Being sick, even when you are home in bed, is not fun. The combination of body aches, fever, chills, and nasal congestion can be enough to make anyone miserable.

There are plenty of home remedies that can alleviate your symptoms and get you back to normal.

If you still feel sick after a few weeks, make an appointment with your doctor.

If you have trouble breathing, have a rapid heartbeat, feel faint, or experience other severe symptoms, get medical help sooner.

Keep reading to see what cold and flu remedies you can conjure up at home.

Chicken soup

Chicken soup may not be a cure-all, but it’s a great choice when you are sick. 

Research suggests that enjoying a bowl of chicken soup with vegetables, prepared from scratch or warmed from a can, can slow the movement of neutrophils in your body. Neutrophils are a common type of white blood cell.

They help protect your body from infection. When they are moving slowly, they stay more concentrated in the areas of your body that require the most healing.


The health benefits of ginger root have been touted for centuries, but now we have scientific proof of its curative properties.

A few slices of raw ginger root in boiling water may help soothe a cough or sore throat.

Research suggests that it can also ward off the feelings of nausea that so often accompany influenza.

According to research, just 1 gram of ginger can alleviate clinical nausea of diverse causes.


Honey has a variety of antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. Drinking honey in tea with lemon can ease sore throat pain. Research suggests that honey is an effective cough suppressant, too.

In one study, researchers found that giving children 10 grams of honey at bedtime reduced the severity of their cough symptoms.

The children reportedly slept more soundly, which also helps reduce cold symptoms.


Garlic contains the compound allicin, which may have antimicrobial properties. Adding a garlic supplement to your diet might reduce the severity of cold symptoms.

According to some research, it might even help you avoid getting sick in the first place.

More research needs to be done on the potential cold-fighting benefits of garlic. In the meantime, adding more garlic to your diet probably won’t hurt.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C plays an important role in your body and has many health benefits. Along with limes, oranges, grapefruits, leafy greens, and other fruits and vegetables, lemons are a good source of vitamin C.

Adding fresh lemon juice to hot tea with honey may reduce phlegm when you’re sick. Drinking hot or cold lemonade may also help.

While these drinks may not clear up your cold entirely, they can help you get the vitamin C that your immune system needs.

Getting enough vitamin C can relieve upper respiratory tract infections and other illnesses.


Probiotics are ‘friendly’ bacteria and yeast that are found in your body, some foods, and supplements. They can help keep your gut and immune system healthy, and research indicates that probiotics may reduce your chance of getting sick with an upper respiratory infection.

For a delicious and nutritious source of helpful bacteria, include probiotic yogurt in your diet.

Besides its potential benefits for your immune system, yogurt is a healthy snack that provides plenty of protein and calcium.

Other options

Salt water

Gargling with salt water may help prevent upper respiratory infections. It may also decrease the severity of cold symptoms.

Vapor rub

You might not like the smell, but some old-fashioned topical ointments, such as vapor rub, appear to reduce cold symptoms in children older than 2 years.


Influenza thrives and spreads more easily in dry environments. Creating more humidity in your home may reduce your exposure to this flu-causing virus.

There are many ways that people treat their cold and flu symptoms with home remedies.

Some of those remedies may seem a bit weird, but there are people and communities that swear by their effectiveness.

To learn more about the oddest options out there, check out the weirdest cold treatments from around the world.

If you want to avoid getting sick altogether, you should proactively boost your immune system.