10 Holistic Cold and Flu Remedies for Immunity this Winter

We all know the telltale signs - a tickle in the back of your throat, the dull headache and the body aches.  This is how a bad cold or flu usually starts but the good news is that there always time to nip it in the bud before it completely sets in.  Here are my tried and true remedies for staying healthy through the winter and kicking sickness in the booty. 

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I wrote up this protocol recently for a few of my clients who had been asking me how to stay healthy and to not get sick this winter. These are remedies that I follow myself to build up my immune system during cold and flu season by eating nutrient dense foods and sticking to these steps below I am usually able to keep myself from getting sick or shorten the duration of whatever bug I can't help but catch. P.S. if you are doing air travel for the holidays, this is a great protocol to follow as well, even if you aren't feeling sick.  

1) Drink Green Juices (without fruit), I like ones with celery and cucumber base plus any other greens, kale, spinach, romaine, dandelion greens, parsley, lemon or lime. Best on an empty stomach. The one pictured above has a healthy dose of ginger.  Ginger (and garlic too) have strong anti-bacterial properties, and if you can stomach it, a ginger shot works wonders too. 

2) Eliminate sugar, processed white flour and dairy.  The first two will lower your immune system response and dairy can add to mucus production and also cause sinus infections. 

3) Up your dose of Vitamin C and use vitamin C powder (absorbic acid) at onset take 1/2 teaspoon in water every 30 minutes until symptoms subside. 

4) Bone Broth.  Buy from a local butcher if you can, or I like bonafide in the freezer section of whole foods, beef or chicken.  Sip this in the AM first thing waking up (8 oz.) and before you go to bed (8 oz.) This helps build immunity and gelatin coats your intestines to help with absorption of nutrients from those green juices ;) The more nutrient rich your diet is, the less likely you are to get the cold or flu. 

5) Book an acupuncture appointment. I always recommend this right when you feel like you are getting sick. Adam Wiscomb in the financial district is amazing and works wonders.  I always see him when I am coming down with something and it works like a charm every time.  Tell him that I sent you :) You can book through his website. 

6) SLEEP! Get 8-10 hours of sleep and go to bed early.  Sleep is necessary for repair, recovery and fighting off infections. 

7) Frankincense essential oil. Two drops on your tongue at the first sign of a cold can be enough to nip in the bud.

8) FOOD! Ginger, garlic, onions, radishes, (all have anti-bacterial properties) turmeric (anti-inflammatory), chicken and lamb (contain selenium and zinc needed for immune function).

9) Sinus Rinse. Grab a Neil-Med or a Netti-pot and get to flushing! Most colds start with the build up of mucus and infection in your nose and throat. Flushing in the morning with warm water and salt is so helpful in keeping infections away. 

10) WATER! While following my anti-cold and flu remedies above, what is most important is to drink tons of water. I am talking enough to make you go to the bathroom every one to two hours. Water will help flush the system and being hydrated is major in fighting the flu virus or infections. 


Molly Alliman