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Everyone in my house has been sick for the past week. Whether it’s all the pollen in the air or the huge springtime temperature swings we get here in LA, not even my 4 month old has been spared a runny nose. For whatever reason, I also cannot take any over the counter cold remedies because they make me dizzy, and I can’t be dizzy when I’m trying to take care of a rambunctious pre-schooler and newborn baby.
So what’s a doctor mama to do? Whip up a 5-minute remedy from ingredients lying around my kitchen.
There’s no Cure for the Common Cold
I know that. Even though I know that the viruses that make us feel lethargic and sneezy and drippy cannot be cured, it doesn’t mean that there are not things you can do to help yourself feel better. Here are my usual tips:
- Shower before bed. The steam helps
loosenup all the postnasal drip so you get a bit more sleep.
- Eat lots of citrus fruit. Vitamin C helps
decreasethe length of colds by a day or two.
- Green tea. Full of antioxidants.
- Nasal saline spray. This again helps keep your nasal passages and sinuses nice and clear. You don’t want your sinuses to get blocked or you can develop a secondary bacterial sinus infection. This is also good for little kids–if everything drains out of their nose they may be less likely to get ear infections (your nose, sinuses, back of
throatand inner ears are all connected). Humidifierat night. Again, steam and moisture help to keep everything running smoothly. If your nasal passages are moist, you are also less likely to get nosebleeds.
Why is this drink a cure for the common cold?
First of all, ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory. It helps
The cinnamon and cloves are just there for taste.
And if you’re not sick? It really is a tasty beverage.
Dr. Mama’s Ginger Lemon Tea
- 1 inch fresh ginger sliced or grated (you don’t need to peel it)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cloves
- 4 cups water
- 1 lemon sliced
- honey to taste
- Bring the water in the saucepan to a boil over high heat.
- Add the ginger and spices, but not the lemon. Turn off the heat.
- Let steep for about 5-10 minutes (it’s fine if you forget about it and let it sit longer–the taste will be stronger).
- Using a mesh strainer, strain the tea into a serving container (I like Mason jars). Discard the used spices.
- Add a slice of lemon and squidge of honey to a mug. Pour the hot tea over it and enjoy!