout the day for a continuous vitamin C intake.
7. Elderberry Tea
You can use either elderberry or elderflower tea for your cold or flu, in part because it has a lot of antioxidants and flavonoids.
Keep in mind to ONLY use the berries or flowers because the leaves and stems are toxic to humans. For the best results, add 8 to 12 berries or a handful of fresh flowers to a pot of boiling water. Turn the heat to simmer for 15 minutes, then strain and drink.
8. Licorice Root Tea
Licorice is great for boosting your immune system and has flavonoids in it. For every cup, you would use eight ounces of water and a teaspoon of dried licorice.
Boil the water, then turn to simmer and place the licorice in the pot. Steep for five minutes and strain the leaves before serving. You can also add some sugar, lemon, or honey to make it taste better.
Are Other Teas Good for Cold and Flu Symptoms?
In addition to herbal and green tea, you can also use white or black tea to ease your cold and flu symptoms.
If you choose black tea, make sure that you get the water up to around 200 degrees, but white tea needs to be made with hot water only, not boiling water. Let both of these teas steep for four to five minutes before straining it and adding it to your cup.
Black, white, and green teas are known to ease cold and flu symptoms, and black tea has ingredients that can actually help prevent illness in the first place, which is why drinking tea on a regular basis is such a smart thing to do.
There are all types of tea that can be used to ease cold and flu symptoms. Many of them have antioxidants and tons of vitamin C, not to mention other ingredients that help you feel better quicker.
Making herbal teas with fresh ingredients is the best way to enjoy a good flu-conquering drink, even if you sometimes have to add something like lemon, honey, or some other type of sweetener to make it taste better.