I don’t find it coincidental that in the three years since I’ve given up fructose I haven’t gotten a single cold or the flu. But my winning streak ended last weekend when I was hit with the mother of all colds. Even my husband (who eats very little fructose and rarely gets sick as well) got the bug. It was the kind of illness where you wake up in the morning and just start crying. It hurt to move, it hurt to blink, it hurt to watch TV. I had every symptom one can have when in the midst of a cold and then some. I couldn’t tell if I had the flu or a very flu-like cold. Either way, it was bad.
I had been sneezing hard core all week prior, but since I hadn’t been sick in so long I told myself it was “winter allergies.” If I had started some of the following treatments at the first sign of illness, I probably would have avoided this whole thing.
As I’ve learned more and more about health through my gut-healing journey, I’ve started to live more naturally and avoid harmful chemicals in any amount whenever I can, so I wanted to do the same and avoid conventional cold medicine despite how sick I was. Unfortunately two of the most recommended cures for the cold/flu in the “natural” category are honey and garlic. Not exactly fructose-malabsorption friendly! But the following 7 remedies (with plenty of rest and hydration) helped me kick that nasty cold swiftly in the rear end.
This is the one I wish I had started to use right from the get go. I didn’t use it until the third day of my cold when I was feeling better but still quite sick–but once I did my symptoms pretty much vanished. According to Wellness Mama, oil of oregano is a natural antibiotic and antiviral. She suggests putting 5-6 drops in a glass of water to drink, but the taste is truly god awful. I would do 1-2 drops 3 times a day instead so the taste isn’t quite as strong. Still, make sure you have a chaser. Perhaps some tequila would overpower it.
***It is VERY important to use a high-quality oil if you’re ingesting it, like the one I use from doTerra. You don’t want to get a cheap one that’s cut with something potentially dangerous!
2. Essential Oil Steam or Bath
Use a few drops each of the following essential oils either with the steam inhalation method or in a hot bath:
- Tea Tree
Steam inhalation method: Boil enough water to fill a medium-size bowl. Let water cool for a minute then add the oils. Stand with your face over the bowl (don’t let the steam burn you!) and make a tent using the towel. Breath deeply for 10 minutes.
3. Hot Lemon Water
Usually illness calls for hot lemon and honey water. Honey is a natural antibiotic and very soothing, so if you can have it by all means: go for it. For most of us though, it’s a no go. But that’s OK, because lemon is incredible healing too. A Modern Herbal states:
“It is probable that the lemon is the most valuable of all fruit for preserving health.”
And lucky for us, it’s mostly free from fructose. Boil 8 ounces of water, pour into a cup and add 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice.
4. Lemon and Salt Gargle
This is great for a sore throat. Put a pinch of salt and some lemon juice in a little bit of water and gargle for 10 seconds. You’ll feel relief instantly.
5. Cinnamon Tea
This is my recipe! Cinnamon helps with the cold, coughs, and a sore throat. (As an added benefit, it also gets rid of gas.) There is a lot of cinnamon in this tea, so it’s quite strong, but in a pleasant way, not in an oil-of-oregano way.
-Add in a cup or glass:
- 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
- 1 drop of peppermint essential oil, 2 drops is too many! (Or use a peppermint tea bag and steep in hot water before adding cinnamon)
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup or honey (optional and not very necessary for a good taste)
-Pour 8 ounces of boiling water into cup
-Stir well every time you drink as the cinnamon will settle on the bottom
6. Marshmallow and Slippery Elm Tea
Marshmallow root and slippery elm bark in a tea are soothing for a sore throat.
7. Homemade Bone Broth
If you’re really sick this is all you should be eating. You know how everyone everywhere considers chicken soup to be the number one nurturing food when you’re sick? That didn’t come out of nowhere and it certainly doesn’t refer to that stuff you get in a can. You need homemade bone broth, and you need a lot.