The week after Eid my house was in the grip of that most dreaded of winter ills, the heinous villain that has you miserable for days and home from work, but not in a good way; the dastardly flu, but not just any flu, it was the worst kind….. MAN-FLU! Dum dum dummmmmm……..
First it was Taufeeq who’s normally cheery and busy spirit was so crushed that even on Eid day we cut our rounds short to take him home so he could just sleep. And then Zulfikar, who went down like a plank shortly after and for the rest of the week I was nursing two sick babies. Somehow, as mom’s often are, I was spared the dreaded, MANFLU! Dum dum dummmmmm…. and managed to struggle on through the quagmire of germs, snot and misery that pervaded my home which is also my office. So there was literally no escape for me. Near the end of all this drama I had a day of being struck down with the most awful sore throat and thick head. Thankfully I managed to rest up for a day and my body fought back valiantly. I was pretty much back to normal within 2 days.
I am a firm believer in natural remedies and there a few go to recipes which I swear by. I am going to share 5 remedies I use regularly to fight the flu. Most of these taste so good I often have it anyway even when there’s no flu in sight. I hope you’ll try some of these and that at least one will do the trick for you. Do let me know what you think of them.
This is a drink my mom always used to make when the weather started to turn cold. As a young child I found it too spicy and never really partook, so it was a drink reserved for the adults. Now I simply love its spicy and warming qualities. The ginger is anti-inflammatory and has natural immune boosting properties. Easily enjoyed as a nightcap just before turning in.
1 2 inch piece of ginger peeled and chopped in chunks
3 or 4 sticks of cinnamon
3 elachi (cardamom) pods
3 – 4 tsp sugar (you can use honey if preferred)
Blend all this in a liquidizer with about half a cup of water till completely fine. Decant into a small pot. Add 2 cups of water and the sugar. Bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and allow to simmer slowly for about half an hour. You can add some more hot water if it has reduced too much. Just let it bubble again for a few minutes before removing from the heat. Strain into a cup and drink hot. You can add milk if you like to make it less spicy. Avoid the milk if you have a cough.
Citron, Ginger and Turmeric Tea
This recipe I found online last year on the www.honeysucklecatering.com Youtube channel. It uses honey, ginger, lemon, orange and turmeric. With lots of anti-inflammatory ingredients and the Vitamin C boost of the lemon and orange it is a great flu fighter. Even better than that, it’s so delicious I’m just finding any excuse to have it.
1 2 inch piece of ginger peeled
1 tbsp ground turmeric
1 cup honey
Top and tail the lemons and orange. Slice in half lengthwise, then place cut side down and very thinly slice it all up. Slice up the ginger and use a mortar and pestle to pound it down quite fine. Add to a bowl with all the other ingredients and mix well. Spoon into a glass jar and keep in the refrigerator. Add a big tablespoon of this mixture into a glass or mug of hot water. Stir it up and drink the lovely tea.
You can watch the Youtube Video by Honeysuckle Catering for this brew here:
Lemon, Honey and Turmeric Tea
This is a really simple, no effort brew that is really quick to put together. This this several times a day especially for sore throats.
¼ tsp ground Turmeric
1 pinch of salt or a grain of course salt, preferably Himalayan
a few drops of lemon juice
1 tsp honey
Add all this to ¾ cup of just boiled water and drink as hot as you can.
Golden Milk (Haldi Doodh)
The internet has coined Golden Milk as the new miracle cure all. With Turmeric touted as the silver bullet that can cure all minor ills everyone is climbing on the Golden milk bus. There are all kinds of dreamy concoctions using almond milk and pistachios amongst others but excuse me, cough cough, haldi doodh has been around since forever and really you want to use the KISS (keep it simple stupid) principle when you’re feeling sick anyway. A comforting anti-inflammatory drink. Again, not if you have a cough as the milk tends to make you phlegmy.
1 tsp ground Turmeric
¼ tsp black pepper
1 cup of milk
1 tsp honey or to taste
Boil this together for a few minutes and drink hot.
Bicarb and Salt Gargle
Not so much a drink as a way to get rid of that nagging sore throat.
Add ½ tsp of salt and ½ tsp of Bicarbonate of Soda to a glass of hot water. Stir to dissolve. Gargle with this mixture several times a day to clear a sore throat.
I’d love to hear what you think of these remedies and also to hear some remedies of your own in the comments section. Be well.